Let’s Divide to Unite!

At last, an end to gerrymandering is possible! OK, not likely, but if Democrats or rational humans are serious about changing the system, now is the time.

It’s time to fight gerrymandering with gerrymandering. (Quick aside: Please do not apply the logic that follows here to every situation. You may be able to convince pro-gun people that guns are bad by shooting at them, but that’s not necessarily a good idea.)

The census data are out and big blue states like New York and California are losing House seats. That means those states have to redistrict.

Now imagine those two big states being entirely blue. It could happen. All you need to do is put together a redistricting commission willing to boldly fight geography.

My house could be a district unto itself and my wife could be elected to Congress because I’m not as popular with the electorate.

Suddenly red-state people will join blue-state people in fighting gerrymandering and we’ll be a united country once more.

Somebody with a computer needs to get to work on this.

A good scandal? When is a scandal not a scandal? I don’t know, but I asked myself that immediately after reading a long front-page story in the Los Angeles Times last week about California Governor Gavin Newsom getting big companies to donate $226 million to charities. The money went to stuff like public health, wildfire recovery and helping the homeless.

Oh no!

This seemed like a good thing to me but the lede on the story claimed that these “behested payments” were “raising alarms about the influence large corporation are amassing in Sacramento.”

Are you alarmed? Would we rather not have $226 million go to charities?

“Critics,” the story said, said this “creates the appearance of a pay-to-play system.”

Was there any evidence of this pay-to-playing? Not that I could see, but then I don’t pay or play so I could be missing something here. What exactly could Facebook be getting for its $27 million donated to health care workers and public health ads? Maybe it got to friend Newsom on Facebook.

Now pause for a moment to reflect on all the scandals and dark money you remember from, say, the past four years that had nothing to do with charity or the public good.

Sigh.

I think some journalists have too much time on their hands.

Must-read. Some legal rulings simply demand to be read. I felt the demand the other day after spotting this sentence in a “case summary” offered by the Court of Appeals of Indiana: “In brief, this is a case about what to call a hole in the ground.”

I would have guessed the answer is “hole in the ground,” but the case turned out to be slightly more complicated than that. It seems a pair of property owners decided to dig up some dirt to use to level their driveway. The hole the digging created somehow got filled with water “and, thus, became a man-made body of water.”

You need a permit to construct a “pond” in DeKalb County. The property owners didn’t get one. Litigation ensued. The Property owners claimed they didn’t build a pond — they just dug a hole.

The court ruling: “This is clearly a pond.”

Keep your holes dry in Indiana.

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