Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Six of One, Half Dozen of the Other

Here in Los Angeles, we had our mayoral election yesterday, and Antonio Villaraigosa emerged victorious. I am sort of happy that he won, because for one thing, he is the first Latino mayor of Los Angeles since hell-and-gone, which is kind of ironic considering the huge Latino population here. Our last Latino mayor left office in 1872, when the population of Los Angeles was about 6,000 people (according to the Los Angeles Times). Things have changed just a teeny bit since then -- I believe the current population is close to 4 million, give or take a few, and the city itself has grown just a tad.

Aside from being Latino -- and I hate that I bought into all the media bullshit and actualy mentioned that first. Hello, I am a lemming -- Mr. Villaraigosa is also alleged to be a progressive Democrat, though I'm not sure what that could possibly mean in Los Angeles, in which even if you are a Republican, you are more liberal than many (most?) Dems elsewhere. If I had to characterize myself (and which you must know, I hate doing -- I reject labels of any kind), I would describe myself as a reform Democrat. That would be as opposed to a same-old-shit Democrat. In the interest of full disclosure, I will also say that I have flirted with the idea of changing parties, since the National Democratic Party is floundering around in a way that I find deeply embarrassing. But I do hope that this is a step in the right direction for my dear adopted city.

The reason I say I am only sort of happy that Mr. Villaraigosa won is that I have developed a deep distruct of politicos of any stripe, and it seems to me to all be bullshit. The hype, the gladhanding, the pandering to special interests -- oh, you know. At any rate, I hope Mr. Villaraigosa can live up to his promises. I don't think this job is going to be a walk in the park. No sir, no how!

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