Saturday, November 1, 2008

Recommendations for LA

The Big Day is almost here, when good Americans across the land will be voting for President and Senator and Governor and Representative and Mayor and City Council and School Board and Judges and Supervisors and Propositions and Measures and many other offices and legislative proposals.

Here in LA, I usually rely on the LA Times. I read their editorials about the Propositions and various officeholders in the weeks before the election, and then I print out their recommendations, so I know how to vote. This year they have put all of this in a Vote-o-rama, which makes it very easy. I agree with almost everything, except Bernard Parks for Supervisor. I'm going with Mark Ridley-Thomas. Parks is a shade too conservative for me, and seems a little too brittle and aggressive. Ridley-Thomas has the air of an accountant, but seems fairly competent. Parks also does not seem to be very tolerant of disagreement. Supervisors in Los Angeles County are possibly the most powerful non-mayoral local elected officials in the country. Each one has a constituency of 2 million. There are five. It's not a good system. There is no elected executive, so each Supervisor is effectively a member of the legislative and executive branches. Not a healthy system, but no one seems to be able to change it.

I also disagree with the LA Times about Prop. A, which is about raising money for anti-gang programs. Their issue with it is that the city doesn't have good programs to ensure accountability for the money. My attitude is that I trust Antonio V on this one.

Last night I picked up a copy of LA City Beat, which I rarely read, but their endorsements were extremely well-written, with a jocularity one rarely encounters in editorials, particularly about this topic. For president they endorsed "That One." I disagree with them on Prop. 2, which is about confinement of farm animals. I'm all for being kind to animals, but I don't think this kind of law should be part of the initiative process; this should be dealt with by the legislature.

Only three (3!) more days!

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