Conservative blogger George Rebane took to KVMR last week and The Union today to fire away at a column I wrote last week criticizing the Board of Supervisors for adding two anti-pot advocates to the committee that’s supposed to develop pot cultivation guidelines for the county.
In the column (http://www.theunion.com/opinion/nevada-county-conservatives-are-fighting-another-battle-they-cant-win/), I suggested that the little drama that unfolded in the supervisors’ chambers was an example of how conservatives refuse to accept the legalization of marijuana and the fact that Nevada County will be at the epicenter of this societal change in California.
Rebane didn’t find anything to like in the column, claiming I mocked local conservatives for no good reason, and failed to understand that a more balanced approach to the committee’s work will insure cultivation rules that everybody can live with. He also objected to my criticism of the addition of well-known anti-pot foe Don Bessee to the committee.
Rebane had his blinders firmly in place when he wrote that criticism. First there was Supervisor Ed Scofield, who was concerned there were no anti-pot types among the 14 people selected for the committee. “Who always speaks on the other side?” Scofield asked. “You may not like him, but it is Don Bessee.”
Then there’s Rebane’s fellow traveler, Wade Freedle, who declared that while conservatives lost the battle to impose strict marijuana cultivation rules, the war against pot continues. Scofield and Freedle don’t sound like they’re willing to compromise.
Rebane also suggests I tried to link the notorious Scopes monkey trial to local opposition to pot, “thereby also demeaning the intellectual level of his readers. Opposing the legalization of MJ is not the same as accepting evolution as the organizing theory of life on earth.”
That’s a stretch that is bound the leave permanent marks. I wrote that the residents of Dayton, Tenn., still won’t accept the validity of the theory of evolution 92 years after the trial, and can sympathize with local residents who won’t accept the fact that recreational pot is a reality.
In an addendum to his comments on KVMR that appeared on his blog, Rebane provided some insight into how the local political game is played. Bob Hren, chair of the Nevada County Republican Party, wrote Scofield to complain about the makeup of the committee, and copied Rebane. Scofield, the go-to guy on the board for the anti-pot cause, then copied Rebane on his response to Hren. Apparently, Rebane is the consigliere of local conservative politics.
But he also wrote the following: “Lest anyone get the wrong idea, I am a fan of George Boardman and consider him the more erudite local exponent of liberal causes…The above is only a critique of the rhetorical methodology he brought to bear in the county’s cannabis controversy…”
At least he didn’t call me a Progressive. I’m too much of a capitalist to be a Progressive.