Wednesday, August 6, 2008

So: There are actually Democrats here? North County Times

Part of an opinion column from my local (Right Wing) paper:

So: There are actually Democrats here?

By JOHN VAN DOORN - Staff writer

It's hard enough trying to observe people, dogs and the fast lane, then form bulletproof opinions, without having to go back over the once-observed and once-sternly-opined-upon because there is new "evidence" or some such.

What is required, if I believe the latest communiques, is a certain flexibility. One must exhibit a willingness to take the views of others into account, to listen closely, and then, perhaps, to alter in some way one's cool and detached opinions, one's observations, and come to the point of ---- I can't believe I am saying this ---- changing one's mind.

But it's come to that.

In this newspaper, thanks to a writer of ours named Gary Warth, I learned on Sunday that the number of Democrats in San Diego County is catching up with Republican numbers. They're this close.

Curses. For years Observer has written, probably because he paid too much attention to the narrow and the pinched in various local governments, that San Diego as a whole was a one-way place, leaning to the right.

It was hidebound conservative Republican, as he said so many times, filled with tycoons and mink-clad nieces, plus Chamber members and retired military men and women (who in most cases arrived at their viewpoints the hard way).

Democrats, if there were any, Observer led himself to believe, met in rooms with the curtains drawn, and spoke in whispers.

They dared not show themselves in public, was my solid viewpoint, lest rich or violent or traditionally misinformed Republicans, from every reach, village and hamlet in North County, would hurl epithets or smite them with bags of water and force them back to their caves.

I am threatened now by the spectre of Opinion Adjustment.

Gary Warth had to get involved with his smarty-pants reporting, his numbers and other reliable bits and shards of information, such as actual party rolls, to show that the split, countywide, is about even, with Democrats closing pretty fast.

For an event of such great moment, Observer is going to take his time. He is not an ideologue, as is widely known, but he is not given to haste, either. Don't look for an immediate switcheroo.

Still, if the numbers of Democrats and Republicans are now just about the same, chances are Observer will soon phone friends and family in the East and say to them: "Come hither. I was misled. It's not as one-sided out here as I have described it. There seem to be significant pockets of liberals ---- well, Democrats ---- in San Diego.

They will be stunned. But they don't call me "Old Ethics and Flex" for nothing.

San Diego county, especially here in the northern end, has for years been a rethugnicant stronghold. The piece above doesn't do justice to the outright hostility to any other point of view than the Grand Old Party line.

I am hopeful that the above mentioned trend continues. But most of the people I hear from around here express a great reluctance to vote for a Democrat, especially for president.

None seem happy with Grandpa Simpson but not so unhappy as to pull the lever for the exotic newcomer. Inexplicable but true.

But maybe, just maybe, we can get rid of Congressthing Issa, at long last.

Catch you later.....

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