Thursday, June 3, 2021

Voting in the USA

I got a comment asking how states could deny people the right to vote.  The commenter is from a civilized country, so it's an excellent question.  They're doing it in many ways.

  • Making it illegal for people to give other people a ride to the polls:  Many poor people don't have cars.  Polling places are frequently in the neighborhoods where affluent white people live.  Often there is no direct bus service to the polls. In the 2020 election, Uber gave free rides to the polls.  The republicans want to forbid that.
  • Balllot harvesting:  In the Navajo nation there are very few roads.  People are really poor.  The post office does not deliver to your home.  You must go in to the post office to get your mail.  Since it's a long way over unpaved roads, neighbors take turns picking up each others' mail.  Same with taking ballots to town.  Banning this practice is currently before the Supreme court, the case brought by the AZ AG, who is a lunatic.
  • Republicans want to shorten up early voting times, they want to close polling places where POC live. They want to shut down "souls to the polls"; many Black people vote en masse after church.  Absentee ballots will be more difficult to get. They're limiting the number of ballot drop boxes, and increasing the gerrymandering of voting districts.
  • They want to give partisan poll watchers the right to challenge people in the process of voting.  This is intimidation

So, while no laws are being passed saying black and brown people can't vote, the republican legislatures are making it virtually impossible.

Mother Jones has done a bang up job on documenting how disenfranchisement has happened repeatedly in this country, and how it's coming back our way.  If the congress does not pass a voting rights bill, the republicans will steal every election in the future. The filibuster was used to prevent people from voting in the past.  The southern states were up in arms about the Black vote.  The western states did not want the Chinese to vote.  So, efforts to ease voting restrictions were met with the filibuster.  It's not part of the constitution, it was a purpose built tactic.  Our democrat senator from AZ is in favor of retaining the filibuster, I really hope she gets primaried and loses.

As to the return of the orange ectoplasm to the White House in August; apparently the ectoplasm has got it in his head that it's going to happen.  Mike Lindell (My Pillow guy) has been taking credit for steering the ectoplasm's thinking on the subject.  There is a really good article in National Review on the subject.  They give you four free articles a month so if you have not used them up, there is no paywall.  Below is an excerpt from the article.

I can attest, from speaking to an array of different sources, that Donald Trump does indeed believe quite genuinely that he — along with former senators David Perdue and Martha McSally — will be “reinstated” to office this summer after “audits” of the 2020 elections in Arizona, Georgia, and a handful of other states have been completed. I can attest, too, that Trump is trying hard to recruit journalists, politicians, and other influential figures to promulgate this belief — not as a fundraising tool or an infantile bit of trolling or a trial balloon, but as a fact.

The scale of Trump’s delusion is quite startling. This is not merely an eccentric interpretation of the facts or an interesting foible, nor is it an irrelevant example of anguished post-presidency chatter. It is a rejection of reality, a rejection of law, and, ultimately, a rejection of the entire system of American government. There is no Reinstatement Clause within the United States Constitution. Hell, there is nothing even approximating a Reinstatement Clause within the United States Constitution. The election has been certified, Joe Biden is the president, and, until 2024, that is all there is to it. It does not matter what one’s view of Trump is. It does not matter whether one voted for or against Trump. It does not matter whether one views Trump’s role within the Republican Party favorably or unfavorably. We are talking here about cold, hard, neutral facts that obtain irrespective of one’s preferences; it is not too much to ask that the former head of the executive branch should understand them.

Apparently the reinstatement is scheduled for August.  Lindell says he will be taking his case to the Supreme Court in July, at which time they will vote 9-0 to over turn the 2020 election, and the Bidens will have to start packing.  

CNN did a short piece which is interesting.  The ectoplasm is not giving up on the idea that he's going to be president again, and much of the base is in lockstep with him.

The desperate hope of the likes of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell was that in the wake of the 2020 election, Trump would simply fade away. That, yes, he would remain a figure of some stature for some within the Republican Party, but that his ability to command the national stage or exert considerable influence over the direction of the Party would wane considerably.
It just hasn't happened. Which creates this reality for Republicans: As Trump swerves more and more into ever-wilder fantasies about his return to power, the GOP base follows right along with him. And since no politician can hope to win elections without the base of their party behind them, Republican elected officials go along for the ride.
Which means they are now on board with a man who believes he will be reinstated as president this summer because of a series of outlandish recounts and audits in swing states.

I don't have any new photos to close with.  We went grocery shopping today, which didn't produce much in the way of photographic inspiration.  So I will close with an old cactus picture that hangs around in Picasa because I like it so much.

That's it!  That's all I've got!


  1. I think trump really is mentally ill. If he was a poor man he'd probably have been locked up by now.

  2. Thanks for the update. I always enjoy your take on events.

  3. Even though he's nuttier than a fruitcake, its sadly fascinating to watch the GOP self destruct. But what I find incredible, is the number of supposedly smart and sane people who are pandering to him.

  4. it's just fucking depressing. with Manchin still hoping that republicans will engage in bi-partisanship (they won't) and the republican in democrat clothing Sinema, there's no way to get rid of the filibuster and so no way for Biden to get his voting rights act passed. we're just fucked unless we get a larger majority in the Senate in 2022. if republicans retake the senate in 2022, this democracy will be dead. free and fair elections will be a thing of the past. republicans will simply overturn any democrat win in their states.

  5. Everyone should read this. It is such a clear distillation of how Black and Brown disenfranchisement is being codified by law. If the Dems don't overturn the filibuster and protect voting rights, we may be well and truly lost.

  6. I just can't stand it. Trump is delusional on the reinstatement thing, but disenfranchisement is real. It's terrifying that lawmakers who claim to support Democracy would do all they can to PREVENT citizens from voting.

  7. This is chilling to the bone because this time I do not know what to do.

  8. Democracy in America is in peril and we must stand against all of this now. The ReTrumplicans have hijacked the Conservative Party the GOP used to be, we need at least two healthy Parties or more for Democracy to work as it should. I'm just surprised more real Republicans have not broken off and separated themselves from the Lunacy, the Orange wannabe Dictator has never been a Conservative and he's only out for what he can get for himself and his Grifter Friends and Family at the expense of every American. Those blindly following him in the Cult of Personality don't even seem aware of what dangerous precedents they're creating that will destroy the American we know and love. I think the Democrats need to quit trying to play nice, you cannot have bipartisan negotiations because you simply cannot negotiate with those who are radicalized, Domestic Terrorist bent and on the Lunatic Fringe. They wouldn't negotiate with Foreign Terrorist Organizations and they really need to quit coddling these Treasonous Politicians that will destroy Democracy for their own gain and fears that never again will the majority of the People ever Vote them in again after all this Crazy shit they've pulled and what they've revealed of themselves.

  9. That National Revue article is right on as well as being very scary. As a country, we are in big trouble at the moment. More trouble than anytime I can recall. It is terrifying.
    I loved your comment about the FLW Sprites. I hadn't thought of that until you said it and sure enough, they do look like they are straight out of the Handmaiden's Tale.