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Tim Myers: The 'Buck' circus

Myers' Musings

Posted: March 7, 2009 9:57 p.m.
Updated: March 8, 2009 4:55 a.m.
Local Republicans gather outside City Hall Feb. 24 to support Congressman Howard P. "Buck" McKeon and to protest President Barack Obama's stimulus plan. Local Republicans gather outside City Hall Feb. 24 to support Congressman Howard P. "Buck" McKeon and to protest President Barack Obama's stimulus plan.
Local Republicans gather outside City Hall Feb. 24 to support Congressman Howard P. "Buck" McKeon and to protest President Barack Obama's stimulus plan.
"We have to understand that many Americans including conservatives ... personally like Barack Obama, and we need to be very careful that we don't create this sense of trying to demonize him or say ridiculous things or irrational things."
- Gov. Mike Huckabee of Arkansas, former Republican candidate for president.

Subject: I really, really need your help!
Please forward this to your fellow Republicans.
I need as many people as possible to storm the city council (In City Hall on Valencia Boulevard) meeting tomorrow night.
When: Tuesday, Feb. 24
Time: Please arrive by 5:45 p.m. with signs in support of Howard P. "Buck" McKeon and against the stimulus/Obama! These can be homemade or you can pick up signs at the Lyons Avenue campaign office tomorrow afternoon.
Why: I just got word today that there is a brilliant, yet devious plan afoot by local democrats to unseat Congressman McKeon in 2010. They plan to do this by starting their efforts now at our very own city council meetings.
We need every SCV Republican to storm the Santa Clarita City Council meeting tomorrow night with signs and verbal support for our Congressman.
- e-mail from Lynn Vakay

I guess Ms. Vakay did not get the memo from Gov. Huckabee, and neither did the circus-like Republican entourage that showed up at city council chambers on Feb. 24 at the behest of the above e-mail, which referenced two paragraphs in a column written by me and a letter to the editor from the SCV Obama for Change grassroots organization published in The Signal on Feb. 22, 2009.

It was probably the SCV's greatest political moment of "Made you look." It also brought to mind youthful hazing incidents - abandoning young men in the woods holding an open bag to catch the mythical snipe.

I especially like the photo of the young man proudly holding up the hand-made sign asserting "Obama = United ‘Soviet' States of America." Would Gov. Huckabee find this not ridiculous and irrational, the comparison of the president to Stalin?

The crazy signs hurt the feelings of some Obama for Change members who showed up at the council meeting to call out Congressmen McKeon for voting against the stimulus package. That self-same city government plans to access said stimulus package for local infrastructure.

Personally, I think this constituted the absolute best thing that could happen for those who would like to see a successor to the congressman - for two reasons.

First, when a long-term incumbent's followers react so viscerally to even the whiff of criticism of their guy, it belies their concern about the opposition. I cannot even imagine this happening 10 years ago in the SCV.

I guess Buck's handlers read the stats that the 25th District voted for Barack Obama over John McCain, even though McCain eked out the most narrow of victories in Buck's homebase of Santa Clarita. With apologies to the Bard, Buck's followers doth protest too much.

Second, this more than anything confirms the rump status of the Republican Party. A functioning country contains a majority of rational and reasonable people. A highly functioning country contains a supermajority.

In "failed states," the rational and reasonable flee, ceding the nation to the wingnuts. When one can only get the nutjobs to show up to show their passionate support, that drives the rational and reasonable, be they left of center or right of center, scurrying to the other side.

But the real question I must now face? Where do we send the circus next? Do I intimate that Obama for Change will show up at every elected body meeting in the SCV for the next six months to say bad things about Buck, so that the circus shows up with more signs getting even crazier and crazier?

Or do I use this newfound puppetmaster power for good and reveal a desire to go around to all the local charitable events to start a "Buck Sucks!" chant at the most inopportune time, forcing the circus to buy tables benefiting the charity so they can position themselves to start the necessary counter demonstration?

We will see, but let me say I will need to use all my willpower to keep from sending the well-meaning but half-crazed Buck lovers tearing all over creation in the SCV's greatest version of the political snipe hunt.

Tim Myers is a Valencia resident. His column represents his own views and not necessarily those of The Signal.


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