“It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into”

Jonathan Swift
"The Democrats have moved to the right, and the right has moved into a mental hospital." - Bill Maher
"The city is crowded my friends are away and I'm on my own
It's too hot to handle so I gotta get up and go

It's a cruel ... cruel summer"

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Kanelis: Blacks, Hispanics, Poor are "trouble"

The single most rambling, incoherent, poorly-sourced, and plain old batcrap-crazy harangue I have ever seen from John Kanelis’ tripewriter was plastered across this mornings’ Opinion page. The picture attached to the column was the newly-updated “Smilin’ John” 2.0, as Bud, one of our commenters, recently called it-- but the column itself spewed vintage “Angry John.” John’s thesis was that Amarillo was risking “commissioners engaging openly in raging turf battles” if we switch to a single-member district plan. As evidence for this contention he offered . . . Lubbock.

Lubbock , Angry John reminds us, elects six council members from single-member districts. So, John the Revelator, has Lubbock suffered these apocalyptic “raging turf battles” of which you speak?

Nope, sez John. They actually cast a “relatively few split votes.” And, only a few commissioners have “popped off,” whatever the hell that means. The literate and semi-literate population of Amarillo stares at the editorial page: We skipped church for this? You wastin’ our time, John?

Angry John scratches his head angrily: Uh, he offers, well, they could have problems.

Right. Okay, okay, okay, John says, get this. The Texas Lege is elected from districts, right? Well, back in the late ‘80s there was this feud between some legislators. John Smithee sez turf battles “happen all the time” in the Lege.

Okay, I get the point, John. But are you saying the Texas Lege should also be elected at-large? 181 members on whom all of Texas votes? Somehow I doubt your corporate masters, way up here in the underpopulated Panhandle, would approve of that idea. But you go ahead and keep pushing it.

Finally, at the butt-end of the column Kanelis simply runs out of steam. Unable to summon anything even semi-lucid for the local bankers and RV salesmen waiting impatiently on the other side of his desk, Kanelis utters the most racist and classist sentiments ever uttered on the Opinion page (and that includes Dave Henry’s column). The moment was reminiscent of the time in 1981 when a frustrated and angry Charles Rocket, looking to get fired, blasted out the f-word during a live episode of Saturday Night Live. And Kanelis spake thus:

A single member district plan doesn't guarantee trouble among elected officials. It just opens the door enough for trouble to sneak in.
What are you sayin’ there, John?