Thursday Highlights

Good morning.

  1. Is this the sort of corporation that the OWS fellows are up in arms about … why aren’t they, like the Tea Party, then primarily critical of the government. Speaking of which, it seems to me many of these OWSers are complaining that they have large college loans + no prospects for jobs given their particular educational qualifications. It seems to me the “corporation” to lay the blame at is the educational industry with its skyrocketing cost of product and willingness to send out students from its care with no particularly useful skills.
  2. Top 1% … and the government teat.
  3. Oh, and that growing income disparity? Hmmm.
  4. And again, that middle class malaise?
  5. Higher taxation and higher revenue.
  6. A point missed here.
  7. “Never at the same time of course” … and what besides your own conscience stopped you? Nothing, I suspect.
  8. Recovery of energy from braking.
  9. Cinema!
  10. A rider? Hey! That “pushed the amendment to Obamacare that required CLASS to be actuarially sound to be implemented:” should be a Constitutional requirement for Congress.” Just CLASS? Why “Just?” Heck every law they publish should be actuarially sound.
  11. Well, I’d vote yes if the drive was to put the above into an Amendment. Otherwise, no.
  12. Stupid stupid stupid. Grandma is not the problem.
  13. The OWS and anti-Semitism meme dismissed.
  14. Pot calls kettle black.
  15. Like I said, kettle is black.
  16. Some words for the Romney skeptics.
  17. Push “post” and go to jail.
  18. This will be discussed at the water cooler today.

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26 comments

  1. Quite right — it was just my own conscience. And if I had been required to show ID before voting in Minnesota … it’d have still been nothing but my own conscience that would have stopped me from sending in an absentee ballot in Maryland.

  2. Is this the sort of corporation that the OWS fellows are up in arms about … why aren’t they, like the Tea Party, then primarily critical of the government.

    What makes you think they aren’t? I mean I guess it depends on what you mean by “primarily” but I think the whole issue is that the corporations own the government. What they want is (1) a separation between corporations and government and (2) a way for government to effectively regulate corporations.

    Top 1% … and the government teat.

    Are you that ignorant?? The numbers in that article are nowhere near the top 1%. I would agree that a lot of upper-middle class people (myself included) are directly or indirectly feeding from the government teat, but that’s largely under “defense” spending, which is the wasteful jobs program for the rich that you and your party never has a problem with.

    The OWS and anti-Semitism meme dismissed.

    Outrageous and deeply offensive. (The meme, of course.) Just another made-up ad hominem piece of propaganda.

  3. Boonton says:

    The OWS and anti-Semitism meme dismissed.

    Let’s not dismiss it! Joe’s thesis is that OWS attracts ‘the type of people’ who are anti-Semitic. Since that excuses him from citing actual anti-Semitism let’s just note that the Tea Party attracts ‘the type’ that’s racist. If Mark asks for evidence we can cite this as precedent to tell him to go stuff it.

  4. Mark has already explained that he does not feel obligated to be fair or to not hold a double standard because he sees his role as “loyal opposition.”

  5. Mark says:

    David,
    OK. So without an ID how is any system going to work that keeps people with multiple partial residencies from voting more than once in National elections?

  6. Mark, you seem to be confused. The most an ID can do is verify that you are Person X. Whether Person X is allowed to vote in more than one district is a separate issue not solved or even helped by the introduction of IDs.

  7. Mark says:

    Boonton,

    Let’s not dismiss it! Joe’s thesis is that OWS attracts ‘the type of people’ who are anti-Semitic.

    That is not! his thesis. His thesis is that anti-capitalism/capitalist movements attract anti-Semites because negative images of capitalists and Jews are associated in some group views. OWS isn’t the attractor, it’s the anti-capitalism. What evidence does he need to bring forth in the defense of OWS?

    Can’t you google for evidence? There is some small evidence (likely as large or larger than the putative racism T/P charges). Which moves the second point. Mr Carter makes the larger point that any movement that demonizes capitalists brings out of the woodword anti-Semites. What parallel do you draw for T/P racism charges? That perhaps rural anti-government movements bring in similar fashion similar fringe racist groups?

  8. Mark says:

    JA,
    What are you talking about?

  9. Let’s say you live in Chicago and go to school in NY. An ID could prove that you are who you say you are, but if the system isn’t smart enough to know that you aren’t allowed to vote in both places, forcing you to prove that you are Mark is irrelevant. If the system is smart enough, then we don’t need you to show ID to know that you can only be registered to vote in one place.

    ID stops me from pretending to be you, but it does not stop you from voting in two places if both places allow you to vote there.

  10. And if you aren’t allowed to vote in both places, it doesn’t matter whether it’s you or someone pretending to be you, they can only vote once.

  11. Boonton says:

    That is not! his thesis. His thesis is that anti-capitalism/capitalist movements attract anti-Semites because negative images of capitalists and Jews are associated in some group views. OWS isn’t the attractor, it’s the anti-capitalism. What evidence does he need to bring forth in the defense of OWS?

    Well Obama is black and a black president. Certainly people who aren’t too keen on blacks would probably be attracted to a movement critical of Obama, which the Tea Party has been. Therefore this same evidence free logic applies to the Tea Party.

    IDs and such
    And if you aren’t allowed to vote in both places, it doesn’t matter whether it’s you or someone pretending to be you, they can only vote once.

    Given the fact that voter fraud is almost doesn’t exist in any significant form, exactly what problem are we attempting to solve here?

    But while we are at it, I like the system Iran supposedly has. You go to any ballot place you want and they give you whatever your local ballot is. You could, for example, be vacationing in LA from NYC and you go into a voting booth there and up pops the NYC ballot with candidates for mayor and local races etc as well as the big national races.

    The problem is Federalism here. Each state owns its voting process. In theory a state like Florida could declare it doesn’t care about people ‘voting twice’ so, say, those with vacation homes or going to college in Florida could vote there even if they are registered to vote in their ‘home states’.

  12. Mark says:

    Boonton,

    Therefore this same evidence free logic applies to the Tea Party.

    Nice of you to exonerate the T/P of racism.

    Given the fact that voter fraud is almost doesn’t exist in any significant form, exactly what problem are we attempting to solve here?

    Yes and performance enhancing drugs are more prevalent in cycling than US pro sports. Don’t test and voila, no problem.

  13. Mark says:

    JA,
    Prevented how?

    The question was that if you want to institute a system that prevents you from voting in two places how do you do that without also putting forth ID in both place and also having a cross checking system.

  14. Mark,

    Authorization and authentication are two distinct concepts. The 2-place problem is an authorization problem. The pretending to be someone else problem is an authentication problem.

    In order to solve the 2-place problem without an ID, you have to make sure all voters have some kind of unique identifier like a SSN. Then you make sure that each SSN is only registered to vote in one place. Voila! Problem solved. You can now only vote in two places if you’re pretending to be someone else in one of them.

    Why is it that you always want to look at only one side of an equation, by the way? An ID system would prevent X impersonation attacks but it would also prevent Y legitimate votes. From all available data, it seems clear that Y is a far greater number than X, so how is implementing mandatory ID a good thing??

  15. One of the nice things about being a Jew is that you’re all things to all people. Jews are indeed the prototypical bankers and capitalists for many anti-capitalist movements. On the other hand, Jews are also the prototypical communists and socialists for many anti-socialist movements. We’re rootless cosmopolitans to the nationalists and primitive tribalists to the cosmopolitans. It’s one reason why in any populist movement, there’s always the risk of anti-Semitism. Right now, I’d say there is about as much anti-Semitism in OWS as there was in the Tea Party — which is to say, some fringe figures glomming onto the movement without any noticeable institutional support. Frankly, I’m pleasantly surprised by its relative absence.

    While a few right-wing front-groups (e.g., the ECI) are trumping up the claim of anti-Semitism for political purposes, it is noticeable that mainstream umbrella Jewish organizations haven’t joined them. The ADL, for instance, has been monitoring anti-Semitism at OWS and concludes that it remains fringe: not “representative of the larger movement or … gaining traction with other participants.” (Indeed, if anything the ADL had harsher language for the Tea Party on this score, declaring that conspiratorial views appeared to have hit the mainstream in the movement).

    By contrast, with respect to the Tea Party, umbrella Black organizations like the NAACP have expressed graver concerns about racism latent in the movement. And polling has consistently indicated that self-identified Tea Partiers carry with them a sharp sense of racial resentment. But I think the crucial distinction is the former: while mainstream organs of the Black community were clearly concerned that the Tea Party was indulging in racism, mainstream organs of the Jewish community mostly have not come to that conclusion with respect to OWS. Bill Kristol may think otherwise, but Bill Kristol tends to disagree with most American Jews on most topics — so why should this one be any different?

    As for voter IDs, I think JewishAtheist answers his own question once we recognize who the “Ys” are. Or perhaps we can just keep concocting non-existent problems that Voter ID won’t actually solve. Our voting booths are terribly vulnerable to dragon attacks, for instance (believe me — in either Minnesota or Maryland, a well-positioned dragon could smoke the whole place with no difficulty). And yes, it’s true that having voter ID wouldn’t actually stop dragons from attacking. And it’s also true that evidence of dragon attacks on voting booths is, shall we say, scant. But let it never be said that conservatives don’t support sweeping new government regulations to poorly address non-existent problems.

  16. Mark says:

    JA,

    you have to make sure all voters have some kind of unique identifier like a SSN.

    That is an effective ID. It’s odd that that you’re first solution to the 2 place problem is an ID.

    The problem is that people can be authorized to vote in more than one place, but having voted in one then they cannot vote in the other. Again solved by a unique ID and a cross check.

    An ID system would prevent X impersonation attacks but it would also prevent Y legitimate votes.

    Why? There is no reason for Y!=0. The only people who can’t obtain are those who don’t care enough to bother. Again, why is important that people who don’t give a damn vote?

    From all available data, it seems clear that Y is a far greater number than X.

    And you trust that data why? Your first impulse it check the credentials of the study. Odd that people who claim Y!= 0 are those who also don’t think there should be any validation on voting.

  17. That is an effective ID. It’s odd that that you’re first solution to the 2 place problem is an ID.

    It’s an ID of sorts, but it’s not the kind of physical ID that you have to go acquire every X years. It eliminates the problem of all those people who are too busy, sick, recently moved, etc. who the Republicans are trying to disenfranchise with their ID pushes.

    The problem is that people can be authorized to vote in more than one place, but having voted in one then they cannot vote in the other. Again solved by a unique ID and a cross check.

    Yes, but you don’t need a physical ID for that, just a unique ID.

    Why? There is no reason for Y!=0. The only people who can’t obtain are those who don’t care enough to bother. Again, why is important that people who don’t give a damn vote?

    1) Please demonstrate where in the Constitution it says that only people who care X amount should have the right to vote?

    2) Please demonstrate that the fundamental variable is caring, as opposed to having the time, ability, health, knowledge, etc. to go get an ID before some date. Take a poor, diabetic retiree who’s in a wheelchair and is otherwise in frail health. To get an ID, she’d have to arrange for transportation (how?), spend at least half a day, and endure some risk to her health. Too bad, she just doesn’t care enough?

    And you trust that data why? Your first impulse it check the credentials of the study. Odd that people who claim Y!= 0 are those who also don’t think there should be any validation on voting.

    Oh please. This is not a difficult question. The data are overwhelming.

    Why do you really think the Republicans are pushing these measures?? Because they honestly care about fraud that they have no evidence is even happening? Please. Even you aren’t that big a sucker, are you?

  18. Mark says:

    David,
    This has to be the weirdest conversation on record. I cite a conservative (Catholic) publisher’s blog stating that the OWS is not anti-Semitic and my progressive commenters ask for evidence. Why? Apparently they thought it was. You cite that Jewish groups are OK with it and haven’t noticed any significant anti-Jewish currents. Well that’s very nice. It coincides with Mr Carter’s conclusions. Apparently however having a conservative agree with you gives you a lot of misgivings. To make matters more interesting, Mr Boonton alludes parallels between this and racism vis a vis the T/P movement but again strangely he tries to use Mr Carters argument that the OWS is not anti-Semitic to state that by the same logic when arguing the T/P is racist. This is to say the least more than a little confusing.

    Then you cite a study, which noted ” self-identified Tea Partiers carry with them a sharp sense of racial resentment” … uhm, newsflash, racial “resentment” isn’t racism. If you tell a Black man “racial resentment” = “racism” you might get in trouble, ’cause he’s likely to know one or two people who harbor racial resentment. But resentment!=hatred or bigotry. You know that. I know that. We all know that.

    So … let’s be clear. OWS is not anti-Semitic, neither I nor Mr Carter think so … and following you, Mr Boonton, and JA’s analogies apparently neither is the Tea Party. I’m so glad we cleared that up.

    David, I have no clue what a “dragon attack” is, Google suggested references to Pokemon a game with which I am completely unfamiliar.

    You keep citing “lack of evidence” of voter fraud. Riiight. And the NBA is performance drug free. Odd that the NBA doesn’t test and there is little serious effort to track down voter fraud and golly none is found.

    JA,

    Why do you really think the Republicans are pushing these measures?? Because they honestly care about fraud that they have no evidence is even happening? Please. Even you aren’t that big a sucker, are you?

    And the Democrats try to make it as difficult as possible for servicemen to vote for what reason? Because they honestly care about fraud? Hmmm? Please you’re as big a sucker as I am. I don’t know if you recall the last time I was asked about voting and what I thought on the matter was to suggest that we amend the Constitution so that Congress persons must be women, Presidents must be men and only men can vote for Congressional leaders and only women might vote for President (or was it the voting restriction other way around … I forget). Did you ever look up the book by Kingsbury I had mentioned … it’s sets some interesting notions on enfranchisement and attaining executive office.

    Please demonstrate where in the Constitution it says that only people who care X amount should have the right to vote?

    In the Constitution there is no reference to any limits (or lack of requirements for that matter) for the ability to vote, except that criteria of race, previous servitude, or sex are disallowed. It is, oddly enough, silent on that matter. Please tell me the reason people who can’t be bothered should still be able to vote (except that those that don’t bother might more likely vote Democrat).

    To get an ID, she’d have to arrange for transportation (how?), spend at least half a day, and endure some risk to her health.

    More likely make some phone calls and write some letters.

  19. Boonton says:

    Nice of you to exonerate the T/P of racism.,

    Not at all, I’m Invoking the Mark Paradign of Evidence Free Logic (MPEL) to declare the Tea Party is guilty of racism by association on the grounds that it can reasonably be expected to attract the ‘types’ that would be racist. This requires no actual evidence of racists in the TP or even racists being attracted to the TP.

    The Tea Party did attract and embrace anti-semitism in the form of Glenn Beck (haven’t forgotten the whole ‘Jews…errr no George Soros…runs the financial system and manufactured the crises and recession documentary’ thing) so we got them there too.

    Yes and performance enhancing drugs are more prevalent in cycling than US pro sports. Don’t test and voila, no problem.

    Well see when they bother to investigate they find lots of cases of performance enhancing drugs. They’ve tried with voter fraud and haven’t found any significant evidence of it on any scale beyond a handful of very local elections. This isn’t very surprising. The incentives aren’t with large scale voter fraud anymore. Anyway I’ll ask again exactly what problem are we trying to solve?

    Or put it another way, why not strip search all preschoolers for illegal weapons and explosives every single day? What you say, there’s no evidence that preschoolers have been shooting or blowing each other up except maybe as a freak case here or there. Well perhaps they are carrying them all the time but just not using them very often…for now. Don’t test, no problem voila!

    The question was that if you want to institute a system that prevents you from voting in two places how do you do that without also putting forth ID in both place and also having a cross checking system

    The system current requires you to register ahead of time. When you register your name goes in the book. When you go vote you sign your name next to the book thereby preventing you from voting again.

    Now how would voting in two different places work? Well you’d register to two or more different places weeks ahead of time. But since the voter registration lists are public records, they can be cross checked against each other for duplicates with duplicates flagged for investigation and prosecution if its part of a scam or just correction if its an honest mistake (i.e. someone moving to a new town during the year or two people who share a name).

    The ID requirement wouldn’t really help prevent duplicate voting. The ID requirement would only prevent someone else voting in your place.

    Why? There is no reason for Y!=0.

    Well yea because we have not opted to have a state run identity system where everyone has to carry ‘papers’ around ala the old USSR. The US has a decentralized identity system where you pay yourself if you feel the need to provide higher levels of identity. Hence those who travel go through the hassel of getting a passport (highly reliable ID), those who just want to get cable TV may only bother with having a piece of mail with their name and address on it (low level of reliability).

    I’ll go for this maybe if you make it a universal entitlement provided free of charge by the gov’t.

  20. Mark says:

    Boonton,

    This requires no actual evidence of racists in the TP or even racists being attracted to the TP.

    The real question is why the Boonton Logic-Free Logic Paradigm is invoked, i.e., how an example of X is not in Y might serve as a exemplar of X is in Y.

    Well see when they bother to investigate they find lots of cases of performance enhancing drugs.

    I’m unaware that they’ve begun testing.

    The system current requires you to register ahead of time. When you register your name goes in the book. When you go vote you sign your name next to the book thereby preventing you from voting again.

    That’s right. But there is (a) no serious validation that I am the person matching my name or that my name is not in many books and if so, any mechanism for preventing me from signing and voting in multiple places, esp. across states.

    But since the voter registration lists are public records, they can be cross checked against each other for duplicates with duplicates flagged for investigation and prosecution if its part of a scam or just correction if its an honest mistake (i.e. someone moving to a new town during the year or two people who share a name).

    Yes, the “can” be checked. They are however, not checked.

  21. Boonton says:

    That’s right. But there is (a) no serious validation that I am the person matching my name or that my name is not in many books and if so, any mechanism for preventing me from signing and voting in multiple places, esp. across states.

    Well there’s a few issues:

    1. Since elections are usually single day events, one can only hit so many states in a day for national elections.

    2. Triviality – since multi-state voting would only make sense for a national election, it would be pretty expensive to pull it off in numbers required to actually swing an election.

    3. Audit trail – You’d have to register ahead of time in multiple states. That in itself could be detected and prosecuted even before election day happens assuming states are willing to share their registration rolls. Likewise actually doing multi-voting would be a 2nd offense which could be tracked and prosecuted.

    Yes, the “can” be checked. They are however, not checked.

    Both parties and independent organ. have poll watchers whose job it is to detect and report either fraud or intimidation at the polls. I believe the voter registration rolls are actually public information that could be checked by independent groups if they wished as well as prosecutors and law enforcements. During the Bush years the Justice Department was ordered to find and punish voter fraud. A handful of trivial cases were detected (i.e. a woman who voted while she was on probation) but nothing serious enough to justify the effort. So we return again to the question of exactly what problem are we trying to solve?

  22. Mark says:

    Boonton,

    Since elections are usually single day events, one can only hit so many states in a day for national elections.

    Two things, voting in person probably limits to one to only about 15-30 states with judicious use of air travel. Have you heard of students and people with vacation homes. They could easily (and as noted at the start of this conversation) and often do register in multiple locations. One more thing, ever heard of absentee ballots?

    Likewise actually doing multi-voting would be a 2nd offense which could be tracked and prosecuted.

    I’m writing his from the Chicago area, as you know, the land of the voting dead.

  23. Boonton says:

    15-30 states? Unlikely. I’d be surprised if you could beat more than ten. You can score an easy four or five by being in the corners of several bordering states. Beyond that you’d have to consider drive times. Even with air travel you still have to get from the airport to the polling place, back to the airport. Ten might be possible if you could make use of a *private helicopter*.

    Students voting from their homes and also from their school, I suppose might be an issue but as JA pointed out they can easily show an ID at both places that would be valid. The states would still have to choose to cross check their registration lists to catch multi-voters….if they wanted too.

    I’m writing his from the Chicago area, as you know, the land of the voting dead.

    Do the voters of the voting dead still live or are they themselves now dead?

  24. Mark says:

    Boonton,
    Well, I was trying to put an upper bound. Polling places are typically open 12-13 hours. So, how many “corner” states near airports that have airports with runways sufficient for private jets that can you reach in the 12-13 + 4 (+ HI … I don’t know if AK has polling places or how/if you can vote on further Islands/territories west, i.e., Midway Island). It seemed to me three such locations was easy, which meant 9. Up there in the North East with all them little states you could probably reach 6 states just driving. In the far west you’re gonna have to fly.

    The dead voters are (were) dead. They aren’t off the rolls and the machine made sure they had people to show up to vote in their place (and the fix was in for the polling referee to not question the bone fides of particular guys as they voted those 20 times or more). That’s how I understand it to have worked. I wasn’t here in the Daley machine era. How’d they do it in the Tammany hall era in New York?

  25. Boonton says:

    So your solution requires first the invention of a time machine to go back and solve a problem of nearly 100 years ago.

    Your upper limit is amusing and might be theoretically possible, in terms of cost it becomes unreasonable to actually matter in a national election……you’d need all these states to be really close (think Florida 2000) for it to matter to spend billions to fly 1,000 voters around in the quest to multi-vote. Wouldn’t it be easier to just use that money to run ads and such to ‘buy’ votes legitimately.

    Constitutionally the fact is the states have a right to choose their electors their way so they may actually want thousands of ‘multi-voters’ flying in spending thousands in transportion costs on election day. (And earlier buying up ‘vacation homes’ from an ailing real estate market to establish multi-residency).

  26. Mark says:

    Boonton,

    Your upper limit is amusing and might be theoretically possible, in terms of cost it becomes unreasonable to actually matter in a national election

    So? It was an upper limit, not an economic limit.

    Constitutionally the fact is the states …

    Constitutionally there is no such thing as voter fraud, the Constitution doesn’t touch on the subject at all.