Daily Archives: 11/05/2002

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Monday’s PDN contained an excellent article about expats living in Bali, and their reactions to the Sari Club bombing in Kuta. I’ve often thought of staying in Bali for an extended period; to read, paint, decompress. The idea that I should go to Bali and help address the problems crept into my mind yesterday and I ruminated on it all of yesterday. A life of service in Bali – couldn’t do much better if you ask me.

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I seem to have more luck with the pro1.blogger.com server – but I still need to monkey with the archive settings to get the Sept – November archives to show. I don’t like this at all.

Okay – here we go again

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Problems with my archive. Hope this helps. The help suggests deleting and rebuilding the archives. So here goes nothing…

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Today, at long last, is the general election. On the ballot are a number of races:

  • Governor/Lt. Governor
    This hotly contested race is between Bob Underwood/Tom Ada (D) and Felix Camacho/Kaleo Moylan (R). A couple months ago, I’d say Underwood was the likely victor, but now I’d put the chances at 50/50. Recently the campaign has become vindictive, with a great many attack ads running on television and radio. This is a new development on Guam, and not a welcome development. Throwing a great deal of rancor into the race, the other Democratic candidate from September’s primary has not endorsed Underwood, and many of her supporters are now sporting Camacho/Moylan signs and showing up at the Republican rallies. I just don’t understand that, sure they were opponents, but they’re still Democrats, and they should have the same goals.
  • 1 Congressional Seat for the U.S. House of Representatives
    This race is between Madeline Bordallo (D) and Joe Ada (R). Bordallo is the current Lt. Governor, and Ada is a Guam Senator and former Governor. This race is for the seat Rep. Underwood is vacating for his gubernatorial bid.
  • 15 seats for the Guam Legislature
    There are 30 candidates running for all 15 seats in the territorial legislature. None of the 15 senators elected today actually represent a district; they represent all of Guam, and any citizen can appeal to any senator for aid and support. Until a few years ago the legislature had 21 senators, a remarkable number for an island with only 150,000 people.
  • Attorney General
    The contest for the first elected attorney general has been heated, especially between Phil Tydingco and Doug Moylan. The other candidates are former senator Don Parkinsonand Elisabeth Cruz.
  • 9 seats for the school board
    After several false starts, this year marks the first time an elected school board will have a say about the island’s detiorating public schools. An elected board was authorized several years ago, but the governor disbanded the board after the elections in ’98, and hardly any candidates filed in 2000. This year however a number of people are running for the posts. It will be interesting to see what this board will do about the deplorable conditions of Guam’s schools.
  • 5 seats for the Public Utilities Commission
    This race confuses me. I understand the purpose, to create an oversight committee for power and water services with the power to appoint general managers for each agency. What I don’t understand is why so many people want the job. Over 25 candidates are running for five seats. And the post only pays $1,000 a month for a two year term. What’s the attraction? Political stepping stone, civic pride, or a cushy job and an easy $12,000 a year? Got me…

I plan on hitting the polls this afternoon. The crowds outside the polling places are immense, and a general party atmosphere pervades the entire proceedings. Tents, balloons, beer, bbq, a few fistfights, chanting from one contingent to the next – Guam has a unique and exciting election day tradition. At the very least, it gets people to the polls. Voter turnout is usually above 60%, and probably more for this election. I think it’s the free food. I know I’ll be eating bbq for dinner tonight, courtesy of some candidate.