The Franchise

by wjw on October 22, 2008

I voted today. I will spare you the suspense and tell you that I did not vote for White-Haired Senileguy and his dingbat running mate, who grow progressively less charming as the season advances. (Obama’s too popular! No, he’s a pal to terrorists! No, he’s a socialist! No, this week he’s a commie! And he wants to steal your pie! And in any case, he’s right where we want him!)

What astonished me was that I had to stand in line for nearly an hour before I could vote. The whole point of early voting is to avoid these kinds of lines, but here we are two weeks before election day, and the citizens of Valencia County seem to be taking this election thing really seriously. This hardly ever happens. Nobody votes around here unless their cousin is running, or something. (Of course, that’s most of the time.)

Of course it was a ballot that was recorded electronically, so my vote was rendered into electronic form and then sent to Our Secret Masters, who will alter it as necessary. But at least I’ve done my civic duty for the year.

Brian Borchers October 22, 2008 at 2:11 am

The point of the electronically recorded paper ballots is that if there is any question about the balloting, then an audit of the original paper ballots can be conducted. You can be sure that both parties will be watching the voting process carefully and someone will demand an audit if things look fishy…

dubjay October 22, 2008 at 2:40 am

Well, yes. But there has to be a =reason= for an audit, and if the vote count isn’t close, there isn’t a reason.

Ian McDowell October 22, 2008 at 5:06 am

An acquaintance of mine, a reporter for the Greensboro News and Record, was kicked to the ground at the Sarah Palin rally at Elon College last Thursday, an event which made the Huffington Post. The local Republicans have gone from saying he deserved it (he’d written a blog about the in-production porno NAILIN PAYLIN, a spoof on you-know-who) to saying he made it up. The local Republican Media Chairman is accusing the News and Record of deliberately underestimating the attendance at the Palin rally. He got furious at me when I told him he reminded me of Al Sharpton (well, actually, what I said was that he’s almost as big an asshole as Al, so I guess he had cause to be pissed).

dubjay October 22, 2008 at 6:01 am

Here we’ve had one of our county Republican chairwomen write a letter to the local paper saying “Muslims are our enemies” and that Obama was a “Muslim socialist.”

An Islamic group demanded an apology, but the executive director of the party said that she was not speaking for the party, and that no apology was necessary.

Stupid cow.

Ian McDowell October 22, 2008 at 4:47 pm

When people tell me that Obama is a Socialist, I like to say “oh gosh, do you think he’ll nationalize the banks?”

Laurie Mann October 22, 2008 at 8:42 pm

Notice how they’re jumping at Obama for talking about “redistributing the wealth,” while ignoring seven solid years of the Republicans “concentrating the wealth?”

halojones-fan October 23, 2008 at 12:18 am

? I’m kind of surprised to hear you call Obama a dingbat, you seem to generally–

oh, right. I see.

PS don’t pick out extremities and try to portray them as representative. There’s plenty of shit thrown by both sides.

Ralf the Dog October 23, 2008 at 2:08 pm

I was just watching CNN. John McCain was speaking at a rally. I must say he looked like he was about to have a heart attack. It might have just been the cold weather.

Disclaimer: I am a Yellow Dog Democrat, I want Obama to win, I just don’t want him to win because his opponent dies or becomes medically unable to hold office.

PS. I like the new interface. No more typing in CAPTCHA (edited to say, you type in the CAPTCHA when you hit the post button).

dubjay October 24, 2008 at 8:56 pm

I will leave the comment on the interface to those who know what Ralf is talking about. Ai not knowz teh computorz.

In re the campaigning, if it were obvious extreme wackos saying this stuff, I wouldn’t kick . . . much.

But now we have the New Mexico Republican party putting out fliers that have a pictue of Obama next to a quote from Ayers saying, “I don’t regret setting bombs. I feel we didn’t do enough.” The flier makes it look like an Obama quote.

They don’t even have enough shame to commission a surrogate to hand this out!

So I have no option but to conclude that the Republican Party has been captured by rampaging freakshow wing-nuts. And the only way to handle them is to give them a defeat so huge, so lopsided that the sane Republicans chase them out of power.

There used to be Republicans I would vote for. That hasn’t happened in a long, long time.

McCain could have been one of them, but he’s so soiled himself in the last few months that a lifetime of scrubbing wouldn’t make him clean enough.

Synova October 26, 2008 at 3:12 am

You know…

McCain has always been outside the Republican mainstream… he’s always been centrist… always been doing “stuff” with the Democrats.

He hasn’t soiled himself… despite all the many many many glossy fliers I receive in the mail, at least six to one for anything from Republicans, that have McCain standing next to Bush, usually behind Bush, big honking pictures of Bush… the two have never much gotten along even, and anyone with a memory cell knows this… there are some indications that they have to make an effort to be civil. The soiling has been deliberate by Obama’s campaign and by the Democratic party that all they have to do is say over and over again that McCain is the SAME as Bush.

Campaign against Bush. “More of the Same.”

It’s a winning strategy. Everyone is sick and tired of Bush.

But it’s not true or honest.

dubjay October 27, 2008 at 5:46 am

McCain sort of surrendered the whole “I’m an independent” thing when he visited Bob Jones University and also kissed and made up with Pat Robertson, two sources of racism and religious crankery that did their vicious best to scuttle him in 2000.

“You nutbags needn’t fear me, I’m as unhinged as you are” is a poor strategy for winning the center, which is what he really needed to do.

Neither was accusing Ombama of buddying up to terrorists. Or calling a middle-class tax break “welfare” in a country that has lost 10,000,000 jobs in the last year.

Basically McCain had a choice of (1) pleasing the base, or (2)coming up with some plans that people might actually want to vote for, and he opted for (1).

Then he hired Bush’s team to implement the same election strategies that worked in 2000 and 2004, namely Scare the American People to Death. “Osama bin Laden is going to rape your children, then force your daughters to have abortions while ordering your sons to marry one another!”

This is =another= bad strategy to undertake in a year when the markets crashed and gave people a lot of =genuine= scary things to worry about. “Give billions to billionaires” is just a =really bad slogan= at a time like this.

While comparing Bush to McCain might be somewhat unfair, I think it would be fair to point out that there is no real difference between them on economic matters or on foreign policy.

And— let’s face it— McCain is too old for this. He contradicts his own campaign because he can’t remember his own campaign’s message from day to day, he’s never learned to use the TelePrompTer, his VP pick was a catastrophe, and his campaign is an utter shambles.

I have an MD friend who says that McCain is clearly exhibiting signs of dementia. I don’t think the nation needs a demented president with a hair-trigger temper, I just don’t.

(And I would really like to read his Navy records, to find out why he was passed over for command. Maybe it was political, maybe it was because he was such a maverick, but maybe they had a point.)

I gave up on the idea of Hillary because she proved unable to stay in control of her own campaign, and it blew up like a rocket on the launch pad with her on top of it. Someone who can’t control a campaign organization can hardly be expected to run the executive branch. McCain can’t control his campaign either, or stay on message. He’s not even inspiring his own people any more.

Obama and McCain were both in New Mexico yesterday, in the same town at the same time. Obama got 50,000 people and filled a stadium. McCain got about a thousand.

I mean, that’s just sad.

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