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Friday, May 9, 2008

Even though California Democrats expressed their desire for Hillary (take that, Bill) in the way-too-early presidential primary, there are, believe it or not, other issues at stake in this election year, and other candidates to anoint. Thatís why weíre having yet another primary in June, and this week I got my absentee ballot. I donít have a sample ballot or any election materials other than what the various campaigns have foisted on me, but I can vote any time Iím ready.

Two of the candidates on my ballot are running unopposed for renomination — my congresswoman and my assemblywoman. Iím going to need to do some research for state senator (three candidates) and county supervisor. The county board of supervisors is nonpartisan, so this will be the election if one candidate gets more than 50% of the votes. There are eight candidates for the one seat from my district, however, so a runoff in November is likely. Thatís okay, because we have to hold an election in November anyway. That presidential primary in March was just silly.

There are also eight people running for five seats on the Democratic county committee, and Iím really lost in that race. Iím not enough of a party guy to know whether I should care whoís on the committee. Imagine being one of the three losers, though. How embarrassing. Itís like not making the NBA playoffs; you have to be really bad to miss the cut.

And we have two initiatives, Proposition 98 (ďEminent Domain. Limits on Government Authority.Ē) and Proposition 99 (ďEminent Domain. Limits on Government Acquisition of Owner-Occupied Residence.Ē). Oh my. Iím going to have to do some serious research here, once I get my ballot pamphlet. The first one includes something about prohibiting rent control and changing condemnation rules, along with eliminating ďdeference to government in property rights cases.Ē At first blush, this seems a lot like throwing a sop to the poor (rent control), while lining the pockets of the rich.

Both of these measures have wording that keeps government from using eminent domain to convey private property to non-government businesses and individuals. Initiatives are almost always poorly written and impossible to enforce, so my inclination, other things being equal, is to vote no on any of them that appear on the ballot. Iíve made exceptions in the past, and I can always be convinced, so itís good I have a month or so before I have to decide.

29 April 2008

Patch of blue.

Another thing I got in the mail this week was the form Iíve been waiting for from the accountant. I can now file my taxes, but I donít have to have it done until October 15, because I filed an extension last month at the very last minute. Since I wonít get my rebush check until I file my return, I doubt Iíll wait very long. If theyíre giving it away, I want my share.

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