Gubernatorial Primordial Ooze

For the tens and tens of people curious as to why gubernatorial candidate Arnold Schwarzenegger refuses to address specific issues, and were extremely busy during the last Presidential election, quit your head scratching. I think we got ourselves an answer. It's good for the poll numbers.

Speaking at an "Ask Arnold" forum in San Diego, the Governator claimed, if elected, he would bring jobs back to the state. Which is important, because California has lost half of all jobs recently gone missing in the country. He said. When asked exactly how he plans to bring those jobs back, the Austrian Oak temporarily hypnotised the assembled with a blinding 4,000 kilowatt smile and got about as murky as the LA night sky seen through a dirty windshield during a stage 4 smog alert.

The only problem is, according to the California Employment Development Department, the Golden State accounted for a mere 8.1 percent of the nation's new unemployment last year while employing about 11 percent of the country's work force, so we're actually healthier than the country as a whole. Which means Davis has done a better job than all those incompetent governors who aren't being recalled, but of course, nobody besides Davis himself is going to point that out, and that probably won't work, since everything that comes out of his mouth is dismissed as self-serving crap.

This is one of the minor pitfalls that tends to befall people in the aftermath of earning a national reputation as "the little Governor who cries self-serving crap not just often but pretty much all the time."

As opposed to the sitting Governor, who can't get away with anything, even telling the truth, Schwarzenegger gets away with everything, or more accurately, saying absolutely nothing. Maybe it's the accent. Asked to specify three state regulations he'd dump as governor, Arnold declined, admitting, "There's a lot to be learned. I'm hungry for information. I'm like a sponge."

Oh, terrific. Just what we need: Governor Sponge. Although you got to admit, it is a step up from Governor Jellyfish. Apparently, we're on a slow climb up the evolutionary ladder out of the gubernatorial primordial ooze. I have a dream. I dream of a day when California is able to enlist the assistance of a Guber whose primary mailing address is not the Hall of Invertebrates. California's Capitol Rotunda; a foyer only a marine biologist could love.

After hearing numerous people claim they watched the debate and thought Arnold gave an exemplary performance, I was convinced they either had misunderstood the definition of the word "exemplary" or some of Arnold's special effects buddies had surreptitiously substituted a digitally altered replay. But then, people thought Dubya won his first debate too. Which teaches us what? Set the bar low enough, and all that's required to be hailed the winner is to refrain from drooling.

Mispronouncing the name of the state you're running to govern apparently isn't enough for disqualification anymore. Neither is having failed to vote in 13 of the last 21 elections. 64 percent of all the elections in the last nine years. Didn't vote. And he wants to be governor. Never got a license, now he's jumping behind the wheel of the fifth largest tandem axle big rig in the world as it plummets down a frozen mountain pass with faulty brakes. You know what we need here? A test. Lawyers got to pass a test.

Pharmacists got to pass a test. For crum's sake, beauticians got to pass a test. Shouldn't governors have to pass a test? I'm talking real answers. Multiple choice. No lame aphorisms to fuzzy essay questions allowed.

Such as: quizzed on the stump as to his opinion of California's Family Leave Program, the man who played a robot from the future rambled on about the present: "I'm very much for families, I'm very much for children and children's issues, and all that stuff." So there you have it; the man is pro families, in favor of children and pro stuff. Can't wait till all those anti-children's issues candidates get a load of this resolute manifesto. You can bet they'll be shivering in their stuff-hating boots.

Will Durst is a San Francisco political comic.

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