The timing is perfect. We all just received our "Sample Ballot and Voter Information Pamphlet" from Rebecca Martinez, County Clerk-Recorder and Registrar of Voters for Madera County, and this year it's none too soon.
Did you know Roseanne Barr is running for President?
Are you aware your polling place may have moved?
Have you had time to review all 11 Propositions being placed before us -- several somewhat ambiguous and curiously named?
Since retiring from a "regular job" after five decades in broadcasting and moving to Oakhurst from Michigan on Election Day 2006, I have had the time and opportunity to become more involved in the political process, something I wish I had done sooner in life.
As I was discussing with area Tea Party Coordinator John Pero just a few days ago, although we certainly hold divergent views in a number of areas, we completely agree that patriotic vigilance calls for much more than simply voting once a year.
Regardless of party affiliation, political philosophy or competing priorities, every one of us should pay much more attention to governmental activity at all levels and, particularly, to our own roles in determining the nature and extent of such governance.
Individual review and reflection is critical to positive collective progress and the actual realization of a government so eloquently defined by our 16th president as being "of the people, by the people and for the people."
Politicians and parties are not "all the same" and any such observation is no more than a lazy excuse for irresponsible citizenship. It is critical that we review every side of an issue, analyze all options presented and critically evaluate competing candidates for public office.
Jack Uppal will be driving more than 400 miles roundtrip from his home in Lincoln to visit with members of our community Wednesday, Oct. 10, with a "Meet and Greet" 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Queen's Inn on Highway 41.
It will be a casual, informal event. There is no admission fee. Come as you are. Jack will share a few thoughts, then be on the firing line for any questions anybody has. He wants to represent you in Congress from California's newly defined Fourth District and won't be holding anything back.
Jack is running against Tom McClintock, currently completing his second term representing the old Fourth District. Since neither Tom nor Jack are from "around here," they're both as new to us as an iPhone 5, just not as shiny and slick. At least not Jack.
Since we're losing Jeff Denham anyway, we're really starting from scratch in choosing either McClintock or Uppal. A fair comparison between the two is not only recommended, but also essential in formulating honest judgment, let alone proper representation.
I'm hoping that McClintock will join us next Wednesday at the Queen's Inn and engage in a debate with Uppal over the future of our lives and liberties. Mr. McClintock's campaign office has received a formal invitation to do so -- extended through the non-partisan auspices of the Oakhurst Area Chamber of Commerce -- and he has been assured of impartial moderation, convivial questioning and courteous civility.
Uppal has already agreed to such an arrangement.
By way of a "sneak preview," you are herein encouraged to turn to page 20-1of that Madera County Voter Information Pamphlet you received in the mail. You will find a formal "Statement of a Candidate for US Representative in Congress Fourth District." Both Jack Uppal and Tom McClintock offer a brief summary of their respective positions.
Jack writes, "I will cut unnecessary spending, bring jobs back to our district, rebuild of crumbling infrastructure and invest in science and technology programs for our future."
Tom states he went to Washington to fight for common-sense solutions to relieve hard working Americans from the stifling burdens of government bureaucracies and to stand with America's founders.
Hopefully, Representative McClintock will attend the event next Wednesday night at the Queen's Inn from 5:30 to 7:30. Wine not?