A Year of Navel Gazing: The Virtual Orange County

Looking back at 2010 on our news blog, one Top 10 List at a time

1. Sheila Marie Sikat drugged her 4-year-old niece so her husband could rape the girl on film. Sikat is overheard off-camera encouraging him to “put it in her butt.” But she made shameless arguments to overturn her 50-year prison sentence, claiming she can’t be guilty of filming a minor sexually because state law requires the victim to be conscious to pose or model in the porn. A three-justice appellate panel rejected Sikat’s arguments in January and affirmed her convictions as well as her punishment. Her husband, David Hwang, a former engineer from Rancho Santa Margarita, is also serving a 50-years-to-life sentence.

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Jesse Lenz
Jesse Lenz

10. Representative Dana Rohrabacher (R-Huntington Beach), who avoided Vietnam War-era military service and in the 1990s vigorously lobbied on behalf of the Taliban while that organization was working with terrorist Osama bin Laden, continued his fantasy of being an expert on the war in Afghanistan. Having been bully on George W. Bush’s invasion and “magnificent” strategy of engagement in that country, Rohrabacher in July characterized as foolhardy Barack Obama’s adoption of the exact same policy.

9. Rohrabacher told FOX commentator Andrew Napolitano in June, “Almost all Republicans in the House of Representatives now believe that the war in Iraq was a mistake, that it was unlawful, that it was immoral, that it wasn’t worth the lives lost or the trillions that will be spent.” Nice of him to proclaim that after Dubya retired to the tumbleweed farm.

8. Rohrabacher probably wants the U.S. military out of Iraq and Afghanistan so it can hopscotch the world map to Burma (more commonly known as Myanmar). He flipped on the war siren in a September National Review column that alleged generals running the Southeast Asian country are seeking nuclear weapons and pose a threat to the U.S.

7. A report came out in October that Rohrabacher inserted himself in the violent 2009 coup that toppled the democratically elected president of Honduras, Manuel Zelaya. The senator and three other Republicans in Congress used about $25,000 in U.S. taxpayer funds to back the rise of Roberto Micheletti, who was also the choice of that country’s oligarchy and right-wing military. Rohrabacher also supported Porfirio “Pepe” Lobo, who replaced Micheletti, and in January traveled again to Honduras to, according to his D.C. press flack, “let the newly elected government know that the Republicans supported them.” State Department documents obtained by the WikiLeaks group show Rohrabacher’s unusual delegation included real-estate investors and businessmen who are also family friends and big campaign donors. They received access to top Honduran officials, including President Lobo, with whom they discussed expanding into the tiny country.

6. Oddly wearing a windbreaker on a breeze-free, simmering-hot afternoon in October, Jack Abramoff’s career-politician pal whipped out a guitar at a teabagger rally in Garden Grove and sang a song he wrote. Sample lyric: “God bless the people who built this great country, and God bless our rights to speak and to pray.” That’s “prey” when it comes to other countries.

5. With Republicans taking the House in the next Congress, Rohrabacher in December offered himself up as chairman of the lower chamber’s Science Committee, calling himself a better fit for the post than frontrunner Representative Ralph Hall (R-Texas). Why? Because Dana is more outspoken that global warming is “a total fraud” orchestrated by Democrats seeking to wreck the U.S. economy.

4. Speaking of his science cred, Rohrabacher—in May, at the height of the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster—barfed, “Reducing oil-company offshore drilling will increase the number of offshore oil-drill spills.”

3. Rohrabacher twice called Obama a “Marxist” during a Seal Beach Chamber of Commerce breakfast in April.

2. George W. Bush apparently wasn’t much better, according to Rohrabacher, who wrote on his Twitter account in November that Dubya is “not a class act, destroyed GOP, jailed [Border Patrol agents] Ramos & Compean, left us bailouts, gave more power to fed gov & China.” Later in the day, he suggested Bush wouldn’t be welcomed at the next Republican Party presidential-nomination convention before tweeting one more time that he was “making waves” in Washington.

1. The Mouth That Rohrabachered said on the House floor in December that the DREAM Act that would have provided a path to citizenship for the children of the undocumented who go to college and serve in the U.S. military was the “Affirmative Action Amnesty Act.” In case that was too subtle of a reference for his target audience of drooling whiteys, he went on to ramble that the bill would “give foreigners who are here illegally preference over non-minority citizens.”

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10. Orange County sheriff’s deputy Allan James Waters was off-duty and allegedly drugged-up when he crashed his Mercedes into a Toyota in Laguna Niguel in March, injuring a 78-year-old woman just a half-hour after he plowed into a Lexus outside Dana Point City Hall. Waters is accused of having exchanged money and fake cocaine for the Opana and OxyContin he was hopped up on; further investigation revealed he illegally obtained prescription pills by providing false information and repeatedly switching doctors.

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