As the Golden State continues to transition into Greece-on-the-Pacific, this election year should have been an opportunity for its citizens to try to stop the madness. But it hasn’t worked out that way. Instead, this year Californians have embraced the model of Kevin Bacon in Animal House, figuratively assuming the position and repeating “Thank you, sir, may I have another?”
At the top of the ticket, Barack Obama is pummeling Mitt Romney by about 16 points in the polls, but that doesn’t mean he is ignoring the state. He’s using it like Charlie Sheen uses escorts. Every few weeks he and his entourage jet into Los Angeles for a fundraiser at some Hollywood potentate’s mansion, tying traffic in knots and leaving hundreds of thousands of commuters gridlocked as they burn $4.59 a gallon unleaded. He treats them like dirt, but they still love him.
Senator Dianne Feinstein is running again, having tread water in D.C. for two decades. At 79, she hasn’t slowed down any – she’s still as condescending and aloof as ever. When a local reporter asked her why she refused to debate her GOP opponent, the bright newcomer Elizabeth Emken (Full Disclosure: I donated to Elizabeth’s campaign), the Senator gave him a pat and walked out. The editorial boards of the state’s many dying newspapers timidly urged Feinstein to at least pretend to respect the voters and participate. She ignored them. Apparently enjoying being treated with contempt, Californians seem poised to reelect her.
In the down-ticket races, voters are ignoring California’s face-first dive off the fiscal cliff and are focusing on the truly big issues. In my south Los Angeles district, the Democrat running for the Assembly has based his campaign entirely on his support for “choice,” as if electing another GOP backbencher will somehow overturn Roe v. Wade. He’ll probably win.
Left unmentioned: Staggering unemployment, budget collapse and the multi-zillion dollar high speed train that the liberal clique in Sacramento wants to build between two desolate hick towns in the Central Valley.