A long and vicious battle to become City Attorney of San Bernardino comes down to the wire as incumbent Jim Penman holds off local attorney Marianne Milligan and Mayor Pat Morris in a race that so captivated the city that fewer than one in five registered voters bother to go to the polls. It’s pretty much the same in races across the Inland Empire. Voter turnout in San Bernardino County as a whole is 11.5 percent (about one in nine registered voters). In Riverside County it’s 21 percent. Some particularly painful lack-of-turnouts are recorded in San Bernardino’s crime-wracked 6th Ward, where only 1,316 votes are cast—combined—for city council candidates, and in Rialto, where only 2,731 people (from a voting roll of 31,604) decide the fate of Measure D, which extends an eight percent tax on utilities for five more years. This would be sad, except that I always vote—and when you don’t, it makes me more powerful. Suckers!
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 7
It may be impossible for law-enforcement personnel to solve the gang problem in Riverside County, but it has no problem getting to the bottom of threats against its own. Which is to say that the guy who was quickly tracked down for placing a tiny classified ad in the Press-Enterprise insinuating malice against Riverside County District Attorney Rod Pacheco pleads guilty today and faces up to three years in prison. Chandler William Cardwell, 33, of Perris worked in the P-E’s classified advertising department when he placed an ad August 25 for a “Big Blowout, Going Out of Business” yard sale with proceeds to benefit the “Rod Pacheco memorial fund.” It listed the district attorney’s home address and phone number. The ad appeared a day after Pacheco held a big news conference announcing he was seeking an injunction to restrict members of Riverside’s East Side Riva gang from gathering and to force them to adhere to a curfew. Cardwell’s attorney explained that he “was a little upset because Pacheco was getting these injunctions, and that was affecting a lot of innocent people.” Meanwhile, although mayhem still reigns on the mean streets of Riverside, those of us who enjoy the classifieds can all read a little easier.
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 8
After reading the 911-word article by Amanda Strindberg in the Riverside Press-Enterprise about how hard it is for the San Bernardino Diocese to attract candidates to the priesthood, I go back and read it again—counting this time—and realize that the thing goes on for 835 words before she gets to the term “sex-abuse scandal.” Amazingly, even then, the horrific and ongoing revelations that Roman Catholic priests across the country have been molesting children—and have been protected from the crime by church hierarchy—are presented as kind of a good thing, at least as far as recruitment of new priests is concerned. Get this: “Some speculate that a desire to support the church after the sex-abuse scandals might have triggered a renewed interest in priesthood . . . “ The idea, of course, is that some young men may want to counter the damage of the sex scandals by contributing their own good work. But there is no mention of the possibility of other ideas by other young men . . . which, of course, is how all those priests have been getting away with molesting all those kids for all these years. Not to mention that one of the seminarians (and, can we use a different word, one that doesn’t sound like it has semen at its root) quoted in the story is named Peter Phan. Of the Lost Boys? Ewww.
FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 9
The Judds, the legendary hot-mama and hulky-daughter duo that broke up in 1990 when the hot mama couldn’t shake her chronic hepatitis, will be reunited at the 2008 Stagecoach Festival on May 3-4 in Indio. The first full-length concert by Naomi and Wynona in seven years will do for the country-fried Stagecoach Festival what the reunion of Rage Against The Machine did for the alt-rock Coachella Festival at the same venue last year. That is, it will make it very mainstream. Or rather, very mainstreamer. Other big-namers on the marquee are Carrie Underwood, Tim McGraw, Rascal Flatts and Taylor Swift. The big news? Wynonna told the Los Angeles Times the Judds have not planned to record any new music together, but they haven’t ruled it out, either. Yes, that’s what she said!
SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 10
For the first time since 1941, the Redlands Horticulture and Improvement Society holds what used to be its annual fall flower show. Wisely, organizers present the event at the Plymouth Village retirement community, where there’s at least a chance that somebody might remember the last one.
SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 11
Armistice Day. I wish.
MONDAY, NOVEMBER 12
Yes, you read that San Diego Chargers’ score right.