Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Disenfranchisement and the Lobotomy Vote

I'm going to cover a lot of ground in this post, so if I wander off, I'll try to come back before the comments start flying.

History - There's a distinct difference between voter suppression and disenfranchisement. Voter suppression is wrong, in that it seeks to actively stop people from voting. The most prevalent example I can think of was southern Democrats blocking black voters through discriminatory laws, intimidation, a few fiery crosses, and the ever-popular lynch mob. I can't think of anyone (with the exception of some ass-backward rejects from an inbred Klan camp) who goes out to deny eligible people the right to vote.

However, disenfranchisement is one of those questionable tactics that may be wrong or may be just in the dirty trick bag. Let's talk some examples.

Floriduh in 2000 - How many recounts does it take before the Supreme Court says "Knock that shit off!" I lost count. But as I watched the call move from Gore to Bush to undecided, it became apparent this wasn't over. This insipid squabbling over targeted recounts, hanging chads, military absentee ballots, and, as a consequence, assloads of billable time for lawyers surely was the case for disenfranchisement. It set the bar for how low campaigns will go. I give Gore credit for finally throwing in the towel (after a mucking fonth), the Supreme court for saying "Enough!", and Bush for not pretending he had a mandate up to 9/11. No one should feel good about this mess, and we should use it as a template for how not to run an election. Sadly, Cleveland has carried on the tradition (and will do so again this year) of disenfranchisement by incompetence.

Oh, and for all you "selected, not elected" idiots who are waiting to scream that if McCain gets elected because it wouldn't have happened if Bush hadn't "stolen the election" eight years ago: Give it the fuck up. It's over. You lost that blather when Bush won a clean election against Kerry. Harping about that shit now just proves you're a petty partisan with a puny pecker (I'll be kind to the ladies and not go anatomical on your asses).

ACORN - ACORN, I think, wrote the book on disenfranchising by registering everyone. They've registered (and this list is not complete and may have a factual error or two) clones, the living, the dead, the elderly the oppressed, the children, the unborn (and unaborted), the GITMO detainees, Mickey Mouse and friends, Democrats, radical Democrats, RINOs, Independents (voting Democrat)Martians, Jedi, wiccans, witches, the undead, women, men, dogs, sheep, transsexual cows, toaster ovens, Osama Bin Laden, Paris Hilton, dolphins, North Americans, South Americans, Latin Americans, Mexicans, Canadians, Romulans, Klingons, droids, Scientologists, and large lump of cellulite in Malaysia named Lenny. The serious point though is that it seems to be a pattern of registering people that shouldn't even be

Then, as a response, the GOP tries to pare down the sheer number of bad registrations, but sometimes in doing so, seeks to have assloads of them tossed, maybe tossing some good ones out in the process. Kind of like throwing out the baby with the bath water (so much for the pro-life plank). This is where a good system design comes in handy. But politics and bullshit being what they are, it's a good chance your vote don't mean shit due to politishit shitting on your vote.

OK Disenfranchisement - All political ads designed to demoralize your opponent may be negative advertising, but if you can weaken your opponent's base support, why not. At that, The Marxist has proven himself better at demoralization. Of course, between the endless streams of polls declaring McCain deader than a grilled cheese samich, a strangely convenient timing for an economic mess, and the fact that conservatives can't stand the bastard, it's not a massive challenge.

Good Disenfranchisement - We have a right, duty and responsibility to vote. We do not have a right to vote for President. Having seen the bullshit involved,I'm not bothered by the idea of dienfranchising certain groups anymore. Here's the list:
Illegals - shouldn't be voting, they're not even Americans
The Homeless - most of the homeless are either addicted or mentally ill. This should disqualify them. If someone is in such a state that they are living on the streets, they need a helping hand to get off the streets and get help. They don't need to be carted off to the polls to "have their voice heard." How the hell do you have the judgment to vote when you're incapable of functioning in society. (clarified due to reminder left in my mailbag)
Criminals -Felony? you can't play by society's rules, go to hell. No vote for you!
The dum - That would be half the retards ACORN registers. If they can't get an ID to vote, can't fill in the blank, operate a butterfly ballot, press a touchscreen, find the polling place without some dickwit with a pack of cigarettes sucking you off, can't name either of the candidates you've been hauled to the polls to vote for, or if you're voting for The Marxist (kidding on that last one), then I'm cool with you not voting. Leave it to those who have at least looked at the issue for a minute or two. Self-education is the key.

Those are the people I'd like to see kept the hell away from the polls. Maybe we'd have a good choice if only people with a minimum IQ prereqisite and the sense to exercise a simple right.

Oh well, sleep calls (I fell asleep in the chair typing this) so I'll leave you to decipher the bloviation.


Patrick M said...

More on my correction. Drug addiction and mental illness alone are not reasons to disqualify people, nor is simply being homeless. It's when you get to the point you're hanging out in abandoned buildings trying to get your next fix, when you've been off your meds and you barely have a grasp on reality. If you can't function in society, then you don't need to be worrying about the damned voter rolls.

As I said, I got reminded of this in an email. I think I wrote that somewhere near falling asleep, so I might have skimped a little on the explanation. But that's the point of revising and extending remarks.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Patrick M said...

Stones: Your comment, while I agreed with every word, had nothing to do with the post. Thus the deletion

Anonymous said...

Thanks Again

Obob said...

this is a reason for Voter ID laws. In Indiana we have it. The democrats cried a thousand violations of civil rights and abuse of power. Yet, acorn has been found in Lake County a high democratic area. It is ripe with people to used and abused by acorn to push acorn's agenda. Not the rights nor agendas of legal citizens, but acorn's.
I fully support the Voter ID due to fact I need ID to purchase booze. In many places it is mandatory for me to show ID even though I am obviously old enough; 39, bald, a few wrinkles and ugly as Nancy Pelosi's partisan rants. It violates my civil rights in knowing there is corrupt voting groups seeking negate my vote. I would encourage senator obama to fully prosecute these people if he is elected. I would expect mccain to do the same.

Shaw Kenawe said...

The wild charges made against ACORN aren't true. Period. It's the story the right wing wants you to hear and the media is reporting as unchallenged fact.

ACORN hired 13,000 workers to register voters. And unfortunately, a few bad apples turned in registration forms with inaccurate and even made-up names.

Here's what's missing from the stories you're hearing: In most states, ACORN is required to submit all forms they collect, whether they appear to be bogus or not. That way election officials, not independent groups, can decide who gets registered and who doesn't. ACORN spends millions to flag cards that may not be legitimate. And many of the irregularities you've heard about only came to light because ACORN ITSELF FLAGGED THE CARDS!

Meanwhile, ACORN has successfully registered over 1 million legitimate voters--Dems, Indies, and Repubs. And there are no reported instances or organized double-voting--so there's no chance this will affect the election.

The McCain/Palin campaign wants to discourage loow-income people and African Americans from voting. And attacking ACORN helps justify their real efforts to suppress the vote--which are well under way.

In Indiana, the Right is considering using home foreclosure as a reason to prevent legitimate registration. (I have a step-relative who lives in Lafayette.)

In Philadelphia, an anonymous flier targeting A.A. neighborhoods falsely warns that voters with outstanding traffic tickets may be ARRESTED if they go to the polls. (I have a friend who lives in Philly.)

In Colorado, the Republican Secy. of State rejected more than 6,000 citizens' registration cards because of minor errors, like not making a checkbox. (My nephew lives in Denver.)

Last week, Fox referenced ACORN 770 times on the air. That's to be expected, but then CNN and other parroted the same right-wing talking points.

Instead of hearing about the hundred of thousands of American citizens who will be PREVENTED from casting a vote this year, you heard about fictional people who will NEVER cast a vote.

And that's the real fraud.

Anonymous said...

"The wild charges made against ACORN aren't true."

Is this place a communist den?
Or just a place for a bunch of brain-washed morons to gather?

Toad734 said...

Im pretty sure Felons and illegals are already on that list.

As far as retards...well, Bush got elected twice so I am all for banning them.

Toad734 said...

ANd don't you have to have an address to vote? In Chicago you do...of course that address can be a cemetary.

Satyavati devi dasi said...

In either WV or Va, can't remember which, early voters were upset with voting machines and reported that even when they were pressing the 'Obama' and/or 'Democrat' buttons, the machine kept switching over to 'McCain' and/or 'Republican'.

Many people went away unhappy and unsure that their intended vote was put in the system as intended.

Mary: Please. I'm a socialist, not a communist, and this is not a den of either. Patrick happens to be a rarity of his (conservative) breed, both open minded and intelligent. He encourages discussion and debate from both sides of the fence with the result that (omg!) both sides often come away learning something. If you can't deal with that, I can give you links to small-minded and xenophobig blogs where you might feel more at home.

And yes. The ACORN thing is being blown way, way out of proportion. Voter FRAUD does not happen until someone tries to VOTE as Mickey Mouse. REGISTERING Mickey Mouse to vote is not the same as Mickey attempting to put in his squeaky little two cents. Of course, most people don't know this, so it's easy to convince them some evil leftist plot is in place that, of course, involves some kind of fraud. It's easy to get people to believe mistruths they want to believe. So please, get over it, get past it, get on with it.

Patrick: Bloviating is a fabulous word and I'm going to keep it.

(and gratuitous movie quote time) "I like you.. I think you're a decent kind of man, even if you are a crook."

Bonus points if you get the movie right.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Mary Mary Quite Contrary said...

Is this place a communist den?
Or just a place for a bunch of brain-washed morons to gather?

Well, you've "gathered" here, my dear, you tell us.

Anonymous said...

Just SLUMMING my dear Shaw Kenawe .
Kind of like going to the Zoo.

Patrick M said...

Obob: That's something I forgot to bring up (as I fell asleep while typing the post). If you can't get around to getting the ID required to vote (even if it's free), then you don't deserve to vote for being a lazy bastard.

Shaw: That's why I said the list was neither complete or accurate. But when an organization, in city after city has the same problems popping up, it raises suspicions at the very least.

Now as for any attempt to disqualify voters because of address and foreclosure issues falls into the bad category, as does threatening the dolts who didn't take care of their traffic tickets.

Denver, on the other hand, is what happens when you have a half-asses system (probably imported from Cleveland).

Mary: Is this place a communist den?

No, but it is a place where people of seriously diverging opinions gather and spar with each other. Consequently, it's more interesting than a site where one person with a different opinion is called an idiot by everybody else that comments. Besides, 3 liberals versus me isn't fair... to the liberals. :)

Hopefully you can add something here.

Toad: I'd comment on your insight, but you'd have to have some first. :)

Saty: This is scary, we keep defending each other.

I tried to be fair in my assessment, and I knew I'd hear about all the crap I missed. Hopefully, they broke out the backup paper ballots in that particular place.

As for bloviating, got that one from Bill O'Reilly. As for the quote, it took some searching, but the answer is Get Shorty. Haven't seen it.

Shaw, Mary: Come on now. Kiss and make up. And send me the video. And at the end, when you're done, say "Oh, what a lovely tea party."

Bonus points if you can guess which movie I got that quote from.

Shaw Kenawe said...

"Oh, what a lovely tea party."

Hmmmm, I'd guess "Alice in Wonderland," but I don't think so, since I actually played Alice in a school production of "The Mad Tea Party." I don't remember that line, and we took the dialog right out of Lewis Carroll's story.

So, ding, ding. You win.

Anonymous said...

"The wild charges made against ACORN aren't true. Period."

I am trying to imagine you saying this with a straight face...but I just can't, it's too difficult. With so much evidence amounting, how can you possibly say that ACORN is not committing fraud? So the people that have been shoved cigarette's in their hand and told to vote 76 (don't quote me on that number, but it's close) times, are all false? They just decided to make it up to help McCain? Pleazzzze!

Satyavati devi dasi said...

Being that I don't like unsubstantiated bullshit stories, I went looking for some credible information about "voting 76 times".

Here's what I found:

A Cleveland teenager who claims he registered to vote 73 times over a five-month period has set of alarm bells among election officials in Ohio's most populous county.

To avoid a link war, you can find this article at

OK. There is a world of distinction between a teenager CLAIMING that he registered to vote 73 times and someone actually VOTING 73 times.

You can register God to vote if you want, but it's still not FRAUD until someone shows up claiming to be The Holy Trinity and wanting to hit the ballot box.

Like I said earlier.. people are much more likely to believe a mistruth if it fits in with their preconceptions.

You'll have to come up with some better research. This is on a par with the 'vetting' done on Caribou Barbie.. look at all the mildew they left under that rug to be found.

Meanwhile, give me a break, will you?

Satyavati devi dasi said...

The real issue with the whole ACORN thing is that people were paid per registration. They should have been paid hourly. Paying people per registration opens up the door for this kind of problem.

Again, it's not FRAUD. ACORN has to flag suspicious registrations and turn them all in regardless. There is no 'fraud' involved in silly registrations. FRAUD occurs when Mickey, Minnie, Donald and Pluto show up and want to vote.

Please, please, for the sake of your party's dignity, get this stuff right.

Satyavati devi dasi said...

Saty: This is scary, we keep defending each other.

That's cause we're secretly in love...but our political principles will forever keep us apart....

...It'll be one of those hideous movies on the (LMN) Abused Women Network one of these days.

Anonymous said...

FRAUD......the definition.....

"In the broadest sense, a fraud is a deception made for personal gain or to damage another individual."

Acorn deceptively registered false names to hurt John McCain and help Obama.

Maybe I'll give you a break, when you convince me Acorn isn't conducting fraud.

MeMyselfAndI said...

Jennifer said... "Maybe I'll give you a break, when you convince me Acorn isn't conducting fraud."

Don't hold your breath Jennifer.

Satyavati devi dasi said...

How does registering voters, true or false, help either candidate if they aren't voting?

That's like saying buying Bandaids will help your boo-boo get better even if you don't use them.

Shaw Kenawe said...

So the people that have been shoved cigarette's in their hand and told to vote 76 (don't quote me on that number, but it's close) times, are all false?


Where's the link that has federal officials claiming voter FRAUD has been committed?

I'd like to read the evidence.

Patrick M said...

I'm to tired to argue either way. I'll let you ladies fight this one out.

The quote comes from the movie >Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, proving I am so Kevin Smith's bitch.

Satyavati devi dasi said...

There's only one thing you can say when me and Shaw line up on an issue, Patrick:

"Release the hounds!"

Patrick M said...

Saty: "Release the hounds!"

I could take that and come up with something really mean. But I'll be nice and stay with the girl vid imagery from above.

BTW, what do you say when you and Shaw line up with ME on an issue (it is a possibility)?

Mike's America said...

Toadbat said:"As far as retards...well, Bush got elected twice so I am all for banning them.

I agree... Toadbat shouldn't be allowed to vote!

Toad734 said...

I didn't vote for Bush, that was you. So do we have you to thank for this mess? Everybody here thank Mike for the 20% reduction in your 401k. If it weren't for excessive Republican deregulation and an incompetent President we wouldn't be in the mess.

Patrick M said...

Toad: This big of a collapse has been coming for a lot longer that Bush has been in office. Now while you'd love to lay all the blame on one man, you know there's a whole lot of blame to go around on this one. But I think we've covered this ground already.

Toad734 said...

Of course there are many factors at work here and yes they started a bit before Bush. They started when McCains former economic advisor, Phil Gramm, wrote two bills which deregulated the insurance, banking and energy sector. One led to Enron, the other led to AIG. Was a guy at Fannie part of the problem, sure but it all comes back to the Republican policy of deregulation. Well, that and greed and the free market.

The problem is that people, like you and Mike, who get their news from Rush Limbaugh is that you think this is all Freddie and Fannies fault, that they were forced to give homeless people loans, banks and investment firms were forced to buy those loans, and Obama got more money from those guys than McCain. None of which are true.

Patrick M said...

Toad: The problem begins with the Community Reinvestment Act, which was changed in 1995, 1992, and 2002, under presidents Clinton and Bush, and (irony here) the Republican Congress. This created an environment where the subprime market could thrive.

Now no company was forced to do anything. But like any time the government meddles in a market rather than some commonsense regulation, it creates imbalance that companies will naturally exploit. And if it coincides with a bubble (the housing bubble in this case), it's going to do damage.

Toad734 said...

Ok, that's all I wanted to hear you say. No one was forced to give loans to the homeless and no one was forced to buy those loans from mortgage companies. Too much deregulation allowed this to happen. We can finally agree on something. And I do blame Clinton for signing Gramms bills into law.

Patrick M said...

We agree only that the government did not force the companies to get into the subprimes, but that's all. This was not a result of the rampant deregulation you claim it was. Here's a little more info on that from