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The lies, incompetence, and corruption of the current presidential administration and Republican roster of legislators has been on display so many times, I'm no longer inclined to pretend impartiality or give them the benefit of the doubt. They had their chance to show their quality, and they blew it spectacularly. They have no credibility left.

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I feel this needs to be shared.  

The legend lives on from the Apprentice on down of the big oompaloompa called Donnie The Donnie, it is said, always has some bed head and he's friends with a loon named Giulani Wit

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2 hours ago, ScottishFox said:

We're 3 weeks out from election day and the supposedly platform, not publisher guys are deciding what we can and cannot see.  I get if you think it's bunk or a dirty political October surprise (this is my guess), but let that play out.  Let the fact checkers shred it in the light of day instead of sowing suspicion by so blatantly playing favorites.

 

 

I agree with you in spirit.  Unfortunately it takes 10 cents to lie and about $100 to debunk a lie.

 

Me and several others have discussed that Trump has specifically uses this to shotgun literally hundreds of lies at a time, seeing which pellets land their mark, and then just repeat this over and over.  This shotgun approach to lying about literally everything constantly has more or less broken politics entirely.  By the time you debunk one thing there's thousands of others you have to deal with, ten of which have become a political staple even in the news media. 

 

There's also the problematic social construct that if you are spending your time debunking someone else's lying about you, it makes you look like a liar yourself.  That's because the conversation is constantly about lies.  It's literally how Trump controls the conversation and makes it constantly about his greatness and his opponents failings.

 

Do I like that social media is deciding for us?  No.

 

Do I have an answer for someone who literally uses a constant deluge of lies to control conversation to be about those lies and treat people as mere receptacles for repeating his lies?

 

We've seen how effective debunking lies about global warming has been.  And that's provable science.

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Just got back from early voting.

 

2.5 hour wait in line.

 

The voting site was an indoor mall with the line going down the length of the mall then looping back on itself. It might have been somewhat pleasant if the mall had its air conditioning on. As it was, there were hundreds of people and the air so stuffy that people were trying to find things to use to fan themselves. 

 

During the last 30 minutes, I noticed twenty people (I counted) who came in, looked at the length of the line, then turned around and walked out. I hadn't thought to look before that so I'm sure that was only a fraction of the people who walked off without attempting to vote. Also, that was only at one of the two doors which people could use to enter the mall so I'm sure a lot of people were giving up before they properly got started. 

 

Inside the early voting room, there was one election judge and two people who were signing people in to vote. After signing in, I was directed to see a Vietnamese lady for the next step. Her only English appeared to be "take piece of paper" and "go to voting machine" because she didn't appear to understand my question when I asked her if the blank piece of paper was the ballot and didn't attempt any response at all.

 

At the voting machine, they'd removed all of the signs which are normally adhered to the machine telling you how to insert your ballot and what you are supposed to do. You were left on your own to figure it out. (Turns out you were supposed to randomly use the stylus to touch the screen until you got an error message which took you back to the initial screen which had instructions on it.)

 

Once I got the ballot up, the list of candidates in each race was always the Republican candidate first, followed by the Democrat candidate, followed by third party candidates. In previous elections, the order of the candidates in each race was randomly determined because the candidate appearing first on the ballot tends to get more votes because he's listed first on the ballot.

 

I've got to contact the local party and the Secretary of State's office to inquire about that but I'm too exhausted to deal with phone calls at the moment.

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It's worth going back to John Milton's essay "Areopagitica," which is one of the first (and still one of the best) defenses of intellectual freedom against censorship. Keep in mind that Milton wrote it while the Wars of Religion raged across Europe: Books killed.

 

Milton argued that authorities should allow much that appeared false or dangerous, because there might be a good or true idea of value mixed in, and that truth would out in the crucible of open debate. But he still argued that books published with malice aforethought, that were weapons calculated to cause harm, should be suppressed.

 

It's why for a long time (or so I've been told) Germany would not allow publication of Mein Kampf in Germany, in German. It was a book that, provably, killed.

 

The technology has changed, but the core argument remains. IN India and other countries, people have used lies on Facebook to whip up murderous mobs. It's absurd for Mark Zuckerberg to say, "Oh, it's nothing to do with Facebook, we're just the communication platform." Not when his platform actively helps people with bad intent find the people they most want to deceive and incite. Like it or not, he is a publisher and bears responsibility for what is published. If Facebook is used for criminal ends, and does not make reasonable efforts to prevent this, then Facebook is guilty of some kind of criminal negligence if not active collusion. I'm sure one of the lawyers here can give a more accurate description of the possible criminal culpability.

 

I have also heard claims, on Marketplace and All Things Considered, that far-right sites are some of Facebook's most popular and profitable. The howls from the right about alleged "liberal bias" sound to me like one more grievance of the privileged at having their privilege challenged.

 

Dean Shomshak

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Wife and I just finished voting.  Wasn't too bad.  About an hour of waiting in line.

 

Ballot instructions were brief, but understandable enough.

 

I also noted that Republicans were listed before Democrats in all races.  I was disappointed that so many of the lesser contests were completely unopposed.  That's not good for anyone.

 

Anyway, my bitching rights are secured for another 4 years.  :)

 

 

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6 hours ago, ScottishFox said:

 

 

I also noted that Republicans were listed before Democrats in all races.  

 

 

I just got off the phone with the state Democrat Party election hijinks hotline and they were going to follow up on it, with the Secretary of State's office if necessary.

 

They said they'd email me back with whatever answers they found out.

 

I know the Republican legislature screwed around with the ballot to take off the option of voting straight ticket (probably not wanting to lose all the downballot races to voters who were just wanting to remove Trump). So not sure what else they might have "legally" done.

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I want to complain some more about my early voting experience now that the business I had to take care of is out of the way.

 

1) The state couldn't have bought those little stickers to put on the floor to mark how far six feet is? That's just ridiculous considering that many people seemed to think that six feet and three feet are the exact same distance.

 

2) When you see friends in line voting, you aren't supposed to walk up to them face to face like you're at a Trump Rose Garden event and stand six inches away from each other having a conversation.

 

3) People need to understand that wheelchairs don't roll sideways. I had my wife and one of my daughters in wheelchairs. I had to keep my daughter from running up on to the person in front of us whenever I managed to create any distance between us. Then we had people trying to squeeze in around us on the sides even though the line is supposed to be single file and there was plenty of room to NOT approach people in wheelchairs from the sides, seeming to expect the wheelchair to move sideways.

 

Edit:

 

On the good side:

 

No poll watchers whether official or unofficial people there to just intimidate.

 

Considering the heavy Latino and Vietnamese populations which you would expect to go to that polling location from the closest neighborhoods plus the large black population of the city as a whole who could choose to go there, I honestly expected pro-Trump poll watchers.

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14 minutes ago, archer said:

I know the Republican legislature screwed around with the ballot to take off the option of voting straight ticket

 

I'm OK with that one.  Nobody should vote straight ticket.  Actually look at the names of who is or is not running.

 

One thing I couldn't help but notice is that the mayoral candidate who is facing about 100 felony charges related to his ballot harvesting was STILL ON THE BALLOT!

 

Can you imagine that guy winning because of straight party line voting?  No, thanks.

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5 hours ago, ScottishFox said:

 

I'm OK with that one.  Nobody should vote straight ticket.  Actually look at the names of who is or is not running.

 

One thing I couldn't help but notice is that the mayoral candidate who is facing about 100 felony charges related to his ballot harvesting was STILL ON THE BALLOT!

 

Can you imagine that guy winning because of straight party line voting?  No, thanks.

 

I don't have a problem with them removing that feature either. The problem I have is that after having taken advantage of it for decades, they choose this moment in time to remove it now that it might not work to their advantage.

 

And I brought it up because the legislature HAS changed the ballot this time around. It's entirely possible that this "the Republican is listed first in each race" is a change in law rather than "illegally rigging the election machines" or something. 

 

For example, they could have decreed that there would be a coin flip between the two major parties and the winner gets all their races listed first on the ballot. Fairly similar things have been done elsewhere from time to time.

 

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We got our ballots in the mail yesterday. I'll probably set aside a couple of hours over the weekend to do the necessary research and make my choices.

 

I already know who I'm voting for in the major races--President, Governor, House of Representatives. I need more information on things like county council, school board, etc.

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24 minutes ago, Pariah said:

We got our ballots in the mail yesterday. I'll probably set aside a couple of hours over the weekend to do the necessary research and make my choices.

 

I already know who I'm voting for in the major races--President, Governor, House of Representatives. I need more information on things like county council, school board, etc.

 

Got mine a few days ago;  I need to do much the same thing, but I gotta admit that the way the Republicans have thrown ethics to the wind prejudices me against them at ANY level right now.  

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Agreed, largely, although there are a few candidates for local office that are actual Republicans (e.g., small-government conservatives) and not Trump-fanboi demagogues.

 

Our candidate for the House is NOT one such, however. We had someone knock on our door to talk to us about the candidate in question. My response was, "I have no intention whatsoever of voting for _____." That ended the conversation pretty quickly. Thank heaven.

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We received our ballots a few weeks ago, IIRC.  I've filled mine out but still need to drop it off.  While we still have the option to vote straight party ticket, I chose not to... and then once I was done noticed that in all cases I have voted for Democrats (though I had done this after considering the choices in each case). 

 

This is our son-in-law's first election in which to vote, and he's choosing to do so in person rather than by absentee ballot.  We've pointed him toward websites to get a sample ballot for his address, so he can know in advance all the candidates he'll need to choose from and the proposals he'll need to decide upon.  I'm interested to know whether he'll encounter any "poll watchers" (official or otherwise) on election day, and if so how they'll behave.

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Sen. Kamala Harris has canceled all campaign travel through this weekend after a flight crew member and her communications director tested positive for coronavirus.

 

“Senator Harris was not in close contact, as defined by the CDC, with either of these individuals during the two days prior to their positive tests; as such, there is no requirement for quarantine,” Biden campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon said.

 

She had been set to campaign in North Carolina today in their first day of early voting, Pennsylvania over the weekend, and perhaps Texas.

 

https://www.politico.com/news/2020/10/15/kamala-harris-coronavirus-positive-covid-tests-429569

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Senator Lindsay Graham illegally solicited campaign donations inside the Capitol Building during a statement to the press following Tuesday's confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett.

 

18 U.S. Code § 607 says, in part : "It shall be unlawful for an individual who is an officer or employee of the Federal Government, including the President, Vice President, and Members of Congress, to solicit or receive a donation of money or other thing of value in connection with a Federal, State, or local election, while in any room or building occupied in the discharge of official duties by an officer or employee of the United States, from any person."

 

The sentence is up to $5000 and/or up to 3 years in jail.

 

It's also a violation of Senate ethics rules.

 

https://www.newsweek.com/lindsey-graham-accused-illegally-soliciting-donations-federal-building-1539300

 

 

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4 hours ago, Pariah said:

Agreed, largely, although there are a few candidates for local office that are actual Republicans (e.g., small-government conservatives) and not Trump-fanboi demagogues.

 

 

I started off trying to do that in the primaries to see if I might do better voting as a Republican and getting in sane people as nominees in that party rather than letting rabidly pro-Trump people get every nomination.

 

But everyone I researched ended up being rabidly pro-Trump. I didn't make it through to the end of the races since I could see it was useless and decided to vote in the Democrat primaries to try to elect the sanest (or best policy) people there instead.

 

The Republican Party here over the course of four years went from being mostly establishment Republicans who weren't very ideological but who gave lip-service to the Religious Right and a very few small-government types...to a hell of a lot of open lunatics who give the impression they're one missed Prozac away from donning their Klan robes and going to rallies.

2 minutes ago, Lord Liaden said:

And he doesn't care. They just don't care any more. None of it matters. The Trump phenomenon has exploded all the norms of American politics. :(

 

But good lord, risking three years in jail to solicit money on C-Span. It probably wasn't even carried on any network which his potential donors would watch.

 

If they really don't care anymore, the only reason why they wouldn't care is that they aren't planning on having a government, as we know it, existing after the election.

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4 minutes ago, unclevlad said:

Just completed the absentee ballot, taking extra, extra care to fill in the circles properly, and letting it FULLY dry now.  Gel inks, ya know.  I definitely do not want to give them a reason to DQ this ballot.

 

 

 

Don't forget stuff like your signature, witness signature if required, inner security envelope if your state requires that, and stamp.

 

Probably not a bad idea to read over all the included list of rules before you seal the envelope as well just to make sure you didn't miss anything.

 

I was reading an article the other day which stated that even if Trump doesn't meddle with things or make challenges in the courts over which ballot should be counted and which chouldn't, there's probably going to be 1.5 million disqualified absentee ballots. That's probably going to be close to the margin of victory for whoever wins.

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