Orange-County Courant

Forsan et haec olim meminisse iuvabit

Friday, August 19, 2005

The last post of this blog

Dear Reader(s),

I would like to thank all of you for your patronage at the Courant these past three months. It has been delightful to read your feedback either in the comments or in your many emails. I have especially enjoyed the camaraderie of the other political blogs, most of all the men at OC Blog, who put this crazy venture into my head.

But recent events, like media coverage and the many potential political maneuverings, have made me think to put an end to my blogging for now. I can foresee a working stiff political junkie like me getting far too wrapped up in the blogosphere and succombing to a sloth-like existence. This I aim to avoid. Without getting paid for punditry - and I'm not saying it's worth buying - the time spent here is costly.

I thank Richard and Anthony for their insightful addition to this thread of commentary. And I wish them luck in their own blogging if they choose to continue.

So without fanfare or applause, I bid you all farewell.

Your Humble Servant,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

UPDATE: I have moved! Check out Hack n Flak and OC Blog for more of my analysis on California politics.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

CA-48 makes uncharacteristically good posts (two)

Dear Sir or Madame,

I'll give "Sam Seaborn" points when he's deserving. I will. And sometimes I think it takes a fresh pair of eyes to notice certain goings on with the special election.

One: http://cafortyeight.blogspot.com/2005/08/ackerman-endorses-campbell.html was interesting because I didn't even read the press release that was emailed to me. I'm sure the guys at OC Blog, Hack n Flak, CalRaces, California Campaigns, and here have all been exhausted by the number of press releases we receive from countless campaigns. This, to the point where we don't really read them any more. Most of the elections are over a year away! I didn't even read Campbell's latest press release, but I recognized the headline.

Senate Minority Leader, and early 48th Congressional frontrunner (I wish he still was), Dick Ackerman finally strolled on back as I thought he would to the Campbell Establishment camp and offered his endorsement. Campbell's campaign foolishly didn't make enough of a story out of this. It merits its own press release for those of us still furious at Campbell over his temper trantrum-turned-Congressional candidacy! ACKERMAN ENDORSES JOHN CAMPBELL FOR CONGRESS, ASKS ALL FORMER ACKERMAN FOR CONGRESS SUPPORTERS TO SUPPORT JOHN IN HIS EFFORT! That should have been the headline. Get with the program Gilliard! Get with the program Terry!

The other: http://cafortyeight.blogspot.com/2005/08/will-chosen-people-choose.html interesting point made by Seaborn was that there are roughly 10,000 Jewish (almost always high propensity) voters in the 48th CD and the October 4th special election date falls on Rosh Hashanah. Seaborn presents this news in a stupid way, but I think that's just inevitable. He is, after all, a Dem.

My prediction, with regards to the Jewish vote, is that the Orthodox voters and maybe the Conservative voters won't. And the Reform voters will. That is if the election dates aren't changed. I feel for the Jewish voters in the district (I really really do), but realistically if sociopolitical event schedulers took into account all religions represented in the 48th and augmented their plans to conform with all rituals and holidays we might never have an election. I sincerely hope 48th CD Jews don't feel singled out about the date. Arnold's already denounced and divorced himself from the hateful activities of his father. He's a friend of the Jewish community in California.

UPDATE: Santana at the Register says the number of Jewish voters in the 48th is 100,000. That seems to be too high an estimation. If true, though, it would mean that roughly 20% of likely voters have a religious conflict with the election. That is serious. Here's the link: County braces for costly round of polls.

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Don't blink

Dear Sir or Madame,

"This tag is not a game" may be one of the only times you'll see me agree with the ACLU.

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

The 48th: The date

Dear Sir or Madame,

Yesterday, in typical 21st Century fashion, bloggers broke the news about the date(s) for the special election(s). OC Blog was the first, then others.

Here's OC Blog: We have a date...

Here's the Daily Pilot: Candidates For Cox Seat Have One Week To File

Here's the Los Angeles Times: Democracy by the Shovelful

Here's the Orange County Business Journal: Gov. Sets Vote for Cox Seat

Here's the Orange County Register: Election to replace Cox set for Dec. 6

Blogs are here to stay and will have a remarkable impact on the way we view this election. Some of the highest caliber political minds are communicating through spin and innuendo in a way never seen before, and the mainstream press get to see it up close. I think the transparency is terrific.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Tran for Senate!

Dear Sir or Madame,

I'm very pleased to see the blogosphere beginning to consider a suggestion of mine made months ago. Both California Campaigns and OC Blog are pondering a Tran campaign for Joe Dunn's soon-to-be-vacated 34th Senate District seat.

Here's the link to what was written about this possibility in June: Should Van Tran Adjust His Target?

Here's the OC Blog post today: Memo To Van Tran: Run For the 34th SD

Here's the California Campaigns post made late last night (Mr. St. John must not sleep): Van Tran for Senate?

"Pete St. John" explains the situation on the ground very well. Assemblyman Tran is like a god in the 68th AD. His staff are hardworking and politically-minded. Their District Director, Barrett Tetlow, was one of the guys organizing precinct walkers for San Diego Mayor hopeful Steve Francis here in Orange County. I have very little doubt they could pull a Republican victory in the area.

What's more, Tran's potential here doesn't conflict with any of the Establishment's political master plan. That means? Money, if Tran wants it.

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

Monday, August 15, 2005

Strickland lands prospective comrades' endorsements

Dear Sir or Madame,

Congratulations "Ralph" for being only the second individual to send a press release directly to the blog. Here are your winnings!

For Immediate Release
August 15, 2005
For More Information, contact:
Tim Clark @ (916) 473-8866 x5

GOP Board of Equalization Members Announce Backing for Tony Strickland
Strickland victory would give Republicans a majority on the BOE

(Thousand Oaks) - Today the two Republican members of the Board of Equalization, Claude Parrish and Bill Leonard, announced their support for Tony Strickland for Controller, pledging to help Strickland gain a seat that would give Republicans a majority on the BOE.

"Tony Strickland would make a fantastic Controller,"said BOE Member Claude Parrish. "And, since the Controller provides the fifth and decisive vote on the Board of Equalization, a Strickland victory would result in a major shift in California tax policy. Taxpayers would rest easy if Tony Strickland became Controller."

"Tony has never wavered in his commitment to lower taxes and less government," added BOE Member Bill Leonard. "We know where Tony Stands. We always have. He is a true watchdog of the treasury, and Tony will use the Controller's auditing powers to identify and root out wasteful government spending. Republicans should rally around his candidacy."

Both BOE Members Parrish and Leonard have anchored the pro-taxpayer side of the Board of Equalization, where, among other duties, various tax disputes are tried before the five member panel. The BOE also elects a Chairman, who then joins the Controller as two of the three votes on the powerful Franchise Tax Board.

"The BOE has a lot at stake in this election, and it's very significant that the only two Republican members of that Board have endorsed Tony Strickland," said campaign spokesman Tim Clark.

Parrish and Leonard join a long list of Strickland endorsers, including Campaign Co-Chairs Jim Brulte and Assembly Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy. Tony Strickland has also gained the support of 25 GOP Assembly Members.

Strickland, who was first elected to the State Assembly in 1998, served as Republican Caucus Chairman during much of his legislative tenure, where he helped lead the GOP effort in the lower house. Since leaving the legislature, Tony has helped found the California Club for Growth, the state arm of the national donor group whose goal is to promote policies that aid small businesses and job creation.

###

www.tonystrickland.com

Hopefully, next time it will be formatted correctly for my emailbox.

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

The politics of video games

Dear Sir or Madame,

John Hrabe, YRF Sacramento Valley's Communications Director, has to be feeling good after the Orange County Register's editorial board came out with a piece in today's paper agreeing with a column he wrote over three months ago.

Here's the link to the Register piece: Law would do violence to free expression.

Here's the link to Hrabe's column: Beware of Assembly censors.

Only notice in the Register version, the editors don't insult the Catholic Church. Congratulations Mr. Hrabe!

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

Immigration politics

Dear Sir or Madame,

Four “must-read” articles today pertaining to the politics of illegal immigration.

First, go to the source: Bill Richardson’s comments in the Albuquerque Journal and LA Times.

Next, go see the analysis from California GOP consultant Dave Gilliard, and the most important of the day, from the Wall Street Journal’s John Fund.

Yours in Freedom,

ANTHONY AFTERWIT OC

Haynes's Monday, August 15 morning memorandum

Dear Sir or Madame,

This one's on getting back to work.

The Russians Are Coming

We now know, from intelligence records seized in the Soviet Union after the fall of communism that the Russians were trying to turn Hollywood into their propaganda operation to lull us into believing that they were not trying to take over our country. Movies like “The Russians are Coming, The Russians are Coming” were part of the propaganda battle of the Hollywood left, portraying those who were concerned about security and liberty, and the Russians’ intent to take away our liberty, and invade our country, as paranoid.

While the Russians did not succeed nationwide, they did leave a remnant of socialists in California, and unfortunately many of them are now elected to the California Legislature. Since the Legislature is back is session next week, those of us who care about security and liberty need to rearm ourselves and try to hold off the relentless invasion by these socialists for one more month.

We all know that this state faces some serious problems—our freeways are overcrowded, our houses cost too much, we are running out of water, electricity, and gasoline, our state government is too big, and consumes too much of our income, illegal immigration is out of control, and our streets are overrun with child predators. Of course, the rulers in Sacramento have no desire to do anything about that. No—we won’t make it easier to build roads or houses, but we will micro-stamp bullets. We won’t increase the penalties on child predators and pornographers, but we will fight about legalizing gay marriage. We won’t do anything about the $9 billion that illegal immigration costs California taxpayers each year, but the Legislature will vote to give illegal aliens a driver’s license. The rulers will spend a tremendous amount of effort to protect the status quo, and no effort at all to solve the real problems of this state.

The current effort of the ruling left in Sacramento, and their allies in the press and public employee unions, is to damage Governor Schwarzenegger’s credibility going into the November election. The “paycheck protection” initiative, on the November ballot, is designed to eliminate the ability of the public employee unions to require every single state employee to pay them money, even if that employee doesn’t agree with the union. The current system allows the public employee unions to take people’s money, spend it on the left wing politicians in Sacramento, and then use the influence that the money gives these unions over the politicians to get more state employees to pay the unions more money, to get more influence, and so on. You and I pay the tax bill for this scheme, and the union and political bosses get the benefit.

These bosses fear Governor Schwarzenegger will come out in favor of the paycheck protection initiative, and his popularity will push it over the top, ending their control of the levers of power in Sacramento. So they are working overtime to destroy his reputation, his credibility, and his influence, so that his endorsement won’t affect the outcome of the election.

In an extreme demonstration of arrogance, the unions are forcing additional assessments on their membership. The California Teachers Union has already assessed its membership additional dues sufficient to raise $50 million to fight this initiative. The California Correctional Peace Officers Association are assessing their membership $30 million, and other public employee unions are in the process of following suit. They expect to raise $200 million to fight the Paycheck Protection Initiative and the other initiatives the Governor supports. They see this as a battle for survival; they will do everything possible to defeat the Paycheck Protection Initiative because it would greatly inhibit their ability to force people to continue to pay them money to sustain their power structure.

It appears that in the short term their strategy has had an effect. The press has been relentless in its attack of Schwarzenegger, and the television commercials have not let up. The only hope for this state is that people are smart enough to see through the hype, and end the current corrupt system. That really is the only way to stop the Russians from actually coming.

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

The 35th SD: The Buzz says Baugh is out

Dear Sir or Madame,

Thanks to Martin Wisckol over at the Orange County Register for confirming suspicions that Assemblyman Chuck DeVore is eyeing the 35th Senate District race that could take place next year if Senator John Campbell wins the 48th special. Wisckol even throws in a vague jab at this blog for suggesting Tom Harman's campaign fund shuffle is legally suspect. No fair, Martin! You have a million-plus readers!

Here's the link: Harman hedges bets with political fund.

With Orange County GOP Chair Scott Baugh out of the race, the conservative field is wide open for DeVore. Silva and Harman are no match. Tran has to be giving a little thought to this, but he's probably received pressure to chase after Umberg and win back part of central OC for the Right.

Sanchez needs to sit back on the thoughts of Governor. Arnold would clean her clock.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

The 48th: Gilchrist for Congress, again

Dear Sir or Madame,

Leave it to other blogs to act as the clean-up crew for the Courant. Powder Blue Report and CA-48 are now reporting that Minutemen founder Jim Gilchrist is running for Congress. What a shocker! This, of course, was news broken here a week and a half ago. They're slowly recognizing Mary Parker Lewis and Chuck Muth are consulting.

Anyone who scrolls down to the bottom of the www.jimgilchrist.com website can see he's serious. The website says "Paid for and authorized by Gilchrist for Congress." What more do you need to know he's running?! He's soliciting donations!

What is news to me is what has now been reported by OC Blog, that local Republican activist Jim Bieber's company, Bieber Communications, is doing his mail pieces. Bieber adds some hardcore conservative support to the Gilchrist camp, as Bieber used to be the California Young Americans for Freedom (www.calyaf.org) Chair.

Here's the link to the post: Jim Gilchrist Is Running.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Orange-County Courant mentioned in Daily Pilot

Dear Sir or Madame,

Thank you Assemblyman DeVore for the nonrecommendation recommendation of the Orange-County Courant in the Daily Pilot over the weekend. Assemblyman DeVore comments here from time to time. And when he does, we listen. We've always applauded him for his modernity in office.

Here's the link: Every blog has its day.

The quote:

No one ever said blogs had to be balanced.

And when it comes to political blogging, many choose not to cross party lines.

Newport Beach Assemblyman Chuck DeVore, a Republican, regularly reads a group of conservative blogs -- including Orange County Courant, the California Republican Blog and Powder Blue Report, run by an Irvine resident.

Let me be the first, but hopefully not the last, to say Assemblyman DeVore may come to us for some of his opinion intake, but we go to OC Blog for some of ours. I've seen DeVore posting over there many times before. I have a feeling the only reason why Elia Powers didn't mention the indespensible OC Blog in his column was because he didn't want to reveal the source of all Jean Pasco and Alicia Robinson's news. His colleagues would be out of a job. The link to OC Blog is on our sidebar, but if you can't find it there just type in www.ocblog.net.

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

Supervisor Silva seeking to be Senator Silva?

Dear Sir or Madame,

I went to an event over the weekend where I overheard two electeds conversing about the possibility of a Jim Silva candidacy for the 35th Senate District. Apparently, he's going around swishing the endorsement waters with his feet. He's trying to see what that race would look like.

I guess bankrupting Orange County with fee and pension increases isn't enough for the guy. The State is his oyster.

The Secretary of State's website has his COH at a little over $260 thou' which could make for a start on the Senate, but I think poses far more of a threat in a lower house race. Silva would spend a lot of it just trying to differentiate himself from the other liberal Republican in the race: Harman.

Thank you Cox. What a shake up this has been. What entertainment!

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Friday, August 12, 2005

BREAKING NEWS: PROP 77 BACK ON BALLOT!

Dear Sir or Madame,

The Governor's Office is breathing a sigh of relief about this I'm sure. I tip my bonnet to Bill Mundell for continuing the fight. After the Superior and Appellate Court rulings, I didn't think he'd win this one.

Here's the link the Register's story: Supreme Court allows redistricting initiative on November ballot

I will say, though, I heard it first alongside OC Blog from 640 KFI news. John & Ken are talking about it right now, but I think they're wrong in suggesting that the whole reason for the special election this Fall is the redistricting initiative. The failure of redistricting reform to qualify for the ballot shouldn't have resulted in a cancellation. Paycheck Protection (Prop 75) is tremendously important. The fact that former Governor Davis and Fabian Nunez and other Dems support redistricting gives me pause. I believe they're hoping redistricting will allow them to pick up House seats for their side of the aisle here in California.

UPDATE: For all my social conservative friends, I apologize. I didn't mean to exclude parental notification (Prop 73) from those initiatives that I believe are important. That one is important. It's important because it's a reassurtion of parental rights which have been all but obliterated over the years by NARAL, Planned Parenthood, the CTA, and the Democrat Party. And, hopefully it will preserve some unborn lives.

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

Gilchrist, Vasquez, Tancredo, Nunez, Haynes, Cosman in North SD last night

Dear Sir or Madame,

Thank to Allan over at Powder Blue Report (what's that mean anyway?) for posting his observations on the event last night in Carlsbad. Sadly, I was unable to attend, but heard from a number of friends it was terrific.

Here's the link to Allan's post: Great Night In Carlsbad Tonight.

The fact that Arab Muslims care so dearly about enforced border security should worry us all. I refuse to believe it's ethnic profiling to recognize that all nineteen 9-11 hijackers were Arab. The millenium bomber we stopped at the Canadian border was Arab. Richard Reid is Arab. And all the Islamofascist terrorists (not insurgents or militants or freedom fighters) operating in Iraq right now are Arab. It's fact, not some radical racist agenda. Fact.

If anyone's forgotten, this:http://www.loc.gov/exhibits/911/images/

and this: http://www.serendipity.li/wot/firemenflag091201.jpg

and this: http://ewoodstock.com/news.h7.jpg

and this: http://www.mrdowling.com/images/608attack.jpg

is why I am concerned about immigration enforcement and border security.

State Senator Bill Morrow organized the event last night and for that he and his staff should be applauded. Republicans must erect this issue to the highest point of their platform lest the Demo union-types take ownership of it. Morrow should take the lead in the Congressional race to succeed Duke Cunningham, if he hasn't already, with more events like this.

Here's the link to the San Diego Union-Tribune, North County Times story: Confrontation contained.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Lefties dream on CA-48 blog

Dear Sir or Madame,

Thanks to Jubal over at OC Blog for bringing this to our attention. There's a new Demo political blog up on the web specifically dedicated to the 48th CD.

Here's the link: http://cafortyeight.blogspot.com/

I'll make sure to add it to the Courant's sidebar. It's good for oppo research. Thanks to "Sam Seaborn" for putting the Orange-County Courant front and center in their list of conservative blogs.

Sam Seaborn, for those who shun all forms of NBC political indoctrination, was one of the protagonists of the hit show The West Wing. Seaborn (played by Rob Lowe who in reality is a Republican) was a speechwriter and counselor for President Josiah Bartlett until a concerted Congressional effort by a dead guy (the good kind of Democrat) in Newport Beach forced a special election that was too enticing to ignore. Seaborn leaves the White House and the show leaves Seaborn not looking good in the campaign, never to return. (Lowe left for a show of his own.)

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

FlashReport features Leonard on nature of the BoE

Dear Sir or Madame,

The FlashReport today, published daily by Jon Fleischman, is a great read and today was no exception (to receive the FlashReport send an email to jonflash@earthlink.net). Fleischman has an exclusive piece by Board of Equalization member Bill Leonard on the nature of the Board.

Here's the text in full:

BOE: WHAT WE DO AND WHY WE SHOULD BE AN ELECTED BODY

By Bill Leonard

The FlashReport article about the Board of Equalization touched on the basics of the Board’s functions (administering sales and use tax, serving as the appellate body for income taxes), but neglected to highlight the important role the Board plays, particularly to people who would invoke the name of Frederic Bastiat.

The BoE is the nation’s only elected tax commission. California is the only state where taxpayers can appear before elected officials without counsel and explain why they believe they do not owe a tax, or why they should be relieved of a penalty. It is the only state where tax bureaucrats must answer to elected officials in a public forum about why they believe a taxpayer owes money or should be penalized. It is the only place where elected officials vote regularly to apply and interpret tax law openly, as well as provide direction to the tax agents about how they should be treating taxpayers.

For these reasons, it is important that the BOE remain an elected body. And for even more obvious reasons, it is important that we elect the right people to this body. Consider this one case the Board heard. An elderly man was appealing his income tax bill. He had been seriously ill one year and had neglected to file his return. Because he did not declare his own income, the state calculated it for him. Although he was long retired, he took pride in keeping his California insurance license active. The tax agents thus consulted Census data to determine the average income of insurance agents in California and assigned that amount of income to this 80+ year old man. How could this man prove he did not earn that amount of money? If all his old clients wrote to us and said they did not do business with him, the bureaucrats could argue that he had new clients. If all the companies he brokered for wrote to say they had not issued any policies through him, staff would tell us that he worked with new companies. Did we check his bank account for deposits? No. Yet the Board voted 3-2 against the man’s appeal and he was required to pay income taxes on some $40,000 of income he did not earn.

For other examples of horror stories that could have turned out differently if the BoE had more bleeding heart conservatives instead of hard hearted liberals, see “Horror Stories from the Tax Bureaucracy” at http://www.boe.ca.gov/leonard/info/taxrights.htm.

The State Controller's race will certainly be one to watch late this year and into next, for the Controller is the tie-breaking vote on the BoE. Right now on the Republican side there doesn't seem to be any sort of ambiguity over who's the more conservative. It's easily Tony Strickland. But he'll face tough opposition by Senate newcomer Abel Maldonado ("Maldo" to his friends). Strickland will be in town again later this month for a fundraiser at the Balboa Bay Club alongside local Assemblyman Chuck DeVore.

The race for the BoE seat in this area is contested, but not sharply. Michelle Park Steele is way ahead in fundraising and appearances after Jim Brulte jumped out to make way for Assemblyman Ray Haynes. A previous FlashReport featured the specifics on this race (along with a humorous mistake by Fleischman that had readers directed to a website featuring a strange-looking, bald, long bearded man in camo pants smiling for the camera).

By all appearances, this will be a very fun series of elections coming up. Stay tuned at the Orange-County Courant for frequent updates.

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

Where all the conservatives at?

Dear Sir or Madame,

In Mel Brooks’ classic western, “Blazing Saddles,” one of the funniest lines of all-time is delivered by Cleavon Little. He deadpan asks a bunch of actors portraying Klan members, “Hey, where all the white women at?”

Today, conservatives in Orange County and in all parts of the state are asking a similar question. Seriously though, “Where all the conservatives at?”

In 2000, we were stuck with two disgraces to the Party, Tom Harman and Lynn Daucher, as they defeated two freedom fighters, Jim Righeimer and Bruce Matthias, respectively.

Remember, Harman’s race? The unions didn’t care for Righeimer and his Paycheck Protection ideas, so they dropped half a mil at the end to beat him, and we were stuck with Harman.

But it’s six years later now, and these good-for-nothings are being termed from office next year.

But where, oh where, are the Righeimer’s or the Matthias’ to run for these seats? So far as I can tell, they’re nowhere to be found.

In 67, Tom’s wife, Diane, Cypress Mayor Mike McGill, and County Supe Jim Silva are all vying for the seat. I’m not sure they’ve got a conservative bone combined.

What a shame that Righeimer could be pushing his successor in a seat like this!

In 72, conservatives have been hoping someone good would emerge to replace the dreadful Daucher. But again, when Mike Duvall and Marty Simonoff are all that are on the radar, there’s nothing to excite the base.

This, the land of Goldwater, the land of Reagan is now… Duvall-land? McGill Country?

What a shame.

Yours in Freedom,

ANTHONY AFTERWIT OC

Thursday, August 11, 2005

OC Blog vs Courant on Gilchrist

Dear Sir or Madame,

I'm honored that Jubal from OC Blog is willing to engage in debate with this blog over the viability of a Gilchrist candidacy. I understand where he's coming from.

The thing about Republicans, like myself, is that we pride ourselves in our loyalty, whether that be to God, country, Constitution, family, or political party. Democrats and all the other lowly parties don't live that way. Jubal and others won't surrender their loyalty to a party (and it's platform) easily. And let me tell you, neither will I.

I like the (possibility of a) Gilchrist candidacy. It riles up this race that was - let's face it - a shoe-in for John "Mr. Howell" Campbell. I believe personnel is policy. I believe Gilchrist would hire an activist staff that, one day, we might see on CNN patrolling the border with their boss during Congressional recesses. Campbell has been abysmal in his hiring of good conservatives.

Jubal makes some very valid, common defenses of his own position. I'll try to tackle a few. I'll presume Gilchrist was joking about "taxing the ultra-rich more" because it just doesn't correlate with the rest of what he's said.

He will have a national fundraising base to work from. He will have the momentum of a late entry. He will advance to the final runoff. He will have a national grassroots effort. He will have the fiscal savvy to go at it with Campbell and Brewer in any debate. He will be able to point to the fact that he'll only be one member of Congress and won't stand out vocalizing his tax policies. He will stand out vocalizing his immigration policies.

Campbell or Gilchrist? It really makes no difference to me. Whoever it is will be the lowest of the low in Congress (unless you count the Demos). But, Gilchrist, a decorated Vietnam veteran and grassroots grownup, inspires. Sadly, Campbell doesn't. Believe me when I say I wish he did.

UPDATE: Daily Pilot story on the race: Dueling endorsements. Harvey Englander wins points for the jab at the end, saying, "We will be more than financially competitive with the car dealer." The car dealer, ouch! Watch for the Brewer crew to attempt to play down Campbell's incumbency.

ALSO: Frank Mickadeit's column in today's Register: Brewer senses sharks circling her. I can see now why Campbell didn't get the Minority Leader position. He was "fooled" into voting for in-state tuition for illegal's anchor babies. Right, right. That gives me so much confidence in his Congressional future.

AND: Campbell has signs all over Culver in Irvine. Once again, he's in the lead.

Both articles highlighting Brewer. Lucky for her.

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Gilchrist clarifies position on Register estate tax remarks

Dear Sir or Madame,

I think a comment that Jim Gilchrist, Minuteman founder, posted on Hack n Flak pretty much bats away all criticism of his oft-repeated estate tax ("Death Tax") remarks. Campbell's going to really have a fight on his hands for the conservative vote here.

Here's the comment:

Unfortunately, recent press reports concerning my supposed support for the estate tax lacked any context, and are untrue.

In fact, I support Congressman John Linder’s House Bill 2525, known popularly as ‘the FairTax’.

Passage of the FairTax will make all discussion of the estate tax moot, since it totally ends all current forms of federal taxation, replacing them with one single-rate national retail sales tax.

If our goal is to leave our children and grandchildren a country that is free and prosperous, there are few things we can do on the economic front that will accomplish it as effectively as passing this fundamental reform of the way we collect taxes.

The day when Americans can take home 100% of everything they earn, saving and investing their hard-earned money with no fear of the ravages of the taxman, is one we should all look forward to and work towards. I will do so, in or out of Congress.

Can you imagine a world free of the paperwork nuisance of filing annual tax returns?

My goal is, and always will be, to lessen burdens on the American people and to restore freedom. Nothing will do that like the elimination of the federal income tax.

Those of you who wish to educate themselves about the FairTax, and its provisions to end the IRS once and for all, can find all the information they need at:

http://www.fairtax.org/

My website is:

http://www.jimgilchrist.com

Or, email:

ElectAMinuteman@yahoo.com

Thanks!

Jim Gilchrist, CPA, MBA(taxation)

Gilchrist proves here he can go toe to toe with any Republican in fiscal matters and present a credible, intelligent, argument on his behalf. He just eliminated their greatest weapon here. He ruined it! Way to go Jim!

Now if you can only distance yourself from the American Independent Party's history and neutralize the OC Republican machine, you're golden.

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

U.S. Border Patrol agent, himself, an illegal alien

Dear Sir or Madame,

This should be embarassing and disheartening.

Here's the link (via Drudge): U.S. agent accused of aiding illegals -- Revealed to be Mexican citizen...

It says they arrested him in Escondido, so it must have been at the station guarding the 15. Thirteen years for this guy, and others like him, is too lenient. He should be convicted of treason or espionage. How can we be sure he didn't aid violently hostile individuals (i.e. Islamofascist terrorists) into this country? How can we be sure he wasn't an agent of the Mexican government, doing the covert bidding of Vicente Fox? At the very least, he should be remanded for the duration of his trial, otherwise he'll just flee to Mexico. And we all know how they shelter criminals South of the border.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Redistricting will not make the special election ballot

Dear Sir or Madame,

Thank you OC Blog for informing us of this bit of news.

Here's the OCR story: State appeals court keeps redistricting measure off ballot

My heart was never fully into the redistricting fight (not like my support of paycheck protection). I generally don't trust judges with anything. I especially don't trust the leftist California judges (excluding Rogan) appointed here by Democrat and Republican Governors. Redistricting will just have to be on the June 2006 primary ballot or later. Redistricting, of course, will inevitably reoccur in 2012 after evaluation of the next U.S. Census.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

No retraction, no apology

Dear Sir or Madame,

Anyone aware of American history or with any sense of observation can recognize the theme of this blog. The name Orange-County Courant borrows from the name of James Franklin's newspaper, published in Boston in the early part of the 18th Century. James Franklin would be Benjamin Franklin's older brother, for whom young Ben was an apprentice until he was removed from that post after the discovery that he had been printing his own opinions under the pseudonym "Silence Dogood."

After being sent packing out of Boston, Benjamin Franklin took up residence in Philadelphia, then London, then Philadelphia again, before making millions in printing and inventions. It was then that he was afforded the opportunity to leisurely go about publishing essays, like Poor Richard's Almanack, under noms de plume. "Poor Richard" was the nickname for one Richard Saunders. Hence that pseudonym here.

"Anthony Afterwit" was a nom de plume Franklin utilized often in the issues of his Pennsylvania Gazette, one of the major papers of its time.

All the contributors have Franklin noms de plume. That is their origin. (See: Benjamin Franklin . Wit and Wisdom for more on this.)

A peripheral theme of this blog is the disclosure of insider political news with a conservative perspective. We have no agenda other than our own as individual contributors. The contributors don't know my identity or each others'. And we certainly are not in the pockets of the powers that be in California.

We certainly will not shy away from threats.

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

Monday, August 08, 2005

Bill Leonard hates me

Dear Sir or Madame,

It appears a previous post of mine on Assemblyman Ray Haynes has sparked the ire of Board of Equalization member Bill Leonard. A friend of mine unknowingly forwarded me "The Leonard Letter" for this week. In it, Leonard has a section devoted to me. Here it is in full:

AROUND THE STATE

***Internet Slander***

As a proponent of emerging technologies I look to the advantages offered, but the downside can also be very threatening. Thanks to e-mail and spamming operations it is now possible to slander someone anonymously at zero cost and distribute the slander widely. A friend of mine is a victim of this type of slander. I received an e-mail the other day that made strange and bizarre charges about conservative stalwart Assemblyman Ray Haynes. The author of the e-mail is a Richard Saunders, but no one has heard of him or even knows this name, so it seems that someone is slamming Haynes and hiding behind a phony name. If you know a Richard Saunders who wrote a nasty e-mail about Ray Haynes, please ask him to call me. Now, the challenge is: how does Haynes respond? If he stays silent then many people may believe the slander. If he wants to answer, how does he know who received the original nasty e-mail? In the pre-Internet days if someone wanted to slander someone they had to spend thousands of dollars printing and mailing the nasty note, but now its virtually cost free. So Haynes has to prove that he is not a bad person to hundreds, perhaps thousands, of people who may have read this one e-mail. You can help by letting Haynes or me know if you received Saunders’ note or any other nasty note about Haynes. Then we can clear the mud away and get back to discussing issues of real importance to Californians.

Mr. Leonard, you're a good conservative and I respect you so much for that. It's not slander. Slander is spoken. Libel is written down. But it's not even libel. New York Times v. Sullivan (1964) [39] protects the media from being prosecuted for libel even if information provided is false. Because I was told information about Haynes by another individual, and I have no reason to doubt that individual, I couldn't have forwarded that information in malice (which has to be proven in order to be convicted of libel). I don't believe I have acted maliciously against Assemblyman Ray Haynes.

But we're not even sure if the information I forwarded onto my readers was false. There have been no official statements on the matter.

Lastly, next time you label yourself a "proponent of emerging technologies" please know a little bit more about what you speak of. I DIDN'T EMAIL ANYONE. The Orange-County Courant is called a "blog." THIS ISN'T EMAIL. IT DOESN'T GET SENT TO ANYONE'S EMAILBOX UNLESS YOU COPY AND PASTE IT INTO AN EMAIL. It certainly wasn't "spammed" to anyone. Not by me. Only people who voluntarily decide to visit the blog over the internet can view what I wrote. I didn't advertise.

Ironically, your email was sent to my friend as bulk, or spam, email.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Re: Looks like Maddox is thinking

Dear Sir or Madame,

Thank you, Mr. Maddox, for replying so quickly to the thought of running for the 35th SD again. I'm just a little envious that you decided to do so on OC Blog instead of here.

Here's former Assemblyman Ken Maddox's reply in full to my previous post:

"I appreciate all of my friends who have asked me to run for elected office. I have been incredibly fortunate to have served on the Garden Grove City Council and as a State Assemblyman.

"It is time for me to be gracious in defeat and seek to serve in a capacity other than elected office. I am thankful for all the continued support but it is time to move on with the next phase of my life.

"I am seeking a deeper relationship with the Lord and my son, lil' Kenny. They are my best friends.

"I wish John Campbell nothing but good things. I served with Marilyn Brewer in the State Assembly. We didn't agree on some things but she is a wonderful woman and would make a good Congresswoman.

"Anyone wanting to know what I'm up to need only contact me.

"God Bless,

Ken Maddox"

An honorable exit from public life. That is certainly a departure from today's norm. Thanks again.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

National Club for Growth endorses Campbell for Congress

Dear Sir or Madame,

I tip my bonnet to the boys over at OC Blog for posting the press release by Pat Toomey's Club for Growth.

Here's the link: Club For Growth Endorses John Campbell For Congress.

This is another huge endorsement for Campbell, who clearly holds the lead in this race with respect to endorsements because he entered the fray before anyone else (except, of course, Ackerman). No doubt, Tony Strickland, current Chairman of California's chapter of the Club for Growth, himself under fire for support of illegal immigrants while he was a State Assemblyman, had something to do with locking this up.

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

The 35th SD: Looks like Maddox is thinking

Dear Sir or Madame,

Late Friday, Ben Lopez posted this on Hack n Flak:

I'll be the first to admit that I am not a big John Campbell fan. He managed to go way beyond breaking Reagan's 11th commandment of not speaking ill of a fellow Republican. What he did to Ken Maddox and those close to Maddox is inexusable and unforgivable. Then what was done to Ackerman was childish.

Somehow Campbell has this idea that he is owed some sense of coronation. He barely gets his feet wet in the State Senate and now wants to jump to halls of Congress. There are far more other Republicans in office that have been waiting their turn in line far longer than Campbell. But oh well, he is in the race and by the looks of it today will be sent to Washington.

So here's my idea...since everyone seems to be clearing the way for him (the conservative donors, some of them since he as his own money, and elected officials), and he wins let's seriously look at KEN MADDOX to fill his Senate seat. Ken has a proven record in OC. He has definitely put in his dues, money, blood, sweat and tears so the speak into the party. Maddox, still young, has far too much yet to give to the area.

Ken, you up to it?

I'll start the DRAFT KEN campaign and get the 410's into the Secretary of State's office for you.

Well this had me thinking.

Ben Lopez currently serves as the California Legislative Analyst, Lobbyist, and Associate Communications Director for the Reverend Lou Sheldon's "Traditional Values Coalition." Lou Sheldon's son, Steve Sheldon, is the proprietor of the Sheldon Group, a public affairs, land use, and law firm in the 35th Senate District and 48th Congressional District. Who's the new Director of State Governmental Relations at the Sheldon Group you ask? Well, that's none other than Ken Maddox!

Steve Sheldon, Ken Maddox, and Ben Lopez are floating a trial balloon for a Maddox reloaded candidacy if John Campbell wins the 48th CD. I guess Maddox has now decided to support Campbell for Congress, because that vacates the seat he coveted and lost last year in a bitter Republican primary.

Maddox can add his name to those already mentioned here: Harman, Baugh, DeVore, Tran, Brewer... And this adds further evidence to the suspicion that Hack n Flak is operated by Johnson Clark consultant Tim Rosales.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Speaking of New Majority, their rugrat edition has new leadership too

Dear Sir or Madame,

I'm not one to normally delve into the depths of little-tike (ie, youth) politics, but sometimes something comes across that amuses me so, that I can’t help myself from taking an interest.

Most of us “inside-baseball” types no doubt remember Mike Davidson going around the state, touting his “conservative” credentials. Well, BREAKING NEWS here on the Courant, this “conservative” is now employed by the NEW MAJORITY: RUGRAT edition, otherwise known as GENERATION NEXT.

Take a gander at this article from June, and next time you see Mike, remember just how full of it he really is.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Elite and hip make up new GOP set Generation Next putting the 'party' in Republican Party as it defines where it stands on the issues.
By MARTIN WISCKOL The Orange County Register

These aren't your father's Republicans.

Paul Makarechian, 31, showed up in jeans to host an event with Assembly GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy of Bakersfield. That was at Fashion Island's trendy Ozumo Japanese restaurant. Another of the group's events, this one featuring a congressman, was held at Costa Mesa's hip Sutra Lounge.

One of the group's board members, land broker Craig Atkins, is spending much of the year surfing the world's best waves. Makarechian, the chairman, gleefully lists the spiky hair of one favored candidate as an attribute. The group, less Atkins, flew to Vegas this month for its board retreat, which included diversions beyond politics.

Welcome to Generation Next, a group of young entrepreneurial millionaires - and aspiring millionaires - gearing up to shape the GOP of the future. It's about fun. It's about image. It's about power. It's about networking.

Oh yeah, and it's about politics.

"Young people look at Republicans, and it's like a parental thing," said Makarechian, CEO of the company that runs the St. Regis Monarch Beach Resort. "We're finding more and more there's a void. ... We're building a network of Gen X entrepreneurs who are taking a progressive, practical approach to business and politics. Who look at what the education system and the business environment will be five, 10, 15 years from now. Who are shapers of culture."

Since forming last year, the Orange County-based group has signed up 20 members - by invitation only, with $10,000 in annual dues. Members include Bill Lyons, the son of developer William Lyons, and Jeff Gehl, the son-in-law of developer and former Ambassador to Spain George Argyros.

The group has had audiences with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Karl Rove's staff and the political director of the Republican National Committee. They've hired their own political director and have spent nearly $100,000 on various campaigns.

Yet they're still largely under the radar. Tom Fuentes, county GOP boss for 20 years until last year, has barely heard of them. Same with political insider Mike Schroeder, a former state GOP chairman.

That's by design, said co-founder Sinan Kanatsiz, who runs his own public-relations and marketing company.

"We've been very stealth. We want to establish ourselves first," said Kanatsiz, 30. "When we get to 50 members, then we'll be ready to hit."

They're also still developing their politics.

In broad terms, their stance is similar to that of the New Majority, a county group of multimillionaire businesspeople who tout fiscal responsibility and business-friendly government while advocating an open mind toward abortion, gun control, gay rights and immigration.
Indeed, Makarechian and Kanatsiz are also members of the New Majority.

"We are conservative on fiscal issues and mainstream on social issues," said Makarechian, whose father is developer and Republican donor Hadi Makarechian.

Policy specifics are few and far between, but here's a glimpse: The group supports Schwarzenegger's reform package, having contributed $10,000 to the campaign so far. They like that the governor comes from outside politics and is taking a different approach to government.

The group is backing Michael Davidson to head the College Republican National Committee - between group and individual donations, they've contributed nearly $50,000. This is the guy with the spiky hair, whom they see as a good spokesman for the generation and a future leader. They like that he favors abortion rights and is sensitive to environmental issues.

But they also spent $30,000 to help President George W. Bush, who opposes abortion rights, in his Nevada campaign last year. One thing they like is Bush's attitude toward Social Security reform, even if they aren't sure it's the best one.

"We need to think outside the box," Makarechian said. "The world our children grow up in is going to be vastly different than ours. ... We can't just be thinking about the next election cycle."
When it comes to illegal immigration, they say they're still studying the issue.

Of course, their political inexperience and lack of specifics hasn't stopped them from winning fans.

"They're not looking at it from a micro point of view," said McCarthy, who took his own step toward modernizing the GOP at Christmas by handing out iPods to all Assembly Republicans. "It's from a macro point of view – the broader issues. ... These are people who are driving industry. They will be the leaders of the future. And they're helping to update the image of the party."

McCarthy also praised the group's diversity. While some GOP organizations seek to recruit minorities, Generation Next draws different cultures naturally. Makarechian was born in Iran to an Armenian father and a German mother. Kanatsiz's parents were born in Turkey. Two of the seven founding board members are Hispanic.

Many grass-roots activists are energized by opposition to abortion rights, gay rights and illegal immigration causes, but Makarechian says "the game is in the center" rather than based on those hot-button issues. That is bound to rile some, but so far even some who favor those causes - such as Irvine Assemblyman Chuck DeVore - are giving the group the benefit of the doubt, welcoming their activism and money.

Some likely opponents outside the party are also treating the group gently, like a coach going easy on the other team's rookie.

For example, county Democratic Party boss Frank Barbaro.

"I think it's time a group of moderate Republicans who are not knee-jerk automatons comes out and looks at the entire forest," he said. "We're so polarized. I'm looking for Republicans who can work together with us. It's the inability to work together that is the problem with the country and the state."

Yours in Freedom,

ANTHONY AFTERWIT OC

New Majority has new management

Dear Sir or Madame,

I tip my bonnet to Martin Wisckol for the news that Paul Folino will take over the reigns of the liberal Republican "New Majority" from Larry Higby. I don't know how this changes anything for conservatives, but it's still news.

Here's the link: Carona foe says deputy endorsement vote rigged.

Why am I not commenting on the Sheriff's race on this blog? Because I don't care to compete with the phenomenal discussions that occur over at OC Blog. We try to stick to coverage of local news, just not the same news.

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

The 48th: Some more info

Dear Sir or Madame,

After a much needed vacation, I returned to Orange County over the weekend and was immediately excited by the news of Minutemen founder Jim Gilchrist's entrance into the race to succeed Christopher Cox. I mentioned Gilchrist as a possible contender for this seat months ago after he spoke at the Saddleback Valley Republican Assembly meeting. It's good, every once in a while, to see a wrench thrown into the mix of the OC Republican VIPs' plans for the area. It's also good that Campbell won't be able to just waltz into Congress. He'll have to spend some real dough here to compete with a national fundraising effort.

I can confirm what "Pete St. John" at California Campaigns is reporting, that Mary Parker Lewis of RenewAmerica and Alan Keyes fame (see: Mary Parker Lewis) is the chief consultant for Gilchrist in this campaign. This conservative Washington powerhouse is just a taste of the national appeal Gilchrist's campaign will enjoy.

I have also seen that Chuck Muth (see: http://www.chuckmuth.com/newsandviews/) will be assisting with the Gilchrist effort in one way or another.

The non-California Republican support of Gilchrist is telling. It signals to me that word has spread. Any OC Republicans will be destroyed for assisting the Minuteman's opposition candidacy for Congress. They'll be seen as Republicans protesting against our President, our Party, and the potential for a Republican to hold this seat. Watch for Gilchrist to try to play down his AIP affiliation and play up his reasoning for leaving the Republican Party, i.e. because its leaders failed to address the issue of illegal immigration in an adequate fashion. Also watch for reiterations of the Minuteman policy. Here it is from Minutemanhq directly:

"The Minuteman Project is affilitated with MinutemanHQ.com the new National Organization for the original Minuteman border project. It is the only group authorized by Chris Simcox and Jim Gilchrist. MMP has no affiliation with, nor will we accept any assistance by or interference from separatists, racists or supremacy groups or individuals, no matter what their race, color, or creed."

This, in order to neutralize arguments presented by Republican loyalists, like Assemblyman Chuck DeVore (see: http://www.ocblog.net/ocblog/2005/08/jim_gilchrist_t.html#comments), and articles like this: Center protest gets tense.

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

Sunday, August 07, 2005

GILCHRIST CAN WIN!

Dear Sir or Madame,

Call me crazy, but I think Gilchrist can win this thing.

Before you dismiss me as a kool-aid drinking, tinfoil hat-wearing, black helicopter-seeing kook, hear me out.

Point 1: Gilchrist will have the necessary funding to make this run. He will have the capability of building a nation-wide donor network, almost assuredly giving him the funding necessary to get his message out.

Point 2: Illegal Immigration matters. As Kinney’s poll shows, 56% of voters care about illegal immigration. Gilchrist will win this sizable group of voters.

Point 3: He transcends partisanship. While surely some partisan hacks (yes, I am looking at you Assemblyman DeVore) may look past Gilchrist because of his association, that feeling does not represent the rank and file voters. They are solution-oriented people, for whom partisanship matters less than issues. While Campbell and Brewer battle for the partisan GOP vote, Gilchrist will have independent Republicans, Decline to States, and conservative Democrats for the taking.

Point 4: Endorsements don’t mean a damned thing. If someone can explain to me the importance of the endorsements of Sam Blakeslee, Jeff Denham, or Wally Herger for a candidate in Newport Beach, I’m all ears.

Point 5: Voters are fed up with status quo. Examples being the Recall and the abysmal approval numbers of Arnold, the legislature, Congress, and even President Bush.

Summed up – it’s a long shot, but if the vote is split and it doesn’t require 50% to win, Gilchrist has a darned good shot.

Yours in Freedom,

ANTHONY AFTERWIT OC

Friday, August 05, 2005

BREAKING NEWS: JIM GILCHRIST FOR CONGRESS!

Dear Sir or Madame,

I have been checking up on the websites quite frequently since my original blogpost. I direct all my readers to www.jimgilchrist.com. It wasn't up just a few days ago (see: The 48th: THE WEBSITES!)

Watch out for this campaign! This is the powder keg!

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Thursday, August 04, 2005

The 35th SD: Baugh and DeVore serious

Dear Sir or Madame,

The Daily Pilot's Alicia Robinson has some ruminations of her own on the race to succeed State Senator John Campbell in the 35th. Campbell, after the early endorsement of the Governor, appears to be a shoe-in now for the United States Congress.

Here's Robinson's story: Who will take a seat?

She lists four Republicans (shows how cynically aware she is of the political trends in California) who might make strong candidates for the race: Assemblyman Tom Harman, OCGOP Chairman Scott Baugh, Assemblyman Chuck DeVore, and real-estate executive Kevin Hayes. She doesn't mention Tran, whom she may believe to be running against Umberg in the nearby SD. She only quotes two.

Hayes: Asked how serious he is about a Senate run, Hayes said Tuesday, "I'm a pretty serious guy in general, but as for a run for that seat, I can tell you I'm still undecided."

DeVore: DeVore said Tuesday he's interested in the seat, but the timing of the election will clinch things for him.

"When these things come up, especially in the era of term limits, you never lightly dismiss it," he said.

But on the other hand, with a safe Assembly seat and more than five years before he's termed out, DeVore said, "there's a lot to be said for just sticking to the task at hand."

DeVore was thinking about the 48th a few months ago, but the 35th may just be too enticing for him to pass up. After considering the names Robinson mentions, Chuck DeVore, a stalwart conservative with name ID, would really only face competition in this district from Scott Baugh. Kevin Hayes would have to spend too much money to get the kind of name ID DeVore enjoys. One would think Hayes and his New Majority friends would have learned their lesson from just last year. I think they have. While Harman represents a good chunk of the district, let's not forget that this is an area that elected both Christopher Cox and Dana Rohrabacher to Congress. Meaning: it's a conservative area. Harman is decidedly not conservative.

Baugh wouldn't have to relinquish his Chairman's title were he to run, if my understanding of the CRP bylaws are correct. He has great name ID. He has great credentials, having been in the Assembly as Leader of the Republicans. And this race would set him up in the area to pull a Campbell-style succession of Rohrabacher. "Does he want to run?" seems to be the only question left unanswered.

Here's for hoping both DeVore and Baugh give this race their time in thought.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

The 48th: The Blog

Dear Sir or Madame,

The following was posted by Dana Point City Councilman Jim Lacy over on OC Blog. I thought it would be good to post it again here.

Next week participants in this blog will be able to view the only website and blog devoted entirely to the 48th CD special election at: www.thesuccessorproject.com. This site, brought to you by The Successor Project, a conservative PAC, will include a blog for debate, as well as all the news on the race, the candidate's records, and answers to questions with links to the candidate's sites. TSP will include streaming video interviews with the candidates to succeed Chris Cox and post them on the website as they are completed.

TSP is going to be nonpartisan and seeks only to draw the candidates out on the issues and their records so voters will be informed. Unfortunately, right off the bat we need some help from John Campbell! Senator Campbell and Campbell supporters, listen-up! Please ask your staff to supply us a picture and 800 word bio/statement to put up on the TSP site. We've asked for it, gotten it from Brewer, but Campbell's managers have not responded to our request to have it to us by August 1. Also, we are dishearted that Campbell's campaign office has refused to answer Conservative Victory Fund's questionnaire. CVF is a member of The Successor Project Coalition. CVF is a venerable old DC based conservative movement PAC that supported Chris Cox for years and helped Chris in his first election to Congress. A staffer for CVF called the Campbell campaign last week to inquire why they hadn't received a completed copy of their questionnaire and was told "Campbell does not do questionnaires." But that is not really the case. Just check California Pro-Life's website for evidence of the Senator's past participation in questionnaires. Come on, John Campbell, answer CVF's questions! They will like your answers! You are going to get a lot of questionnaires in this campaign, and you'll have to give in on this anyway, so get back in touch with CVF at 202-547-7177 and tell them you've overridden whoever answers your campaign phone and tell CVF that you will answer their questionnaire!

This blog has already linked to The Successor Project on its sidebar, under "Other Blogs." We here at the Courant will no doubt be spending quite a bit of time perusing that site if it is regularly updated. Thank you Councilman Lacy for keeping us informed on this web development.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Tom Harman's campaign for the 35th SD

Dear Sir or Madame,

Big kudos are in order for "Jubal" over at OC Blog for following up on State Assemblyman Tom Harman's funneling (dare I say laundering?) of campaign funds from his committee for Assembly accounts to his committee for Senate account. It appears like Harman has really been scared off of the County Supervisor race by Tom Moorlach, who has gotten a lot of ink as of late in the local press because of Orange County's financial travails.

Read here: Where's Tom Harman's Campaign Report? and here: Harman Update.

Now all this financial activity is probably meant to serve a purpose. What could that be?

Well, it could be a way of posturing Harman ahead of others in the predicted Senate special election to come. Would $100,000 scare off a defeated Marilyn Brewer? Would it scare off Scott Baugh? Tran? DeVore? My hunch is probably not. Brewer loaned herself $150,000 for this year's 48th congressional special. Baugh makes $100,000 in a lunch meeting. Tran shouldn't even be running in this race. (Instead, he should take a shot at Umberg in the race to succeed Dunn.) And DeVore's a good conservative freshman legislator with a lot of money left to be tapped. Would any of these folks be scared off by a fluffed-up Senate campaign committee that's essentially the entire product of Harman's vigorous fundraising over the past couple of years? I highly doubt it.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

National Review visits LA

Dear Sir or Madame,

Our rivals to the North have something to brag about:

Bill Buckley Brings NR to LA!

Join WFB, Rich Lowry, Jonah Goldberg, Jay Nordlinger, Kate O’Beirne, Ramesh Ponnuru, and Kathryn Jean Lopez on Sept. 17 for a private cocktail party and dinner in Los Angeles.
Details.

It's more than I'm willing to spend to see people I've already seen and met before, but I understand the need for fundraisers like these. National Review was created by Buckley to be a publication that makes little profit. The writers provide National Review Online absolutely free (totally magnificent of them). Both were made and maintained for the movement. That's why you don't see the really coveted, full-color, pricey advertisements from auto companies and alcoholic beverage distributors splashed upon its pages. And anyone who knows publications, knows one doesn't turn a profit on subscriptions or rack sales.

I pray this won't be Buckley's last trip to the Left Coast. We need him here more than ever!

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

The 48th: Campbell terminates the competition

Dear Sir or Madame,

This comes courtesy of the OC Blog: Schwarzenegger Endorces Campbell For Congress. It shouldn't be much of a surprise.

With this juicy quote:

"Senator John Campbell has been a strong and sometimes lonely voice against the special interests that dominated the Legislature in recent years," said Governor Schwarzenegger. "John has offered bold and innovative solutions to our budget crisis and steadfastly resisted calls for higher taxes. His vision and leadership are needed in Washington, DC, where he will be a tremendous advocate for Orange County and California."

One thing is for certain: John Campbell has been lonely in Sacramento. His attempt at securing the Senate Minority Leader position was a lonely effort. Governor's lap dog is a lonely position. And having ex-Campbell staffers and associates working with the Governor can't hurt.

If I were to offer one bit of advice to Gilliard and the Campbell Team it would be to make these releases email based. Hardly anyone uses faxes anymore! And put the bloggers, even the anonymous kind you loathe, on your email list. It may really pay off for you in the long run.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

The 48th: THE WEBSITES!

Dear Sir or Madame,

Since this can be said to be the first real day of the special election campaign to succeed Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Christopher Cox, I thought I'd try to reach the Congressional campaigns online somehow. Here's the results:

State Senator John Campbell: www.campbellforcongress.com It's a website at least, with links to online contribution capabilities, a contact email, and rotating photos (a cleverly placed one has Senator Campbell smiling next to the avowed politically neutral Congressman Cox).

Former State Assemblywoman Marilyn Brewer: www.brewerforcongress.com Gives you a "COMING SOON! This name was recently registered at Register.com." Nothing up yet.

Minutemen Organizer Jim Gilchrist: www.jimgilchrist.com Gives you a "Coming soon - check back" message from domainspot.org. Nothing available on www.gilchristforcongress.com.

UC Irvine Professor John Graham: www.johngraham.us Is still an active website from his 2004 Congressional campaign and could easily be converted to '05.

Newport Beach Attorney Steve Young: Nothing available.

What does this tell me? John Campbell, like it or not conservatives, has a lead on the web as well as a lead in the polls and funds.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Big victory for Chuck DeVore in El Morro Village

Dear Sir or Madame,

The Daily Pilot posted an article up on the website late last night detailing the California Department of Parks & Recreation predicted inability to stick to appropriations agreements and timelines. This, for locals unaware, has been a source of controversy for Assemblyman Chuck DeVore since he took office. El Morro Village, nestled within Crystal Cove State Park, has been the focus of the Department's land grabbing interest.


Here's the link: Cuts likely in El Morro work.

UPDATE: Assemblyman DeVore, in a fashion befitting a very active writer, has sent out an email to supporters regarding this new development. I'll post it here in full.

More multi-million dollar overruns at State Parks

The most frustrating part of my job in Sacramento hasn’t been dealing with the Democrats. For the most part, they do what you would expect them to do: expand the size of government and try to raise taxes. No, the most frustrating part of my job has been dealing with the bureaucracy – that permanent government seemingly unmoved by any election, completely immune from any attempts at reform.

Both the
Daily Pilot (see below) and the O.C. Register ran stories this morning detailing yet again one particularly constant irritation I’ve had with our state bureaucracy: the State Parks Department and the park at Crystal Cove in my district.

No, this time the story wasn’t about the multi-million dollar overruns in the so-called “restoration” of the historic cottages (only a bureaucrat could call the complete destruction of a 70-year-old shack followed by totally new construction “restoration”). This time the story was about the multi-million dollar overruns for State Parks’ plans to destroy El Morro Village (a source of more than $1 million a year in revenue to the state) and replace it with a 250-car parking lot and campground (a money-losing venture for the state).

We are now seeing a pattern emerge with State Parks – a pattern manifested in one park in one Assembly district, but no doubt common throughout the state. The pattern? As the
Daily Pilot wrote today:

In DeVore's view, starting a project and then asking for more money before its completion has become a pattern for the state parks department.

"As policymakers, it doesn't do us any good to approve multimillion dollar projects and then find out in the middle of the project, oh yeah, we need several million more dollars," DeVore said. "Once you're in the middle of the project, what do you do?"

I’ll tell you what State Parks expects us lawmakers to do: shut up and give the bureaucrats more tax money.

I have other plans.

All the best,

Chuck DeVore
State Assemblyman, 70th District

www.ChuckDeVore.com


This latest bit of news just makes DeVore's past emails seem prophetic.


Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Seeking: Candidate for Office in AD72. Experience Not Required. Steady Heartbeat Preferred. Principles a Plus.

Dear Sir or Madame,

In all seriousness, is anybody of any legitimacy going to run for Daucher’s seat? Looking at the finance reports for Mike Duvall and Marty Simonoff are just sad.

Duvall has raised a total of $67,000, having spent more than $20,000 of it – most of it wastefully. He’s reserved only one slate, so that explains $1,000 of it. But given that he’s raised only $50,000 legitimately ($25,000 was from his own pockets), how absurd is it for him to have spent more than $7,000 on fundraising??? Is there NO low hanging fruit for him to have picked on his own? Is he already having to shell out a commission to raise ANYTHING? He’s in trouble.

But Marty Simonoff isn’t in much better shape. Yes, he has only spent $3,000 – a much more acceptable sum this far out. But Marty’s only legitimately raised around $28,000, as he’s put $50,000 of his own money towards his total of $78,000.

What this race desperately needs is a third option. Preferably a conservative, and even more preferably one who has the resources to loan his campaign the allowable $100,000 off the bat. We’ll see if any such person emerges. If they do, this race is theirs to lose, despite the late start.

Operators will be standing by at all Sacramento consulting firms.

Yours in Freedom,

ANTHONY AFTERWIT OC

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Local Demo high schooler seeking spot on Board of Ed

Dear Sir or Madame,

I want to thank Greg Hardesty at the Orange County Register for giving conservative Republicans a good heads up on this prospective local politician. The participation in Model United Nations gives her up before the punchline at the end. And it is only a punchline because it's Orange County. Anywhere else in California, this would just be another high-minded young kid seeking statewide recognition.

In the words of this young lady's mother, "If she could major in Ruling the World, she would." Not much different from most other Democrats. They're infected so young these days. I love how the CTA has this girl wired with budgetspeak to stand up to Arnold.

Here's the link: A chance to represent millions.

It's just a shame that her education will no doubt be stunted when she reaches college, because she'll only be exposed to a single, leftist, orthodoxy that thumbs its nose at open discourse. She won't have the opportunity to develope her Demo viewpoints until she's too warped to take on a Walters, or Bates, or whoever is in office and seeking office at the time.

The ambition is something to marvel at. She's a young woman after John Kerry's Yalie heart.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Christopher Cox says goodbye to Congress

Dear Sir or Madame,

Thank you, Orange County Register, for printing this wonderful letter by Chris Cox to his constituents. I have voted for the guy for a long time and I am appreciative of his service here and in Washington.

The changes I've seen
I've watched the march of freedom in Washington and the world

By Chris Cox

This evening, my time in the House of Representatives will come to an end. I'm deeply grateful to the people of Orange County for the opportunity to have served you and our country in Congress since 1988.

Today, Orange County's values are dominating the debate in Washington. It wasn't at all like that back in the 1980s, when I first came to Washington to work as a lawyer in the Reagan White House. But that's certainly when the trend started.

By 1989, when I was in the House of Representatives and President Reagan came to the House floor just before leaving office for a private valediction with our Republican members, all the pieces were in place: Where once the economy had suffered years of "stagflation," over-regulation and punitive taxation, now it was strong. And where once the Soviet Union had been on the march, waging proxy wars across the globe and threatening the world with nuclear annihilation, now it was in retreat.

At the Pope John Paul II Polish Center in Yorba Linda in 1988, I remember telling a gathering with great certitude that "Poland will be free in my lifetime." That turned out to be an excessively cautious prediction. The following year, as a newly minted representative in Congress, I served as a U.S. election observer in Poland. Solidarity swept the nation's first free elections - and the communists were swept out.

The march of freedom in our own hemisphere has been just as exhilarating. With a State Department delegation that included my friend and colleague from the White House and Congress, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, I monitored the first post-civil war elections in El Salvador. We wore bullet-proof vests, and our hotel was blown up. Just this week, nearly two decades later, the Congress voted to approve a free trade agreement with Central America. Instead of guns and body armor, we're now sending computers and breakfast cereal.

Here at home, too, we have come to recognize that "as government expands, liberty contracts." One of my purposes in running for Congress was to eliminate waste and bureaucracy in government. Over the years, I've occasionally been able to take a nip here and a tuck there out of the federal behemoth. For example, we eliminated the oldest government regulatory agency, the Interstate Commerce Commission; and my closure of the wasteful National Helium Reserve was the third largest privatization in American history, yielding $2 billion for taxpayers.

But I am also leaving Congress with some unfinished business. I may have overestimated the time it would take for Eastern Europe to be free, but I confess that I also underestimated the time it would take for communism to fall in China. But if I've learned anything over my career in Congress, it is that we must never underestimate the power of freedom. While their governments may be repressive, people everywhere yearn to be free. And across the globe, the trend is toward free markets and free speech, and away from the statist ideologies of the past.

And finally, with 9/11, our focus has shifted to what we now call homeland security - an organized effort to share information in new ways, in order to stop terrorism before it happens. For the last three years, this has been my main calling. If we give up our freedom to suit the exigencies of the war on terror, we will give al-Qaida the victory. That must never happen.

To the wonderful people who for nine terms gave me the support that made it possible for me to serve our country: thank you. It has been a privilege to represent you.

We can only hope to have another like him succeed him.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Who's in touch with the 48th?

Dear Sir or Madame,

With all the high-priced consultants Marilyn Brewer has on staff, you'd think they could at least attempt to connect to the voters in the district. Today's Daily Pilot has an hilarious piece by Alicia Robinson, offering an immediate comparison of whom the candidates are respectively targeting for endorsements.

Here's the link: House race candidates get support.

John Campbell has the Orange County Lincoln Club, a well respected, conservative, influential group of local donors.

Marilyn Brewer has ... Senator John McCain! From f*%#ing Arizona! What the hell does his endorsement buy her?!

First, he's from a state whose residents come and defile our beaches and coastal communities every summer with their weird clothes, tanlines, and haircuts. Second, he's from a state that's not California. Third, he's from a state that's not even close to this district. Fourth, did John McCain even poll that well in Orange County during the 2000 Republican Primary? Fifth, he's from Arizona!

I could care less if Marilyn Brewer has John McCain's endorsement. I really care that John Campbell has the Orange County Lincoln Club's endorsement. That's key. They have friends outside the Club who will give in this contested race.

At the end, Robinson gives us another bit of good news: B-1 Bob won't run as an American Independent. Two things may have happened here: either Dornan was deluged with phone calls from past Republican supporters and the Party asking him if he needs to be institutionalized in his retirement or some other big boy may be running as an AI, like Jim Gilchrist of Minutemen fame. Either way, big news: Dornan will stay a beat down Republican.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Irvine may see apartment high-rises

Dear Sir or Madame,

Here's an article on today's Orange County Business Journal website that corroborates a point made by Silence about a week ago: Irvine May See Apartment High-Rises.

Not all infill in South Orange County will be light residential. Some of it - especially in Irvine - will be high-rise residential.

This may not have the same effect, politically, as the kind of suburban population growth the guys at CalRaces were talking about. High-rise residential doesn't typically attract the kind folk that make up the Republican Party. In fact, it attracts the opposite.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Monday, August 01, 2005

What the political gossip columns missed...

Dear Sir or Madame,

It has now been confirmed by multiple sources. Assemblyman Ray Haynes has disclosed (to some) that he is romantically involved with Assemblywoman Mimi Walters's Chief of Staff, Gina Zari. They have been seen canoodling arm in arm around the state's capital.

This comes shortly after the breakup of Assemblyman Haynes's second marriage. And it may explain his strange endorsement behavior last year in the 70th AD race, when Haynes first endorsed DeVore, then Cristich, then everyone else. At the time, Zari worked for Cristich.

Assemblyman Haynes, who I still respect (albeit less than I did before), has been going through many changes these last few years. He's lost good staff members to controversy. He's taken up relations with a younger woman conspicuously close to the dissolution of his second marriage. He's lost massive amounts of weight. And it all seems very unhealthy. Don't they warn members of the state and federal legislature about things like this?

I'm worrying about our once really conservative friend, Assemblyman Ray Haynes. I know he's a tough, grown man, but still. Anyone else have an update on this?

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

OCR political gossip columns today

Dear Sir or Madame,

Frank Mickadeit and Martin Wisckol are both regular columnists for the Orange County Register. Mickadeit's column goes all over the place with regards to topics. Recently, he's written on politics. Wisckol's column, "The Buzz," is always about politics.

Here's the link to Mickadeit's column today: Harry has Voldemort; we have Charmin' Ron.

After going through the intern's Harry Potter court session, you get snippets of Corona/Hunt news as well as some social background on the Igers.

Here's the link to Wisckol's column today: Schwarzenegger donor sued.

Now, the first part of Wisckol's column is only interesting because the donor happens to be one of Schwarzenegger's top three donors and Wisckol is trying draw a pattern of sexual misconduct between birds that flock together.

The second part gives us some great insider information on the OC ballot initiatives' support/opposition within the ranks of the firefighters and sheriffs deputies as well as the controversy over early union endorsements for Sheriff.

The third part shows Corona, expectedly, dwarfing all other candidates for Sheriff with his nearly half-million dollars COH.

The fourth part, a rarity, gives some ink to Matthew Harper for his YRFC Chairman's victory in Sacramento two weekends ago. (I don't believe there was a Buzz column last week, so I'll let Wisckol get by for tardiness on this bit of news.) Congrats Harper!

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

Poizner blob destroys all in IC race

Dear Sir or Madame,

I just received this in my email box:

August 1, 2005
Contact: Tim Clark
Phone: 916-473-8866 x5

Poizner Reports $2.25 Million in Total Funds Raised Through June 30th

(Sacramento) - According to the recently released campaign finance reports, Republican Insurance Commissioner candidate Steve Poizner raised $550,000 from almost 500 donors in just 24 days during the month of June, and then gave his campaign another $1.7 million, bringing his total campaign funds to $2.25 million, with $2.1 million in available cash on hand.

During this period, Poizner far outpaced the two other potential Republican candidates. After subtracting outstanding debt from reported cash on hand, one potential opponent had a negative balance of -$58,832 while the other had just $6,713 in available funds.

"Steve's support among donors and Republican activists is truly remarkable," said campaign spokesman Tim Clark. "The first contribution Steve received was on June fourth of this year, and in the next twenty-four days, he raised over half a million dollars above and beyond his own personal contribution."

The Poizner report's expenditure list also revealed the campaign's plans to feature the candidate on most of the major GOP slate cards.

"It is clear that Steve is the strongest candidate for Insurance Commissioner and that's why so many Republican leaders and volunteers have already endorsed his candidacy," said former Senate Republican Leader Jim Brulte.

Poizner has been endorsed by dozens of Republican legislators, leaders, and other activists throughout the state.

Anne Dunsmore and Michael Sowers from Capital Campaigns are heading up the Poizner finance team, while Senator Jim Brulte is serving as the Campaign Chairman. Wayne Johnson and Tim Clark of JohnsonClark Associates are the campaign's lead strategists, and Campaign Solutions is handling the internet strategy.

I used to play the X-Men arcade game all the time when I was younger (gives you one clue as to how old - and nerdy - I am). It was the one with all the X-Men superheroes' old costumes (Wolverine had a brown and yellow suit). The first big villain "boss" that the X-Men team encountered in the game was a guy called "The Blob." The Blob just walked around slapping and sitting on your hero, all while growling out, "Nothing can stop The Blob!" It always annoyed the hell out of me. Well, that's what Steve Poizner's race for Insurance Commissioner reminds me of.

Poizner is The Blob. His infusion of $1.7 million just makes you laugh, in agony, at the thought of attending a Phil Kurzner fundraiser at Jeff Corless's Orange County apartment for $40 a person. The guys at Hack n Flak can add this finance report to their lineup. It's frightening that a Democrat, who supported the 2000 Presidential recount in Florida that threw away American servicemembers' ballots cast overseas in order to admit Democrats dual and dimpled votes, could get so many Republican endorsements and so much Republican money.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC

New wordsmith at the Courant, Part Deux

Dear Sir or Madame,

Please welcome Anthony Afterwit to the growing list of contributors to the Orange-County Courant. I trust you'll find him a knowledgeable addition to this political forum.

(I know I'm supposed to be on vacation. But even while out of town, I've been hard pressed to put the electronics away. I can't seem to do it. I'm sure none of the readers have similar problems.)

Yours in liberty,

SILENCE DOGOOD OC

Haynes's Monday, August 1 morning memorandum

Dear Sir or Madame,

Here is Assemblyman Ray Haynes's latest defense of his California Border Patrol Inititative. I'll post it in full. Besides the silly title, it is a good read. I like how, this time, Haynes provides us with cost predictions and comparisons. It's important to reiterate.

Enforcing The Law Is The Right Thing To Do

My Democrat colleagues on the Assembly Judiciary Committee recently killed ACA 20, the constitutional amendment designed to create the California Border Police, a state agency whose sole purpose, if we can ever get it formed, would be the comprehensive, uniform, and statewide enforcement of federal immigration law. The full text of ACA 20, in its current form, is available on www.calborderpolice.com if you would like to see exactly what the bill would do. Within two weeks of the death of the bill, the Attorney General also released his title and summary of an initiative with the same language as ACA 20. That initiative is now out for signature gathering, so the people may have the opportunity to enact the terms of ACA 20 over the objection of the liberal majority of the California Legislature. Only time will tell on that account.

However, I was intrigued by the arguments used by the opposition to the idea of the California Border Police. These arguments generally fall into three general categories: (1) The California Border Police would cost California taxpayers too much money; (2) Patrolling the border is a federal job, and only the federal government should do it; and (3) Illegal aliens do jobs that Americans won’t do, so stopping the flow of illegals would destroy our economy. Those arguments persuaded the Democrats on the committee to vote against my bill. I’d like to address those arguments.

First—the Border Police will cost too much money. I wish that my Democrat colleagues worried this much about the cost of illegal immigration back in 1999 when they gave illegals free medical care in California. California taxpayers now spend about $4 billion a year on the cost of free medical care for illegal aliens.

More important, the total cost of illegal immigration to California taxpayers is approximately $10 billion a year, when education, welfare, health care, and prison costs are combined. The California Border Police will cost between $200 and 300 million a year, but will reduce our social service costs by between $3 to 4 billion a year. That is a bargain. In addition, that $300 million is only 3% of the $9 billion increase in the 05-06 budget over the 04-05 budget, 3/10ths of 1% of total state spending. We really can’t afford not to do it.

Second—enforcing immigration law is a federal responsibility. The federal government isn’t doing its job. Federal law grants the states the authority to enforce the law, and since the California taxpayer pays a disproportionate share of the cost of illegal immigration, California should do everything in its power to reduce those costs.

Finally—illegals may do jobs Americans won’t do, but they live a life of fear, abuse and exploitation. It is not right that human smugglers endanger their lives, and that American employers exploit their labor with substandard wages or working conditions. It is not right that criminals target illegals, who cannot report a crime for fear of deportation. It is not right that illegals pay into a social security system in which they will never participate, or get injured on the job without compensation, all for fear of deportation. They should come to this country legally, and enjoy the safety and protection of our laws. Those who justify the current condition, including many of my liberal colleagues, are actually advocating that illegals continue to live in these subhuman conditions indefinitely.

Enforcing the law is right for everyone. It is right for Californians, it is right for the federal government, and just as important, it is right for the long term good of the illegal. That is why we need the California Border Police, and why I am supporting the initiative. If we just do the right thing first, everything else will fall into place.


This, when Drudge is linking to a new article on the feds' arrests of more illegal alien gang members here: Feds Make More Than 500 Gang Arrests... I believe they made a number of arrests in California just a few months ago. (Maybe a reader can dig up the Register or Times article where I saw it.) This, in addition to Burbank City Councilwoman Stacey Jo Murphy's boyfriend (see: Charges Filed in Weapons, Drug Probe).

The San Diego Union-Tribune did a front page story on MS-13's operations up in Los Angeles and their affect, after deportation, on their countries of origin. The guy pictured in the U-T was one of their prettiest, with MS-13 tattoos on his forehead, cheeks, and body. I believe he was from El Salvador.

Here's the link to one of the only articles that paper has published on Washington's attempts to curb the gang threat in America: House passes tough anti-gang ... This is certainly a danger to Southern California. Thank you Minutemen, for all you have done.

Virtue, Liberty, and Independence,

RICHARD SAUNDERS OC