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Current Topic: Politics and Law

Welcome to the new cold war...
Topic: Politics and Law 9:57 am EST, Nov 18, 2004

[ This is a really fascinating brief on the rise of the EU as a power balance for the united states, and outlines a number of things that I think have been floating around this space for a while. The arguments dealing with quality of life are particularly compelling to me. -k]

Welcome to the new cold war... - Gonzales nomination angers abortion foes - Nov 11, 2004
Topic: Politics and Law 4:56 pm EST, Nov 11, 2004

] As a member of the court, Gonzales ruled with the
] majority that some teenage girls should not be required
] to get parental permission for an abortion.
] In his opinion on the ruling, Gonzales wrote, "While the
] ramifications of such a law may be personally troubling
] to me as a parent, it is my obligation as a judge to
] impartially apply the laws of this state without imposing
] my moral view on the decisions of the legislature."

I posted a story about this earlier, which I've deleted. This one is better. Earlier I said that "the radical right doesn't trust him either." More to a point, the radical right doesn't trust him because he was not an activist judge.

[ Good point. The "activist judge" line always struck me as odd, coming typically from people whose moralism pushes them to seek judicial support for their principles. I have mixed feelings about Gonzalez himself, but my baseline assessment is that he'll be an improvement. I'll have to research a great deal more before I can speak intelligently about him. -k] - Gonzales nomination angers abortion foes - Nov 11, 2004

BBC NEWS | World | Americas | Election reveals divided nation
Topic: Politics and Law 4:20 pm EST, Nov  3, 2004

] Religion - rather than class, ethnic origin or education
] - has become the key determinant of voting in the 2004
] presidential race, according to an exit poll conducted by
] the Associated Press news agency.

Some exit poll statistics here. This election was decided by Conservative Christians who came out to vote because of the marriage amendments. Kerry spent too much time on the Daily Show and not enough time in Church. Stupid old conservatives vote, because they like imposing their will on others. Stupid young liberals tend to stay home and watch TV, because they don't understand the reality of whats going on.

BBC NEWS | World | Americas | Election reveals divided nation

Early Exit - A squeaker!
Topic: Politics and Law 4:36 pm EST, Nov  2, 2004

] The first wave of exit-poll data reaching my desk comes
] from a variety of sources. In some states the sources
] disagree about the specific margin by which a candidate
] leads, but never about which candidate is out in front.
] Some of the confusion may stem from the mixing of morning
] exit-poll numbers with early afternoon numbers. With
] those provisos and the understanding that the early
] numbers are predictive of nothing without their
] accompanying computer model, here's what I've heard:

Slate is leaking exit poll data.

[ Don't forget the extra large grain of salt. Exit polls are notoriously shady. -k]

Early Exit - A squeaker!

LawGeek: Sample Right-wing Voter Suppression Letter
Topic: Politics and Law 12:26 pm EDT, Oct 29, 2004

] For any of you who doubted the reports of Right Wing
] voter suppression campaigns, here's a sample letter that
] was sent to a largely-Democratic, largely-people of color
] community in Ohio.

Can I please have one story about left wing voter suppression?

[ As rattle says, you could claim that suing to keep nader off the ballots counts, though the counter argument is that Nader didn't follow the rules and had a whole ton of invalid names on his petitions. You may argue against the petition rule, but there's healthy evidence that Nader didn't do the right thing as the law stands. Also, this isn't exactly suppressing voters as much as suppressing choice. Similar, but not exactly the same.

There was some story about a lefty organization, ACORN i think, which was getting in trouble, but again, not for denying voters. They were registering dead people, or made up names, or something -- clearly a serious violation, in the sense of ballot stuffing, but also not disenfranchisement, precicely.

That's all i've seen. -k]

LawGeek: Sample Right-wing Voter Suppression Letter

Daily Kos :: Voter suppression flyering starts?
Topic: Politics and Law 12:22 pm EDT, Oct 29, 2004

] This flyer is being distributed around Milwaukee's
] African American communities.

I saw pictures of these in 2000, but at the time it was considered an anomaly... Trouble is these reports are hard to authenticate.

[ Yeah, some of this stuff is so over the top that I can't help but think it's a prank, but then, not every loony with a vision to disenfranchise voters is particularly smart. This stuff makes me want to kick people in the head. -k]

Daily Kos :: Voter suppression flyering starts?

Record Labels Said to Be Next on Spitzer List for Scrutiny
Topic: Politics and Law 5:44 pm EDT, Oct 22, 2004

] Eliot Spitzer, the New York State attorney general, has
] recently taken on a procession of corporate powers from
] Wall Street analysts to mutual funds to insurance
] brokers. Now he is casting his eyes on the music
] industry, particularly its practices for influencing what
] songs are heard on the public airwaves.

[ Spitzer is one tough motherfucker, man. The dude does not abide. -k]

Record Labels Said to Be Next on Spitzer List for Scrutiny

Al Gore: Bush Policy Driven By Ideology Not Reality
Topic: Politics and Law 5:36 pm EDT, Oct 20, 2004

This is a long transcript of Al Gore's speech on the Bush presidency delivered at Georgetown on Monday. It's long and I couldn't find the text anywhere except on a forum site, so I include it here.

Whether or not you agree with his views, it's worth reading, and offers more analysis than Ron Suskind's NYT Magazine article on the "Faith based Presidency".


[ Really long! But excellent. So as to not overload the pages, I haven't reproduced the content... click on the thread link and view the original post.

The appropriation of language like "steadfast" and "resolute" as pertains to GWB is simply absurd. "Inflexible" and "stubborn" are more accurate. As Ralph Waldo Emerson has said, "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds." Seems almost tailor made for our current president. -k]

Al Gore: Bush Policy Driven By Ideology Not Reality

Yahoo! News - Problems Crop Up in Fla. Early Voting
Topic: Politics and Law 12:47 pm EDT, Oct 18, 2004

] State Rep. Shelley Vana was not so happy. She said the
] paper absentee ballot she was given at a Palm Beach
] County site was missing one of its two pages, including
] the proposed amendments to the state constitution. She
] said election workers were indifferent when she pointed
] out the oversight.
] "There was absolutely no concern on the part of the folks
] at the Supervisor of Elections Office that this page was
] missing. This is not a good start. If there are
] incomplete ballots out there, I can't imagine I would be
] the only one getting it," she said.

This is not a good start...

[ No indeed. I couldn't get to the linked article so I can't be sure if this was covered, but presumably an incomplete ballot like this one would end up being completely invalidated. So a missing second page may not merely be a partial disenfranchisment, but a total one. Regardless, this is completely unacceptable. -k]

Yahoo! News - Problems Crop Up in Fla. Early Voting

Yahoo! News - Report: Jeb Bush Ignored Felon List Advice
Topic: Politics and Law 2:23 pm EDT, Oct 17, 2004

] Florida Gov. Jeb Bush ignored advice to throw out a
] flawed felon voter list before it went out to county
] election offices despite warnings from state officials

Screwing up who can and can't vote once is probably an error. Do it twice, and you're probably trying to screw someone. This is a nice dovetail to the Nevada reports.

Yahoo! News - Report: Jeb Bush Ignored Felon List Advice

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