From the Balcony of the Irate Right

  • 10/04/2012
  • Terelle Jerricks

IrrateRightEvery Four Years the Bolts Seem to Come off the Wheels of the Republican Go-cart

By James Preston Allen, Publisher

I know that you’ve all seen the emails and Facebook postings proclaiming Obama to be a socialist, a closet Muslim or even still from the “birthers” that he wasn’t even born here! It seems like the closer it appears that he might actually win re-election the more irate the screams from the Republican balcony become. You will note that I print the occasional rant from my right-wing critics in our letters column. I do so relishing the idea that I’m both providing a space for them to exercise their rights to free speech and exposing Random Lengths readers to the fact that not all of our neighbors are left leaning card carrying unionists.

I’m not sure if all of this anti-Obamaism is based exclusively on the objection of having a black man in the White House who isn’t a servant, but I do feel a certain pride in the fact that this man with the most unlikely of names has risen to the highest office in the nation. If it makes them feel any better, he is still “a servant of the people.” And as we may well witness in this political clash, a master of American politics.

It is also curious to note that with all the Republican fears about voter fraud, it is their own campaign’s subcontractors they have to worry about–particularly in battleground states like Florida. To the Obama campaign’s credit, most of the legal battles over new voting restriction laws in Texas, Ohio and now Pennsylvania were won — laws that could have excluded hundreds of thousands of legitimate voters the from the polls.

All of this however is just background noise for most Americans who view politics as a blood sport. They like to see players get muddied on the field in their struggle to get into office, not unlike football. The problem in the game of politics is that there are no referees in striped shirts. And although there are rules and laws, they are meant to argued over, bent or broken, in service of winning at any cost. The only firm rule is not getting caught and/or making sure that your opponent is exposed. It’s the only true reality TV sport.

So every four years, the bolts on the wheels of our not so civil society seems to come off. The attack ads are flung at the opposition’s public image like stones from catapults at a castle and campaigns amass huge war chests to increase the size and volume of their messaging. Yes, politics is the surrogate for civil war. This war of politics is not limited to just the national campaigns nor just to politicians. In the race between Sen. Alan Lowenthal and Long Beach Councilman Gary DeLong for the 47th Congressional district, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce spent an unprecedented $319,000 on television and Internet advertising against Lowenthal by attacking his bills as a “job killers.”

So what are these job killer bills that Sen. Lowenthal has sponsored? One was, AB 568, which he sponsored as an Assemblyman. This bill would have prevented pregnant juvenile detainees from being shackled around the abdomen. The others are:

  • AB 1186– the School Energy Efficiency and the Greenhouse Gas Reductions Act. These bills would have established grants from the State Energy Resources Conservation and Development Commission to help districts build energy efficient schools.
  • AB 1532, an Amendment to the California Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006. It would have designated funding for jobs and businesses related to reducing greenhouse gases.
  • SB 1572, the AB 32 Investment Fund. Similar to AB 1532, it would also have designated funding for job promotion in disadvantaged communities.
  • SB 761, an internet privacy protection bill that would have prohibited unauthorized use of consumers’ private information online.

Not unlike the attacks from the irate-right on Obama, these accusations by the US Chamber of Commerce in support of Delong are really quite suspect and in my estimation, verge on delusional!

Do be wary of these late-in-the-game attacks as they harken back to an era of politics, especially here in California, when one historical campaign was won by an unknown Richard Nixon who launched an anonymous telephone attack against Helen Hagen-Douglas asking if they knew she was a communist!

These kind of tactics don’t just apply to politicians either. The hilltop Republicans have been screaming from their balconies about this newspaper again too.

“If you don’t stop carrying that #!*## newspaper in your establishment, we’ll stop coming here,” they scream. So much for having a civil discourse or defending the First Amendment. My reaction? Go read the Daily Breeze if you want to hear only the Republican side of the argument!

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