Warning! This is a Political Post. Many people do not want to read these, so this is a warning to those readers! Go look at this picture of a dog I took by the US Post Office on Irving, and return later when I’m back to Regular Posts. Thanks!
Believe it or not, California’s June Primary is actually somewhat important to the two major parties’ presidential candidates. This is more so on the GOP side than with the Dems, but either way, it means a lot of people are going to vote. Yay?
There’s also a lot of Other Important Elections being decided as well, including an open US Senate seat, a State Senate primary here in San Francisco (the first with the new district lines that put all of SF in one district!), and so on. Due to California’s “top two” system, the top two vote getters move on to the general, regardless of party. So there’s that.
Then there’s the Democratic County Central Committee races in San Francisco, where a cast of thousands are running for something no one cares about 90% of the time.
People have been asking me who to vote for in this. One advantage of blogging for far too long is that I have written about this oh-so-important subect before, in 2008 and 2010 (twice!). Plenty of Deep Thinking Political Types have expounded on this issue at places like Medium (!) and elsewhere, as have plenty of idiots who Think They Know Best.
All you need to know is this: the reason why you’re having thousands of people, including many current and former elected officials (!) run for a non-gov’t job that pays nothing and is mired in the minutiae of running a dying political party is pretty simple. When that party committee sends out pieces of paper saying “vote for this,” most San Francisco voters do what that piece of paper says, and don’t give it much thought. Sounds crazy but it’s true, especially in “presidential” election years.
Heck, I even ran as a “write-in” candidate, on a platform to move party meetings to somewhere not a stuffy state government basement with no cell service, and have drinks available, but while I still think this would be a good idea, I don’t think any of the candidates care about such mundate matters. Even if they do matter if you want to, say, build a local political party for future elections & causes.
Here’s what I recommend to build a better San Francisco, and to reduce the influence of Stupid Bullsh*t in Local Elections: if you get a piece of paper via the USPS telling you how to vote this year from the “DCCC” (Aka San Francisco Democratic Party), burn it (or recycle it if you’re into the environment).
Don’t read it, don’t even look at it, just destroy it. Repeat as necessary. Instead, inform yourself about who’s running for office, and make the much maligned “Democratic County Central Committee” go back to what it’s supposed to do – register voters and do Boring Party Business, which none of you care about, and won’t anytime soon.
It sounds simple, but it’s possibly the most radical notion to hit local politics. Imagine if people ignored party hacks driven by money, and instead listened to their neighbors and talked to candidates for local office themselves, instead?
The mind reels at the possibilities.
PS: Here’s a fun factoid you may not know – since races for “DCCC” are party races, they are not governed by local laws regarding campaign donations. That’s right – if someone wants to take a big pile of loot from a special interest group, they can – and it’s perfectly legal! So long as the money goes for their “DCCC” campaign, it’s fine.
Until you realize that many people running for “DCCC” are also running for Supervisor in 2016. That means they can take big piles of cash and print up junk mailers, ads, and OF COURSE it’s for their DCCC race and OF COURSE it will have no impact on an office they’re running for in the SAME YEAR.
This kind of sh*t is clever, but it’s also playing with the rules in a way that Jimmy McGill would if he went into politics, instead of becoming a lawyer. Personally I plan on Not Voting for anyone for “DCCC” or “SF Supervisor” who is pulling this stunt.