“Choose Or Lose”

Badge - 2008 election


It’s intriguing how a single word can transfix a million minds.

An ordered world is spinning out of sync — balance betrayed. We are left with these final thoughts from the Wicked Witch of the West:
“Oh! What to do? What to do?”

Nike’s right. There’s nothing to it — just do it. Doing it in Oakhurst means finding a political group with which you identify and getting involved and active. I’m talking Tea Party, Madera County Republicans, Mountain Democrats. You name it — I’m for it. As long as it’s folks paying attention, being thoughtfully reflective, mutually respectful and dependably supportive.

As autumn leaves of red and gold drift by our window, The Oakhurst Democratic Club kicks off its “New Fall Season” this Saturday, September 6th, at Denny’s on Highway 41.

In keeping with a concerted effort to maximize political candidate exposure to membership regardless of party affiliation, joining the group on Saturday will be Art Moore, campaigning for Congressional Representative in the Fourth District as a committed Republican. Major Moore, a graduate of West Point with a combined fourteen years of active military duty and National Guard service in his background, faces an uphill struggle against our current Congressman, Tom McClintock, running for a third turgid term.

Moore plans to work across the aisle, get things done and keep Yosemite open. McClintock promises little and does much less. He still hasn’t moved into the district he represents despite continual pledges to do so. Tom’s primary achievement of late was to introduce a bill in the House of Representatives honoring Jessie Benton Fremont, wife of early California pioneer and politician, John Fremont.

McClintock, in a token bow to the 150th Anniversary of the Yosemite Land Grant, mistakenly credits Ms. Fremont with influencing President Abraham Lincoln to endorse the Act, although there is no actual historical evidence supporting such a fantasy. To the contrary, whatever limited relationship Ms. Fremont had with the President seems to have been confrontational and adversarial in nature.

Trusting McClintock’s recommendation, the Republican House approved H.R. 1192 redesignating Mammoth Peak as Mount Jessie Benton Fremont on July 15th before leaving on their five-week summer vacation, a classic illustration of form triumphant over content.

The Congress of California Seniors is a statewide, nonprofit advocacy organization focusing primarily on legislative and consumer issues that impact older adults. They publish a “Friends and Foes of Seniors Report Card.” Project Vote Smart reports that on this listing, Tom McClintock scores a remarkable 15% out of a possible 100 percentage points, the rock bottom lowest performance of 119 California names listed.

But Congressman McClintock is a perfect tire iron in the spokes of effective government and warrants re-election if one wants Federal gridlock to continue with paralysis preserved, even if it means voting against personal self-interest for a man who’s gone on record time and time again against virtually every progressive position from Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s New Deal onward.

Social Security? McClintock calls it “morally bankrupt” and “nothing more than a tax levied against youth.” Medicare? McClintock voted for Congressman Paul Ryan’s abhorrent budget scheme that offers to turn our current system into a voucher plan with tight restrictions on treatment options and expenditures. Immigration Reform? While our former District Representative, Jeff Denham (R- Turlock), courageously advocates comprehensive legislation eventually incorporating a path to citizenship, McClintock is dead set against any such idea, assumingly embracing Mitt Romney’s “self-deportation” notion – as viable a concept as screen windows on submarines.

I’m hoping to see you Friday night at the Oakhurst Community Center for the 12th Annual Sierra-Oakhurst Kiwanis Run For The Gold Car Show Dinner at 6 PM – this year featuring the Yosemite Jazz Band and a Minarets ensemble. Then Saturday morning we’ll be at Denny’s spending some time with Art Moore, who will be arriving around 8:15, so get there plenty early.

The October Oakhurst Democratic Club meeting will be a “Meet the Candidates Morning” with Oakhurst attorney David Linn and incumbent Michael Keitz competing in the race for Madera County District Attorney — and candidates for the office of Sheriff, those being current Undersheriff, Michael Salvador, and Chowchilla Chief of Police, Jay Varney.

The right to vote is our most precious political inheritance.

We must use it or could lose it.

It is we who have the final responsibility to select those who choose to serve.

“A well-informed electorate is a prerequisite to democracy” – Thomas Jefferson (1789)

2 Responses to ““Choose Or Lose””

  1. Cassie Says:

    Mammoth Peaks and Mounting Jessie Benton Fremont—there is a joke in there somewhere.

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