Tuesday, November 6, 2018

A CURE FOR OUR AILING DEMOCRACY?

If the national ID system were the key to getting your health care and medications, there’d be no need for “voter registration” and no ability for the GOP to purge voters.
(Thom Hartmann at Common Dreams.org)

EXCERPT:

"The GOP stepped up their voter suppression game in 1980 when Heritage Foundation, ALEC, and Moral Majority co-founder and Reagan campaigner Paul Weyrich famously said, “I don’t want everybody to vote. Elections are not won by a majority of people; they never have been from the beginning of our country, and they are not now. As a matter of fact, our leverage in the elections, quite candidly, goes up as the voting populace goes down.”

In that, he was following on an old Republican strategy of caging and polling-place intimidation, which earned William Rehnquist his rock-star status in the GOP back in the 1960s.

This is still the GOP game plan, although they’ve turned it into an art form."

* * * * *
Democrats cheat, but they're not very good at it.
HERE'S A SHORT LIST OF GOP TACTICS

The deception started long before Donald Trump.
(Thom Hartmann at Alternet.org)

EXCERPT:

"People are wondering out loud about the parallels between today’s Republican Party and organized crime, and whether “Teflon Don” Trump will remain unscathed through his many scandals, ranging from interactions with foreign oligarchs to killing tens of thousands of Americans by denying them healthcare to stepping up the destruction of our environment and public lands.  

History suggests – even if treason can be demonstrated – that, as long as he holds onto the Republican Party (and Fox News), he’ll survive it intact. And he won’t be the first Republican president to commit high crimes to get and stay in office.  

In fact, Eisenhower was the last legitimately elected Republican president we’ve had in this country."

Monday, November 5, 2018

SCUM VS. SCUM

A Talking Bag midterm special post!

Chris Hedges puts America's elections in perspective. Too much fucking perspective.

(Chris Hedges at TruthDig.com)

"Our system of legalized bribery is an equal-opportunity employer."
(Greg Palast.com)

BREAKING NEWS!

Republican gubernatorial nominee Brian Kemp made a hacking allegation against Democrats.
(AP News/Huffington Post.com)

"ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia’s online voter database morphed into a last-minute curveball in one of the nation’s hottest governor’s races, with Republican nominee Brian Kemp making a hacking allegation against Democrats just as reporting emerged of a gaping vulnerability in a system that Kemp controls as secretary of state.

Kemp’s office did not detail any nefarious acts by Democrats, offering no evidence for Sunday’s unusual action that effectively means the state’s chief elections officer began a probe of his partisan opposition days before an election.

Polls suggest Kemp and Democrat Stacey Abrams are locked in a tight race that even before Sunday had evolved into a bitter back-and-forth over voting rights and ballot security.

The state Democratic Party called Kemp’s accusation “a reckless and unethical ploy” and said he was using the FBI to support “false accusations.”

Kemp’s actions amount to “banana republic stuff” and are “perhaps the most outrageous example of election administration partisanship in the modern era,” wrote election law expert Richard Hasen in Slate."

* * * * *

(Richard L. Hasen at Slate.com)

"In perhaps the most outrageous example of election administration partisanship in the modern era, Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp, who is running for governor while simultaneously in charge of the state’s elections, has accused the Democratic Party without evidence of hacking into the state’s voter database. He plastered a headline about it on the Secretary of State’s website, which thousands of voters use to get information about voting on election day.

It’s just the latest in a series of partisan moves by Kemp, who has held up more than 50,000 voter registrations for inconsistencies as small as a missing hyphen, fought rules to give voters a chance to prove their identities when their absentee ballot applications are rejected for a lack of a signature match, and been aggressive in prosecuting those who have done nothing more than try to help those in need of assistance in casting ballots.

But the latest appalling move by Kemp to publicly accuse the Democrats of hacking without evidence is even worse than that: Kemp has been one of the few state election officials to refuse help from the federal Department of Homeland Security to deter foreign and domestic hacking of voter registration databases. After computer scientists demonstrated the insecurity of the state’s voting system, he was sued for having perhaps the most vulnerable election system in the country. His office has been plausibly accused of destroying evidence, which would have helped to prove the vulnerabilities of the state election system."
IT WASN'T THE RUSSIANS!

American plutocrats are adept at stealing elections, without outside interference.

Facebook Said 80,000 Russian Posts Were Buried in 33 Trillion Facebook Offerings Over Two-Year Period Further Undermining NYT’s Case 
(Gareth Porter at Consortium News.com)

EXCERPT:

"...And now, according to the further research, the odds that Americans saw any of these IRA [Russian] ads—let alone were influenced by them—are even more astronomical. In his Oct. 2017 testimony, Stretch said that from 2015 to 2017, “Americans using Facebook were exposed to, or ‘served,’ a total of over 33 trillion stories in their News Feeds.”

To put the 33 trillion figure over two years in perspective, the 80,000 Russian-origin Facebook posts represented just .0000000024 of total Facebook content in that time.

Shane and Mazzetti did not report the 33 trillion number even though The New York Times’ own coverage of that 2017 Stretch testimony explicitly stated, “Facebook cautioned that the Russia-linked posts represented a minuscule amount of content compared with the billions of posts that flow through users’ News Feeds everyday.”

The Times‘ touting of the bogus 126 million out 137 million voters, while not reporting the 33 trillion figure, should vie in the annals of journalism as one of the most spectacularly misleading uses of statistics of all time."

Sunday, November 4, 2018

RIGGING THE VOTE

Underhand Republican tactics – gerrymandering, voter suppression, more – underpin a vice-like grip on power
(Ian Samuel at The Guardian.com)

"The American right is in the midst of a formidable project: installing permanent minority rule, guaranteeing control of the government even as the number of actual human beings who support their political program dwindles.

Voter suppression is one, but only one, loathsome tactic in this effort, which goes far beyond just winning one election. Minority rule is the result of interlocking and mutually reinforcing strategies which must be understood together to understand the full picture of what the American right wants to achieve."
RALPH NADER RADIO HOUR

A bowl of fresh fruit, a cup of black coffee, and a healthy dose of the Ralph Nader Radio Hour is a great way to start the day!

(Ralph Nader Radio Hour)
November 3, 2018

"Ralph welcomes journalist and author, Anand Giridharadas to talk about his book, “Winners Take All: The Elite Charade of Changing the World,” which argues that rich “do-gooders” don’t really want to change the system that made them rich."

(Ralph Nader Radio Hour)
October 27, 2018

"Ralph talks to Democratic Congressman, Jamie Raskin, about what issues the Dems have to run on to take over the House. And editor of Ballot Access News, Richard Winger, explains how the two major parties conspire to keep third parties off the ballot. Plus, listener questions!"

Friday, November 2, 2018

LEE CAMP'S COMEDY COMMENTARY

(Joe Lauria interviews Lee Camp on Consortium News Radio)

"Comedian Lee Camp joins Consortium News Radio for Episode 4, discussing the state of America’s wars, prisons and media, as well as his new comedy special to be released on mid-term U.S. Election Day, November 6, 2018."

* * * * *

(RT Show)

"With reality now seeming like a Shakespearean comedy, perhaps only comedy can truly bring truth to the people. DC-born comedian Lee Camp and a talented cast do just that with RT America’s first comedy show - Redacted Tonight with Lee Camp. This is not your grandparents’ satire program. Every week Redacted Tonight will provide comedy news with a punch. This weekly satire show tackles all the real news stories the mainstream media failed to mention and provides new angles on the ones they do."

(Podcast)

With Lee Camp and Eleanor Goldfield.

Censored stories, sensible solutions and common ground movements to fight and build.

And sometimes other stuff too.