Halloween approaches, and like a bad horror franchise, Jason Young – the Tonya Harding of Anaheim politics – has re-emerged to sling mud in the Anaheim City Council races.
Young is possessed of a simplistic idea: Disney is evil and any candidates it supports must be mindless puppets. The corollary is any candidate or elected official who criticizes Disney is a pure and infallible paladin whose every utterance and policy preference is ipso facto good and worthy of obedient support. All of his political advocacy flows from this obsessive, Manichean mentality.
Young has paid to create and promote an animated video/political fantasy that illustrates his dark but fanciful view of Anaheim city elections. He’s posted it on his “Stop Disney” Facebook page, where he indulges his habit of smearing those with whom he disagrees. Presently, he’s infatuated with some of the council candidates as “goons.” He professes to oppose “pay-to-play” politics, unless he supports the candidates who engage in it. In that case, he ignores it.
The problem with Young’s paid campaign ad – and it is an independent expenditure – is he failed to include the legally required disclosure on the ad. That puts him afoul of state campaign laws and also the city campaign finance ordinance championed by one of Young’s political idols: Councilman Jose F. Moreno. Not very transparent.
Readers might remember Young’s past brushes with legality, as this blog reported in October 2012:
Curiously for someone whose standard way to express disagreement is to call someone a liar, untrustworthy or corrupt, Mr. Sumage-Young was arrested in 2004 for second degree burglary, identity theft, and fraudulent use of an access card. He ultimately pled guilty and was sentenced to 120 days in jail, 3 years probation and required to make restitution to his victim.
You can search “Jason Garner Young” at the OCCourts.org website (click on the Criminal and Traffic Case Access portal). While the information summary there says “not guilty,” according to the full record Young change his plea to “guilty”to the above felonies, served his jail time, and upon completion of probation the offenses were reduced to misdemeanor status, which is why the charges are shown on the website as dismissed (again, all public information).
No one is perfect. Something to keep in mind next time Mr. Sumague-Young takes a political disagreement and turns it into a character assault. Mr. Sumague-Young might also want to keep this in mind.
Such perspective has never taken hold with Young. Like many of Mayor Tait’s acolytes, his behavior makes a mockeyr of the “City of Kindness” stuff. The 1st Amendment protects free speech. Just as William Fitzgerald is free to spend his time at city council meetings bellowing vicious, deluded rants smearing city council members and candidates, and Jason Young is free to spend his money on vicious, deluded videos attacking council candidates. They both behave despicably and with little regard for the truth – birds of a feather.