Bureaucrat Beat: RoboJerks, Ballot Liars, and Flag Folly

The phone rings. You pick it up. A computer says, “We want you to vote for Mr. So and So.” We hear locals who have really had it up to here with the robocalls – as many as nine of them a night. Do they really think a computerized interruption in dinner will win votes? Just more of the ill-mannered, invasive tactics afoot in today’s marketing world. We in the Bureaucrat Beat newsroom say, if your computer calls us, we will not vote for you.

We agreed on one more thing. The people who comment on our website need to chill out when it comes to immigrants. We really do not like hate mail. It might surprise some people that we go through whole days and even weeks without breaking a sweat over immigration. We stand behind our earlier rant that Mexico and America need to engage in a real way to find common answers.

Of course, now we’re up to our ears in oil. News reports say crimes may have occurred. No kidding. One of the crimes – that we have a regulatory system that does not require plans in place in case one of these offshore oil rigs blows up. Nope, never even considered that. Double Good Grief!!! How is it we strain at threats to tiny bugs but not to an entire ecosystem!!! We have one word – money. How disgusting.

Take Proposition 16 on the June 8 ballot, if you want to ponder disgusting. The utility, PG&E has spent a reported $46 million to get this measure passed. They call it the “Right to Vote” initiative. They swear that you want to vote before your government forms a public utility. What they really mean is they don’t want public utility formation that will compete with them. Pure and simple. So, when you hear one of the jillions of TV ads they’re running, remember, it’s not the Right to Vote Proposition. It’s the Right to Kill Competition.

Proposition 17 pretends to be your friend, too. Not so, according to Consumer Watchdog. And VoteVets.org. They point out that Prop. 17, sponsored by Mercury Insurance Company, will mean higher rates and a surcharge for customers who cancel car insurance for awhile and then restart a policy or buy a new policy. All we had to hear was that an insurance company is sponsoring this proposition with millions of dollars.

We just about fell off our chairs and face-first into our manual typewriters when we saw the headline: “Feds Approve New Golf Oil Well Off Louisiana.” We don’t care if it’s not deep. It’s in the ocean!!!!

Nice to see flags flying in many of our towns. As usual a hiccup in Mammoth Lakes seemed to say there would be no flags. We hear some major scurrying and expletives led to what it takes to get the American flags flying in Mammoth. Why is that always such a problem?

Facebook is a problem for some people. The grapevine has passed some stories around about tacky comments even political candidates post. What are they thinking? Hello? The internet sometimes reveals who people really are, and its not particularly pretty.

Neither was the appearance of Census workers at front doors on Memorial Day. Yep. That’s right. A worker knocked on a local man’s door in Mammoth and started to ask him questions about his neighbors. A question too far. The man asked the Census worker to take a hike. The local man inquired further and found out that the Census Bureau has instructed its workers to ask people about their neighbors. Good Grief.

With that, this is Benett Kessler signing off for Bureaucrat Beat where we await your word on our lives in the Eastern Sierra and beyond.


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