In today's pages: Questioning Sarah Palin, seceding from the Union, and recalling Gov. Schwarzenegger
Columnist Tim Rutten keeps the Op-Ed page focused on Sarah Palin, blasting John McCain's campaign for shielding his running mate from reporters. Just as the media questioned Barack Obama's support for former pastor Jeremiah Wright, Rutten writes, they're entitled to question Palin about her religious affiliations:
Less than a month ago, Palin sat in the pews at the Wasilla Bible Church, to which she and her family belong, and listened to a sermon by David Brickner, who heads Jews for Jesus, a group cited by the Anti-Defamation League for its "aggressive and deceptive" proselytizing of Jews. Brickner said that Arab terrorism against the state of Israel was an expression of God's judgment on the Jewish people for their rejection of Christ. After Brickner concluded his remarks, a special collection was taken up to support the sect's activities.
Strong stuff! On another Palin-related topic, writer Christopher Ketcham explores the surprising support among Americans for a state's right to secede. It's not just disaffected Alaskans: it's one out of every five Americans surveyed in a recent Zogby poll. D'ohhhh! I have two words for those people: Abraham Lincoln. OK, two more: South Ossetia. Wrapping up the Op-Ed page, Dennis Hathaway, president of the Coalition to Ban Billboard Blight, laments the L.A. Councilwoman Janice Hahn's proposal to turn the Convention Center's shell into a series of giant electronic signs:
Hahn calls the selling of advertising rights on a public building a "clever" way to raise revenue for the city. So what's next in this exercise of fiscal cleverness? A super-graphic wrap of City Hall?
On the other side of the crease, the Times editorial board rises to the Gubernator's defense against a plan by the state prison guards' union to mount a recall drive. It might be poetic justice to recall Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who gained office in the recall of Gov. Gray Davis, but it would be wrong to blame him for the state's current fiscal mess:
The present crisis merely demonstrates the shallowness of the anti-politician bromides that accompanied the last recall. Political inbreeding and tax-happy Democrats do not bear all of the blame for Sacramento's mess. The problems are structural and the solutions complex.
The board also sees a glint of hope amid darkening economic times in the 99 Cents Only Stores' decision to keep prices below $1. And it urges the Supreme Court not to change its mind and permit states to impose the death penalty for raping a child.
Photo by Don Fisher/TMC