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Campaign mailers are political trash

I dislike all the political mailers that come in the mailbox.

For the most part, they’re worthless if you’re trying to understand the candidates. Also worthless are these paid pieces which offer recommendations who to vote for. They often are based on who paid for the piece. I was dismayed to see a bunch of Republicans endorsed in one of them along with an endorsement for Prop. 13. If you’re a Republican and vote for this new Prop. 13 you need your head examined.

I was fuming when I saw the attack piece mailer from congressional candidate Bob Elliott banging on fellow Republican Ted Howze.  (You know they’re feeling desperate when they send out garbage hit pieces like this one.) Remember that Ted Howze ran against incumbent Republican Congressman Jeff Denham in the 2016 election and found issues with Denham’s voting record. Elliott’s hit piece featured darkened photos of Howze lined up with Josh Harder, Nancy Pelosi and Alexandria Orcasio Cortez all in a row, like they’re peas in a pod. Under their image is a Sacramento Bee drop quote: “Howze attacked Denham during the campaign.” Under that is thise verbiage: “By attacking Republican Congressman Jeff Denham, Ted Howze helped Josh Harder win and Nancy Pelosi become Speaker.”

For Elliott to suggest that by challenging (and losing to) Denham in the primary helped Harder get elected is pure unadulterated hogwash. Denham lost to Harder in the general election all by himself. Howze’s primary challenge did nothing to unseat Denham.

To link Howze with Pelosi is deplorable and sad.

Elliott may be a fine man with a great military record – and I am sure I would prefer him as my congressman over Josh Harder any day of the week – but he’d better get rid of the campaign consultants who dropped that garbage in my mailbox.

* * * * *

I attended the hour-long Feb. 11 candidate forum for District 5 supervisor hopefuls last week. Only about 30 showed up for a district of about 109,000 people.

I found it ironic that the question about “will you serve a full four years?” came up. Let’s face it; the only reason that question came up is because candidate Channce Condit wants to be excused from his current job to take on a higher job. At the end of this year, Condit will have finished year #2 of a four-year term. Of course, this time Condit said he’d serve all four years at the county level. Anyone care to bet he’d renege on that promise to run for Adam Gray’s Assembly seat in two years?

Later in the forum Condit said: “It’s always important to stand by your convictions and also if you tell somebody you’re going to do something, you’re going to follow through on that.” Hmmm.

While it’s true that Condit never explicitly said he’d honor his commitment to serve his full four years when he put up campaign signs in 2018 and went door to door asking for votes in an uncontested race for his council seat, it was implied that he would. But had that same question been asked of him in 2018, you know exactly how he would have answered: “Will you serve your full four year term?” Absolutely I will. You betcha.

Well, I asked Condit a different version of that question on Oct. 8, 2018 (a year and four months ago ) and this is how it went down:

Me: “This may be a pointed question but do you have any political ambitions beyond council?”

Condit: “To be honest with you, I haven’t thought about it but I haven’t ruled it out. And I just want to focus on being the best councilmember I can for Ceres and that is my focus because at the end of the day, you know, doors might open in the future but I’m always going to live in Ceres and I want to make Ceres the best community it can possibly can be.”

I guess he is now distracted from that short-lived goal.

I also found Condit’s remarks on the surface water plant very interesting. At every opportunity Condit has voted against steps toward the water plant process. In the past he declared the project was a “necessity” while saying the ratepayers shouldn’t have to pay for it. Who should? The residents of Chico or Bakersfield or Ripon?

At last week’s forum he said he was opposed to the plant – even though it’s needed – but he’s been opposed because the city hasn’t secured water rights yet. Shifting explanations?

* * * * *

I chuckled at an Associated Press article titled, “Teacher unions: Children terrified by active shooter drills.”

Terrified at a drill?

The lead paragraph reads: “The nation’s two largest teachers unions want schools to revise or eliminate active shooter drills, asserting … that they can harm students’ mental health and that there are better ways to prepare for the possibility of a school shooting.”

I sat through a drill at Central Valley High School last summer and while it was a somber experience – only because you never know if it’s the real deal or not – I can’t say I was terrified. Nor were the kids I was locked in the office either. They knew the drill, pardon the pun.

We live in a world that can be scary but being unprepared for a moment of a real campus shooting or emergency is certainly scarier. Students, indeed all of us, should be “scared” of the what-can-happens because it helps us all survive.

* * * * *

The national media was so focused on which Democrat would come out on top in New Hampshire that they conveniently glossed over the indications of an impending Trump tidal wave.

In his 2012 during re-election campaign and unchallenged by his party, Obama pulled 49,000 votes in New Hampshire. Trump collected nearly 128,000 votes! Not a bad showing considering the president faces no real GOP opposition, and not bad considering that the media and the Democrats pound him relentlessly.

* * * * *

Bernie Sanders was in Carson City over the weekend and he allowed another takeover of his rally. Three young liberals from the Bay Area part of the Direct Action Anywhere, an animal liberation activist group, took over the stage, with Priya Sawhney grabbing the mike from Sanders who acted like he didn’t know what to do and wandered off stage. One young woman began denouncing the dairy industry for artificial insemination of cows while another topless woman poured fake blood all over her head.

Direct Action Anywhere issued a press release about the incident claiming the three women were arrested for indecent exposure. “If Bernie truly cares about justice, he will stop propping up the dairy industry, which relies on the abuse of female cows,” said Sawhney in the release. “I love Bernie, but we must hold abusive industries accountable, not shield and subsidize them. Animal farming is an industry which gives welfare payments to millionaires.”

You can get a picture of the insanity of the left and how their thinking has become so misguided. These kooks are really going to drag into class warfare a link it to female cows?

A passage of Roman 1:21 streamed into my head when I pondered on these malcontents: “Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn’t worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused.” (New Living Translation).

For crying out loud, God gave man dominion over the animals who are not on the same par as human beings. And I’m all for people becoming wealthy for working hard and being ingenius feeding the world.

This column is the opinion of Jeff Benziger, and does not necessarily represent the opinion of The Ceres Courier or Morris Newspaper Corp. of CA. How do you feel about this? Let Jeff know at