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Political Fix by Gloria Penner


The year 2008 was suited to those of us who cover the news and who analyze it. It was replete with drama from the devastating natural disasters in China and Myanmar to those caused by human greed and negligence resulting in a global economic meltdown. There were genuine surprises including Sarah Palin's rapid rise from obscurity to rock star popularity on the national political stage and Barack Obama's victory over racism, conservatism, and the power of the Clinton and the Bush connections.

There were the personal defeats which reminded us of the heroes of Greek tragedy brought down by hubris. This year, the derailed careers belonged to a United States senator, perhaps a governor, and a city attorney. Ambitions were sabotaged as well when leaders promised more than they could deliver, and the best laid plans to benefit the public interest caved to the pressure of special interests.

Perhaps the strangest phenomenon of all was the fate of Proposition 8 in California. Its passage eliminated the right of same-sex couples to marry, despite a ruling by the California Supreme Court less than six months earlier that same-sex couples had a constitutional right to marry. Thousands of such couples who did marry after the court decision and before the initiative passed are now in legal limbo. Interestingly, the California vote for change embodied by support for Barack Obama over John McCain (61% to 37%) did not carry over to Proposition 8 (52% Yes to 48% No).

Yes, it's the inconsistency and unpredictability of human behavior that keeps the news fresh, even when history seems to be repeating itself. So my New Year's wish is for 12 months of much better news even if we have to sacrifice some excitement.

December 21, 2008 at 05:44 PM
I wish that the running of our country be turned back the people. That it be taken back from the hands of life time bureaucrats. That the request of many by the vote be honored and not changed by special interest of a few. I wish that the news media do their job and report all the news instead of trying to create and manufacture the agenda driven propaganda. I wish that all the Dan Rather are found and exposed. I wish that the news contain all the facts. I wish that honesty and integrity play a bigger roll in the information that is supplied to the people of this country. I wish that the government get out of the news business and stop sponsoring news organizations through grants.

Matthew C. Scallon
January 11, 2009 at 03:42 AM
"Interestingly, the California vote for change embodied by support for Barack Obama over John McCain (61% to 37%) did not carry over to Proposition 8 (52% Yes to 48% No)." What I found interesting --and I blogged about it on my personal blog-- was that Proposition 8 passed by 52-48, while Proposition 4 failed. This means that some peole voted for Prop 8 but against Prop 4. I'm still scratching my head over this. For these folks, gay marriage is dangerous but the wholesale slaughter of innocent human life --or at least the exclusion of the mothers' parents from knowing about said slaughter-- isn't. Huh?

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