Politics (formerly Election 2012)

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Re: Election 2012

Postby Fridmarr » Fri Jun 22, 2012 7:21 am

Fivelives wrote:Donating $71,600 to the Obama "victory campaign" this year will get you dinner with Barack Obama at a private house. However, just to get Kim Kardashian to make a brief nightclub appearance, some Vegas clubs pay her around $100,000. And I'd just like to think, THINK, mind you, that Kim Kardashian is far less important to the running of our country than anyone in any position of power in D.C.
That seems like an apples and oranges comparison, it's like suggesting that hockey is much more popular than baseball because their tickets cost a lot more. Not only that, but even the math is a bit wonky. Those dinners are 71k per person/family. The dudes going to the club to see Kim are not dropping 100k, and the club is going to get at least some of that money back from the people who come to see her.

Anyhow, I don't really see any problem Koatanga's point. It's not particularly onerous to understand the positions of the representative(s) from your district, especially those at the federal level. Campaigning at that level is MUCH more prolific than you suggest. Relegated to public access? That's simply not even close to accurate. The fact that there is a lot of power in congressional seats, means any seat in contention does get a fair (much more than necessary) amount of attention.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Fivelives » Fri Jun 22, 2012 10:33 am

I read my local newspapers, watch my local news shows, and most of my television watching is on "local" network stations. I don't see shit about congressman A vs congressman B, and the extent of the campaigning?

I've gotten a cold call from the campaign and a form letter. The form letter talked about everything he'd done for my district and the cold call only lasted long enough for me to request to be removed from their calling lists.

The amusing thing is? I live in district 2, and am currently registered to vote in district 1. The congressman who mailed me the letter? Is from district 7, and the one that cold called me is from district 8. Go figure.

And as far as comparing apples and oranges, it's not that far a stretch. It almost seems like you're just being argumentative here - the idea is that it costs far more for a celebrity's time and attention than it does for time and attention from our government representatives. Go ahead - it's an election year. Call your campaign of choice and ask how much you'd have to "donate" in order to get some time with your candidate. Then compare that to how much you'd have to pay (at least they're honest) for the same amount of time with a celebrity of your choice. I thought I'd made that clear by saying that 15 minutes of Kim Kardashian's time was worth more than an entire evening of the President of the United States' time*.

If you're interested, here's a legit service that provides celebrities for events: http://millionairesconcierge.com/celebrity-meet.htm

Call them up and ask them how much it would cost to have dinner with DiCaprio. Then compare that number with the $71,600 it'll cost you to have dinner with the President of the United States of America.

* Unfortunately, my google-fu fails me completely today and I don't remember the name of the Forbes article that listed the average cost of buying a congressman. I picked it up and read it in a doctor's office some time late last year or early this year - if you can find it, I expect it would probably leave you as dumbfounded as it left me there.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Jabari » Fri Jun 22, 2012 11:08 am

Fridmarr wrote:It's not particularly onerous to understand the positions of the representative(s) from your district, especially those at the federal level.

Because politicians always do what they say they're going to, right? :lol:

We tried to get some of "our own" into Congress in the last election. Turns out that they're just as easily bought off and/or corrupted as the rest of them.

http://thinkprogress.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/Tea-Party-donations.png

Cheap who..., er, dates, that lot.

(Not the link that Fivelives was talking about - I'd be curious to see that one too...)

I'm particularly disappointed in Allen West. Had high hopes for him, he certainly "talked the talk" and seemed to have a good background and character. Then he voted to extend the Patriot Act (among other problematic votes, mostly financial stuff). Ugh.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Fridmarr » Fri Jun 22, 2012 3:09 pm

Fivelives wrote:And as far as comparing apples and oranges, it's not that far a stretch. It almost seems like you're just being argumentative here



Yes, I am being argumentative because what you are saying deserves some common sense thrown at it.

It's totally apples and oranges.  First, just on the simple math, you aren't seperating the difference between an appearance fee and a seat fee.  The president's fee is 71k per 2 people max.  Celebrities attend events which many people show up at...so the cost per person is actually often much less. The host is using that appearance to turn a profit off of small fees from many people over time. The net results are vastly different.

That's all irrelevent though, because what the heck does it matter?  Abosultely nothing at all.  The reasons people are interested aren't the same, the motivations of the honored guests aren't the same.  Trying to parlay that into some sort of commentary about our society is just stupid.  I could probably come up with thousands of similarly meaningless comparisons about just about any topic to spin things in any particular direction.

For our last federal congressional election, we had a televised debate, countless radio and newspaper commentaries and interviews with the candidates, millions of commercials, the voter's summary guide, public records of previous votes, and finally the position summaries in the local papers, and that's all before you even begin to touch that big fancy thing called the internet....and that was just for the Republican primary (the incumbent was the dem so that was all unecessary), the general election was like that again...just on steroids.  Good grief, you can't on one hand suggest that all the power is with congress, point out all the costs involved in getting time with these people and then honsetly suggest that all their positions are a relative unknown...

If you can't find out the positions of your federal representatives, you're being purposely obtuse.
 
Jabari, honesty is a completely different topic.  You will never know that about anyone until the situation arises, but at least with incubments that information is easy to come by.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Fivelives » Sat Jun 23, 2012 8:39 am

Fridmarr wrote:Yes, I am being argumentative because what you are saying deserves some common sense thrown at it.

It's totally apples and oranges. First, just on the simple math, you aren't seperating the difference between an appearance fee and a seat fee. The president's fee is 71k per 2 people max. Celebrities attend events which many people show up at...so the cost per person is actually often much less. The host is using that appearance to turn a profit off of small fees from many people over time. The net results are vastly different.


So go check out Millionaire's Concierge. Ask them how much it would cost to get an A-list celebrity to have dinner at your place. The reason I used that particular example is because it was easy enough to find, but the main point is "celebrities are more expensive than politicians". Whether you go by appearance fee per person, or personal interaction fee, or any other metric, the fact is one person is paying that money and getting something out of it. In the case of say, Tao nightclub paying a Kardashian $100k for a brief appearance vs you paying $72k for a dinner with the president, one "person" is still paying that fee. In Tao's case, they'll quite possibly make that back because of all the people that hound celebrities. In the case of dinner with the president, you get to discuss policy and have your own personal ideas heard.

So again, what's the difference between a celebrity appearance fee and a presidential appearance fee? Because that's exactly what that 72k "donation" gets you - a POTUS appearance. Just like the 100k gets you a Kardashian appearance. Now it just seems like you're being purposefully obtuse about this.

Oh, and as far as "cost per person" goes - only one person assumes the cost of a celebrity appearance.

Fridmarr wrote:The reasons people are interested aren't the same, the motivations of the honored guests aren't the same. Trying to parlay that into some sort of commentary about our society is just stupid.


How so? People are more interested in celebrities than politicians. That's not a social commentary, it's stating a fact. The sky is blue. Politicians get less attention than celebrities. These are both facts, and I challenge you to disprove them.

Fridmarr wrote:For our last federal congressional election, we had a televised debate, countless radio and newspaper commentaries and interviews with the candidates, millions of commercials, the voter's summary guide, public records of previous votes, and finally the position summaries in the local papers, and that's all before you even begin to touch that big fancy thing called the internet....and that was just for the Republican primary (the incumbent was the dem so that was all unecessary), the general election was like that again...just on steroids. Good grief, you can't on one hand suggest that all the power is with congress, point out all the costs involved in getting time with these people and then honsetly suggest that all their positions are a relative unknown...


None of my local stations showed anything about it - whether debates or commercials. None of my local papers had anything about it. I admit, I don't listen to the radio, so maybe there was something there. I did get a letter from each candidate talking about their platforms and what they've "accomplished" so far.

Also, for fucks sake. I'm not talking about myself. I may be a PART of Joe Q Public, but I'm definitely not Joe Q Public. You say it's easy to find out things on the internet, which is true - but what if you're part of that 30% of the US that doesn't have internet? How about if you're a part of the 40% of US internet users that don't have broadband internet? Go on - throttle your connection to 56k then try and load a webpage. What if you don't have a television, or live in a rural area as I do? I didn't see jack diddly shit about anything other than presidential races unless I tuned in to CSpan.

And get this through your skull: MOST PEOPLE DON'T FUCKING CARE ABOUT THEIR REPRESENTATIVES IN CONGRESS OR IN THE SENATE - that's why they get away with all of the shit they get away with and STILL have a 90%+ reelection rate. Show me how this is possible without voter apathy. Show me where I'm wrong, here. Give me numbers that disagree with mine. Here:

http://www.fairvote.org/voter-turnout#.T-XfLEWm-So

Relevant bit:
Low turnout is most pronounced in off-year elections for state legislators and local officials as well as primaries. In many cities, for example, mayors of major cities often are elected with single-digit turnout ; for example, turnout was only 5 percent of registered voters in a recent Dallas mayoral election, 6 percent in Charlotte, and 7 percent in Austin. Congressional primaries have similarly low turnout; for example, turnout was only 7 percent in a recent Tennessee primary, and was only 3 percent for a U.S. Senate primary in Texas. A statewide gubernatorial election in Kentucky has a turnout of only 6 percent since Kentucky gubernatorial elections are held in the off-off-year between mid-term congressional election and presidential elections was scheduled at a time when there were no elections for federal office. North Carolina’s runoff elections have seen turnout as low as 3 percent in statewide elections.


In the 2010 congressional midterms you're talking about, my state (Arizona) had a 36% voter turnout. If the media blitz was as pronounced here as you say it was (despite me being fairly certain in my assumption that you don't fucking live in my state), why wasn't it higher? Why was it lower, in fact, than the voter turnout rate nationwide (41.0%)?

http://elections.gmu.edu/Turnout_2010G.html

And this is despite the big huge fucking debacle that is SB 1070 coming to a vote in 2010. I rather imagine that would have something to do with voter turnout in 2010.

Oh look, someone agrees: http://ncoc.net/Actions-That-Influence- ... nout-AZCHI

And here you go - turnout % and raw numbers by county in Arizona: http://www.azsos.gov/election/2010/gene ... rting.aspx

If you'd like to compare that to a population map, go right ahead. Rural areas don't get the same media as urban areas do. In other news: water is wet. Fire's status as "hot" is still being debated.

Go ahead and do the same types of searches on your own state, Fridmarr. Compare turnout rates in low population counties to high population counties and across income lines. Go drive out to East Westbumsfuckville in your state and compare their local newspapers to your local newspapers. Sit around for a couple of hours and compare TV programming (here's a hint: the only thing that's the same are newscasts and regularly scheduled programming, or "big ticket events" like presidential races).

Come back to me with an argument consisting of more than just "lol ur dumb" and then we'll talk.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Fridmarr » Sat Jun 23, 2012 9:36 am

First of all, if you want to keep posting here you need to chill out a bit.

Secondly, I don't need to live in your state to do a search of the at least regional newspapers in your district. There's plenty there. Third, I didn't say it's easy to find information on the internet, I said it's easy to find information without the internet, the internet merely makes it that much easier. If you want to talk about East Westbumsfuckville, I lived there for 18 years. A tiny amish community in the heart of central PA, a lot of people don't even have electricity (by choice), yet somehow managed to be quite knowledgeable about their elected officials (and their opponents) in a time when a lot of the media we have today, didn't even exist.

For the most part, I'm not sure what you are even arguing. I never suggested that voter turnout for *ANY* election is high. I never debated the re-election rate, I lament it myself it's an amazing case of NIMBY. I'm supporting Koatanga's comment that people should participate in their congressional elections, in hopes of the positive affect that would have on those issues. There's no "problem" in that participation, it's not a futile effort, it's not hard to educate yourself on the candidate's positions, and really the lower turnout actually enhances it particularly on off year cycles.

As for the celebrity vs politician thing...it's stupid, the original comparison was mathematically off, but most of all it's utterly irrelevant.

I don't form opinions and then enter google search races to find links to support it. I use information to form my opinions. If you want google links, I'm sure that nothing I've said is all that hard to come by.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Jabari » Sat Jun 23, 2012 9:59 am

Fivelives wrote:And get this through your skull: MOST PEOPLE DON'T FUCKING CARE ABOUT THEIR REPRESENTATIVES IN CONGRESS OR IN THE SENATE - that's why they get away with all of the shit they get away with and STILL have a 90%+ reelection rate. Show me how this is possible without voter apathy.


Well, one reason would be that we're on the wrong side of:
A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the majority discovers it can vote itself largess out of the public treasury. After that, the majority always votes for the candidate promising the most benefits with the result the democracy collapses because of the loose fiscal policy ensuing, always to be followed by a dictatorship, then a monarchy.

Note that we're nearly in the "dictatorship" stage as it is.
http://news.yahoo.com/justice-dept-says-president-exerted-executive-privilege-over-140250605.html;_ylt=A2KLOzLe2uFP1W0AlUTQtDMD

(As an aside, I give it about a 25% chance that this whole discussion is moot as the election will be "delayed" for "national security reasons". Europe blowing up financially being the most likely cause (as that'll destroy the TBTF banks here as well), but there are other triggers too.)
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Fridmarr » Sat Jun 23, 2012 10:11 am

I don't think that situation has to be irrecoverable. I mean clearly, "we" regularly vote that way now, and to see Greece's reaction to their situation by doubling down on that notion is also disheartening, but I think it is possible for people to get past the "how does this benefit me" mentality. Perhaps I'm naive...

You're point is right though, re-election rates is not purely about voter apathy, there's a lot that goes on at the congressional level dealing with the distribution of money and drawing of districts to keep incumbents of the party in power, in place. That said, there is also a lot of people who think seem to think that all congressman are corrupt...except their own.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Jabari » Sat Jun 23, 2012 1:57 pm

Fridmarr wrote:... but I think it is possible for people to get past the "how does this benefit me" mentality. Perhaps I'm naive...


*shrug* - It's Other People's Money(tm), of course they're going to take as much as they can. (Sandra Fluke, anyone?) That, and at some point over the last 60 years or so the whole concept of "personal responsibility" has just gone out the window. (I blame FDR, myself).

I heard that we've recently gone to a population that is only 49% "net tax-payers". Sorry, but we're done for. Only question now is the timing. *shrug*

The only thing that can save us at this point is to enact a law that says something on the order of "Any person that is a net-negative contributor to the public treasury is not allowed to vote."

This really should be the rule anyway, as it's a horrific conflict-of-interest as it is. Note that government employees are paid from the public treasury. (As is the military, and I would certainly allow an exception for active military being excluded from the above).
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Fivelives » Sat Jun 23, 2012 2:32 pm

Not all congressmen are corrupt, but enough are to give that impression.

And Fridmarr - my opinions were formed based on information. The "google search race" was to show you some of the information I used to form those opinions. Not the other way around. Also, how is low turnout not related to voter apathy?

The reason I used the example that I did is because I couldn't find the original article that I was talking about. I mentioned the sources I originally used and also fumed about not being able to find them again - there's a video somewhere in the bowels of youtube that showed me just how "hard at work" our representatives are during a vote, where there were about 20 empty seats visible from the camera's point of view and 5 or 6 people rushing to press other people's "vote" buttons, as they were absent from the vote itself. The article in Forbes that compared hiring a celebrity to buying a congressman and called the latter "a good investment". The absolute dearth of information in rural areas that I've lived in (and you lived in an Amish community - I'd say that probably actually had something to do with the amount of information you had available. "American Colonies" such as the Pennsylvania Dutch have a more vested interest in how the country is run than Joe Q Public simply because they feel they have to be on the lookout for politicians enriching the rest of the US at the cost of their lifestyle). The switch for most campaigns from having people cold-calling registered voters and mailing letters to being run on the internet, which a large portion of society doesn't have access to.

... The list goes on, but that's what I could find to begin with.

I disagree - I don't think it's possible at all for people to get past asking "how does this benefit me". We're selfish, and that's part of human nature. Always has been, always will be.

Jabari, I don't think we're really at that point yet. Of course we expect our representatives to do things that benefit us - that's why they (nominally) represent us. But I also think that quote is more along the lines of a direct benefit rather than something like say, getting government funding to open a state park in the area, supporting our pet non-profit organizations, or fix local roads etc. If that were the case, then the stimulus packages that give money directly to individuals would've been more popular than they were.

Jabari wrote:The only thing that can save us at this point is to enact a law that says something on the order of "Any person that is a net-negative contributor to the public treasury is not allowed to vote."


That's an interesting idea, actually. You mention that active duty military (and I'd probably add disabled veterans that are drawing lifelong pensions) should be exempt, but what about other non-taxpayers such as clergymen? How about college students who are relying on grants and loans to attend school? There's a lot of logistical issues with that, but if those could be worked out it sounds like a Good Idea™.

It would definitely keep the ultra-rich who live on debt and avoid paying into the public treasury because of that.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Jabari » Sat Jun 23, 2012 3:55 pm

Fivelives wrote:Jabari, I don't think we're really at that point yet. Of course we expect our representatives to do things that benefit us - that's why they (nominally) represent us.

Hmm, I guess I prefer to expect that they represent our views (i.e., for me, balanced budget, restoring freedom (particularly the 4th), prosecute the financial fraudsters). I've no interest in hoping that the Rep can get megabucks for state parks and such - hardly fair of me to (expect to) steal Fridmarr's cash to go toward the Grand Canyon. *shrug*

Jabari wrote:The only thing that can save us at this point is to enact a law that says something on the order of "Any person that is a net-negative contributor to the public treasury is not allowed to vote."


Fivelives wrote:That's an interesting idea, actually. You mention that active duty military (and I'd probably add disabled veterans that are drawing lifelong pensions) should be exempt, but what about other non-taxpayers such as clergymen?

(Disclaimer: I have no idea how taxes currently work in such cases)
As long as they weren't taking direct benefits (foodstamps, section-8, etc), and they didn't get refunded more than they put in, then "zero" is not a negative number so they'd be ok. Similar cases for students (grants = benefit, loans aren't as they need to be paid back at interest), etc.

It'd certainly be a logistical nightmare in practice, but the idea is to not allow the leeches to vote for more blood, basically.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Fridmarr » Sat Jun 23, 2012 4:05 pm

Fivelives wrote:I disagree - I don't think it's possible at all for people to get past asking "how does this benefit me". We're selfish, and that's part of human nature. Always has been, always will be.
I think it's much worse now than ever before, it's systemic at this point. However, it can also be made apparent that such decisions are not in your best long term interest, and people can make that adjustment. The environmental movement exists almost exclusively on that notion, and it's a powerful movement.

No one said low voter turn out wasn't because of voter apathy, we were referring to their reelection rate despite their approval rating not just being caused by apathy.

Jabari, keep in mind, not paying income tax doesn't equate to not paying taxes. That said, I do think it's problematic that we're near a majority of people not paying income tax at all. However, the notion of requiring someone to be tax positive in order to vote is pretty difficult for me to swallow. I'm not even sure what a fair way to calculate that would be, annually, for life, total amount paid in...I mean it's a pretty deep jar of flies. I totally get the big conflict of interest we have with gov't employees and the real problems that has caused and will continue to cause, but I don't think removing their right to vote is the answer.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Jabari » Sat Jun 23, 2012 6:29 pm

Fridmarr wrote:... but I don't think removing their right to vote is the answer.


Please remember, we (theoretically) are a Republic, not a Democracy.

As weird/harsh as this is going to sound, there is no such thing as a right to vote. Voting is a privilege in a Republic.

You have exactly 3 "rights":
- Life.
- Liberty.
- The pursuit of (but not guarantee of) happiness.

We've lost a great deal of the second (NDAA? TSA? Federal SWAT raids on small dairy farms?), and completely confused the third to think it's a guarantee. The first is mostly there still, but it's even slowly starting to slip away.

I certainly don't claim to have all the answers. *shrug* I just know that if I had all the waste and fraud and stupidity at home that is in the public sector, my wife would take every knife in the drawer and kill me 50 times over for it. Then we have a 90% re-election rate. That's just ... depressing.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Fridmarr » Sat Jun 23, 2012 9:43 pm

That's totally not true. First, those are from the Declaration of Independence which doesn't have legal standing (it was also saying that they were innate human rights (inalienable) at a bit of a different level than the sorts enumerated in the constitution like free speech and all that). Secondly, the constitution codifies direct election of senators by popular vote (meaning we absolutely have a RIGHT to vote) among other amendments. Third, the constitution deems other electoral power to the states, who in turn via their own constitutions have granted various right(s) to vote to the people. We are a constitutional republic and those constitutions have enumerated voting as a right of the people for many situations.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Skye1013 » Sun Jun 24, 2012 10:19 pm

Quick question... when it comes to voting for members of Congress... how often is it a two-party "race" (I use that term loosely, since most often it's the incumbent that wins) vs having third-party candidates on the ticket?

People say that voting for a third-party for president would be a "wasted" vote, but if it became popular enough, couldn't the 3% of voters that opted for the third-party candidate effectively "highjack" a congressional election, due to low voter turn-out for most of those anyway?
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Fridmarr » Sun Jun 24, 2012 10:28 pm

I think there are four independents currently in congress. Though that doesn't always mean they ran as independent, and then you have guys like Lieberman who was a democrat with a conservative foreign policy mindset, and popular enough to be Gore's running mate in 2000. He actually lost the democratic party primary, but still won the general election as an independent. Obviously, he's more closely aligned with the democrats.

I'm not sure how many non Reps/Dems have had a viable shot lately... I think it's generally a two party race with a few exceptions scattered in.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Fivelives » Sun Jun 24, 2012 10:59 pm

Jabari wrote:As weird/harsh as this is going to sound, there is no such thing as a right to vote. Voting is a privilege in a Republic.


The 15th, 19th, 24th and 26th amendments to the Constitution beg to differ. We do have a right to vote, not a privilege. Although I can see where the argument could be made, considering that certain rights are stripped away from people (like felons). That might make it seem like it's a privilege, but really it isn't.

How much do you think things would change if America did get off its collective ass and elect a mostly independent congress? And I kinda liked Lieberman. I was hoping for a McCain/Lieberman ticket in '08 and instead got McCain/Palin. Blech.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Koatanga » Mon Jun 25, 2012 1:27 pm

Fivelives wrote:
Jabari wrote:As weird/harsh as this is going to sound, there is no such thing as a right to vote. Voting is a privilege in a Republic.


The 15th, 19th, 24th and 26th amendments to the Constitution beg to differ. We do have a right to vote, not a privilege. Although I can see where the argument could be made, considering that certain rights are stripped away from people (like felons). That might make it seem like it's a privilege, but really it isn't.

How much do you think things would change if America did get off its collective ass and elect a mostly independent congress? And I kinda liked Lieberman. I was hoping for a McCain/Lieberman ticket in '08 and instead got McCain/Palin. Blech.

The 15th, 19th, 24th, and 26th amendments are just that - amendments. They can be repealed just like any other amendment. Is it likely to happen? No. Can it theoretically happen? Yes.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Skye1013 » Mon Jun 25, 2012 4:39 pm

Yes, but each of those amendments specifically states "right to vote." Nothing about "voting privilege."
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Koatanga » Mon Jun 25, 2012 5:39 pm

Skye1013 wrote:Yes, but each of those amendments specifically states "right to vote." Nothing about "voting privilege."

And yet in this document there is no mention of a right to vote:

http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charte ... cript.html

If you do a search in that document on the word "vote", you will not find it in relation to the common man. It talks about senators voting, and representatives, and electors, but never the general population.

Here is the bit on electing the President:

The US Constitution wrote:Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress: but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector.

The Electors shall meet in their respective States, and vote by Ballot for two Persons, of whom one at least shall not be an Inhabitant of the same State with themselves. And they shall make a List of all the Persons voted for, and of the Number of Votes for each; which List they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the Seat of the Government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate. The President of the Senate shall, in the Presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the Certificates, and the Votes shall then be counted. The Person having the greatest Number of Votes shall be the President...


As you see, there is no mention at all of the general population having any influence on the appointment of Electors, or for whom the Electors cast their votes. There is nothing in there to indicate the common man would cast a vote for the President at all.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Fridmarr » Mon Jun 25, 2012 5:46 pm

I don't understand why you are trying to separate out the amendments, they are part of the constitution. There's nothing in the constitution that can't be repealed through an amendment either.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Skye1013 » Mon Jun 25, 2012 5:47 pm

Do a search for the word "right" in that document... it only comes up once:
To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries
Because it doesn't include the Bill of Rights.
"me no gay, me friends gay, me no like you call me gay, you dumb dumb" -bldavis
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Skye1013 » Mon Jun 25, 2012 5:59 pm

Fridmarr wrote:There's nothing in the constitution that can't be repealed through an amendment either.

While this is true, that doesn't mean they aren't rights acknowledged/granted by the government.

It'd be like saying the rules of your guild aren't really rules because they could be changed at any time...
"me no gay, me friends gay, me no like you call me gay, you dumb dumb" -bldavis
"Here are the values that I stand for: I stand for honesty, equality, kindness, compassion, treating people the way you wanna be treated, and helping those in need. To me, those are traditional values. That’s what I stand for." -Ellen Degeneres
"I'm not going to censor myself to comfort your ignorance." -Jon Stewart
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Fridmarr » Mon Jun 25, 2012 6:02 pm

Skye1013 wrote:
Fridmarr wrote:There's nothing in the constitution that can't be repealed through an amendment either.

While this is true, that doesn't mean they aren't rights acknowledged/granted by the government.

It'd be like saying the rules of your guild aren't really rules because they could be changed at any time...

...yes that was my point. There is no difference in legal standing between the constitution and its amendments, so no reason to treat them separately.
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Re: Election 2012

Postby Jabari » Thu Jun 28, 2012 8:41 am

I apologize for not responding in a while, haven't had the time. Today's events have made me extremely angry, however, and I need to vent a bit...

First, I overdid it with the "right/privilege" to vote - the later amendments certainly have made it a right. That wasn't the original intent (something like only White Male Landowners could - obviously too restrictive, but it was a privilege at the time). *shrug*

Fridmarr wrote:First, those are from the Declaration of Independence which doesn't have legal standing (it was also saying that they were innate human rights (inalienable) at a bit of a different level than the sorts enumerated in the constitution like free speech and all that).

The DoI is probably the best political document ever written. The Constitution would have some value, but the first ten words of Article 1, Section 8 pretty much destroy any good it could have done. (I've heard it said that the whole POINT of the Constitution is to distract you from those ten words. Cynical, maybe, but it certainly rings true today...)

Fridmarr wrote:Secondly, the constitution codifies direct election of senators by popular vote...

The 17th Amendment is one of the worst mistakes ever, BTW. (Senators were initially elected by the state's legislatures).

Fridmarr wrote:I'm not sure how many non Reps/Dems have had a viable shot lately... I think it's generally a two party race with a few exceptions scattered in.

As an example for the coming (hopefully) election, follow people like:
- Calen Fretts (http://frettsforcongress.com/)
- Kerry Bentivolio (http://bentivolioforcongress.com/)

Fretts is on the ballot as an independent. Bentivolio is an "R" challenging the incumbent. Do either of them really have a realistic shot? No, probably not.


Now to the venting:
The Constitution died today. It's been in its death throes for quite a while now, but we have official date of death.

If you read the ruling, they're saying that PPACA is "unconstitutional on the surface, but since it's a tax it's fine" (basically). The first ten words of A1S8 strike again.

1) I hope that all of you with company-provided insurance have a backup plan. Your cost is likely to immediately jump by 50% or more - companies can't absorb the cost of this. You're also likely to get dropped sooner or later - it's far cheaper for most companies to pay the fine under PPACA than to pay for the insurance. (Companies have the fiduciary duty to their stockholders to do this if it's cheaper.)

2) My advice based on #1: Get yourself into the best physical shape you can. Eat better, exercise more. "Health care" is going to be rationed as a consequence of this (might take a while, but it'll get there), so do the best you can to stay out of the system.

3) There is nothing, NOTHING, our government can't force us to do now. Whatever they tell us to do with our money is a 'tax'. Electric Car mandate? "Just a tax". Outlaw gun ownership? "Oh, that's simply a $2M/year tax for each gun, nothing more." RFID implants? "Just a tax." Selling your firstborn into slavery? "Just a tax."

4) Voting for "team red" or "team blue" to "get the correct people on the Supreme Court" is now shown to the be farce it's always been.

5) And back to the original discussion: As far as 2012, do you really think that Mitt RomneyCare is really against this? Voting is useless. "The master's tools will never dismantle the master's house."

:evil: :evil: :evil:
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