Friday, October 15, 2004

So farewell, then...

Donna Arduin

It's not even Halloween yet, but already the knives are out and flashing in the circle of advisers around Governor Narcissus. Today's encouraging word is that "Cabinet Secretary Marybel Batjer will likely step down before January".

It's been a good week. On Wednesday we learned that conservative ideologue Donna Arduin, the Gropernator's spectacularly incompetent budget director, has resigned forthwith. Her departure was accompanied by the usual euphemisms -- "to pursue alternatives in the private sector", "to spend more time with her family", "sorry to see her go", "shot while trying to escape", etc. The faculty at California's state universities, who will long remember her principled opposition to state support for higher education, will doubtless honor her departure in song and story.

Perhaps the most memorable contribution of the Arduin regime to the budget debate was the proposal to save state money by allowing animal shelters to kill stray cats and dogs faster, after holding them just 72 hours. When pet lovers protested, Gov. Narcissus quickly dropped the scheme as potentially harmful to his image. We can only speculate on Arduin's response to this policy reversal.

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