Sunday, November 2, 2008

NBC has no respect for us here in the Pacific states

Saturday Night Live's new episode won't be on for another two hours, but has already put up clips in which Sarah Palin (played by Tina Fey) is hawking goods on the QVC shopping channel. 

The timing is typical of the arrogance of those responsible for live events on the East Coast. Yeah, we're six hours behind New York here in freak state Hawaii (well, five hours as of fifteen minutes from now, since Hawaii doesn't do daylight saving). Sporting events, election coverage, and all this other crap is scheduled and treated as if no one on the West Coast or out in the Pacific even exists. [The Los Angeles Times also insensitively uploaded this article on McCain's not-yet-broadcast-in-Honolulu appearance, which had a few spoilers for me.]

It's bad for elections, since New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Virginia, and sometimes even Florida are announced three hours before polls close in California, and five hours before they close in Hawaii. 

Not that there's any mystery to who will win this state: Although the War in Iraq does play a role in some people's decision here (Oahu has a huge military presence), the overwhelming factor is that Obama was born and raised here (yes, he really was born here!), his ailing grandmother still lives here, and they love Obama to death. Obama's biggest margin might come from the Aloha State.

The problem with early election results is that it can make people who were headed out to vote for president turn around and go home if there's no point, and that hurst "lesser" races). In California, for example, could a same-sex marriage ban pass because Obama supporters didn't see the need to pad Obama's numbers in the popular vote (Obama is ahead by some 22 points, so he "already" pretty much has a lock on California's 55 electoral votes)?

In Hawaii, a lack of enthusiasm for the election means that the commuter railway that has been put up for a vote (thanks to the opposition of short-sighted people who think that an elevated railway is more unsightly than bumper-to-bumper gridlock on expanded Interstate H1) might lose support in a tight race. 

A commuter rail line in Honolulu is an issue with which I have been active since even before I started living in Hawaii: a rail line that runs the length of this linearly arranged city and goes all the way to the University of Hawaii, thus freeing cash-starved students from the trouble of buying a car, paying for insurance and parking and gas, finding parking in lots that are already full an hour before class starts, and contending with bumper-to-bumper traffic that runs the length of Oahu's south shore. 

Okay, none of this is really NBC's fault, but I thought I'd vent anyway. 

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