In California, Gov, Arnold Schwarzenegger tried to mess with teacher tenure and political activity by unions. He got his head handed to him. Or, to quote Linda Hamilton, "You're terminated, motherf--ker."
But the nazel-gazing isn't as easy in Greene County, Mo., where a quarter-cent sales tax flamed out. We still hold to our Tuesday night instant assessment -- linking a law tax with childhood development programs was a bad idea -- but we're fascinated by the Wednesday morning fingerpointing.
Darrell Moore, the Greene County prosecutor (and a Republican) blamed talk radio and its "negative" braying for the defeat. Moore told KSMU:
"I am angry at some of the people on the radio talk shows who ... feed this idea that this proposal was government trying to raise children. [That] offends me.
"For people to say it was the government trying to raise children is a lie, and it's outrageous."
One more thing about the right-wing zing. If Darrell Moore and other elected officials are serious about condemning the influence of KSGF, then they should quit patronizing the station. They should refuse all future requests to guest on KSGF's morning show. If Moore & Co. believe the talk-radio monster contributed to the CSI tax defeat, then quit feeding the monster. Ignore it and let it starve.
Other city and county officials, meanwhile, are moaning about the defeat and predicting dire consequences. A new crime lab might -- horrors! -- be located in Joplin. City police won't get an automated records system. But then there's Roseann Bentley, a county commissioner, minimizing the tax defeat in Wednesday's News-Leader:
Bentley, who also chairs the Mayor's Commission for Children, said early childhood education efforts won't be deterred by the tax proposal's failure.
"We obviously won't have an early childhood resource center, but we'll continue to work on school readiness and bringing awareness to this topic," said Bentley.