You certainly have to wonder if this blog is shining a light on our county’s political diversity and causing some discomfort among those with more inflexible, long-lasting political views.
Not a day goes by without the hard-right blogs — Juvinall, Steele, Rebane or Pruett — making a snide comment about the commentary, either here or own their own political blogs. It’s endless — and it increases during the political season. The poor fellows can’t help themselves.
The commentators here — from Tom O’Toole Michael Anderson to Steve Frisch — represent a diversity of political views — not just one.
In fact, our county’s political demographics are changing. This blog is just holding up a mirror to the community at large.
We should celebrate our political diversity, not denigrate it.
Much of the friction began when Tom McClintock was elected as our Congressman, spouting hard-line rhetoric like it’s time to get rid of the “left-wing clerk recorder” — a nonpartisan post. McClintock is largely going away with “redistricting,” but the divisiveness continues.
The campaigning against Tom Anderson in the judges’ race and Doug LaMalfa for Congress has been “negative.” For his part, LaMalfa is a staunch conservative. There are “whisper campaigns” about Beason, though he has done a good job.
The Union newspaper’s editor/publisher has exacerbated the friction in the Anderson-Smyrnos race, writing uninformed columns about judicial sentencing under new laws called “public safety realignment.” It means that some criminals can be released from prison without parole, jeopardizing public safety, so a judge has to consider this. Retired Judge Al Dover has called out The Union on its uninformed coverage.
People are going to be watching the results of our local elections closely — the Beason-McGuire and Andersonl-Smyrnos races, in particular — for signs of how the electorate feels about this negative, divisive campaigning.
My hunch: They don’t like it. They’re tired of it. They’re tired of the behind-the-scenes political operatives — the self-appointed tiny-town political puppet masters. They want to get on with their business.
We have a “silent majority” of voters in our community. They are reasonable, hard working and more “middle of the road” than the extreme ones who try to grab the spotlight all the time.