Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Election Post-Mortem

Ah, victory. Mostly.

Uncle Woody was, it goes without saying, one of the voices raised in favor of killing all the initiatives in this election. Nothing about this "special" election had any validity on its merits. It was truly an act of political desperation.

If the writers of these travesties were completely honest, we would find that this wasn't designed to fix our budget deficit. This was an attempt to force dollars into the hands of greedy special interests. They know who they are.

California voters, whatever else our faults may be, were not fooled. Even those who voted for the initiatives appear to have done so largely because they didn't see any better way of getting out of our mess.

The real loser, of course, is Schwarzenegger. Politically and personally, Schwarzenegger is running out of options. His so-called political capital is just about maxed out. He has, truthfully, no creative ideas for fixing anything, budget included. Nor does he have enough influence left with the state legislature to be able to dictate solutions that will garner any serious discussion.

Assuming Arnie has aspirations of serving further as a career politician, this entire budget fiasco is going to become a millstone around his thirty inch neck. Anyone heard from Gray Davis lately?

It's still relatively early, but no one seems to believe that the 1A through 1E initiatives have any life left. Good. May they rest in relative peace. 1F appears to have won, but that doesn't really bother me. For all my huff about "voting the bums out," If we can actually put some teeth behind this initiative that theoretically limits the legislature's ability to raise their own salaries in a deficit year, the current class should be forced into salary laissez faire for the duration of their terms.

California may be dysfunctional, but the voters still have some life left.

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