Sunday, January 08, 2006

Dispatches from the campaign trail...

With my rarely-followed edict of not commenting on campaigns until the actual year of the election now a quaint memory of the past year, I'm ready to dig deep into the issues to provide readers with what they really want: sarcastic nit-picking of pointless political statements. Laura Cadiz served the platter today:

The race for the Howard County executive is officially on.

In the first public forum that featured the three candidates, the Columbia Business Exchange invited the men to headline the group's annual State of Columbia luncheon last week.

County Councilman Ken Ulman referred to the success of the extensive community planning process that he helped forge for downtown Columbia; council Chairman Christopher J. Merdon spoke of his bipartisan leadership; and Harry M. Dunbar referred to his life experience.

"I have lived roughly twice as long as my young opponents," Dunbar said of Ulman and Merdon, both in their early 30s, before the crowd of about 170 people Thursday at the Columbia Hilton, "which provides me with 10 times, 20 times more life experience."
It seems to me that life experience is pretty well linearly correlated with age; that is, for each additional year of age, your life experience also goes up by a year's worth of whatever metric we use to measure life experience. Harry Dunbar, obviously, doesn't see things my way, claiming an astounding 5:1 ratio--at a minimum--of experience to age. I guess the good years are really yet to come.

Of course, Dunbar can always be counted on to say something silly; that's why we love him. But what about the other candidates:
After telling the crowd that he worked as a paperboy when he was 9 years old -- later explaining, "I know how to deliver" -- Merdon talked about his role as a Republican elected chairman of the Democratic-majority council.
Ugh. Do I really have to comment on what is perhaps the worst pun I've ever read? No. Good. Let's just leave it at that.
"I'm the only candidate that has a proven track record of working with both sides," said Merdon, of Ellicott City.
Actually, if you want to nit-pick, you can probably round up a few hundred bills that passed over the last few years with unanimous votes from the council, meaning every council member has a track record of "working with both sides." But it's so much easier just to say whatever you want, truth be damned.

By the way, lest you call into question my anti-partisanship, I looked for an out-of-context quote from Ulman worthy of a sarcastic comment but couldn't find one. Never fear, readers, the well is deep and this is just the first bucket.

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