*** FAKE CASBAH *** ELECTION GUIDE

THINGS THAT MAY OR MAY NOT CONCERN YOU

GENERAL ELECTION ENDORSEMENTS

We desperately want the election to be over. So much so that we nearly did not add our own endorsements to the teeming terabytes of text covering this, the MOST IMPORTANT ELECTION OF OUR LIVES. We would love nothing more than to click our cranhammer slippers and wake up in post-election America, where everything works great and people love each other. With that said: voting really is important! If you’re not convinced of that by now, well, shit. We drop freedom bombs on non-Americans to give them this right.

Find your polling place —> Where the fuck is my polling place?
Confirm that you’re a voter —> Did those motherfuckers get my ballot?

So here’s a Quick (?) and Dirty Voter Guide, or A Look at How We Voted For Political Junkies Who Just Can’t Stop Reading About the Election.

PRESIDENT OF THE GREATEST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD

Jesus Christ on a melting polar ice cap, there’s no way you don’t already know who you want to be the Leader of the Free World. And guess what? It doesn’t matter! Under the inequitable, antiquated, back-asswards method of electing a President in this country, every last voter in true-blue California is exercising the franchise for Barack Obama. Fair? Of course not. But that’s the way it is. You should be frustrated with this dumb system regardless of who you support. The Electoral College has resulted in a clusterfuck plenty of times, even in recent memory, and yet here we are. What to do? Whine, complain and lobby for the National Popular Vote, which California has already passed into law in hopes of enough other states eventually doing the same. In the meantime:

Vote for Jill Stein*

Since we’re all collectively casting our 55 electoral votes for Obama, we suggest voting with your conscience, which in our case is the Green Party candidate. We don’t really know who Dr. Jill Stein is, and it doesn’t matter. She got our vote because she represents views that align with our own bleeding liberal heart, and because she’s not Bronco Bama or Money Boo Boo.

The Prez never turned into the magic liberal so many of us hoped for when throwing our support behind him four years ago. Remember when Obama was a hedge against establishment-Dem Hilary? How naive. Then he hired guys like Rahm Emanuel, Lawrence Summers and Tim Geithner, didn’t close Gitmo as promised, didn’t prosecute a single criminal act out of so many from the Bush adminstration–like, you know, torture–and ramped-up the National Security State to Orwellian levels. Also the war on whistleblowers, the trust-us-it-happened capture and prosecution killing of Bin Laden, NDAA, flying death robots and so many other reasons. Yes he got the health care law passed, but it’s a split-the-baby compromise modeled on old Republican proposals that Republicans were never going to vote for anyway.

A friend explained it thusly today: “A Romney or Obama vote gives the establishment a mandate to continue its crushing imperialism & two-tiered justice unabated.” Huzzah!

So vote for the Green. Or if you’re a weed-friendly disaffected conservatarian, Gary Johnson is your candidate. If you like writing in Mickey Mouse, Roseanne is on the ballot.

*Unless you are registered in a “deciding it for the rest of us” state like Ohio, Florida, Nevada, Wisconsin or Virginia. Then you should totally vote for Obama. 

MAYOR OF SAN DIEGO

What the hell is going to happen? Polling has been all over the place, and after an endless string of debates we paid little attention to, we still have no idea. What most everyone agrees on is that both candidates are kind of terrible. The mayoral campaign has been a nightmare of character-attack sniping that left us wistful for “independent” third-place finisher Nathan Fletcher. Fletch, we hardly knew ye. San Diego hasn’t elected a Democratic mayor in over 20 years, and despite a registration advantage for Dems, it apparently will be very close.

Bob Filner

We don’t have our hearts in this one. Vote for the devil you know (Filner) over the tea party puppet devil of Doug Manchester you know all too well (DeMaio).

UNITED STATES SENATOR

Oh man, another six years around the dance floor with DiFi. Feinstein will breeze back into her Emeritus Permanent Senate Seat as one of our two (TWO!) senators from California, home to 37 million people. Our other one is pretty great, but Feinstein is a Blue Dog who happily sells us down the river at every opportunity. Her nominal opponent is some no-name Republican effigy with zero chance whatsoever. We left both ovals blank out of disgust.

UNITED STATES REPRESENTATIVE, 53rd DISTRICT

Susan Davis

Susan Davis is a moderate Democrat, likes wearing purple and will easily emerge victorious over her kooky Republican opponent.

UNITED STATES REPRESENTATIVE, 52nd DISTRICT

Scott Peters

We live south of the 8 and don’t vote in this race, but wholeheartedly recommend a vote for Not Brian Bilbray. Peters is no John Kennedy, but Bilbray has been in lockstep with his obstructionist Republican colleagues in the Worst Congress Ever, and that is more than enough reason to vote him out. His campaign has tacked leftward in trying to win votes in the redrawn district, with dubious ads claiming that Peters is the one out to gut Medicare (‽), and another featuring his incredibly hot, cancer-stricken daughter that uses medical marijuana. Will it be enough to retain his seat? We sure hope not, but, probably.

STATE SENATOR, 39th DISTRICT

Marty Block

Has a D by his name and gets our vote by default. Assemblyman Block has name recognition over GOP opponent George Plescia, whom you’ve already forgotten.

STATE ASSEMBLY, 78th DISTRICT

Toni Atkins

Is an actual progressive-liberal, will easily win re-election and we like her a lot.

CITY COUNCIL, COUNTY SUPES, JUDGES, SCHOOL BOARDS AND DOG CATCHER RACES

We will not offer and do not recommend taking our advice on the down-ballot races. For these we consulted the voter guides of the San Diego Democratic Party and San Diego CityBeat. You could do a lot worse.

STATEWIDE PROPOSITIONS: DEATH AND TAXES

YES on Prop 30

A new, temporary tax to help balance the bleeding state budget. We’re not wild about the governor and legislature budgeting via the ballot box like this. But the alternative is more severe cuts to state services. Hold your nose and vote yes. It’s going to be close.

NO on Prop 31

Austerity! Does a lot of bad things and liberal people don’t like it. Hasn’t polled well, seemingly has no chance.

NO NO NO on Prop 32

Trojan-horse corporate initiative masquerading as campaign reform. This piece of crap is going down and be sure you vote against it.

NO on Prop 33

Same insurance “reform” initiative that Mercury Insurance has run up the flagpole in previous elections. Allows companies to raise rates if you have a lapse in coverage for any reason. Duh, no.

YES YES YES on Prop 34

We used to be fence-sitters on the death penalty, but upon further review, holy shit the State should not be killing people. The biggest, most glaring reason is that innocent people are convicted of capital crimes all the time. Also, keeping people on death row is expensive and pointless, since California has a de facto moratorium on executions anyway. It will be replaced with life sentences without the possibility of parole, so vote Yes and end the death penalty in California. It looks very close and needs your vote.

? on Prop 35

This is a tricky one. We are absolutely in favor of coming down hard on sex offenders and human traffickers. But we feel that this kind of criminal justice legislation should be done through lawmakers, not an initiative on a crowded ballot. We voted No, but leave it up to your own conscience. Here’s a good summation of the No argument.

YES on Prop 36

Reforms the Three Strikes Law, which was itself a criminal justice law passed by initiative. Three Strikes sentences a lot of people to life in prison for non-violent and often minor offenses, which is stupid and costly. Vote Hell Yes.

YES on Prop 37

We definitely need more consumer information on genetically-modified frankenfood, and the No campaign is supported by none other than Monsanto. Don’t overthink it. Vote Yes to label GMO food.

NO on Prop 38

The Molly Munger “shared sacrifice” tax that has no chance of passing. Vote No and don’t let it sink Prop 30, which it might anyway. Yikes.

YES on Prop 39

Closes a corporate tax loophole and funds green sustainable things, apparently. Vote Yes and hope for the best.

YES on Prop 40

This initiative would undo the state’s redistricting, which is such a bad idea that even the initiative’s backers don’t support it anymore. Vote No but don’t sweat it; this sucker ain’t passing.

LOCAL PROPOSITION – PROP Z

We do not pretend to be educated on education issues. While we value book learnin’ and stuff, it does seem like we vote to approve a new bond or tax for schools every single election. Prop Z would raise property taxes by $60 for every $100,000 a property is worth. That is a big tax increase. We voted No, but you should feel free to do otherwise and make us feel really guilty about it.

For more detailed information, we suggest the San Diego Free Press Progressive Guide to Ballot Propositions.

Now go vote!

ENDORSEMENTS

Distressed? Frustrated? Underemployed? Gobsmacked? Grin-fucked? Fret no more, for we want to advise you, to provide counsel, because you might forget to vote, not care, care but haven’t paid attention, or paid attention but hated everyone and everything. That’s fine! Shit is fucked up and bullshit, the game is rigged by nefarious power-mongers behind the curtain and we sympathize if you would rather avoid politics entirely. Unfortunately the result of politics is public policy, and if you don’t vote you let the people who do–only about 20% of those eligible–make the decisions for you. So vote goddamn it. It’s easy and we don’t get to do it very often.

Find your polling place —> Polling Place Finder
Confirm that you’re registered —> Voter Registration Status

If you still have an absentee ballot, don’t mail it. You can either vote at your polling place on Tuesday 7am-8pm or bring your completed ballot to any polling place. Remember to sign the envelope.

MAYOR OF SAN DIEGO

The long mayoral cluster-grope can’t end soon enough and after we eliminate two of these thieves public servants, it still won’t be over for another six months. Following the back-and-forth spin and pissing matches through the funhouse mirror of Twitter is tedious. We’ve known who was running for a year now and according to the latest poll, the conventional wisdom back then could be the order of finish on Tuesday: DeMaio and Filner heading to the runoff, Fletcher and Dumanis sent packing. But if we had to put money on it, we would guess that the Log Cabin Republican and the Developers’ Lackey finish 1-2.

These recommendations reflect our own jaded opinions so please don’t take them personally. We are Decline-to-State voters in the City of San Diego.

Bob Filner 

Filner is the only real choice for liberals and other thinking human beings. He has solid progressive credentials and is the sole Democrat in the race, a point he relied on too early and too often. Bob took a lot of heat for his seemingly indifferent approach in the early stages, he’s been prickly and bumbling at various times and he lags his opponents in fundraising. But he’s gotten stronger as the campaign has worn on. More importantly, Filner is still the only candidate defending positions we agree with: he’s against Props A and B, opposes the Irwin Jacobs Balboa Park-defacing vehicle bypass, and has consistently called for fair regulation of medical marijuana. Plus he was a Freedom Rider and the only white man to stand with the Congressional Black Caucus when they protested Bush the Younger’s appointment to the Presidency. That’s good enough for us. We give Bob our four-Cranhammer endorsement and recommend you fill his oval, punch his chad or push his button as the case may be.

People who would vote for Filner include Labor, environmentalists, stoners, Donna Frye, Jello Biafra, Lester Bangs, Eddie Vedder, Questlove and the surviving members of Black Flag.

Nathan Fletcher

The Wild Card. A former Marine reservist and Iraq War veteran who reminds voters of it at every opportunity, Fletcher has positioned himself as the champion of centristy post-partisanship and independence. This despite the fact that his “identity always has involved Republican politics,” as Voice of San Diego described. He fiercely challenged DeMaio for the local Republican Party endorsement and suddenly found his true calling as an Independent when he didn’t get it. Whatever his motives, seizing the Indy mantle was clearly the right move. He went from a guy scratching for name recognition to the biggest story of the campaign. A zombie army of Fletchbot acolytes hit the streets for their new hero, placing their vague hopes and dreams on the young career GOP operative whose positions closely mirror his two conservative opponents.

Fletcher deflects the policy similarities by pointing out what a nicer guy he is than Carl DeMaio, which we can’t argue with. Maybe the strangest twist of the campaign is Filner’s own unabashed man-crush on Fletcher. We have carefully avoided coming into his physical proximity, fearing the rugged good looks and low monotone would put us under his Rasputin spell. If he makes the runoff he definitely gets our vote and we can all hope and dream together. The back-room midnight deal that raised San Diego’s redevelopment cap in support of a new stadium put him on the map, so if a Chargers stadium is your important issue, Fletch is your guy. He’s made friendly, noncommittal statements on medical marijuana and seems like he could be reasonable on the issue. He says good things about bike lanes and transit, is a surfer, and jeez it’s hard not to like him. His best value for wobbly Dems is as a hedge against DeMaio and that’s where much of his support lies. We slide Fletch two Cranhammers, one for each of his tough and tested balls.

Those who would enjoy pulling Fletcher’s lever include La Jolla soccer moms, developers, paddleboarders, Nancy Reagan, James Taylor, Jason Mraz and guys in Stones cover bands.

Carl DeMaio

If you’re reading this you are not seriously considering DeMaio. This self-promoting grandstander would be a disastrous Mayor in every aspect. A gay man with a name-changing felon for a partner, he is nevertheless the worst candidate of the four on LGBT issues. The progressive alt-weekly San Diego CityBeat calls him “the anti-christ”–in a non-religious way–while Papa Manchester’s U-T stands four-square behind him, as good a reason as any to flee in the opposite direction. Voice of San Diego noted “a charlatan, faker, traitor to the people, a cigar-and-smile trickster, political quack, pretender, clown, cheap gambler, bamboozler and a liar.” That was the San Diego Union in 1897 criticizing a long-dead mayor, but apply it to DeMaio now. We award him no Cranhammers and may god have mercy on his soul.

Likely DeMaio voters include corporate lobbyists, disgraced former Mayors, people who think Unions are the debbil, Sean Hannity, Paul Ryan, Sammy Hagar and the singer from Creed.

Bonnie Dumanis

Dumanis is an automatic no-vote for her Pyrrhic crusade against medical marijuana. She is a massive disappointment and cruel irony for LGBT-sympathetic voters who would love to support a gay female candidate for Mayor. Despite racking up a few key endorsements, the County D.A. ran an amateurish stealth campaign for much of the year and was a no-show at a string of debates. When she finally did show up we were surprised by her willingness to mercilessly attack the fresh-faced Fletcher. She refused to lay a glove on the easily-targeted DeMaio, strategically triangulating her loyaly to the guy leading in the polls. Dumanis has consistently polled in fourth place and can only be a spoiler of Fletcher’s independent bid. We shake up one short Cranhammer for her Bostonian pronunciation of Chah-juhs.

Numbering among the ranks of would-be Dumanis voters are establishment conservatives, cops, gun owners, Jerry “It’s All Bullshit” Sanders, Ted Nugent and the original members of the Lawrence Welk Orchestra.

LOCAL PROPOSITIONS

NO on Prop A

An ideological anti-union trojan-horse solution in search of a problem. Project Labor Agreements are infrequently used in San Diego, and poison-pill legislation was passed in Sacramento that could cost San Diego millions in State money if a PLA ban is implemented. The transparency argument is all bullshit too, as Prop A would actually publicize less contract information than is already available. Vote Nay.

NO on Prop B

A bad solution that purports to address the real problem of pension liabilities. Leaving aside the dubious legality of the current Mayor pushing the referendum as “Citizen Sanders”, the City’s own Independent Budget Analyst advises that Prop B would actually cost the city millions. That among a host of other fatal flaws. It’s bad policy and you should vote No.

STATEWIDE PROPOSITIONS

YES on Prop 28

Prop 28 is a compromise on term limits. It reduces the total number of years a state legislator can serve from 14 to 12, but revises the current law so all those years can be spent in one branch of the legislature (currently restricted to 8 years). Term limits seem to have outlived whatever usefulness they once had, but this at least makes the law a bit more fair. Yes on 28.

YES on Prop 29

Adds $1 to the current 87-cent tax on cigarettes in California. We don’t smoke filthy death sticks ourselves so this is an easy choice. For those of you still inhaling burnt poison, be advised that our state has only the 33rd-highest cigarette tax in the country, and that the new tax would go directly to cancer research. You might need it eventually. Vote Yes on 29.

UNITED STATES SENATE

Dianne Feinstein is once again the incumbent shoo-in for one of California’s two Senate seats–an absurd paucity of representation for the biggest state in the country. We have long been disgusted with DiFi’s conservaDem policy choices in the Senate. After her vote to retroactively revise the FISA law as cover for George W. Bush’s illegal wiretapping program, we called her office to say that we would nevermore cast a vote for her in any election. So we researched a few of her primary opponents and found that David Alan Levitt would be a great candidate if he had a chance in hell. He doesn’t, but we recommend a protest vote for Mr. Levitt regardless.

U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

53rd District – Susan Davis

We wish she would be a much more liberal Representative, but Davis is the incumbent Democrat and will easily win another term over her tremendously flawed Republican opponent.

52nd District – Lori Saldaña

Saldaña is the more progressive candidate between her and former councilman Scott Peters. We remember Peters as a middle-of-the-road developers’ ally on the council and that sways our choice to Saldaña. However, she has picked up a lot of baggage during the campaign and alienated people who should have been allies. Peters has the organization and momentum to finally unseat the unctuous Republican Brian Bilbray. We recommend Lori Saldaña but feel her candidacy is dead in the water and won’t begrudge a vote for Peters.

CITY COUNCIL

District 3 – Todd Gloria

Our councilman is running unopposed. We like Todd but wish he would get out of the Mayor’s pocket and be a better ally for fellow councilman David Alvarez, who is awesome.

District 1 – Bryan Pease

The environmentalist Pease has no shot at unseating Sherri Lightner. She says a lot of nice things from the council dais, but votes with the majority anyway most of the time. The strategic vote here would be for Lightner to keep the seat out of Republican hands.

District 7 – Mat Kostrinsky

Konstrinsky should be prouder of his Union affiliations and is the easy choice over GOP-backed Scott Sherman.

STATE ASSEMBLY, COUNTY SUPES, JUDGES AND DOG-CATCHER RACES

Other than voting to re-elect Toni Atkins, we don’t have well-formed opinions on these races but generally agree with CityBeat’s endorsements for the down-ballot offices. Having said that, please be sure to vote for Garland Peed for Superior Court Judge. His opponent–one Gary George Kreep–is apparently quite the creep and a raving right-wing Birther. So, Peed over Kreep if you will.

Thanks for playing in what’s left of our participatory democracy. Get out and vote! Polls are open from 7am to 8pm Tuesday. Find your polling place here.

- FC

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