Remember Kenny Guinn? He's the governor. He's sort of a forgotten man these days, what with being a full-on lame duck and all. The last time his Barney Rubble-esque visage popped up, it was in connection with the Lorraine Hunt for Governor campaign, being quoted in a mailer or an ad or something. In other words, Kenny Guinn has pulled a Kaiser Sose -- poof, where'd he go?
That's not to say that there aren't any number of things that Guinn could do to make himself useful. For instance, Guinn could do the state of Nevada one last, good turn from the governor's chair by rekindling his publicly expressed complaints about GOP gubernatorial candidate Jim Gibbons' competence, or lack thereof. Then again, maybe Guinn wants to see the Millennium Scholarships gutted and replaced with an ambitious state-funded program to provide much-needed public subsidies to Canadian mining conglomerates.
Meantime, there's something else Kenny Guinn could to to make himself useful. He could stand up to an out-of-state organization that is spending money to attack Nevadans on Nevada TV.
A wingnut factory (mis)named the Center for Union Facts has been running offensive, disgusting ads in Nevada and three other states -- Oregon, Montana and Michigan. Why those states? They've all got ballot initiatives to cap government spending.
One of the ads portrays DMV employees as lazy, overpaid people who don't do any work. Hey, we don't like to go to the DMV, either. But every time we've been there over the last couple of years (which has been fairly frequently, what with teenagers taking driving tests and getting beaters licensed and all), the employees, once you get to them, are quick, friendly and competent. And yes, anybody can come up with a horror story about the DMV -- just like anybody can come up with a horror story for a college, the grocery store, the cable company, their boss, Blockbusters, Starbucks or anyplace else where people come into contact with other people. DMV workers are out in the open, dealing with a never-ending stream of human units -- many of whom, being human units, are ignorant assholes -- day after day after day. DMV workers are just people trying to do their job and get by, and they don't deserve to be assaulted and insulted by some right-wing ideologues with more money than brains.
In Montana, the state's attorney general has unloaded on the Center for Union Facts and defended Montana workers. Nevada doesn't really have an attorney general these days. But it does have a governor. Guinn, too, should publicly defend his state, and its working people, against demeaning insults, and publicly call the Center for Union Facts on to the carpet.
And so, for that matter, should state Sen. Bob Beers. As the Progressive States Network has explained, the reason the Center for Union Facts is running the anti-union ads is to make voters hate public employees so they'll vote in favor of the Tax and Spending Control Initiative. Beers, who already let Nevada down by not knocking off Jim Gibbons in the primary, should stand up for his fellow Nevadans, and against well-funded but offensive meddlers operating out of Washington, D.C. Beers brought the little wingnut ballot thingy to Nevada, and if he wants to swoon over it, fine. But that also means he's got an obligation to do something and not stand idly by as insults are are unfairly hurled at Nevada working people.