I drove up Harbor Blvd. from the 91 on Easter afternoon and noticed the first signs of spring.
Not, I mean, the first signs that we’re warming up after winter — those happened long ago. I mean the first campaign signs: several in the orange-and-indigo theme of the Fullerton recall, a few for Travis Kiger (who is competing primarily with Glenn Georgieff for Dick Jones’s seat) and one way up high on a pole for Chris Norby.
This is not a popular sentiment in the pages of Friends for Fullerton’s Future, the blog owned by Tony Bushala that deserves most of the credit for provoking and promoting the recall, but at some point one might expect voters’ calculations regarding the recall to involve not only how much the incumbents deserve to retain their offices, but also who is likely to replace them. At least four candidates for the three seats have been associated with (and at least three of them largely lionized by) FFFF. Three are Republicans: Planning Commissioner Kiger, Parks Commissioner Barry Levinson, and Greg Sebourn. Opinion among FFFF commenders about one of Sebourn’s opponents, Jane Rands, seems to be a mixture of respect for her criticism of the Council and disrespect for her being part of the Green Party.
(Disclosure statement: I’m a Democratic candidate for the State Senate district including Fullerton, volunteering with the campaign of Council candidate Paula Williams, and had an absolutely hellacious go-round with FFFF commenters, beneath a column where Sebourn noted the “irony” that there was a water main break last month on the street of a “water reformer,” as he described himself in the headline. Luckily for me, I suggested long before my recent blow-up that I thought that FFFF would itself become an issue in the election, as it might be thought to give some clue into the temperament and support of those candidates who might replace the incumbents. This insight is not some brainstorm, it simply comes from my talking to many voters outside of the FFFF orbit. And while I suspect that this story will inevitably be depicted as a hit piece — comments on which will probably be part two of the series — I don’t intend it as such. I find FFFF to be a mixed bag, partly admirable, partly abominable. It has a serious record of discovering, reporting on, and badgering over issues that others have given short shrift –combined with a fire-breathing, take-no-prisoners, jarringly un-self-reflective spirit. Decide for yourself!)
So, I just want to comb some of the recent FFFF comments sections for some examples that seem to represent the ethos of the group that, as soon as two months from now, could end up with its denizens controlling the entire city government. (They generally align with with incumbent Bruce Whitaker, who works for Assemblyman Chris Norby, against whom Fullerton Mayor Sharon Quirk-Silva is running in the new AD-65).
Here’s some excerpts from this past weekend’s notable comments (all of which appear to be from regular commenters and/or ones who support the FFFF position on its main issues):
(1) [About the “water tax”:]
First step is to hire a “more” COMPETENT CITY ATTORNEY!
CITY COUNCIL GET OFF YOUR ASSES AND DIRECT THE CITY MANAGER TO DRAFT A PLAN TO RETURN EVERY CENT THAT HAS BEEN COLLECTED SINCE THE STATE DECLARED THE COLLECTION OF THESE FUNDS TO BE ILLEGAL.
Do like the IRS, no receipts=no deduction
The water fund had no expenses, refund all the collected funds as a penalty for staff and management incompetence.
(2) [Regarding Mayor Quirk-Silva:]
I have seen you at ribbon cuttings, you lady ( i use the term loosely)…suck, bad, but go ahead and continue- to pal around with loosers, like Loretta….and who ever told you to wear that red scarve, please tell me it wast raul, loretta’s fag hag boy-wanna be stylist…it puts on 13 pounds, to your already ruebenesqe figure…see Im a giver, I just told you something apparently your freinds have a problem doing..you look stupid with that scarve- stupid.
(3) [Regarding the gay student who was yanked from speaking at a FHS Assembly by an Asst. Principal, note that at least one commenter challenged this regular commenter:]
(4) [Regarding the promotion in rank of FPD spokesperson Andrew Goodrich from sergeant to lieutenant:]
Dear me, I see what is happening, Like the ex theif, I mean cheif….
Andy is being promoted, or he will spill the beans,meaning- give him his promotion, so he can garner that amount of money for his retirement, its a ploy, he isnt staying, he too the chubby troll spawn from the human troll SYL,will leave with his monies in hand, poor fat fuck andy- will never be accepted, ANYWHERE, your a stupid goober, who has managed to, obviously learn how to do hand jobs on his bosses…no other reason, would make sense, none, other than he is the dept NEd beatty in Deliverance…and he doesnt have a pretty mouth- you go figure….hand job? who is with me.
I don’t want or expect people to take my word for it regarding how representative these comments are of discussion on FFFF; the RSS feed is in our right column, so go check it out yourself. (I’d hate for OJB to be judged by our worst commenters, but we tend to tell our worst commenters to stuff it. Is this the custom on FFFF? Check it out. My sense is that I didn’t have to look hard for these, and that there was plenty of support for all but perhaps the “keep the gay out of my face” one.) Of course, these comments are not necessarily reflective of the views of Fullerton’s potential new overlords — and, if they’re not, the FFFF-community candidates have the chance to say so.