I just got back from the polls. That's a photo of the new Diebold voting
The poll worker handing out the "I Voted" stickers tried to tell me the machines have a paper backup inside them, but I didn't hear any noise of a printer operating, and even thermal printers have motors to move the paper. The poll was too busy to have any sort of discussion about it.
Superior Court judges: I have absolutely know information about any of these candidates, I can't make an informed decision, I skip these.
County Board of Education: I'm not really clear what purpose the county BoE serves except to provide weak internet service to the schools. This candidate was running unopposed, so it's no big deal.
County Board of Supervisors: Dianne Jacob is running unopposed for reelection. I think the entire board needs to be replaced for lack of leadership. We're four years into the decade, and they still haven't finished the 20-year plan that was supposed to cover 2000-2020. They started on it before I even moved here. The moment that anyone raises any objections, no matter how small they or their concerns are, this board stops what it's doing. It was a good opportunity to test out the machine's support for write-in votes, so I wrote in the candidate who promises me a 55-year old houseboy if he's elected President.
Prop 55: A statewide $12.3 billion school construction/renovation bond. This will probably be the last one of these I'll ever vote for. It's huge, but there's still a lot of schools in need of serious work. The last one of these we approved was "only" $1 billion. If this doesn't cover it, they're just going to have to spend the budget more wisely.
Prop 56: This would cut the budget approval threshold in the legislature from 2/3 to 55%. The Democratic Party has never had less than 55% of the seats, so if this won it would let them run the table. Sure, it sucked last year that the Republicans refused to negotiate reasonably and held it up. This year the Republicans are saying the same thing about the Democrats. Either way, the law has been 2/3 for 70 years, and this state's spending has gotten ludicrous. Drop it to 55% and it would get worse. The arguments in favor are that this proposition makes the legislature forfeit their pay, travel allowances, and expense reimbursement for every day past the deadline the budget isn't done. But with a greater-than-55% majority, the Democrats would simply never let it get to that point, so that's an empty gesture.
Prop 57: The governator's re-fi loan. The state is already in debt, and a lot of it is short-term loans they got from banks during the last two years' budget crises. We can pay it off with bonds at low rates over 9-14 years, or we can get fucked in the ass every time the bank loans come up for renewal. This is a no-brainer, but it has to go hand-in-hand with Prop 58:
Prop 58: A constitutional amendment to force a balanced budget, and it requires building up a reserve fund for bad economic years. (You know, like the last couple.) If this were to happen without 57, the state's debt service obligations would fuck it over something fierce.
Prop A: I wrote about this Sunday. No way.
Prop E: To rezone 20 acres at the corner of Poway Rd. and CA-67 from rural residential to commercial, to allow its owner to build a gas station and RV storage facility. There's no gas station within 9 miles north or south of there, and it's about 5 down the hill on Poway Rd. It's a spot that needs one. The opponents whine that it'll open up the area to development, put another 24,000 cars on that 2-lane stretch of Poway Rd each day. They also wave the spectre of another Wal*Mart. I think they're full of it. The owner has been up-front about his plans from the start, and has filed a deed restriction preventing future owners from altering it without City Council approval. (Admittedly, he could rescind it later if he wants, but if he did, people would crucify him.) I was gently leaning in favor of it, but what kicked me into firmly supporting it was the behavior of his opponents. They've been ripping down and defacing signs supporting the proposition all over town. They behave like a bunch of bratty children. So fuck them.