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Why I'm Not Voting For Tim Goodrich For Torrance City Council


I live in Torrance, a suburb of Los Angeles where I moved thirteen years ago as a condition of getting custody of my older sons. It's far more conservative than West Los Angeles where I grew up and worked, or than Venice where I'd lived before. It's an interesting place to live, and the politics are very small-town - which is something I don't necessarily think is a bad thing.

We're about to have a councilmatic election, and one dear friend of TG's is running - Gavin Hachiya Wasserman - who we're supporting because we know him and think he's a good guy, even if a little more conservative than we are.

I'd been looking at supporting other candidates, including Tim Goodrich, a recent Torrance resident, veteran, and antiwar activist.

Even though we disagree on the war and other issues, I'd been generally impressed by his other stances - on the environment, and schools - and had been looking for a progressive to support to see how we might leaven Torrance politics a bit.

But today, I decided not to vote for him. Why? Because yesterday we just got an 11" × 14" mailer from him extolling his military service, veteran status, etc. - and absolutely silent on what his real politics and beliefs are. And I looked back at the mailers we've received (I collect them during election season) and realized that he's fundamentally dissembling about who he is and what he believes in.

Now I get why he'd do that.

Torrance is the city where on Armed Forces Day, there's a giant parade with tanks down Torrance Blvd in front of City Hall. Torrance is a city where - as recently as a decade ago - black people driving through had a remarkably high probability of being pulled over. Torrance is not Venice, trust me.

And I understand why it'd be suicidal to come to Torrance and announce that you're a fan of Che and Jane Fonda and Tom Hayden; but you know what - this kind of dissembling just leaves a damn bad taste in my mouth.

Because I'd like to see a mix of liberal and conservative Councilmembers here. But I'd like evn more for the citizens who elect them to do it with their eyes open, and I'd like to elect a liberal who respects we voters enough - and believes in the power of liberal values enough - to think that they could tell us the truth about their beliefs and win based on their values.

That's not Tim Goodrich. And so I won't be voting for Tim Goodrich when I send in my absentee ballot tonight.

And I think that there's a lesson there for other candidates as well. Tell us the truth about who you are - because if you don't think we'll vote for you if we know it, maybe we won't.


Armed Liberal:

"Tell us the truth about who you are..."

The Democratic Party and specifically the Blue Dog Democrats have chosen another direction for themselves.

Robert Novak has documented this best (link) (and that's my only link, because I can't be bothered doing a search for "some other article that supported this"). I strongly recommend reading the whole piece. There's no "money quote" - rather the effect comes from a steady accumulation of evidence. But to get you to read it...

"Childers fit right in with the Blue Dogs elected in 2006 to give Democrats control of the House after a dozen years of a Republican majority. They won office by campaigning as independent conservatives. But in the House starting in January 2007, they have voted the Democratic line -- with no exceptions -- more than 80 percent of the time."


"The Blue Dogs come from all over the country, from districts generally conservative but not traditionally or firmly Republican. In 2006 when the political currents were running against the GOP, they could campaign as conservatives opposed to Republican corruption and hypocrisy and against knee-jerk liberalism. Their profile: hard-line on immigration and terrorism, highly critical of President Bush’s war policy, pro-gun and usually pro-life, contemptuous of Republican deficit spending. They pledged they would not be beholden to Nancy Pelosi in Congress."


... "The key to a Blue Dog’s voting pattern seems to be not his personal ideology but how safe his district is."


"The Blue Dogs say remarkably little on the House floor. Representing shaky districts (except for Charlie Wilson), they don’t want to offer anything that will come back to bite them. However, Rep. Nancy Boyda (D-Kan.) let her emotions get the best of her last year at a Congressional hearing on Iraq. When the respected retired Gen. Jack Keane testified that the surge is working, she walked out of the hearing and said: “There is only so much you can take.” After upsetting the world famous miler and five-term Congressman, Rep. Jim Ryun (R-Kan.), in 2006, she applied for membership with the Blue Dogs but has broken with Democrats only on FISA and energy out of the selected bills."

My emphasis added:

"What is clear is that Blue Dogs are neither conservatives nor independents. They only campaign that way."

Armed Liberal, you said a lot of things about how the Democratic Party needs to change, and have been embarrassed because the reality for the Democrats turned out to be victory without change.

This is an important part of how that gap was finessed. You have an entire political movement which is simply a fraud, a category of new elected representatives who are fundamentally dishonest not only about what they will do but who they are - people who are faking it for the suckers as completely as Lonesome Rhodes in A Face in the Crowd (1957).

People who wanted to vote Democrat but wanted it to be a "regular guy" kind of Democrat (by their standards), or who have had "cultural" issues that they cared about, like being pro-life or pro-gun, have been fooled, but good. They didn't get their conscience-saving or feel good issue, and they did not get the kinds of people they voted for. They got Pelosi-style liberals who despised them enough to lie to them and that's all.

That's why all conservative wishful thinking about how they lost but the winning Democrats were more conservative "Blue Dogs" is baloney.

The Democrats have won big. Bravo.

By the way, this is not an American thing. I'm not aware of any American ever who was as phony as Labor leader and prospective Prime Minister Mark Latham, who in campaigning literally wrapped himself in the American flag to reassure voters that he would support the alliance, but who wanted to get rid of it, and wrote as much in a book written while he was campaigning saying the opposite of his true opinions. Had he been elected, there would have been many unpleasant surprises for people who thought he was safe to vote for, including the fact that he's violently nutty.

We have, internationally, a Left segment of the ruling class that thinks it's fine to do this.

I got that flyer in my mailbox too. thank for the background info. He will not be getting my vote either.


I know it wasn't your intention, but you made me smile today. I have a friend who lives in Hemet, CA. He likes to say that he is conservative. I tease him that he is a "California" conservative. He would be a liberal anywhere else, but especially here in Texas. Thanks for the laugh and the gentle reminder about our differences.

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