Tag Archives: The Liberal OC

Just How Much Do Local Blogs Matter?

After seeing Gila’s latest story on The Liberal OC, I’ve been thinking. I know, I know. That’s a REALLY scary thought. But trust me, it’s not scary.

All too often when we think of the netroots, we think of those big, glitzy, glamorous national blogs with all those hundreds of thousands of User IDs. We think of that huge convention in Chicago that just ended. We think big, and we think national. But when you really look at the big picture, the national scene is only a small part of it.

The SF Chronicle just caught onto this, and I’m glad to see them noticing. There’s a giant segment of the netroots that hasn’t been noticed much, but is nonetheless making a huge difference throughout California, and throughout the nation. Follow me after the flip for more…

Some people who blog think the blogosphere has a tremendous impact on elections. I am not one of them. In general, I believe the impact of blogs today on who gets elected is miniscule. Their influence will likely increase as time goes on, but at the moment I think their effect on elections amounts to little more than an asterisk.

That’s part of what Gila has to say today at The Liberal OC. And you know what? She’s right. Whether we like it or not, the national blogosphere only has so much of an impact on elections and campaigns right now. Perhaps that will change some time in the future, but I don’t see it happening now.

Yes, the netroots is a big asset in terms of raising money and exciting the base. However, it can NOT be substituted for institutional donors on fundraising matters. And no, the netroots isn’t a proven vehicle to win votes. So on this matter, Gila is correct.

However, I make a conditional exception for local blogs.

And once again, Gila is spot on in her observation. While everyone is focusing on the big national blogs, they are all missing the one area of the blogosphere that’s having the most impact on politics, which is THE LOCAL BLOGOSPHERE.

The SF Chronicle takes a look at what happened with Say No to Pombo in CA-11 last year, and at what happened in a recent special election for State Senate in New York. In both cases, the local blogs brought to attention stories that the mainstream media ignored, and they ignited local readers to become local activists. I guess The Albany Project makes a huge difference in New York State, and all of us know in California just how instrumental the local netroots was in taking down Richard Pombo.

But of course, these aren’t the only examples of the local netroots making the real difference. After all, everyone here in Orange County knows that without the stellar coverage of local blogs like The Liberal OC, the Tan Nguyen psychodrama would have never become such a huge story. And of course, stories like Claudio’s “Ignorance to Enlightenment” series at Orange Juice have jump started countywide discussions on the intersection of faith and politics. Oh, and if you need another good example of what happens to a politician who ignites the fury of the blogosphere, see what’s been happening to Orange County Supervisor Janet Nguyen.

So what does this all say? It says that local blogs can be quite instrumental in influencing the political dialogue online AND offline. It says that local blogs can be key in making or breaking a local politician’s career. It says that just as all politics is local, all local politics can be strongly affected by what’s happening on the local blogosphere.

So what does this mean for us? This means that we should not be afraid to tackle local issues, and discuss local politics. Local affairs may not be “sexy” enough for the big national sites, but it’s the local politics where the local netroots can have the biggest impact.

Don’t believe me? Ask the New York State Democratic Party, or ask Richard Pombo, or ask Janet Nguyen (or Tan Nguyen for that matter!). They can tell you all about it. : )

CA-42: The Weekly Dirt on Dirty Gary

(Cross-posted at Trash Dirty Gary and The Liberal OC)

It’s been quite a wild week in the 42nd Congressional District. Ever since Ron Shepston announced that he’s running against Dirty Gary Miller, there have been quite some interesting developments that have occurred in the race to replace Dirty Gary. We’ve had the bloggers talk about going offline. We’ve had the California Democratic Party go online to announce its new website targeting Dirty Gary. We’ve heard rumors that a former Republican politician might reemerge to challenge Dirty Gary in the primary. Oh yes, and what did Ron say about John Kerry?

Follow me after the flip for all the latest dirt on Dirty Gary…

Part One: The Bloggers

The bloggers are coming out of the computer room. OK, so how do I know? The call has been made on Daily Kos. A few of my Kossack friends joined me at DFA Training last month, and they are ready to get the netroots involved in grassroots politics.

So what will come out of this? Hopefully, a whole lot of good work! I encourage our online friends, especially those of them in Southern California, to help us local activists in kicking some Dirty Gary arse and bringing some integrity back to the 42nd District!

Part Two: The Party

Nothing really prepared me for this. The California Democratic Party is actually doing something in the 42nd… And the 44th, as well as the 41st! It’s started the “Triangle of Corruption“, a web site that will keep track of all the dirty wrongdoings of Gary Miller, Ken Calvert, and Jerry Lewis. Way to go, CDP!

Part Three: The Other Challenger?

Oh my goodness, you just have to see this bit of salacious gossip that Art Pedroza included in this week’s “OC Political Chismes“! Apparently, there’s word out here that Lynn Daucher may run against Dirty Gary in the Republican Primary next June. Yes, you heard me right… Lynn Daucher!

So will Miss “Shopping for the Right District” end up running where she actually lives? I don’t know. Still, it would be nice to see Lynn run for office representing a place where she actually resides.

Part Four: The Candidate

Oh yes, and take a look at this, why dont you? No, Ron isn’t trying to take a jab at John Kerry. He’s just talking about how much the Daily Kos community contributes to Democratic victory. Go ahead and take another look at Ron’s latest Daily Kos diary… You might start thinking differently about “those crazy bloggers”.

Part Five: And Finally…

Here’s another rule that Dirty Gary broke! Cheese louise, he wore a hawaiian shirt inside the halls of Congress?! Not only does he have no respect for decorum, but he doesn’t even have any good taste! ; )

July 31, 2007 Blog Roundup

Today’s Blog Roundup is on the flip. Let me know what I missed.

To subscribe by email, click
here and do what comes naturally

Today Is All About The
Voting Integrity

Budgets are Moral


Take Your Final Chance for DFA Campaign Academy!

(Cross-posted at The Liberal OC and Daily Kos)

Something amazing is happening tomorrow. DFA Campaign Academy is coming to Southern California! Tomorrow, progressive activists from all over Southern California will be coming to Orange County to learn how to win next year and in future elections. And guess what? All of us activists will be learning from the experts who know a thing or two on how to win.

Oh, and here's some more good news. Even though registration for attendance is already at 160 people, DFA is still accepting sign-ups for tomorrow! That's right, even if you haven't signed up yet, you can still come to DFA Training! So what's happening at DFA Training? Follow me after the flip for more…

So what’s in store for this weekend? Well, why not look at the curriculum to find out?! Learn how to fundraise! Learn how to target voters in your neighborhood with new and imporved online tools ready for you to start using! Learn how to use communicate your message better in your local area! Take advantage of this opportunity to learn all this and more this weekend!

OK, so why exactly is this important? Why should we learn all these campaign stuff, especially if we’re not in an area where progressives can win? Actually, that’s why we need to all go to the training this weekend! For far too long, many Democrats have written off areas like Orange County and the Inland Empire as “hopelessly Republican”. But you know what? We can change this!

Ron Shepston may already be doing this as he’s getting his campaign started in the 42nd Congressional District. Now what could possibly be a better way for all of us in Southern California to help Ron out than to go to DFA Campaign Academy and learn how we can convince our neighbors in CA-42 to support Ron? Ron will need people to can take a progressive message, and communicate it in a way that catches the attention of people who may not know much about politics. Ron will need people to help him raise money. Ron will need plenty of help from us if we want to see him win next year, so let’s learn how we can make that happen this weekend!

OK, so you’re nowhere near Orange County? And you don’t live near the 42nd District? That’s fine. Please come anyways, as it’s also important that you learn how to get Democrats elected and promote the progressive agenda in your neighborhood! Perhaps if you sign up now, you can also still catch a hotel room available if you need one. It’s important that we build up Democratic infrastructure everywhere, so let’s get started this weekend! Let’s go to the training and learn what we need to know to gegin building that infrastructure we need to win!

So who’s with me on this? I’ve already signed up for the training. Have you? Well then, you can still sign up! The training’s only $70… That includes lunch for both days and all the workshops you want inside! Oh yes, and this is your chance to meet some of the finest progressive Democrats in the entire region. So what are you waiting for? Sign up to come tomorrow and join the fun! ;-)

CA-42: The Case Against Dirty Gary Miller

(Cross-posted at The Liberal OC and Trash Dirty Gary)

Gary Miller is corrupt. We know that. But why should we be working to unseat him? Why should we invest our resources in a “safe red district” and try to turn it blue next year? Why should we think we have a chance to win in the 42nd Congressional District?

The best way to answer this question is to answer two other questions. Why should we allow such a corrupt individual to stay in office? And what has Gary Miller done for his constituents that has earned him the privilege of earning our votes for reelection? Once we figure out these answers, we can answer those other questions.

You may be surprised by these answers, so follow me after the flip for more…

Well, let's start by answering the corruption question. He'll skirt the law and evade paying his taxes in order to enrich himself on the taxpayers' dime. Now how's that for someone who's supposed to be such a better patriot than those “America-hating Defeatocrats”?

Oh, and who is Gary Miller really working for in Congress? Looking at all the earmarks he's put into legislation and where he's directing these federal funds, the answer is quite clear. He's bought and paid for by the Lewis Group, a real estate development company in Upland. Whatever the Lewis Group wants, Gary Miller delivers… Even if it calls for money spent in Victorville, which is nowhere near the district! Now why would Gary Miller direct federal funds to one interchange in Victorville? Oh yes, that's right… The Lewis Group had a new development right off the 15 in Victorville!

And oh my, look how rewarding all this work has been for Dirty Gary Miller! Look how the Lewis Group has paid him back for all his service. How precious. But you know what? Gary Miller may focus on what's best for his bottom line and the Lewis Group's bottom line, but he's not taking care of what's best for the voters of his own district.

So when did Dirty Gary Miller forget why he's supposed to be in Congress? Doesn't he remember that he's supposed to serve the voters who send him to Washington to represent their interests? Now is it in their interest that Gary Miller abuse “eminent domain land sales” in order to avoid paying the taxes that provide for our national security, our transportation infrastructure, our schools, our parks, and so much more? Is it in their interest that Gary Miller ignore the local needs of the district in order to deliver the desires of out-of-district developers?

What about traffic relief on our freeways? What about helping out our schools in a way that doesn't allow the federal government to take over our schools? What about doing something about the coming climate catastrophe that may not only hurt our businesses, but threaten our very lives? What about ending this failed war in Iraq that has claimed so many of our brave soldiers' lives, and all for our troops to be caught in the midst of someone else's civil war? These are issues that the people in the 42nd District care about, yet these are the issues that Gary Miller ignores as he misuses his power to enrich himself and his developer friends.

So what can be done about this? We can tell all our family, friends, and neighbors about how Gary Miller isn't serving us. I'm doing my part on Trash Dirty Gary, a local blog dedicated to exposing Gary Miller's dirty record AND letting local voters know that we have a better option. Oh yes, and I'll also be uncovering Gary Miller's dirt AND talking about this better option over at The Liberal OC.

OK, so what is this better option that voters have in the 42nd? We can replace Gary Miller with someone who actually wants to serve us! There's an election next year, and Dirty Gary thinks he'll get an easy ride, as he's in a “Safe Republican District”. But Gary Miller has offended Republicans, Democrats, AND Independents in the district by ignoring our local needs while he enriches himself at taxpayers' expense. And if the Democrats in Washington think that Dirty Gary can't get away with his high crimes against the voters of the 42nd Congressional District, why should we?

And guess what! That's where YOU come in. Yesterday, you found out that a blogger will be challenging Dirty Gary in the 42nd. Tomorrow, you'll meet the campaign manager for this special candidate. And on Wednesday, you'll meet this very candidate. And right now, all I can tell you is that this candidate lives in the district, and this candidate actually cares about what's best for the people in this district.

So until then, I rest my case. Gary Miller is guilty of being a corrupt crook who has failed the voters of the 42nd District. And I think we can all take care of his sentence by doing what we can to help this campaign to restore honor and integrity to our Congressional Office! : )

Open House at Solorio’s Place Tomorrow

(Cross-posted at The Liberal OC)

In case you haven’t noticed, there’s a new kid on the block over at The Liberal OC. Yes, believe it or not, I’m there and I’m there to stay. You may have bumped into me before here at Calitics (where I’ll still post stuff), but now I’ll also be there to chat with you about what’s happening in Orange County.

And now that I’ve said that, here’s something happening in my little corner of OC that I’m pretty excited about. My Assembly Member, Jose Solorio (D-Santa Ana), will be hosting an open house at his district office. He’d like to talk to us locals about what he’s doing for us in Sacramento. Oh yes, and here’s a good chance for us to ask him about all that legislation he’s working on.

Ah, there’s so much to talk about! What’s happening with health care? What’s being done about our gang violence problem in Central OC? What’s being done to ensure that OC gets its fair share in parks funds? I know I’m looking forward to talking with Assm. Solorio about what’s happening, and if you live in the 69th Assembly District, I hope you can join me for this chance to chat with our local legislator.

Come on and follow me after the flip for all the details on tomorrow’s open house…

The Open House is at Jose Solorio’s district office, on Saturday, July 14, from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Solorio’s office is located at 2400 E. Katella Ave., Suite 640, in Anaheim, just west of the Katella exit off the 57 Freeway. Here’s a Google Map of where to go. To RSVP, call his office at (714) 939-8469.

Get it? Got it? Good! Oh, and one more thing: I plan to liveblog from the open house. If you can’t make it to the open house, but still want to ask Assm. Solorio a question, please let me know tomorrow morning when I post the open house thread at The Liberal OC. I’ll make sure to ask him for you.

So what questions do you have for Jose Solorio? I’m still thinking about mine. Well, at least we’ll actually have a chance tomorrow to finally tell our local representative how he should represent us. This really should be happening more often.

Calitics Is #5 Most Influential Blog in California!

(H/T to The Liberal OC and OC Blog for this!) : )

Take a look at this! Blognetnews.com has released its first list of “California’s Most Influential Political Blogs”, and Calitics has been rated #5! Oh my goodness, we made the Top 5! I guess people are actually paying attention to what we have to say about advancing progressive values in California. This is just terrific.

But you know what’s also terrific? Many of our fantastic friends in the California (and especially Orange County!) blogosphere also made the Top 20 list! The Liberal OC hit #14! California Progress Report hit #10! Orange Juice hit #6! Total Buzz hit #3! And yes, my favorite local right-wing blog, OC Blog, hit #1. Congratulations to my conservative friends at Red County/OC Blog for being the #1 most influential political blog in California!

So what else can I say? Well, I can start by thanking all of you who faithfully read our fine blog. And thanks to all of you who constantly share your point of view with us in the comments. And thanks to all my fantastic colleagues who contribute to the blog with all their informative and insightful stories. And most of all, thanks to our fearless leader Brian for heading up one of the best blogs on the web… Which now also happens to be one of the five most influential blogs in the state! : )

Left, Right, and Center ALL AGREE: Janet Nguyen Needs to Come Clean

(Also see OC Blog and The Liberal OC)

Why is Orange County Supervisor Janet Nguyen evading the law? This is a question that all of us are asking. This is a question that bloggers on the left, right, and center are all asking. This is a question that Janet Nguyen is forcing us to ask so long as she refuses to file a report on those secret campaign contributions that violated Orange County’s campaign finance law. And so long as Janet Nguyen does not file this report, we will all be counting the days that she has not filed.

Even though Martin Wisckol began reporting on this matter at The OC Register’s Total Buzz blog, Janet Nguyen has not taken notice, and she has not reported. Even though Mike Lawson has begun counting the days that Janet Nguyen has evaded county law at The Liberal OC, Janet Nguyen has not taken notice, and she has not reported. Even though Matt Cunningham has spoken out about this at OC Blog, Janet Nguyen has not taken notice, and she has not reported. Oh yes, and even though we at Calitics have turned our eyes to Orange County for this, Janet Nguyen has not taken notice, and she has not reported. So what will it take for Janet Nguyen to report these contributions? How many more days must we count?

Why won’t Janet Nguyen come clean? Why won’t she report these contributions, and report of her returning this money? Who were the donors who gave to her legal defense fund? When did these donors give? And just how much did these donors give? So long as Janet Nguyen does not obey the law and report these contributions, she only invites us all to ask these questions, and she invites us to count the days that she has not reported.

What excuse does Janet Nguyen have? Why can’t she fill out the paperwork about the three donors to her legal defense fund? Why can’t she follow county law? As she is now a county lawmaker, she should be setting a good example. She needs to file a report. And until she reports, we will be counting the days.

So if Janet Nguyen can’t even follow one county ordinance on campaign contributions, then how can we trust her with this and other laws? This is why left, right, and center all agree that Janet Nguyen needs to come clean. We have waited 53 days, and Janet Nguyen still has not complied with the law. And until she complies, we will be counting the days.

AD 54: Step Up for Jim Brandt!

OK, I just saw this on The Liberal OC, and I think I should share this with all the rest of you. Remember when I told you that Jim Brandt is running for the State Assembly in the 54th District, where Betty Karnette is termed out?

Well, Jim is looking for some help. He actually is looking forward to winning this race and serving the people of Long Beach, San Pedro, and Palos Verdes in Sacramento, but he can’t win this thing alone. If you’re in this area, then perhaps it’s time for YOU to step up and help Jim out!

Follow me after the flip to find out how YOU can help

Here’s the email that Jim recently sent to supporters:

We’re launching the ground campaign for Jim Brandt for Assembly! We’ve targeted precincts throughout the 54th Assembly district, and we need you to Step Up for Brandt and help get them covered.

At the core of Jim’s campaign is the need for healthcare for all and building a healthier California. Studies show that walking is the best way to get healthier. With our Step Up for Brandt campaign, you can get healthier and help Jim at the same time!

Next weekend, June 9-10, the Step Up for Brandt campaign will launch with a literature drop to Democrats in our targeted precincts.

Here’s where you come in: We need you to adopt the targeted precinct closest to you and reach out to Democrats to let them know about Jim Brandt for Assembly. Once we’ve matched you to a precinct, our Field Operations Coordinator, Marc Barron, will get you all the training and materials you’ll need.

To join the Step Up for Brandt Team, reply to this email or contact Marc directly at [email protected].

P.S. If you are unable to walk a precinct, we still need your help! Please contact Marc and let him know what you can do for Jim Brandt for Assembly (writing letters, making phone calls, tabling, etc.).

Jim has what it takes to win this slightly Democratic district. Remember his good fight against Crazy Dana Rohrabacher in the 46th Congressional Race last year? If he can take on Crazy Dana, then he can win this race! But again, not without your help!

If you want to help Jim win, please send an email to [email protected]. He’s counting on a few good people to help him get to Sacramento and fight the good fight for the people of South LA County! : )

Tonight’s Wild and Wonderful Open Thread

OK, so we had a busy day today chatting about some very important issues! We tackled immigration and whether children born in the US to undocumented immigrants should receive US citizenship. We talked about health care, and how private insurance really sucks. We talked about high-speed rail, and when we can actually expect a network that covers the entire state. Oh yes, and we also chatted about the big news of LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa endorsing Hillary Clinton for President. Overall, I’d say that we talked about a whole lot of important issues today! : )

So what do you want to talk about now? What’s on your mind tonight? I’m still thinking about what happened at the Strawberry Festival. Oh yes, and I’m noticing the wild speculation about a possibly EXPENSIVE Republican Primary in AD 73. Oh, and I also still have Orange County property values on my mind. So what’s going on in your corner of California tonight? What do YOU want to talk about?

Go ahead. Make my day. Fire away! : )