Monday, October 31, 2005

Scary Day Indeed: Bush Names (Sc)Alito To Replace O'Connor

President Bush has decided to completely cave-in to his right-wing, evangelical base and has chosen Judge Samuel Alito to be his new Supreme Court nominee. Alito has been the "wet dream" choice of Christian conservatives for years. He was appointed to the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals in New Jersey 15 years ago at the age of 40 by President George H.W. Bush. He is brilliant, Catholic and extremely conservative, a "Scalia-lite." This has earned him the nickname Scalito.

Amusing (and scary) that Bush would pick Halloween to name such a nominee in the wake of Rosa Parks death.

Venus Unlikely To Qualify for WTA Championships

Nadia Petrova (finally) won her first WTA Tour title on Sunday, the Generali Ladies Tournament in Linz, Austria by handily beating the crafty veteran left-hander Patty Schnyder 4-6, 6-3, 6-1. Schnyder promptly withdrew from this week's Advanta Championships in Philadelphia, the penultimate tour event of the year. Venus Williams had earlier withdrawn which means that she is unlikely to qualify for the tour-ending WTA championships in Los Angeles starting Tuesday November 8. As I mentioned earlier, the much hyped "race to Los Angeles" turned out to be not much of a race when Venus didn't compete for the 8th and final slot and has now been passed by both Schnyder (#7) and Petrova (#8) and may even slip to #10 if Dementieva wins two matches in Philadelphia. Interestingly, Serena is at #11. These are the calendar year performance rankings, not the official past-12-month rankings. Lindsay is currently at the top of both, although Kim Clijsters has the best shot to end the year #1 if she gets to the final in L.A. and Sharapova doesn't repeat as WTA Tour Champion. I still think it's very likely that one of the top 8 who has qualified for Los Angeles but who has not played recently due to injury (i.e. Justine Henin-Hardenne) may withdraw, allowing the #9 person to enter the draw, but at this point that is likely to be Elena Dementieva and not the 2005 Wimbledon Champion and Los Angeles native Venus Ebony Starr Williams.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Arnold Slow On Filling Supreme Court Vacancy

Carol Corrigan Vance Raye

Former California State Supreme Court justice Janice Rogers Brown (and certified whacko) has issued her first ruling from her new perch on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and President Bush has nominated two people to the U.S. Supreme Court in the four and a half months there has been a vacancy on the 7-member California Supreme Court. Reportedly, the President is set to nominate either Alito or Luttig on Monday but the Governator still hasn't picked his State Supreme Court nominee. Arnold did make some state appellate court nominations on Friday and has apparently narrowed his choice down to two candidates: Vance Raye and Carol Corrigan. Raye is basically a clone (and crony) of Janice Rogers Brown whom many legal commenters (including the Attorney General of the State of California) have problems with. On the plus side, he did vote earlier this year to uphold California's Domestic Partner Benefits Law. Carol Corrigan is more moderate but apparently is so tough that she caused a grown man to faint in an oral argument two weeks ago! Gee, whom do you think Arnold will pick?

Saturday, October 29, 2005

ALASKA: State Supreme Court Saves Same-Sex DP Benefits

The Alaska Supreme Court issued a ruling on Friday in ACLU v. State of Alaska which overturns a lower court decision which said it was legal for the City of Anchorage to bar same-sex domestic partner benefits to public employees. Further, the Court said that it was unconstitutional to not provide benefits to the same-sex partners of public employees if these benefits were being applied to married opposite-sex couples. The money quote from the majority opinion is:

"Essentially all opposite-sex adult couples
may marry and thus become eligible for
these benefits. But no same-sex couple
can ever become eligible for these benefits
because same-sex couples may not marry
in Alaska. The spousal limitations in the benefits
programs therefore affect public
employees with same-sex domestic
partners differently than public
employees who are married."


"We conclude that the public employers'
spousal limitations violate the Alaska
Constitution's equal protection clause."

The court re-affirms that same-sex marriage is not legal in the state of Alaska (the only state in the Union that has ended sex discrimination in marriage to date is Massachusetts) but that Government has a responsibility to treat similarly situated couples equally, and it evaluates registered same-sex domestic partners and married opposite sex couples as such.

Instant Run-off Voting Rebuffed in Sacramento

Argh. I am not sure why it is so hard for such a good idea to get enacted by a progressive state like California. I'm talking about instant run-off voting.Instant run-off voting is an election system by which the voters include a ranked list of their preferences for the candidates on the ballot. It reduces the unfortunate situation of having to vote for the "lesser of two evils."

Friday, October 28, 2005

Miers Withdraws; New Shortlist for O'Connor's Replacement

The AP has a new short list of possible candidates that the President may be considering to nominate to the Supreme Court now that The Church Lady Harriet Miers has withdrawn her nomination. The usual suspects are there: Alito, Garza, Jones, McConnell, Luttig, Wilkinson, Clement, Owens, Estrada, Brown. However, also on the list are some women I haven't heard of before. Alice Batchelder (61 years old, 6th Circuit Appellate Court), Karen Williams (54 years old, 4th Circuit Appellate Court), Maura Corrigan (57, Michigan Supreme Court Justice), Maureen Mahoney (50, clerked for Rehnquist, argued and won the University of Michigan Law School in favor of affirmative action).

Thursday, October 27, 2005

MAINE: Gay rights repeal set for defeat? Maybe.

The fourth time is the charm? Maine's human rights law is a broad civil rights statute which includes sexual orientation as a category. Maine's legislature has passed legislation to prohibit discrimination based upon sexual orientation (and other categories) numerous times. Each time, heterosexual supremacists have placed repeal measures on the ballot. There's currently another heated public policy debate going on about the necessity and utility of civil rights protections for LGBT people in the State of Maine. Usually the measures poll positively (for the gay rights side) in the days and weeks before the election but the final results have not been in our favor in the three previous statewide ballot battles over gay rights in Maine.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Operation Iraqi Freedom Reaches 2000 U.S. deaths

More than 2000 U.S. soldiers have now been killed in "Bush's war." As Arianna Huffington points out, this number is the real significance of the PlameGate scandal, and is the reason why she says the current scandal is "worse than Watergate."

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

REVIEW: Noah's Arc

I meant to write an extensive review of the first show that aired on wednesday last week but I was a bit disappointed about the unfortunate changes made to the characters since I first saw clips of the Noah's Arc concept in January 2004. I wasn't sure how to phrase my disappointment politely, so I have been hesitating. If you missed the show, Rod 2.0 has an excellent recap for you.

Monday, October 24, 2005

UPDATE: Los Angeles Council District 14: Huizar versus Pacheco

The race to fill Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's vacated City Council seat (District 14) is heating up. The frontrunners are Jose Huizar (who leads the money race) and former District 14 City Councilman Nick Pacheco. I have lived in the council district since 1994 and it's well known that Pacheco is an *expletive deleted*. However, I don't know much about Huizar except that he is on the Board of Los Angeles Unified School District.

On Friday October 21, the Los Angeles Times endorsed Huizar. However, I live in the heart of the district (near El Sereno) and I see very few Huizar signs but a lot of Pacheco, Jimenez and even Heckmann yard signs.
About a week ago I (and I presume other voters in the district) received a very dashing set of turquoise blue rubber gloves in the mail from some group with the phrase "Hard working Jose Huizar for City Council/Trabajando duro Jose Huizar para Conseja" on each.

My questions for the next Los Angeles City Councilperson in the 14th District are not about how hard working they are but rather:

  1. What are you going to do to insure no reduction in cable service and quality when Time Warner takes over 98% of the City's cable market share next year?
  2. Do you support California's current Comprehensive Domestic Partnership Law and oppose any proposals (legislative or electoral) to deny previously granted rights and responsibilities to unmarried couples in Los Angeles?
  3. Do you support commen sense programs (condoms in prisons and jails, needle exchange, comprehensive sex education) to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS?
  4. Do you support an independent civilian oversight board to review police actions?
  5. What do you think is the most pressing land use issue facing the City of Los Angeles?

Those are my questions for my prospective City Councilperson. What are yours?

Sunday, October 23, 2005

WTA Tour Championships Approaches

So far, Lindsay Davenport, Maria Sharapova, Kim Clijsters and Mary Pierce have qualified for the season-ending Sony Ericsson WTA Tour Championships in Los Angeles November 8-13. Amèlie Mauresmo and Justine Henin-Hardenne are very likely to qualify so really Venus Williams, Elena Dementieva and Nadia Petrova are "fighting" for the final spot. Although as one commentator puts it, "I'm not sure one could call what Venus is doing 'fighting' since she's only playing in one tournament (Philadelphia) between now and the WTA Championships." Patty Schnyder is playing in the Zurich final against Davenport this week and is scheduled to play both Linz and Philadelphia. Schnyderhas probably wrapped up the seventh spot. Petrova lost in the finals of Thailand a few weeks ago and is scheduled to play Philadelphia also. Dementieva is not scheduled to play either Linz or Philadelphia. The question is, how seriously does Venus want to play in Los Angeles? It's the biggest pay check of the year (usually) but the tournament also has a lot of ranking points associated with it to start 2006 on the right foot.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Today is Police Brutality Awareness Day

Today is October 22, the National Day of Protest to Stop Police Brutality. In Los Angeles, there is a Call to March on Parker Center in Downtown Los Angeles by the "October 22 Coalition." The Coalition is named after a March Against Police Brutality on October 22, 1995.
In the year since the last October 22, peace officers in Los Angeles have shot and killed a 13-year old African-American boy, a 19-month old Latina baby and a beloved pet.

Kansas Teenager Ensnared by "Romeo+Juliet" Law Set Free

Mathew Limon, who as a gay Kansas teenager had (homosexual) sex with a 14-year old boy when Limon was 18-years old, was prosecuted, convicted and then imprisoned for five years has finally been freed. The Kansas Supreme Court finally ruled that "Moral disapproval of a group cannot be a legitimate state interest" and struck down an unconstitutional Kansas law that had a harsher punishment for committing a act which if it had been done with a girl of a similar age would have resulted in a fine. The Limon case has been a cause célèbre of sodomy law activists and gay rights activists since the June 2003 U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Lawrences v. Texas.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Bush Has Net Positive SurveyUSA Rating in Only 7 States

How low can he go? A new SurveyUSA poll of 50 states shows that President Bush has a net positive approval rating in just 7 states: UT, ID, WY, AK, ND, MT and MS. In the state of California he's at -33 (32% approve, 65% disapprove) and even in Texas he's at -12 (42% approve, 54% disapprove)!

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

New Funny, Sexy TV Series Set in L.A. Premieres Tonight!

Noah's Arc is premiering on cable TV (LOGO) tonight at 10pm in Los Angeles. Noah's Arc is the brainchild of Patrik-Ian Polk, the man who brought you the black gay classic film "Punks" (which included Rockmond Dunbar and Vanessa L. Williams from Showtime's "Soul Food" and Seth Gilliam from HBO's Oz and The Wire). The show is a combination of "Sex in the City" and "Soul Food" with a "Queer as Folk" twist. It's set in Los Angeles, so it should be fun to watch how a new poignant, funny, sexy television series set in L.A. references the city now that HBO's "Six Feet Under" is six feet under.

Early reviews of the first show indicate that sex scenes may have been toned down a little but that the result is still a unique portrayal of Black, gay life in a large urban metropolis, specifically Los Angeles. Similar to "Sex in the City," there are four main characters: Noah and his ARC (circle of friends), Alex, Ricky and Chance. Get it? Each one of the friends is an archetype (hopefully not a sterotype). Alex is the responsible one (Miranda from Sex in the City),Ricky is "the ho" (Samantha from Sex in the City), and Chance is "the stuffy professor" type (thus you may understand my interest in the series :)). The lead character is a struggling screenwriter in Los Angeles (go figure!) who meets a phyne "down low" brutha named Wade who identifies as straight but is interested in getting to know Noah better. Much better. Biblically better.

Fun ensues.

Electronic Line Calling Approved by ITF

Yes! Recall that earlier in the year the USTA announced it would not use electronic line calling at the 2005 US Open, and the other Grand Slams followed suit. Now, however, comes word that the International Tennis Federation has certified an electronic line calling system called "Hawk-Eye Officiating." This is great news! Hat tip to the On The Baseline blog for the story. I heard about this during the coverage of the Kremlin Cup final on The Tennis Channel on Sunday. Apparently it is now up to the tournament organizers to install the technology and decide how to utilize the information. (Does the player get limited challenges of line calls? Unlimited? Do they lose a point if they are wrong? Every time?) Hopefully, the 2006 Australian Open will be the first Grand Slam to install the system and set a standard for its use in the majors.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Black People Don't Like Bush, Either!

The blogosphere (and now the main stream media) is starting to buzz about this startling result in the latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll: President Bush's approval rating among African-Americans is 2 percent! This is the flip side of the outburst Kanye West made on a televised benefit for Hurricane Katrina survivors a few weeks ago ("George Bush doesn't care about Black people"). I presume this will put an end to the questionable project being organized by the "closet heterosexual" chairman of the Republican National Committee, Ken Mehlman, to recruit African Americans to the Republican Party.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Troublesome Ruling In New York On Partnership Rights

From How Appealing and QueerDay comes reports about an appellate ruling in New York State in the case of Langan v. St. Vincent's Hospital which basically said that John Langan of Vermont could not sue St. Vincent's Medical Center for allegedly causing the wrongful death in 2003 of his partner, Neal Spicehandler, with whom he had executed a civil union in Vermont in 2000.

In a 3-2 decision, the majority claimed that under New York law only a legal spouse can sue for wrongful death and that "[a]ny contrary decision, no matter how circumscribed, [would] be taken as [a] judicial imprimatur of same-sex marriages." However, in a dissenting opinion which ran for 14 of the decision's 19 pages, Justice Steven W. Fisher wrote that "this case is not about marriage" and chided the majority for misconstruing the case as one about same-sex marriage rather than about the state's wrongful death statute and a person's right to equal protection under the law.

Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund, Langan's attorneys, vowed to appeal to the Court of Appeals, New York State's highest court. As I mentioned this February, this seven member court is being closely watched because it is still an open question how they will treat a case of first impression dealing with the legalization of same sex marriage in the State of New York.

Court watchers are still waiting for a ruling in Andersen v. Sims, a similar case in Washington State which could make that state the second state to end the ban on same-sex couple being issued marriage licences. Of course, the entire country of Canada legalized same sex marriage earlier this year. I wonder which neighbor state, Washington or New York, will be first to join their progressive neighbors to the North?

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Pierce Wins 18th title in Russia

Mary Pierce continues her amazing 2005 tennis season by winning her second Tier 1 tournament of the year, the Kremlin Cup in Moscow, Russia. She ended an improbable run by Francesca Schiavone with a 6-4, 6-3 win over the diminutive Italian who had beaten former World #1 Amelie Mauresmo 6-1, 6-1, 2004 US Open Champ Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-3, 6-1 and 2004 finalist Elena Dementieva 6-3, 6-1 before losing to Pierce. In the quarterfinal round, Mary Pierce was down 6 consecutive march points in the third set tiebreakeragainst Elena Likhovtseva but managed to win the next 8 points in row to close out the match 7-5, 4-6, 7-6(6) in 3 hours, 13 minutes! Mary Pierce also won the Tier 1 Acura Classic in San Diego in August before this year's US Open. She was in both the French Open and US Open finals this year. Schiavone was attempting to win her first WTA Tour title, Pierce won her 18th. With her win in Russia Mary Pierce jumps into 4th place in the race to the season-ending WTA Tour Championships at the Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles November 8-13. I'll be there, will you?

Black Gay Sexuality on TV: NOAH'S ARC on LOGO

Finally! Noah's Arc is coming to TV. It debuts Wednesday October 19 on LOGO. Noah's Arc is the brainchild by Patrik-Ian Polk, the man who brought you the black gay classic film "Punks." The show is a combination of "Sex in the City" and "Soul Food" with a "Queer as Folk" twist. I've been seeing excerpts and previews of Noah's Arc since January 2004 so it's very exciting the show is finally airing on network television. I'll have a review of the first show later in the week...

Friday, October 14, 2005

Topalov Wins World Chess Championship Tournament

Veselin Topalov has proven himself as the true heir to the title of "World's Best Chess Player" held by Garry Kasparov for over a decade by decisively winning the 2005 World Championship Tournament in San Luis, Argentina. In a fourteen round double-round robin tournament he placed clear first with 10 points (6 wins and 8 draws, no losses); an incredible "+6" (6 more wins than losses) result. At the super-grandmaster level tournaments are often won with +2 or +3 scores. World rated #2 Viswanathan Anand tied for 2nd place with Peter Svidler with 8.5/14 at "+3." This is a disappointing result for Anand who has been the second best player in the world for atleast a decade and looks like may have been vaulted by Topalov. Svidler only had one loss (to Topalov) and four wins, a very encouraging result for someone who doesn't turn 30 until next year. Anand played brilliantly and dangerously losing two games with the Black pieces to players he shouldn't have (Morozevich and Kasimjanov) but winning 5 games, drawing both his matches with both Topalov and Svidler. A decisive result in 50% of his games shows that he was definitely intereted in playing fighting chess in Argentina. About twenty years ago, Anand and Michael Adams and I used to play in the same tournaments, so I still maintain an interest in what is going on in the upper echelons of competitive chess. I had previously predicted that Topalov would win the tournament and Anand would place second but I thought the strongest female player of all time would have a breakthrough tournament and place third. Instead, Judit Polgar had an absoluteoly wretched tournament and placed last (which is where I though Svidler would end up).

Execrable Bankruptcy Law Goes Into Effect Monday

There are reports that the number of bankruptcies has surged in recent weeks (last week it was 102, 863 compared to an average of 30, 000 per week for the previous 4 years) as people try to file their paperwork before being subsumed under the auspices of The Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 signed into law by President Bush on April 20, 2005 after a pusillanimous display by Congressional Democrats.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Arnold On HIV-related Legislation

The Governor didn't veto all the good legislation passed by the Democratic-dominated State Legislature in the last session. Apart from the numerous gay rights measures I have mentioned earlier, he also approved some important HIV-related legislation: AB 228 (Koretz), AB 547 (Berg) and AB 1142 (Dymally).

AB 228. This bill would prevent insurance companies from discriminating against HIV-positive individuals from receiving medically necessary organ donations. It doesn't go as far as a bill which was signed into law in Illinois and played a prominent role in an episode of NBC's E.R. last year which allows HIV+ organ donors to transplant to other HIV+ organ recipients. Currently HIV+ organs can not be transplanted into anyone, according to the way the United Network of Organ Sharing administrates the organ donation waiting list. HIV and organ transplantation is an intriguing topic of future research.

AB 547. This bill by Assemblymember Patty Berg would allow localities to run syringe exchange programs without declaring public health emergencies every two weeks. Previously counties which wanted to run needle exchange (which has been scientifically proven to be an effective HIV prevention measure) had to declare public health emergencies of limited duration. Last year, the Governor vetoed a bill almost identical to AB 547, this year he vetoed one which would have allowed state monies to be used to fund needle exchange.

AB 1142. This bill by Mel Dymally would establish a statewide African American HIV/AIDS Initiative by coordinating a response to the disproportionate impact of HIV/AIDS on Blacks in five regions of the state: Los Angeles, the Inland Empire, San Diego, the Bay Area and the Sacramento/Central Valley area.

Also, importantly there was no bill (SB 945 died earlier) passed by the Legislature to switch California's HIV surveillance system to a mandatory names-based system as the CDC in Atlanta has been pressuring states to do before the Ryan White CARE Act is re-authorized (the law expired on September 30 but is expected to be re-authorized for another 5 years early in Spring 2006). There's still a very healthy debate going on within AIDS activist circles as to whether a switch to names-based reporting is necessary, what the implications of such a switch would be and what protections should be coupled with such a significant change in public health policy.

In addition, thanks to State Senate Leader Don Perata, AB 1677 (Koretz), which would have allowed non-profit organizations to go into the state prison system and distribute condoms was permanently stalled in a Senate committee in September after passing the Assembly in June.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Davenport postpones retirement; Serena's approaches?

Lindsay Davenport defended her indoor court Porsche Grand Prix title in Filderstadt, Germany on Sunday by beating Amelie Mauresmo 6-2, 6-4 in just over an hour. It was her 50th title, putting her 9th on the all-time list, behind Monica Seles, who has (had?!) 53 titles. Interestingly, Monica is still listed as an active player even though she has not played a WTA tour match since losing the 2003 French Open quarterfinal to Nadia Petrova. After winning, Lindsay said she has no plans for retirement in 2006. 2005 US Open champion Kim Clijsters has said that she will retire at the end of 2007. Speaking of female tennis players and retirement...

Serena Williams pulled out of the remaining tournaments she was scheduled to play, ending her season at 21-7. Although she won the 2005 Australian Open, Serena's season was hampered by injuries and lack of commitment to training. She didn't play the French, looked like a "hot ghetto mess" until she lost in the third round at Wimbledon, and easily lost to her sister Venus in the fourth round of the US Open.

Interestingly, in 2005 the four Grand Slams were won by 4 different women: The Williams Sisters (Serena and Venus) and the Belgian "Sisters" (Kim Clijsters and Justine Henin-Hardenne). Prediction for 2006: A Williams Sister will only win one of the Grand Slams.

Monday, October 10, 2005


Mack Reed over at LAVOICE.ORG has made the following banners available for use by progressive bloggers:

Distribute widely!


I attended Being Alive's Spirit of Hope Awards last night in West Hollywood
and ran into Assemblymember Paul Koretz. He gave me a bumper sticker which says "Stop Arnold: Vote No on Propositions 73-78!"

Even better, in his remarks to the couple hundred people in attendance at the Pacific Design Center's Silver Screen Auditorium he used this great slogan to remember which propositions to vote no on: "NIX ON THE FIRST SIX!"

Cute, eh? I's an easy way to remember to vote NO on the first 6 propositions on the November 8 ballot and YES on the last two (Prop 79 and Prop 80).

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Bush Approval Rating Hits All-Time Low (Again)

The Huffington Post is highlighting the latest CBS poll which has Bush at a level of 37% approval, 58% disapproval. In addition, the poll also has the worst numbers ever (since they started asking the question in 1983) for "Is the country moving in the right direction or on the wrong track?" An astonishing 69% of respondents say wrong track.

Friday, October 07, 2005

The New Television Season

Now that the new television season has started the true beauty of Adelphia's Digital Video Recorder called MOXI. This is a Tivo-like device which allows one to record television shows digitally (there's no videotape!).

The shows I currently am recording every episode of are:

  1. Alias
  2. Lost
  3. Desperate Housewives
  4. The West Wing
  5. Nip/Tuck
  6. ER
  7. Survivor: Guatemala
  8. The Daily Show with Jon Stewart
  9. Commander in Chief

I am also recording individual episodes of

  1. MTV's Real World: Austin
  2. Invasion
  3. Numb3rs
  4. The Simpsons

What's in your Tivo? :)

Sunday, October 02, 2005

CA: Ballot Measures for November 8 Special Election

BoifromTroy has a summary of Arnold's positions on the eight ballot measures voters will face on the November 8 special election ("Arnold's folly"). I have put links to the full text of each of the ballot measures (in PDF format) from the Secretary of State's office. The bottom line is that the Governor has called for the expenditure of more than 40 million dollars to have a statewide special election in 2005, seven months before there is a statewide election already scheduled for June 2006. I say that the presumption should be against all these ballot measures.

Ballot Measure (Brief Title) Governor MadProfessah
Proposition 73 (parental notification) : YES NO
Proposition 74 (delay teacher tenure) : YES NO
Proposition 75 (union dues change) : YES NO
Proposition 76 (school spending cap) : YES NO
Proposition 77 (redistricting) : YES NO
Proposition 78 (Pharma's Rx drug plan) : YES NO
Proposition 79 (discount Rx drug plan) : NO YES
Proposition 80 (electricity regulation) : NO NO
So, I don't disagree with the Governor 100% of the time, just 87.5% (7 out of 8).
I find it very disturbing that the Governor is supporting Proposition 78 which is really just a fake initiative sponsored by big pharmaceutical companies to try and confuse voters with Proposition 79, which is a real discount prescription drug plan and includes prohibitions on drug profiteering. Also, Proposition 77 sounds like a good idea (I agree the legislature shouldn't be drawing it's own voting district boundaries) but I disagree with the notion of handing this power to "retired judges." I think best solution is a non-partisan commision of experts jointly selected by the Governor and Legislature. However, there's no way that California should do a non-partisan reidistricting before populous red states like Texas and Florida have. Proposition 77, the so-called "Live Within Our Means" act would modify the Proposition 98 funding formula for schools. It would also impose a cap on the rate of increase of government spending which would end up devastating many many social programs on which the most needy Californians rely. Just Vote No!

Angelides Bashes Arnold On Gay Marriage Veto

Thanks to Kos for pointing out the California gubernatorial candidate Phil Angelides smackdown of Arnold's cowardly action of vetoing the gay marriage bill on Thursday:

By vetoing the Civil Marriage and Religious
Freedom Protection Act, Governor
Schwarzenegger has come down on
the wrong side of history. Governor
Schwarzenegger had the chance to
enter the pages of history with the
likes of Martin Luther King Jr.,
John F. Kennedy, and Lyndon B.
Johnson; instead he has chosen to be
listed alongside George Wallace and
Strom Thurmond. Just as Wallace,
Thurmond and many other
segregationists came to regret their
errors, I hope that Governor
Schwarzenegger will come to
change his views.

This sounds like a man who should be Governor of a great state. He understands a historical moment when one presents itself. What do you think?


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