Archive for the ‘elections’ Category

Abolish the Electoral College   Leave a comment

I am amazed that this institution has not gone away long ago, or at least been reformed.  This past election has demonstrated that most of the reasons for its existence are fatuous.

lets start with:

It prevents foreign interference in US elections

This reason comes from The Federalist Papers, No 68:

Nothing was more to be desired than that every practicable obstacle should be opposed to cabal, intrigue, and corruption. These most deadly adversaries of republican government might naturally have been expected to make their approaches from more than one querter, but chiefly from the desire in foreign powers to gain an improper ascendant in our councils. How could they better gratify this, than by raising a creature of their own to the chief magistracy of the Union?

This seems to make  any allegation of foreign interference (read Russia) absurd if the reasoning behind this institution is sound.  I am surprised this hasn’t been brought up as a reason that any investigation into this is just silly.

It prevents an incompetent from becoming president

The 2016 US election was one of duelling idiots. While one may defend Hillary Clinton as Threat not chicebeing well educated, she certainly lacked the knowse to deal with the election process (I refer you to Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes book Shattered: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign for documentation of her lack of political savvy, but that was pretty obvious to anyone watching the campaign). [1]

On the other hand, the US has been saddled by someone who appears to believe he wouldn’t have won.  I could get into Trump’s  candidacy, but this is a really bad one if this is one of the reasons for having the electoral college.  I’d toss in the 2000 election as another example of the wrong person becoming president.

More reasons

I found Richard Posner’s Slate article defending this anachronism.  In defence of Posner, his article was written in 2012 before this past election fiasco.  Posner gives the following reasons to keep this:  Certainty of Outcome, Everyone’s President, Swing States, Big States, and Avoiding Run-Off Elections. I have to admit that the learned judge seems to be offering confused reasons.

Certainty of Outcome is a bad one for the learned judge to begin with since Gore won the popular vote by over 500,000 votes in 2000 and Clinton won the popular vote by nearly 3 million votes (2,868,691).  I found it hard to find  a graph which gave the popular votee in the 2016 election, as opposed to graphics that showed the electoral vote, since this number is so disparate it makes this argument risable. [2] It would seem more certain in a truly democratic society, or at least one that likes to pretend to the rest of the world how great its democracy is.

Or is that pretence a relic of the cold war?  Now that democracy is no longer an issue the US can get rid of its pretending its democracy is somehow better than the rest of the world.[3]

Everyone’s president is a truly laughable assertion under Trump.  How many people DIDN’T vote in the last election? Then there are people like me who voted for third parties.

The reality of the “everyone’s president” argument made by Posner is silly is that he then goes on to “Swing States” and “Big States”.  Posner is trying to use the founder’s belief that somehow the Electoral college prevents regionalism.  Then he goes into the glaring examples of regionalism.  It was Clinton’s failures in swing states that cost her the election!

Bottom line on those three arguments: you can’t claim that somehow the electoral college prevents regionalism when regionalism is what ended up costing the election of someone who won the popular vote by 48.5% (as opposed to the electoral college winner who won by 46.4% of the popular vote).

Reading Posner’s article, the 2016 election points out the flaws in his arguments: the electoral college serves no point other than to be anti-democratic, which gets into “run off elections”.

Those would be small prices to pay if they would be the cost of having the democracy the US has presented to the rest if the world through the last part of the 20th Century and the beginning of this one.

The problem is the electoral college is an anti-democratic institution which is an extreme danger to the electoral process.  The sad part is that the travesty caused the electoral college is again being ignored.  I noticed that the democrats were blaming everything except this fossil for their loss.  Now, the silliness of foreign influence in US elections overlooks a reason given for this artefact.

The 2016 Presidential election has demonstrated that this institution needs to be abolished, or drastically reformed.  Its existence has led to a constitutional crisis (not that the US hasn’t been on the verge of one since its inception).  But this one is one of proportions that can no longer be ignored.

The real bottom line here is that the US system of elections is in drastic need of an overhaul: does it take a Constitutional crisis to force this to happen?

notes:

[1] disclaimer: I voted for Jill Stein for many reasons other than just the “democratic” party running Clinton, but her choice was one of many sickeners the party gave me.  The entire US election process makes me sick, but the duopoly really disgusts me.

[2] I knew Clinton was going to lose when the election results focused on the electoral votes as opposed to the popular votes.

[3] there is little difference between a republic and a democracy in modern political science.  Besides, the French Revolution pretty much put paid to most of the anti-democratic v republican beliefs of the founders.

[4] Here is my wish list of changes to the US system of elections.  Only Jill Stein and the Greens seems to be willing to mention them:

open debates run by an impartial body like the League of Women Voters, shorter election cycles, open primaries, ranked choice voting, return of the fairness doctrine and equal time rule (Trump used the lack of it to get shitloads of free publicity), campaign finance reform–if not publicly funded campaigns, easier access to the ballot for parties, reform or abolish the electoral college, end gerrymandering, handcounted paper ballots or receipts, and I am sure that is only the beginning.

Today’s French Lesson!

Hillary est un gros cauchemar putain.

(She is a fat fucking nightmare)
Hillary_Clinton_official_Secretary_of_State_portrait_crop

And While we’re at it, here are the results from when I was trying to find a better res image of a meme:

Fuck Off SC

Posted 07/04/2016 by lacithedog in Election 2016, elections, Uncategorized

Voting can be soooo exciting….

especially when you vote for Socialism! See how hot she gets because she’s voting Socialist!

Unfortunately, the ad was attacked by pretty much everyone in Spain. On the other hand, it does catch your imagination and beats the type of political ads one typically sees: especially US attack ads.

The US has a form of politics where one attacks the other candidate rather than say what one actually proposes and supports. That is a worse form of advertising since it led to the expectation that Obama would do all sorts of neat things such as come up with single payer health insurance and gun control. Unfortunately, we needed to hear how crappy Obama actually was going to be rather than have our hopes built up that he would be a leader.

Posted 20/11/2010 by lacithedog in elections, Socialism, Socialist

Attack ads circa 1800

From the American Creation blog:

210 years ago, at the turn of the century, two of the biggest players in the American Revolution exchanged blows over some of the same issues that still occupy us to this day. John Adams, the incumbent who had taken the Federalist reigns from the great George Washington, squared off with his on-again, off-again, on-again Virginia friend, Thomas Jefferson. Contrary to what we are often led to believe, this contest was incredibly fierce and oftentimes took a very negative tone. For example, when the Adams camp learned of Jefferson’s desire to thwart the Federalists they accused Jefferson of plotting to destroy the very fabric of society by eliminating god from American life.

Even Martha Washington succumbed to the propaganda, telling a clergyman that Jefferson was “one of the most detestable of mankind and a threat to our way of life”!How often have you heard me call Jefferson a slimebag on this blog? Here you get to see the evil’s that Jefferson would bring about from the voices of the time.


Historical background for the Election of 1800:

As I said, American Creation is a fun blog to read!

Posted 06/11/2010 by lacithedog in elections, US Election, US Elections

DISOBEY RUPERT MURDOCH ON THE SECOND OF NOVEMBER

Change the Date to the Coming US election and this is quite appropriate!

I posted the above image from White Rabbit in yesterday’s Beau Bo D’or post where I pointed out that the Tea Party is basically a Fox News creation. And Fox News is a part of Rupert Murdoch’s Newscorp empire.

 

It seems that Newscorp is having problems with its political donations in the US. It amazes me that US citizens are as ignorant of who runs their political system as this quote from the Guardian article points out:

In the run-up to the last presidential election in 2008, Murdoch backed Democrat candidates, shifting his support from Hillary Clinton to Barack Obama. He has since thrown his support firmly behind Obama’s Republican opponents.

Litvack added: “While it is perfectly reasonable for companies to engage in policy debate on specific matters that affect their business, there needs to be a clear and transparent process to ensure that such activities serve the interests of shareholders. There is no evidence of a political contributions policy or process at News Corp.”

So, maybe those Tea Partiers should be rising up against big business that makes them puppets on a string.

Beau Bo D’Or

Thank you, White Rabbit for mentioning Beau Bo D’Or.  He’s a British artist who creates political images which are more meaningful to the British Market, but some of them have relevance to the US.  Such as this one of Rupert Murdoch.  It’s quite appropriate since the Tea Party is basically a Fox News creation

 

Change the Date to the Coming US election and this is quite appropriate!

 

Anyway, here is a video of Beau Bo D’Or’s images.

Unfortunately, the site has been closed down and the images removed.  So, the video is the best sampling you will have of his work.

New Image!

It seems that elections are coming up everywhere! The UK is looking forward to a general election with Gordon Brown announcing the Labour strategy and David Cameron attempting to be “cool”. While the British elections aren’t as interminable as the US ones are…YET–we do have this build up going on that makes me have this yearning for dictatorship. At least they don’t have elections.

The US ones never seem to end. They are campaigning for the next election before the one election has even begun (e.g., they have been campaigning for the 2012 and 2016 presidential elections since 2007). We all know the date when the next “mid-term” election will take place (early November), yet they have been busily going on since lord knows when. And all that takes MONEY!

The British elections are sort of Secret, we know there is a general one coming up sometime this year. It’s due because even though Gordon and Dave have been “electioneering”, they haven’t actually called one and time is running out for the current Brown Government! They have to call an election sometime soon, or we will all be bored as hell with their twaddle. Not to mention the pre-election warm ups on the News getting us prepped for what the issues will be (the fact that everyone is pretty much skint–including the government).

At least they deal with the issues. Unlike in the US where “Conservative” politicians are all talk about “tax and spend”, yet the same people who talk that rubbish are working to ensure loads of government money for their constituencies. Not to mention they have done fuck all for about the wars they started.

I am a reluctant lefty, especially by US standards. In the US, Richard Nixon would be considered a liberal these days looking at the programmes he advocated (and the current republicans work to dismantle)!

So, with that said, I now take Alan B’Stard as my new mascot!  And Thanks to White Rabbit from whom I grabbed the Tory ad as it seemed so appropriate to this post.  If Alan B’Stard can become Labour, why can’t Tony the Weasel become a Tory.

Tony the Tory!