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1600 Propaganda Avenue
As an atheist, I guess I'm sometimes kind of naive. I don't understand how all these people -- people who profess to be driven by some superior set of morals they got from religion -- can govern by sleaze and lies, without reservation...like, if the real story behind some issue doesn't work for the party, not to worry -- just trump it up to better meet your political needs. At least that's the M.O. the White House seems to have been working under for quite some time, according to a pretty shocking New York Times editorial:

When the public first learned about the firing of eight U.S. attorneys, administration officials piously declared that many of the prosecutors had ill served the public by failing to aggressively pursue voter fraud cases (against Democrats, naturally). But the more we examine this issue, the more ludicrous those claims seem.

Last week, we learned that the administration edited a government-ordered report on voter fraud to support its fantasy. The original version concluded that among experts "there is widespread but not unanimous agreement that there is little polling place fraud." But the publicly released version said, "There is a great deal of debate on the pervasiveness of fraud."

It's hard to see that as anything but a deliberate effort to mislead the public.

Sound familiar? In President George W. Bush's first term, a White House official, who had been the oil industry's front man in trying to discredit the science of global warming, repeatedly edited government reports to play down links between climate change and greenhouse gases. And then there was the 2002 National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq, which turned reports on old, dubious and false tales about weapons of mass destruction into warnings of clear, present and supposedly mortal dangers.

It's obvious why the Bush administration would edit those documents, but why the voting report? Because charges of voter fraud are a key component of the Republican electoral strategy.

If the public believes there are rampant efforts to vote fraudulently, or to register voters improperly, it increases support for measures like special voter IDs, which work against the poor, the elderly, minorities and other disenfranchised groups that tend to support Democrats. Claims of rampant voter fraud also give the administration an excuse to cut back prosecutions of the real problem: officials who block voters' access to the polls.

There is one big catch, as Eric Lipton and Ian Urbina reported in The Times last week. After a five-year crackdown, the Justice Department has not turned up any evidence that voter fraud actually is a problem. Only 86 people were convicted of voter fraud crimes as of last year - most of them Democrats and many on trivial, trumped-up charges.

The Bush administration was so determined to pursue this phantom scourge that it deported a legal Florida resident back to his native Pakistan for mistakenly filling out a voter registration card when he renewed his driver's license. And it may well have decided to fire most of the eight federal prosecutors because they would not play along.

No word on what will become of Ann Coulter for her voting transgressions. I suggest deporting her to the West Village, and lashing her to a telephone pole on the tranny row section of Christopher Street.

Posted by aalkon at April 17, 2007 10:26 AM

Comments

So it's okay to call women trannies, as long as you disagree with them.

Posted by: Jim Treacher at April 17, 2007 2:38 AM

This is what you get when you want a strong central government.

This is what the founders were on about.

It's not that power corrupts, but that power attracts the corrupted and corruptible.

Take away the power, and the corruption goes away.

Posted by: brian at April 17, 2007 5:56 AM

I think it is deeper than that Brian. If it were just the corruptable, they probably would be pretty benign. I think they believe they are doing the right thing and they know better than us.

And it comes from both sides. Hillary for example, may not be corruptable, because that is not what she is after. She wants power for the sake of having power. She knows what is best for us and she will stuff it down our throats for our own good.

I'd prefer a snake oil salesman any day.

Posted by: Jon at April 17, 2007 7:42 AM

"So it's okay to call women trannies, as long as you disagree with them."

So you admit she'd fit in there.

Posted by: Hasan at April 17, 2007 9:29 AM

From what I've read, most of the few actual, prosecutable cases of "voter corruption" were actually "registration corruption" when people being paid by number of registrations received turned in bogus registrations. It's not like Harvey the Invisible Rabbit would have actually shown up to vote and affected the local school board election outcome.

Posted by: deja pseu at April 17, 2007 9:34 AM

I think they believe they are doing the right thing and they know better than us.

Yup. Remember, these folks were chosen by god to be in power at this time. What I find somewhat surprising, actually, is that nobody thought of using DoJ as an overtly political branch of government before (at least, not that I know of). Rove was really serious about the "permanent Republican majority" and, I gotta hand it to the guy, very creative in figuring out ways they might be able to accomplish it. Unfortunately, their particular melding of Christian fundamentalism, executive authority, and incompetence didn't keep playing with the electorate.

Hillary for example, may not be corruptable, because that is not what she is after. She wants power for the sake of having power.

I don't like Hillary for this very reason. I think that power is basically what she's about, without a guiding principle as to why she wants it. But I put her in the "won't screw it up to badly" category of candidates, because she's basically a smart moderate like her husband, and despite what people want to believe, she's not beholden to the Democrats' leftist wing (that's Edwards these days).

So it's okay to call women trannies, as long as you disagree with them.

There's a deceased equine around here, somewhere, for you to abuse.

But since that Imus thing still irks you - you don't think there's anything different about a white woman, who's a public figure, poking appearance-based fun at another white woman, who's a public figure (and I don't see where Ms. Coulter was called a tranny... perhaps your brain filled in that one...) vs. a white man, who's a public figure, poking racially and sexually stereotypic fun at a group of young black women, who are individually NOT public figures (who really watches women's college basketball or even the WNBA?)? These are the same thing?

P.S. Imus would still be around if his bosses thought he were good for their business.

Posted by: justin case at April 17, 2007 9:41 AM

"If the public believes there are rampant efforts to vote fraudulently, or to register voters improperly, it increases support for measures like special voter IDs, which work against the poor, the elderly, minorities and other disenfranchised groups that tend to support Democrats."

I am so glad that these people have seen the light about the 2000 and 2004 elections. I was really tired of their insisting that people were so stupid they couldn't poke a hole in a card with a stick, yet were intelligent enough to vote for "their" guy.

"Other disenfranchised groups"? Oh. Criminals, right?

I still want somebody to say, simply, that a free photo ID is a bad thing, and give the reason without a bunch of grandstanding. Any takers?

Posted by: Radwaste at April 17, 2007 3:39 PM

"So you admit she'd fit in there."

Huh? I don't like her either, if that's what you're getting at.

Posted by: Jim Treacher at April 17, 2007 6:21 PM

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Posted by: credit chase logon cards at April 22, 2007 10:53 AM

You can vote in presidential elections with a Sam's Club card intead of your voter registration card. Amy, why in the world would you have any problem with an ID to vote? Do you support no ID's for driving? At least you have to appear to know how to obey the rules of traffic to get one. This doesn't even require you to prove that you're informed ( much less not suffering from Bush derangement syndrome) before deciding who is going to take our nation and the world in what direction. It sounds like you're piling on, that's too bad but everyone has an off day, even a goddess.

Posted by: Cerubus at August 29, 2007 3:43 PM

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