by H. Millard (c) 2003

DragnetI'm driving down a street in L.A. the other day and I'm once again struck by how much this city now looks like Mexico. Remember the old Dragnet TV series? Forget it. That L.A. doesn't exist now. The sun baked, pastel cottages where Sgt. Friday would knock on doors are still around, but these days if you knock on the doors, the greeting from the other side will often be "Hola." Brown people stare at the few white people on the sidewalks as though the whites are unwanted vampires who should go back to their caskets. The looks shot at whites say "How dare these white U.S. citizens be here? Don't they know that this all belongs to Mexico and we non-U.S.citizens are the inheritors of this place, if for no other reason than that we are outbreeding them?"

My car radio is on one of those so-called conservative talk stations--sandwiched in between the growing number of Spanish language stations. I'm listening to this old conservative guy who is something of an institution in the area because he's been at it for so many years. I listen to his program from time to time, but can't usually take too much of it. It's like being locked up in an old age home with a bunch of toothless geezers eating pabulum and telling you about how it used to be. You want to be polite, but you also want to get out of there before the grim reaper shows up.

The talk on the radio is all about the California recall election coming up on October 7--if the court allows it to go forward.

Tom McClintockArnold SchwarzeneggerThis talk show host seems to be one of those all or nothing purist types who would rather lose everything than win something less than everything. His patter is proving that. He's telling listeners that (sure to lose) Tom McClintock is the guy to vote for, by gum, and that Arnold Schwarzenegger isn't a real conservative (Yawn). Talk Show Conservative Callers (TSCCs), with testosterone-lite voices, then call in and parrot what the guy says and overlook his lapses in memory and the fact that what he often says doesn't seem to have much relation to what they're saying.

Before the current recall election, few Californians, outside of the really hardcore, fully engaged, think of nothing else immigration reformers, even knew who McClintock was. To these committed immigration reformers, however, McClintock has always been a stand up guy. And that, today, is where his main vocal support is coming from. Unfortunately, these hardcore immigration reformers are louder than they are numerous.

Anyway, every so often the old conservative radio host says something that is so unrelated to what a caller is saying that it sounds as though it's a startle reaction after someone has just nudged him awake. He's a professional, so he reflexively seems to know how to cover with some standard sound bridge such as: "Okay, let's move on to the next caller," which is sometimes said in the middle of what a caller is saying. The same callers seem to call in day after day. Most just give emotional opinions. Most support McClintock.

Some of these TSCC callers then predictably praise a local black conservative talk show host and say that he should run for president. Read, "Look at me, I'm a white conservative, but I'm not a racist because I just praised a black guy...oh...not because he's black, golly gosh, I didn't even notice that, but because he's a good conservative." Yeah, right. Such callers can't even see the noblesse oblige racism inherent in such things.

I've heard it all before. Then, to prove that McClintock is the guy to vote for, the host tells me that McClintock was in the Boy Scouts while Schwarzenegger was busy chasing women.. Retch! I'm supposed to like McClintock for that? I'd like to know why the hell McClintock wasn't chasing girls when most boys his age were. Was he a goody-goody? Was he dead inside? What's with some of these so-called conservatives and sex? Why are they so hung-up on the subject? Some of these guys are still complaining about Clinton's escapades in the White House. Maybe the life force didn't fully find its way into their genes or something. Maybe if some of these callers had a stronger life force, or more testosterone, they would have had more children and wouldn't have left niches in society to be filled by higher breeding Mexicans, that they're now, and rightly so, complaining about.

RenfieldSteve ForbesIt sounds as though many of these TSCCs are white, and old, and dying. What is this? Are conservatives like Shakers? Are they a self-limiting sect that doesn't birth new members, because they think sex is evil? And, some of these TSCCs seem to want to take everyone else down with them as they throw away their votes on McClintock. Lately, McClintock has been reminding me of bug blood and rat blood sucking Renfield in the 1931 Dracula movie. He just can't laugh out loud. Instead, he seems to swallow his laugh through quivering lips. The last guy who reminded me of Renfield was Steve Forbes. You can almost hear and see all three of these guys saying "Yes, Master...heh, heh, heh...," while looking up from the hold of the ship with big black shadows under their eyes and while rubbing their hands together.

Then the host tells me he's been fighting the good fight to save California for many years and that illegal immigration must be stopped, and that McClintock is the guy who will do it. Of course, what the host doesn't say is that McClintock isn't going to win this election. The reason isn't because of McClintock's position on illegal immigration, but because McClintock fails to inspire beyond the choir that he's been preaching to. I'm not happy about that and I wish it weren't so, but it is. And, all the TSCC rah rah phone calls won't change it.

I wonder what it's going to take to get some of these so-called conservatives into the real world where they'll stop looking for purity in their candidates and start replacing whining with winning. Why, if this talk show host has been fighting for many years to save California are we in worse shape now than ever before and why are we being de facto annexed to Mexico? Are some so-called conservatives just slow learners? Can't they see that their way of selling their ideas doesn't work? They've lost battle after battle and they've backed loser after loser, and now they're going to do it again with McClintock.

Desert survivalistsI'm not buying the goofy TSCC arguments. I've heard such silly purist crap from various cranks in trailer parks and at gun shows for far too long. It's time that conservatives or rightists or whatever we want to call ourselves, start winning elections. We need to start being more clever than we've been in the past or we're not going to win anything and we'll end up as marginalized malcontents sitting out in the desert someplace in the Mexican state of Aztlan, saying things like "Had Bustamante not won back in '03, sonny, things would be better, and we'd still be part of the United States." It's time to win, even if we don't get everything we want.

Despite the fact that there are 135 people trying to unseat Governor Gray Davis, there are really only three candidates in the race who have any reasonable chance of being governor: Cruz Bustamante, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Tom McClintock. As I keep writing, McClintock isn't going to win. It's not in the cards, amigos. The numbers aren't there. If any of these TSCCs have any correct political instincts they would understand this. Perhaps, however, their political instincts have been as sublimated as their sex instincts and perhaps they've all spent too many years in the Boy Scouts. How else can we explain the fact that some of these TSCCs, who claim they don't like the Mexicanization of California, are apparently going to vote for McClintock and thus actually help Bustamante?

To repeat, my real problem with McClintock is not his message, but the fact that he's a potential spoiler in this race. He can take enough votes away from Schwarzenegger to put Bustamante into office.
It may be pretty late in this column to confess that I'm not happy about knocking McClintock or other conservatives/rightists including radio talk show hosts, and the truth is that I like many of their positions. We also need as many allies in the fight to save California as possible, so alienating McClintock supporters isn't a great idea. Still, they're starting to piss me off with this Boy Scout crap and their political stupidity and with McClintock's campaign calling me with recordings that tell me he's surging in the polls. What a bunch of phony, whistling-past the graveyard baloney. He's not surging at all. The guy's got good positions, but he fails to excite people. I've also been sensing something smug and smirky about McClintock lately that I don't like. It's almost as though he's hoping that his presence in the race will doom the Republicans to another loss so he can get his revenge against the GOP bigs who are mostly backing Schwarzenegger. Perhaps just thinking about this revenge is enough to bring on that manic Renfield smile that I think I've seen.

Anyway, McClintock better quickly understand that he's not the only one who knows that he doesn't have the power to win this election, but that he may have the power to screw it up and thus make California even more a colony of Mexico. And, if he does screw it up by siphoning away votes that would have gone to Schwarzenegger and, as a result, former MEChA member Bustamante gets elected, McClintock will probably be finished in politics. If Bustamante gets in, I suspect that even his best pals in the immigration reform movement will thereafter always spit when they hear the name McClintock.
There's still time for McClintock to come to his senses and pull out and throw his support behind Schwarzenegger, but the clock is ticking.

fight in CongressIf Arnold gets into office and then fails to deliver, I'll be the first to sign a recall petition to get him out of office. I've never bought the argument that we need to stick with a loser just because we elected him. That's why I support the recall of Gray Davis and is one of the reasons I want to see a reform of our political system. I'd like to see a system that brings in more political parties and has something of the parliamentary system built in so we can more easily get rid of bums.

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