That makes the improbable candidacy of Herminia Ortiz, who is
seeking to unseat Pasadena Councilman Victor Gordo in the March 8
election, all the more intriguing.
Admittedly, hers is a long-shot campaign. But if she wins, she
may just become the first elected municipal official in modern American
history, outside of Puerto Rico, who speaks only Spanish.
I wrote about Ortiz's candicacy here and I know she doesn't have a snowball's chance, but the consequences of her win would be devastating to the concept of a person's duty to become American before joining the political process. Not to mention the costs involved -
If Ortiz wins, will the city provide her with a translator? For
what events and at what cost Will the translator be allowed in closed
sessions, where duly authorized participants are sworn to secrecy?
Would the city pay for translation at political functions?
"We'll cross that bridge when we get to it,' said Jane
Rodriguez, the Pasadena city clerk, who is responsible for setting up
translation at public hearings. "We haven't come across that before ...
It would be expensive.'
The exclusionary tactics of the immigrant rights crowd and their apologists is phenomenal. To automatically write off the majority of people in the district who speak English, and pay taxes in order to keep the services flowing to the illegals, is morally wrong. Yet, this crowd would deny constituents the ability to redress grievances in the native American language. Will we stand for it? We'll see on March 8th.
On a related note - The drive for illegals to vote is gaining steam.
Rep. Adam Schiff told a mostly friendly crowd Friday that the president's Social Security reform plan is destined to fail.
And when it does, he said, Democrats must be ready to seize the
victory if they are to regain control of Congress and the White House.
Great way to represent us Congressman. Don't debate the fiscal and moral value of having people invest in their own future, but try to stifle the debate before it ever happens. I worked for the Feds and the retirement system I had is similar to the one the President wants to implement. We had five funds and you could invest (from high to low risk) in foreign stocks, small-cap stocks, an indexed stock fund, bonds, or a money-market type account. No one forced you into high-risk stocks and you could mix-and-match your contributions. I had a great return on my account (and I still do). Those who are younger will, naturally, gravitate towards higher risk funds with the greatest returns and older investors (if they're smart) will go for the bonds or money-market type accounts, becuse they are low-risk and you don't want to incur risk when retirement looms.
Just because some people aren't financially savvy, doesn't mean you can deny the majority of Americans a better living in retirement. But then we've alotta noodleheads in my district who don't get it -
Few attending the forum were very sympathetic to Bush's proposals,
and many took issue with his assertion that Social Security is facing a
financial meltdown by 2042.
"I think this whole issue was raised by Republicans to make
Bush and Cheney's friends on Wall St. richer,' said Shelley Stephens,
54, of South Pasadena.
After seeing her parents lose "hundreds of thousands of
dollars' when the stock market crashed in 2000, Stephens said she is
wary about diverting payroll taxes into private accounts.
"They are taking a stable program and turning it into a less stable program,' she said.
"This is a social program that works,' added 42-year-old
Melanie Cicconi, also of South Pasadena. Though she agreed some
adjustments must be made, she said the president's plan is too extreme.
"This is not an immediate crisis and there are so many different ways to solve this problem,' Cicconi said.
Several speakers took a more conspiratorial tone, asserting the
entire debate is a red herring cooked up by Republicans to draw
attention away from their controversial judicial appointments and the
It's pretty simple for you financial Luddites, don't invest in the new program. Take the 1.3% return on your Social Security account, shut up, and let those who are smarter enjoy themselves in retirement.
The widow of US writer Hunter S Thompson has said her
husband killed himself while they were speaking to one another on the
Thompson - best-known for his 1972 account of a
drug-addled Nevada trip, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas - shot himself
on Sunday at his Colorado home.
His widow, Anita Thompson, 32, told the Aspen Daily News she heard the "clicking of the gun".
She said: "I was on the phone with him, he set the receiver down and did it."
What utter selfishness and disregard for his family. The admiration I had for the writer cannot be said for his lack of humanity. I have no problem if some old fart wants to blow his brains out, but to make your loved ones complicit in the act is despicable. And now his wife feels guilty -
"He wanted to leave on top of his game. I wish I could have been more supportive of his decision," she added.
Tom McClintock writes about the runaway government spending in California -
To provide that high level of public services 40 years ago, California state government spent $200 for every man, woman and child in the state -- or $1,240 in today's inflation-adjusted terms. Today, California government consumes $3,200 for every
person in the state -- 2 times more in population-adjusted, inflation-adjusted terms.
Put another way, this year state government will spend $9.38 out of every $100 that you earn. That's the biggest chunk out of your earnings in California's history.
Californians pay the fourth-heaviest taxes per gallon of gasoline in the country -- and yet California ranks dead last in per-capita spending on its roads. Californians back every classroom with nearly $300,000, and yet only a fraction of the money reaches
the actual classroom. Californians pay among the highest sales and income-tax rates in the country, and yet California's credit rating is the lowest in the nation.
He goes on in the article to state solutions to the budget problem -
To do so, we must decentralize our service delivery systems -- starting by restoring control of our schools to parents and school boards and restoring their management to principals and teachers. Highway taxes must again be earmarked exclusively for our highways. We must roll back the excessive regulations that obstruct our commerce, our housing, our energy and our water supplies. We must dramatically downsize the state's bureaucracies by eliminating overlapping jurisdictions and by abolishing agencies that duplicate local or federal functions.
There's only one thing missing; the rampant illegal immigration that is
driving this mess. Why are we spending so much money on schools? To
educate the children of 3-5 million illegal aliens. Why are the
freeways crowded? Housing prices through the roof? 3-5 million illegal
aliens. Why are the county hospitals closing? You got it. We will not
be able to call California the Golden State again until the politicians
come to grips with the elephant in the tent. And if a good man like Tom
McClintock won't talk about it, who will?
Drudge links to a talk by NY Times editor, Bill Keller -
Keller’s speech focused on the struggle of
print journalism to maintain its relevance in the face of constant
cable news updates, increased blogging, and failures in credibility.
He noted that, according to a recent opinion poll, the public’s
trust in journalists is at its lowest point in decades. He attributed
this in part to the increasingly polarized nature of the American
public, who look to the press for support of their viewpoints.
“At the moment,” he said, “the major press is under attack from ideologues on the right and left.”
Keller also sees “blogging,” or online writing that blurs news and
commentary, as a mixed blessing. While he celebrated the blogger’s
ability to uncover breaking news, he noted that a blog’s inherent bias
might be detrimental to the reader. “A blog is still a view of the
world through a pinhole,” he said, noting that it can sometimes fall as
low as being a “one man circle jerk.”
If I had some one else blogging with me, I guess I could then do it with two hands. What an elitist jerk. He then goes on -
“There is a pressure to feel well informed
without ever confronting an opinion that confronts your prejudices,” he
said of blog readers.
I get constant pressure when I post something that a reader may think I've either gone overboard or am completely off the map in my opinion. Keller fails to realize that our experiences and knowledge color all our opinions, be it bloggers or so-called "objective journalists". It would be a great thing for the MSM to start declaring their bias and write their stories from that basis. We can then decide for ourselves if the stories warrant their place in the collective consciousness of their readers.
S. Thompson, the acerbic counterculture writer who popularized a new
form of journalism in books like "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas,"
fatally shot himself Sunday night at his Aspen-area home, his son said.
He was 67.
"Hunter prized his privacy and we ask that his friends and admirers
respect that privacy as well as that of his family," Juan Thompson said
in a statement released to the Aspen Daily News.
Pitkin County Sheriff Bob Braudis, a personal friend of Thompson,
confirmed the death to the News. Sheriff's officials did not return
calls to The Associated Press late Sunday.
I guess his demons finally got to him. But, boy, what a great writer! "Fear-and-Loathing in Las Vegas" had me laughing my ass off at the escapades of Thompson and his "lawyer" on their drug addled trip to Vegas. I've read the book many times and I can still cite passages wholesale. "Fear-and-Loathing on the Campaign Trail" documents the sordidness of the Nixon campaign in 1972. No one captured Nixon's paranoia and vileness like Thompson did.
Like many men who give a $#@!, Thompson allowed his passions, along with too much booze and drugs, to overwhelm his talent and he spent the last few years a raving lunatic seeing conspiracies everywhere.
An aside, get ready for the media to dredge up all the '60's
counter-culture BS in the next few days; you'll be seeing alotta idiots
that you hoped never to see again.
Councilman Victor Gordo and challenger Herminia Ortiz squared off
Saturday in a debate focusing on immigrant concerns such as affordable
housing, protections for day laborers, and rumors of federal immigration raids.
I'm not a fan of current councilman, Victor Gordo, but Ortiz doesn't even speak English! -
The Institute of Popular Education of Southern California hosted
the forum at Villa Parke Community Center. It was conducted primarily
in Spanish, with English translation.
Ortiz, who does not speak English, is running for Gordo's
Fifth District council seat in the March 8 election. It is the only
contested City Council race, and Gordo is heavily favored to win re-
How can she represent the entire district, when she obviously would only do so for half the residents; that should be troubling to many. She wants to portray the many immigrants as victims of city officials and law enforcement -
She criticized an affordable housing project funded in part by the City
Council and being built by Heritage Housing Partners at Fair Oaks
Avenue and Peoria Street. She said the project had forced out Latino
families, and others are either too poor to be considered for
low-income housing or undocumented and therefore unqualified.
Ortiz also complained of police patrols of sites where day laborers
congregate, earning loud applause from the Spanish-speaking crowd when
she suggested that money for those officers could be better spent on
health care for the community.
Ortiz needs to realize that if immigrants want to be a part of the community, then they need to become citizens, vote, and learn to speak English. It's pretty darn simple. If they can't, or won't, do so, then it's time to leave the country. You can read more about Ortiz and the election here and here.