Diary of a Mad County

MONDAY, June 9 The Mighty Duckslose to the Devils in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals in New Jersey. While Ducks players are bummed that the loss prevents them from hoisting the Cup, it does enable them to leave New Jersey.

TUESDAY, June 10 Apparently the Border Patrol has figured out that we'll all be much safer if we send back undocumented workers like Hermenegildo Ortega–who got the boot in south Orange County a couple of weeks ago–but keep their children here in foster homes. Evidently this is just part of the Bush administration's "Piss Off Everybody" foreign policy, which emphasizes breaking up families–with bombs and/or foster homes–as a way to make everyone much safer. Paul Wolfowitz and George Custer have written extensively on the subject. And when I say everyone, I mean not the undocumented workers. If they want to feel some security and respect they oughtta go the tried and true route of joining the armed forces and getting killed. Works every time. . . . Not surprisingly, Orange County Register columnist/police sycophant Gordon Dillow urges Border Patrol to take a tougher line. When Orange County Latinos complain of harassment and demand an apology from the Border Patrol, Dillow writes: "I've never had a cop apologize for hanging a traffic ticket on me. And I've certainly never had a cop promise that he won't stop me for speeding outside a school, a hospital or a community center." Seems we should be worried less about undocumented workers and more about Dillow behind the wheel of a car.

WEDNESDAY, June 11 Congress-man/Recall Monkey Darrell Issa (R-Tool) finds that his place at the head of the Boot Gray Davis Parade has put him under the microscope, which, for a guy once charged with stealing a car, doesn't take much magnifying. Today, we're reminded that two people who worked at Issa's car alarm company claimed he once brought a gun to work to intimidate them. Asked about the incident while running for the Senate in 1998, Issa said, "Shots were never fired. . . . I don't think I ever pulled a gun on anyone in my life." See, I can tell you right now I have never pulled a gun on anyone in my life because I have never pulled a gun on anyone in my life. If a person has to think about whether they have ever pulled a gun on someone, that means they have pulled a gun on someone. I mean, it's like asking someone, "Have you ever stolen a car?" or "Have you ever set a suspicious fire?" or "Have you ever bought an election?" . . . In other threats to our safety, the Congressin' Sanchez sisters—Loretta and Linda—sign up to write a book about their lives. Can't wait to see the centerfold. Possible titles being kicked around: How to Make Friends and Jump Parties; Me Too; Some of My Best Friends Are Republicans … Wait, So Am I; What About Bob?; Nice Pair, Who Moved My Cheese … Seriously, I Really Want Some Cheese; My Bob, My Bitch; and Lawyers, Nuns and Money.

THURSDAY, June 12 Micah James Culling of Brea is born at 12:33 a.m. at Kaiser Permanente in Anaheim and becomes Orange County's official three millionth resident. . . . David Brinkleydies. The consummate newsman breaks journalism's No. 1 rule: if you want good coverage when you die, don't die the same day as Gregory Peck. . . . Speaking of peckers, the world finds out in today's Weekly about fallout from the Donald Bren piece I did a couple of weeks ago. R. Scott Moxley's Press Clips reveals that my article, which took Bren to task for supporting Family Values Republican candidates while fathering children out of wedlock, including at least two whom he's virtually ignored for 10 years, will cost the Weekly thousands since Bren's Irvine Company announces it's pulling out all its advertising in the Weekly. And to think: all this could have been avoided had Bren just pulled out years ago.

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Photo by Tenaya Hills

FRIDAY, June 13 Get a call from Cal State Fullerton professor Jarret Lovellabout a demonstration he and the Orange County Peace Coalition are putting on at the Newport Beach Public Library as well as other area libraries. Lovell, who teaches a class in civil disobedience, says the demonstration is to educate people about how the Patriot Act allows law enforcement to check library records to see who's been checking out what or when. Lovell says this won't be a protest with marching and yelling—though there may be some street theater—because, "you know, it's a library," but will be more about talking to people about what the government is allowed to do under the Patriot Act, much of which is a mystery. In fact, Lovell said that as part of a class he teaches, he had students read the law. When students found out police could check up on what they'd checked out, "a lot of them got pissed because, as part of the class, I've had them check out books on revolution and making Molotov cocktails, and they checked them out from the school library and now they were worried they're going to hear a knock on the door." We agree that the only thing more chilling than the Patriot Act is street theater.

SATURDAY, June 14 Remember those three million people now living in Orange County? Every one of them but Micah James Culling is driving the freeways today. In an attempt to get down to the Newport Library demonstration, a 30-minute drive becomes an hours-long trek. The 405 is packed. So is the 91. The 5? You know the old saying: never take the 5. I try surface streets, I double back and take parallel freeways, I try all the tricks taught me in a lifetime of SoCal driving. Nothing works. I'm listening to KNX, and traffic anchor Randy Keith notes how heavy traffic is with no major accidents to blame. I know I'm in trouble when he says, "There's a big backup on the 405–which is another way of saying it's another day on the 405."

SUNDAY, June 15 Happy Father's Day, Donald Bren!

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