4 more years America - from the LJ of a soldier
If you voted for Bush, didn't vote, or voted no on gay marriage, I hope you get drafted. I hope they stick you in my unit, and you go with me to Iraq when my unit goes back in September. I will laugh when you see what soldiers in that country face on a daily basis. I hope you work with gay soldiers too. I did. One of them saved my life. Think he shouldn't have the right to get married? Fuck you. He fought just as hard as I did and on most days, did his job better than me. Don't tell me gays don't have the same rights you do. Think the war in Iraq is a good thing? I'll donate my M-16 to you and you can go in my place.
Voting machine error gives Bush 3,893 extra votes in Ohio - AP Breaking News
Franklin County's unofficial results had Bush receiving 4,258 votes to Democrat John Kerry's 260 votes in a precinct in Gahanna. Records show only 638 voters cast ballots in that precinct. Bush's total should have been recorded as 365.
OK, lets see intra-state margin of error correlation of exit polls in paper/evoting districts. Not that anything's going to chante... No one is going to contest because they'll just be smeared by the press as sore losers. Rove just had to get away with it long enough for Kerry to conceed, Bush to proclaim a mandate, and the media to kiss their asses. Obviously Palast is following up and no one will care. Again.
Not to get all conspiracy, but look at these graphs. Holy crap that's shady. Maybe I lost faith in the American public too soon.
The political stuff will trickle off for a bit. I have a vacation coming up and it might be time to wipe clean. I'll sign off with a piece of email kos received:
I work at a domestic violence shelter in a rural conservative district in Mich. that is has had its economy gutted by NAFTA and where Christianity dominates the culture.
Yesterday while reflecting about 4 more years of Bush I was talking with a woman staying in the shelter. I will give her a fake name, lets call her Laura B. Laura is 28, pregnant, (never considered an abortion). She finished highschool and did a year of college before dropping out to have a couple of kids with her military husband. Living in Virginia on base with her autocratic mate (he doesn't allow the boys 3 and 4 to say "yeap" they have to answer "yes sir") drove her crazy and she was hospitalized for suicidal thoughts. Military dude divorced her and has custody.
She came home to Mom in Mich and ended up at our shelter to try and sort out her life. (Mom has no money either and her own problems.) We, like all secular agencies, have seen a steady erosion of funds.
Laura B. has found a job working in the kitchen at a local faith based Christian College. She makes $6/hour. She drives a dying Ford Escort wagon pays $2.15/gallon for gas. Her latest crisis is her insurance expired on Oct. 9 (her ex-partner cancelled policy). She needs to come up with $211 to get insurance for one month or face a $1,000 fine if she gets caught driving with no insurance. We have some public transportation, Dial-a Ride, minibus runs between 7 am and 6 p.m., M-F $1.50 one-way. She has to be at work at 6am.
She has been walking to work lately but it is about 2 miles she is 5 months pregnant, it is dark at 5 am, and winter is coming. Solution? Go begging at the churches who seem to have money for these things. They will give her the money if she attends bible school. So last night she was at bible school until 9 p.m.
She has never attended our domestic violence support groups as she is too tired at night and goes to bed early but the bible study was not optional.
She was excited about "God's message" when she came back.
This week she moves into low income subsidized housing. Her newest crisis is she has found out when the college is closed for the Christmas holiday (one month) she has no employment. She is hoping to find temporary employment as a seasonal retail worker if the Christmas sales are brisk to tide her over. She doesn't know what she will do when the baby is born, hopes she can work up till the last week (she is on her feet all day with this job). She will be eligible for subsidized daycare.
She voted for Bush because of his "family values."
Strategic software for music activism
The fact is, there are a lot of people out there who really like Bush. Believe it. Contemplate it. Figure out what to do.
I've been holding back on posting to give a little perspective on it, think about what I want to say. There's not really a question of what needs to be done, but I will be moping a bit.
By the slimmest of margins, and it looks like, because of a completely irrelevant bigotry, we have validated the administration's actions abroad, and committed ourselves to a set of foreign, economic, civil rights and environmental policies that will probably take a lifetime to undo.
It's almost enough to make you throw your hands up. The triumph of newspeak, of fantasy over objective reality. But on the other hand, to realize that if an aging populous of bigots with an agenda of hate and fear is the best that they can come up with, perhaps there's hope in opposition. And that even if there isn't any hope, against such an agenda, opposition is a moral obligation.
Anyway, instead, here's some links:
"Get over it," he said, "The way you feel now is exactly how I felt when Nixon won a second term -- crushed. I just couldn't believe America was that stupid. But remember what happened to Nixon that term."
"Change comes from discontent," he said. "And right now, there's a lot of discontent."
I'm sure there will be tons of recrimination and analysis that explain exactly why Bush has won, but one number stands out to me as I think about Bush's win, and that's the number of people who voted. The Democrats were predicting upwards of 118 million voters. The Republicans were predicting 104 to 108 million. It's closer to the number that the Republicans projected. In other words, the Democrats were undone by the same thing that everybody hoping for significant change is undone by, the false hope that people who don't normally vote would rise up and make their voices heard. It never seems to work that way, does it?
We couldn't form a plausible opposition to the those who act as if the future doesn't exist.
Our culture has been swept along in a tide of emotionally-resonant, steadfastly anti-rational entertainment, and politics is at the head of the wave. The course of our country, the future of our people, is being determined by lizard-brain responses to images designed to trigger sub-rational responses.
Reading the various commentary and chatting with a few people I've come to a couple of realizations which I think we all need to come to terms with. First, as Eric Alterman puts it, there are more of "them" than "us" right now. The people who voted George Bush and the Republicans into office this year didn't do so because they were conned by a right wing asshole posing as a compassionate centrist. They did so precisely because he is a right wing asshole
The early spin declares that the secret to Bush's success was moral issues. A whopping 22 percent of voters called "Moral Values" their single most important issue, beating the economy, terrorism and Iraq; and of those, 80 percent voted for Bush. Yes, Evangelical Christians seemed to be the driving force yesterday, and they were driven, some say, by Bush's stance on gay marriage and abortion.See also this thread: 21. "Moral Values"?
The election was a victory for George Bush and Rovianism, a victory for Grover Norquist. It was also a victory for Osama Bin Laden. I don't believe for a moment Bin Laden was trying to sway voters to Kerry with his taped address. This was the outcome he wanted, a gift from us to him: an unapologetic Christian Crusader in the White House whose reelection giving lie to the notion that Abu Ghraib was an aberration and that the deaths of thousands of Iraqi civilians weigh upon America's conscience. This morning America could not look more like a grinning aggressor to the Arab world, an aggressor with fresh marching orders.Also, yesterday morning:
I am preparing myself for either outcome today. Should Kerry win, I will post an important statement called "A Time for Healing," or something equally noble-sounding. Should Bush win, I shall post a statement of philosophical resignation tentatively titled "Good, Go Ahead, America, Choke on Your Own Vomit, You Deserve to Die." The latter will probably require a little more tweaking.
Per my piece from this morning and my previous post, here's an extremely telling piece of exit polling data from yesterday: Not only did Kerry win by an 86-13 margin among self-described liberals, he also won by a 55-45 margin among self-described moderates. So how'd Bush pull it off? He won 84-15 among self-described conservatives, and, more importantly, he made sure conservatives comprised a much bigger chunk of the electorate than they did in 2000. (Conservatives comprised about 34 percent of the electorate yesterday, versus 29 percent in 2000--a huge shift, raw numbers-wise.) Anyone anticipating a conciliatory second Bush term should stop and consider how much Bush owes his base.
That's Bill Bennett's conclusion. He won't be the only one. What we're seeing, I think, is a huge fundamentalist Christian revival in this country, a religious movement that is now explicitly political as well. It is unsurprising, of course, given the uncertainty of today's world, the devastating attacks on our country, and the emergence of so many more liberal cultures in urban America. And it is completely legitimate in this country for such views to be represented in public policy, however much I disagree with them. But the intensity of the passion, and the inherently totalist nature of religiously motivated politics means deep social conflict if we are not careful.SLOW DOWN THERE.... - Amy Sullivan thinks this is hooey
In the end, this election is about what kind of people we are, what kind of country we'll be. Half of the electorate dissents from Bushism. The election still represents an expression of the strength of opposition to the radical and reckless course Bush has followed, despite the ugly campaign.
I've referred to this in the past, and hopefully will have a chance to return to it, but here's the essence of the matter, as I see it. Before today, the course that America had charted in the world over the last three years could be seen as the result of a traumatic event (9/11) and the choice of a president who was actually put in office by a minority of the electorate. This was a referendum on what's happened in the last three years. And it's been validated.
I sure hope all the liberal energy that came together this year doesn't dissipate. After all, the real problem has never been George Bush, the problem has been that a bare majority of Americans agree with George Bush. That's not an academic distinction, either: just as movement conservatives built up their machine in the ashes of Barry Goldwater's loss in 1964, liberals need to continue building a long-term machine dedicated to changing popular opinion. And it's hardly a herculean task: a switch of only 3 or 4 points in public opinion is a virtual landslide, and if we can pull it off it means that guys like George Bush can't get elected anymore, even if they are the kind of people you'd like to have a beer with. It can be done.
Worse, I predicted 17 months ago that pushing for a constitutional amendment against gay marriage would specifically backfire on the Republicans, and cost them the White House. On the contrary, Bush bumped his popular vote percentage to a Clinton-topping 51 percent, Republicans increased their lead in both the House and Senate, and all 11 gay marriage-banning initiatives were headed for passage as the votes got counted in the wee hours this morning. Unsurprisingly, and certainly not for the last time, my finger is nowhere near the national pulse.
MSNBC exit poll indicates that the youth did not vote. The 18-29 bracket voted the same this year as in 2000, while 30-44 group was down.
That being said, lets count all the votes and see how it falls.
Probably worth updating on election day right?
We've been busy little bees over the past week. That and trying to juggle work work, outside work, etc can be a bit demanding.
We have almost 20 machines, so looks like more won't be necessary, but here's some extra stats for completion's sake.
Paul, your contribution will be well spent on a big bottle of cheap vodka.