I HATE POLITICS—IT’S THE ISSUES THAT KEEP ME AWAKE
I’ve long since vowed I would never blog about politics; readers are too valuable to risk losing half of them.
Yet our everyday world is governed by who’s in charge. And like it or not, that becomes important . . . no, let’s be honest here, being in charge is everything.
As lovers have said, Let me count the ways:
Years ago when our kids were on Foothill High’s swim team, the afternoon air was often terrible . . . orangey-brown, and so toxic the kids couldn’t swim. After school sports were regularly cancelled. If you happened to be outside, you could see, smell, and feel the rotten air. Finally the Air Quality Management District took over and clamped down on smog-producing cars. And probably on refineries and factories, too. Gradually the air got better, until now it’s mostly breathable. At least in our area.
But guess what just happened? The Orange County Air Quality Management District was recently taken over by Group A. With a one-member plurality, the tough-minded president of the board was fired. The remaining members have now adopted new, softer rules proposed by the oil industry—the polluters. Guess which way the air is headed.
The same scenario just happened to the California Coastal Commission—whose conscientious chairman was just terminated because he was “too hard on developers”--again by Group A. You’ll no doubt soon see the results . . . high-rises of every kind taking over our coastline.
It’s all so personal. Remember when you could count on Halloween night being cold—even nippy? Last year, in October, Orange County’s temperature reached 102. Near Halloween. I’ve never been so overheated, so many months, as I’ve been these last few years. Hey, it’s really getting hotter! And I’ve never seen so many tornadoes, so many floods, in so many areas, as now appear on TV.
I couldn’t imagine I’d ever witness, personally, the disappearance of so many Grand Teton glaciers . . . nor could I forget how scary it was to be stuck on a sandbar all night on a tiny boat in Juneau’s Taku river, with glaciers hanging over us mere yards away--knowing if you fell in the river you were dead. Years later, flying over the Taku river, I saw to my astonishment that all the glaciers were gone.
But Group A holds debates in which NOBODY mentions Climate Change. Partly because the oil industry has its own scientists—about 1% of the total—who declare Global Warming a hoax. So Group A has silently vowed to ignore Climate Change.
And what about guns? What about 21 kids mowed down in Newtown, Connecticut? And how about Group A’s refusal to propose the slightest change in background checks because the NRA wouldn’t like it? How frightening would it be to infuriate another driver in Texas, where citizens are practically mandated to “open carry?” For Group A, it seems, America’s 46,000 gun deaths a year are a small price to pay to ensure that all “good” citizens are now armed.
Freedom from regulation is Group A’s mantra, meaning freedom for coal companies and others to pollute air and water at will, freedom to raise drug prices 500%, freedom to keep merging corporations until smaller businesses can no longer compete . . . freedom from everything except a woman’s right to make decisions about her own body. Which is where Group A draws the line.
As I said in the beginning, I hate politics. I’d rather we all negotiated our differences and agreed to make the best decisions for the greatest numbers of people. But Group A won’t have it any way but their own. Which wouldn’t matter much, if it weren’t so personal.
With Group A in charge, we’ll all be hot, and soon hotter. We could eventually find the air too polluted to breathe, and the water ever-so-slightly poisonous. It’s possible we’d have to pay $750 for a lifesaving pill . . . or someone’s daughter might be forced to carry a rapist’s baby. And we’re all likelier than ever to get shot.
I think I’ll vote for Group B.
To keep life humorous: "A Circus Without Elephants" and "A Clown in the Trunk" both memoirs, available, autographed, on Maralys.com. Or Available on Amazon.