Cold and clear this early Thursday here on California’s north coast, a lightening-bright can be seen from my back patio, like a white bubble from the east. We’ve supposed to have a chance of rain, but right now not a cloud in the sky — last night was clear, too, and the moon appeared hugely-full, and awesome.
Unless some ground fog forms upward in the next little while, we should receive a fireball sunrise.
And to continue the motif, this has also been one fireball of a political week. And a bit of shock, too, apparently.
And a way-worse democratic slaughter, a shellacked disaster not seen since the 1940s, maybe.
(Illustration found here).
Not just for the Democratic party, which got drubbed way-bad, and as the days go pass, up pops signs the midterms were more than just a nightmare, but also for our own brand of democracy, of which the form we practice. Draconian, asshole voting laws hindered the process, and for a country like ours, having done this shit for 230-plus years, a horrible example.
From The Economist this morning:
According to some civil-rights groups, voting on Tuesday was a bit of a mess.
Changes to voting laws in more than a dozen states had yielded some confusion, frustration, long lines and turned-away voters.
Some people arrived at the polls in Texas without a valid photo-ID, while others in North Carolina were sent packing even though the state’s voter-ID law doesn’t take effect until 2016.
Thousands of voters called hotlines complaining about inaccurate voter rolls, malfunctioning machines and bewildering new rules.
Some volunteers at polling stations were reportedly just as flustered as everyone else.
Such complaints are unsurprising.
America wins few awards for administering orderly and streamlined elections.
The way citizens register and vote is “still in the dark ages in many ways,” says Wendy Weiser of the Brennan Centre for Justice, a public policy think-tank.
Most states rely on a paper-based registration system, and many close registration weeks before Election Day.
Few allow voters to vote early, which leads to crowding and last-minute hiccups at polling stations.
Polling staff tend to be untrained volunteers, and many machines are either incredibly old or new and untested.
Different states also have different voter laws, with little integration of voter data, which makes it tricky when people move.
Add the horrifying bullshit from the GOP bullshit machine, and you do have a mess.
Via International Business Times:
Thousands of voters in Texas, North Carolina and Georgia said they were unable to cast ballots in Tuesday’s midterm elections amid growing efforts by Republicans to stamp out voter fraud.
The complaints suggest that a slew of laws passed in recent years by GOP lawmakers and blasted by critics as a modern-day poll tax aimed at suppressing Democratic turnout may have influenced the results in some of the nation’s most contested contents.
In states that recently passed election reform laws, voters said they were turned away because they didn’t have photo identification or after they showed up at the wrong precinct.
Voters also complained of long lines, faulty voting machines, language hurdles and confusion over voter requirements, according to the nonpartisan coalition Election Protection.
In all, the nonprofit fielded 18,000 complaints, a 30 percent increase from 2010, according to the Seattle Post?Intelligencer.
And those majority hard-right wing-nuts in the US Supreme Court played their shitty part, too — effectively gutting last year the heart/soul of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, knocking open the door to all that voting-booth bullshit.
A political bit I discussed this week — nit-twits voting against their own self interest — also seemed to play a part in Tuesday’s watershed debacle, as people so fed-up and stressed-out with shit couldn’t think in any correct, coherent frame of mind.
This yesterday in the New York Times:
When a force that powerful is fueled by anger rather than careful analysis, it produces results that can seem irrational.
More than a third of people voting for a Republican House candidate said they were unhappy or even angry at the Republican leaders in Congress, according to exit polls, but they did so anyway, producing a House that is even more right-wing than the current one.
Two-thirds of voters complained that the economy favors the wealthy.
But they supported candidates who largely back further tax cuts for the wealthy, who oppose an increase in the minimum wage, who have blocked expanding Medicaid for poor people and who want to repeal a law that has provided health insurance to those who couldn’t afford it.
They did it in order to send a message of deep disappointment and frustration to President Obama, but the message didn’t really contain much content beyond that.
“I’m just tired of all the fighting and bickering,” Jeffrey Kowalczuk, a Wisconsin voter, told The Times yesterday, explaining why he voted for Republicans.
See! Unable to fathom the words coming from his own mouth. Anyone with any walking-around sense can see the entire Republican brand is a poisonous cancer, though also a dying cancer, and as the US becomes more-obviously none-white, the GOP will suck down as much as they can before they go under — carnage, chaos and Ted Cruz.
So most-likely these self-same voters will soon be really pissed when the same shit just gets worse — clueless.
And way-ugly blowback from Tuesday, from none other, John McCain: “I want to start an examination of our policies in the world and then find out whether we have the capability to meet these expectations.”
Boots on the ground…and the draw of straws:
‘Soon the men began to gather, surveying their own children, speaking of planting and rain, tractors and taxes.
They stood together, away from the pile of stones in the corner, and their jokes were quiet and they smiled rather than laughed.’
Alas, no fog have cometh, so we’re enjoying a fireball sunrise…
(Illustration out front: Vincent van Gogh’s ‘The State Lottery,’ found here).