Cassity: Election down, governing coming up

Editor's note: This is Chuck Cassity's last biweekly column in the Daily Pilot. Chuck is leaving this space due to our reduced print production schedule (the Pilot is going to five days of print next), but he will continue to submit commentaries to the Forum page. We thank him for his contributions.


This column will appear on Friday, three days after the biggest election in our collective lifetimes has passed into the annals of history.

But due to publication deadlines, I have no idea how the election will have turned out by the time you read this. So as an intent observer of such matters, I've put together several observations during the course of this interminable election process. So here goes.

•If President Obama wins reelection, will it be George W. Bush's fault?

How about if he loses? Will that be Bush's fault as well?

•I kind of like the way the Europeans do it. Sixty to 90 days before a presidential election, or at most six months, they begin their campaigns. They campaign hard, speechify a lot, do the debating thing and then vote. No sweat, no hassle. Here I'm guessing we started the campaign for the 2016 presidential election the morning of Nov. 7.

•When, exactly, I wonder, did it become acceptable, even fashionable, to demean, denigrate, disparage, degrade, defame and debase others with whom one disagrees politically or philosophically?

The rift between those on either side of the issues here in Costa Mesa has never been deeper or more profound. But unlike the past, when issues were debated in a cordial, collegial manner among friends who treated each other with respect, I am alarmed at how the tone has turned so sour and personal of late in our fair city. One can only hope that whoever wins the charter fight and the open council seats can find a way to mend the tear and build the consensus necessary for effective governance. One can only hope.

•Speaking of the charter, I wonder whether there will ever again be a challenge to the almost unfathomable power of unions if Costa Mesa's Measure V goes down in flames. With national, state and local unions contributing more than $500,000 to the "no" effort, 10 to 1 against local money, it will be surprising if it wins — and a real shame if it loses.

If it does, even those who are on record against the charter will have to question how fair it is for far-flung unions to exert such immense power over little cities such as our own. Maybe we should just fold our tents and sign over ownership of the city to the unions once and for all. Maybe, in fact, we should all just go to work for them. With union wages, perks and benefits for everyone, of course. Let's see how they like it for a change.

•If Obama loses, will teleprompter stock crater?

•Watching this election unfold in California was like watching the Indianapolis 500. It was happening, to be sure, but nowhere near here. If we have to pay for this election and put up with it for most of two years, don't you think they should have to campaign here a time or two? Oh, I know they swoop in to scoop up our campaign donations, but shouldn't they have to stay and vie for votes as well?

•It was just reported that Republican voter registration is now down to below 30% in California. Shouldn't the last few of us remaining troglodytes get some of that affirmative action thing routinely afforded to minorities? Maybe our votes should count for more than just one. Maybe we should get to vote a whole bunch of times — like in Chicago.

•Lastly, I would be remiss if I didn't take this opportunity to publicly thank the legions of my fans who've taken the time to write to the Pilot and express their undying appreciation for my column. It's for you that I toil over it so. Please keep those cards and letters coming. They warm my aging — but still vibrant — heart.

CHUCK CASSITY is a longtime Costa Mesa resident active in education, youth sports and other causes. His column appears every other Friday.

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