Monday, August 25, 2003
Larry Flynt and me: Or at least his polling company. Just spent about 15 minutes on the phone with a polling company asking my opinion on the California recall and the possible candidates to replace Gov. Gray Davis.
This is the second time in about nine months that I've gotten polled. The last time was about a rather dull proposed bond measure for building a new communications center for the city of La Mesa. This one, at least, was more interesting.
In order to get some initial impressions, it wasn't apparent for the first five or so minutes exactly on whose behalf this poll was being done. It was the standard poll questions, trying to get a feel for biases, favorables vs. unfavorable
And then there was the big Larry Flynt push.
Larry wants to offer amnesty to all illegal aliens currently in California, and then "close the border to illegal immigration." Well, it sounds nice, but there's a couple of problems.
First, the governor cannot offer amnesty -- that's a federal power
Second, the border is a sieve -- we've been trying to keep the dang thing closed for decades -- it's not possible without a sea change in enforcement, including hiring legions more Border Patrol agents.
Third, hiring the aforementioned Border Patrol agents is a federal job.
The other amusing thing was listening to the script read by the surveyor rail against "conservatives" and "right-wingers." For the most part it's pointless to quibble with the poller -- they're only reading a script they're paid to read, but I'd certainly like to debate whoever wrote the thing.
The script extolled the virtues of a "lovable smut-peddler" who "literally took a bullet for the First Amendment." Sorry, Flynt took a bullet not for the First Amendment, but for his own pocketbook. Hustler magazine is not a noble publication that contributes to political discussion or the betterment of American life.
Flynt also wants to expand and tax "gaming" (the PC term for gambling here in California), which, Bill Bennett excepted, is largely a tax on the poor. But the way you hear Flynt's spinners tell it, he wants to solve California's budget problems without hurting the "regular people," but that's what those taxes would do.
I did my best to push Flynt's negatives up so maybe he won't campaign too hard and I won't have to see him on television or listen to him on the radio.