June 5th, 2006

Not Left-Handed

Keith Olbermann: American Hero.

Run, do not walk, to check out this clip.

I wish I had the time to browse through Countdown more often; I do record it on my ReplayTV, but then I never actually watch it. You have to FFWD through the stupid human-interest sections, and a lot of it is just going over stuff I already know, but there's almost always at least 15 minutes worth of riveting TV in there...

ETA: Another clip worth watching: Preview of Who Killed the Electric Car?. We saw this when we went to see An Inconvenient Truth. Looks cool. And, hey, President Bartlett is narrating! :-)
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Endorsement addendum.

I'm planning to vote yes on Santa Clara County Measures A, B, and C.

Measure A bumps up our sales tax under a rule that keeps the revenues created in the county for use on things like public health, infrastructure, education, and emergency preparedness. It's opposed solely by the usual suspects: the Libertarian Party and the "taxpayers' association", using arguments that seem unusually disingenuous even for them, claiming that all the money would go to mass transit. Given that the measure is supported by the League of Conservation Voters, the Sheriff, the Superintendents of local schools, and so on, I find it hard to believe that no money is going to the various other areas). It's also supported by the (non-partisan) League of Women Voters, and Representatives Mike Honda and Anna Eshoo, both of whom I like a lot.

Measure B is an odd one. It's a ballot earmark, which I usually dislike, but it does serve a purpose I like (parks), and it's opposed by, it appears, nobody. Even the Republican-dominated Chamber of Commerce likes it. The Libertarians and anti-tax loons couldn't be bothered to write an essay opposing it. Well, OK...

Measure C is a bond issue to upgrade facilities at the Foothill and DeAnza community colleges. I have a friend who got his degree at Foothill, Xta is currently taking a class at DeAnza, and I know various other people who've taken a few classes at one or the other. The district is apparently quite good at attracting and keeping good faculty, but the schools are starting to get run-down and overcrowded. Using bonds for this sorta thing makes sense. The only opponent is the SV Taxpayers' Assocation, using, again, rather disingenuous and sensationalistic arguments -- they assert, on their No on C website, with lots of italicized and bold text, that the "real cost" of the bond is much more than the stated amount of the bond, because of interest costs. Umm... duh. Bonds accrue interest. So do mortgages and home equity loans -- that doesn't stop people from using them to buy houses and rennovate. Paying a large, up-front cost over a period of 30 years, with interest, is frequently preferable to trying to accumulate money for 25 years, then make the purchase. One wonders whether these jokers reacted the same way to Arnie's deficit consolidation bonds.

For the Santa Clara County Democratic Central Committee, one of the people I've been corresponding with in the Silicon Valley Dean Democratic Club, who's actively campaigning for multiple candidates I like (Debra Bowen, and Phil), recommends: "Herb Engstrom wholeheartedly. Also Pearl Cheng. Likewise Vince Cortese. In that order. ... I think Andrew [Pontius, whom I met and liked] has withdrawn, which is a cryin shame, he'd be very good." I think I'll also cast one of my (up to 6) votes for Andy, anyhow. Have to decide what to do with the other two. I'm mildly acquainted with Alyson Abramowitz, and she did play a non-trivial role in getting me to become more active in the first place -- after I attended her Boston WorldCon fundraiser, I worked at a few phonebanks she was running for Kerry. OTOH, she's supporting Westly.

ETA: *facepalm* Upon further inspection, I actually don't get to vote for anyone on the Central Committee this time out; the seats for AD21 aren't on the ballot -- the number of qualifying candidates was the same as the number of seats, so appearance on the ballot wasn't required. (As it happens, I recall meeting a couple of the people who will be taking the seats, at the convention; one of them helped me corral the other delegates for the AD, when I was trying to get a whip count.) Fortunately, my research didn't go to waste; the people I was thinking would be on my ballot do turn out to be on Xta's, in AD22. (I think I got this race into my head because I was referring to Xta's ballot last night at the party.)

ETA: My mail today included a hand-written note from Jack Carter. :-)
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