Monday, November 07, 2005

Ballot Proposition Theory

Naw, not those (Yes, No, No, No), but in San Francisco there is a local proposition F, which would reverse a policy of "browning out," fire departments, which consists of taking certain firehouses, or personnel, or machinery off-line on a rotating basis to control costs -- spiraling costs I imagine, because that's what costs do. Prop F obviously enjoys widespread support in the union-blue-collar-public-sector sector, but it's probably and bad, expensive idea. San Francisco already has an extraordinary firehouse to square mile ratio, and the rationale in voting Yes seems to come down to nastalgia and stirring patriotism.

Fine. Except, ever since Saturday morning, when I saw two separate, simultaneous fires in the Mission District, the number of firetrucks racing around the section of San Francisco I call home has been bizarrely, extraordinarily high. I mean, two in the last five hours, three on Saturday, one on Sunday. Could a pro-Prop F group have engaged in a systematic fire-starting campaign in the municipality to underscore an artificial need of over-the-top fire protection, thereby ensuring the passage of the afore-mentioned Prop? I mean, clearly, right?

Here we go again:
Those of us left-of-center are showing all the momentum going into a critical election that those to the far-right are desparate to win. All polls and predictions show Arnie going down. Except, 17 counties in California have touch-screen voting. Alameda, San Bernadino, etc. Seventeen counties. It bears watching.

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