The Road Back From Darkness

Random Lengths News | November 14, 2005
There should be people dancing in the rain this morning after the stunning defeat of the Terminator’s special election “I’m-gonna-fix-Kalyfonia” campaign at the polls last night. Yes, I don’t think I’ve felt this good about an election since Governor Pat Brown defeated Richard “Tricky Dick” Nixon back in 1962 after which Nixon made his disingenuous comment, “The press won’t have Nixon to kick around anymore.” Ah, if that were only true… But it wasn’t. As history is remembered, Nixon not only came back like a bad smell, he invaded our national politics with his snide, corrupt and paranoid ways up until the White House plumbers got caught breaking into the Democrats National headquarters at the Watergate Hotel. Will we be so lucky this time around?

Only perhaps if Arnold gets lost in China and doesn’t return. But until that happens, there should be some guarded self-congratulations for all of those citizens who helped stem the tide of the encroaching neo-con retrovirus attacking our body politic. The significance of stopping Arnold dead in his tracks should not be allowed to be diminished by the rightwing spin doctors and media pundits, either. This was a resounding defeat for a political agenda that leads directly back to Bush’s White House, and to Karl Rove, the political advisor still under investigation in the recent grand jury indictment of I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby. As, it is widely suspected Rove is “Official A” mentioned in the indictment, but not yet charged for outing Valier Plame as an undercover CIA agent by revealing her identity to columnist Robert Novak.

The flag of caution that I will raise now is that Arnold’s “special election” strategy may be kaput, but it has drained the union opposition by tens of millions in campaign funds, and with his reelection bid coming on next November this might just have been part of a clever Rove plan to drain them dry. The teacher’s union felt so threatened by propositions 74, 75 and 76, as well they should have, that they mortgaged every piece of real estate that the organization owns to fund this test of wills with our muscle-bound Governor. It just may prove to be the best investment that teachers have ever made politically, showing that a group of academic-girlie-man types can actually stand up and be empowered to defeat a sitting governor. Applause is indeed warranted.

The Governor’s attacks, not just against one union but all unions, has created such an unprecedented sense of solidarity statewide that he may have even a bigger battle in the future—for if he ever again promises to “fix” anything in Kalyfornia again it better be worth the 50 million bucks. Quite probably some of his defeat can be laid on the reaction of voters in general to his relying on the special election tactic once again to subvert the State Constitution this time. It didn’t help him much that the most ultra conservative forces, the Catholic right-to-lifers and the drug corporations were all in bed with him and that the drug companies were exposed for buying off liberal endorsements for proposition 78. The NAACP and others have a few mea culpas to offer publicly before they are forgiven.

Oddly enough, though Arnold may have just fixed something in a back-handed sort of way that he hadn’t intended and that just could be by changing the lack of courage and commitment of Democrats, liberals and progressives alike, so that they actually stand up and fight for something they believe in. There is nothing like a common enemy to bind people together to defend their village against the savages at the gate. Applause again is in order for the Terminator for doing the wrong thing but getting a more desirable result. Who knows if former Governor Pete Wilson had done this, several of these wrong-headed propositions just might have passed.

Who knows for certain what this election foretells but when we look back on this date from some future vantage point we may just muse that it was this election and the public’s reaction to Arnold’s muscle bound ego that stopped the Republican neo-con march into darkness which awakened the consciousness of America from its nightmare of corruption, war and torture.

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