The Obama File

Discussion in 'Politics' started by eyeswideshut, Oct 5, 2011.

  1. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

    That's not true, actually. In two thirds of the states, you can go a gun show and buy whatever you want without any background check or identification. You can buy semi-automatic assault rifles without showing ID in 33 states.

    Moreover, what restrictions exist on gun purchases exist for good reason, and were justified by a clear need to prevent extant problems. Where are the extant problems that your restrictions on voting would address? Entirely in your imagination? Your total inability to cite any actual problem that this restriction would solve means that there is no justification whatsoever for imposing any additional burdens on voters. The fact that loose-lipped members of your own party have been stupid enough to confirm on camera what the actual motivation is renders your charade of serious concern over voter fraud unbelievable.

    You guys are scumbags who are out to disenfranchise people who disagree with you, because you are afraid that your program of fascism can't win a fair election.
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  3. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member


    Mad's justification is fiction, pure and simple.
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  5. madanthonywayne Morning in America Registered Senior Member

    Well, then 74% of the American people are also scumbags. This includes a majority of every demographic group including those you claim might be disenfranchised by voter ID laws.

    Perhaps they have a higher opinion of themselves than you do and are not concerned about the trivial "burden" of showing an ID.
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  7. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

    People are largely ignorant. They do not appreciate exactly how many voters will be disenfranchized, nor how much of a burden this can actually end up being in various cases (which is what allows you to keep characterizing the burden as "trivial" without any actual substantive investigation of what it amounts to - just mere hand-waving about how everybody who votes probably already has ID). They are also frequently ignorant of the fact that this is a non-problem.

    But let me clarify: the people I described as scumbags are the GOP operators who dreamt this up and have been pushing a coordinated national campaign. They know exactly what they're up to, and have cynically calculated how they can take advantage of electoral ignorance to get their ways. The scumbag category also includes advocates of voter ID (of whatever motivation) who have been exposed to the actual facts - the non-problem of voter fraud, and the actual numbers to be disenfranchized - and who continues to advocate for it in spite of that. Doubly so for scumbags who attempt to dismiss the facts of the case with mere hand-waving.

    Seriously: are you even capable of discussing anything related to politics without immediately, consistently resorting to blatant dishonesty? Is there a single underhanded tactic that is beneath you? Do you think that nobody notices that you don't, apparently, think enough of your own positions to advocate them honestly?
  8. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

    Assuming your poll numbers are trustworthy, and that is a big if, as you are sourcing them from a debunked Republican/partisan rag, a single poll and a single question about a complex issue, does not a mandate or accurate response make. If you asked the same people if they favored voter ID if it disenfranchised millions of legitimate voters (e.g. medically infirm, disabled people, etc.) I think you would get a very different answer.
  9. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

  10. madanthonywayne Morning in America Registered Senior Member

    Yes. Everyone is ignorant. No one can possibly understand the immense burden and the complexity of having to show an ID.

    To function in society these days you need an ID. Anyone active enough to actually go to the trouble to vote almost certainly has an ID. Getting an ID is not much more difficult than registering to vote. If you can do one, why not the other?
    Are you capable of discussing an issue without resorting to personal insults? The Supreme Court in a 6:3 decision agreed with me. To quote John Paul Stevens (no conservative) who wrote the majority opinion:

    "The relevant burdens here are those imposed on eligible voters who lack photo identification cards that comply with SEA 483.[2] Because Indiana’s cards are free, the inconvenience of going to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles, gathering required documents, and posing for a photograph does not qualify as a substantial burden on most voters’ right to vote, or represent a significant increase over the usual burdens of voting. The severity of the somewhat heavier burden that may be placed on a limited number of persons—e.g., elderly persons born out-of-state, who may have difficulty obtaining a birth certificate—is mitigated by the fact that eligible voters without photo identification may cast provisional ballots that will be counted if they execute the required affidavit at the circuit court clerk’s office. Even assuming that the burden may not be justified as to a few voters, that conclusion is by no means sufficient to establish petitioners’ right to the relief they seek."
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2012
  11. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

    That is not what was said/written, that is you creating another straw man. Let me repeat again for your edification, assuming that the poll you cited was valid, you cannot make the broad assertions you made based on one question in one poll. That is a fundamental error in logic, something you are really good at especially when it benefits the Republican/Tea Party talking points.

    Ignoring previous responses to this argument and pretending they don’t exist, is not going to make them go away. First, Republicans are not requiring just an “ID”, they are requiring very specific types of ID and disallowing forms of ID that are likely to allow non-Republicans to cast a ballot. Additionally, there are some people who because of circumstances of their birth were born in the states but do not have birth certificates, something that is necessary to obtain the ID Republicans want. Others are medically infirm and due to their illness, they cannot obtain the IDs Republicans demand. There are people in transit (e.g. college students) who may have difficulties obtaining the ID Republicans are demanding. And there are still others who are limited by the lack of transportation. As has been pointed out to you on numerous occasions, in Pennsylvania an estimated 800k-900k voters alone will be disenfranchised by this most recent Republican attempt to rig yet another election.

    Repeating partisan nonsense, does not make nonsense any more sensible, it just piles on the nonsense.
  12. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

    No, just the majority of the voting public, who don't really pay close attention to this issue.

    The GOP strategists behind it are not ignorant, and nor is the determined opposition.

    I said they were ignorant - that they have not been exposed to the relevant information - not that they were too stupid to understand. Other polls that include information about the effect on turnout show markedly different levels of support.

    Meanwhile, I'll note your dismissiveness, sarcasm and dishonesty - a straightforward, vacuous personal attack on myself. You are not engaging the substance of the statement - which was backed by data from the same exact poll that you invoked - but simply mocking me as a pretense to avoid substantive engagement.

    That said, this stuff:

    ... is nothing more or less than a determined effort on your part to remain pointedly ignorant of the actual impact of the laws, and steer the conversation away from any such information. You present no actual data on what exactly these ID laws require and how that might burden certain people. You are arguing from pure self-serving supposition and innuendo. Which, of course, you have to: the GOP strategy here is premised on the fact that these laws sound superficially benign, and one has to actually dig into the data and think about how people who are not typical middle-class urban residents live and what burdens are actually involved in securing the required documents.

    Back in reality-land, it is known that something like 11% of eligible voters - tens of millions of Americans - lack the kinds of IDs required by these laws. These people are disproportionately elderly, young, poor, disabled, students and minorities - hence the obvious appeal to the GOP of suppressing their votes. It is also known that these restrictions will cost hundreds of millions of dollars a year to implement. It is furthermore known that the kind of in-person voter fraud that they aim to prevent is a non-issue. So we have you proposing to spend a 9-digit sum of money to solve a non-existent problem while disenfranchizing a bunch of minorities, poor people, students and retirees. That is the reality of your policy proposals, not your hand-waving about how "reasonable" this is.

    For emphasis, let's revisit your premise:

    In the first place, that isn't entirely true (we all probably have elderly relatives who no longer have driver's licenses, for example). In the second place, the laws in question don't require simply "an ID." They require specific types of ID which match other documents in certain ways - they are crafted to be as restrictive as possible. So restrictive, in fact, that they will disenfranchise tens of millions of Americans. Maybe you will assert that those people do not "function in society." But the fact is that they have the right to vote, and you do not have the right to disenfranchise them for no defensible reason, regardless of any of nasty implications on your part about their place or "function" in "society." Seriously, you're about two inches away from coming off as an outright fascist with this stuff.

    The post you are responding to did not contain any "personal insults." I cannot say the same about your response.

    Noting your underhanded, dishonorable tactics for what they are - and for how they are used to intentionally derail substantive discussion - is just that. That such behavior apparently clashes with the persona you'd like to project is not my problem. If honest descriptions of your tactics make you feel bad, then you should change your tactics instead of complaining that I'm a big meanie.

    In the first place, it wouldn't be the first time the SCOTUS has gotten a question wrong.

    In the second place, it's not clear to me that the courts are truly finished with this issue. The crucial issue was that the plaintiff had not established that the burden was onerous - but that situation can change once more of these laws go into effect and more opportunities to concretely demonstrate such arise.

    In the third case, that same majority also stated that it was clear that the GOP was motivated by partisan interest, and not any genuine problem with electoral fraud, in pushing for the laws in question.

    In the fourth case, the fact that these laws might be constitutional does not mean that they are not immoral, nasty and just plain bad policy.
  13. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    All things considered ....

    I don't think, given your low opinion of average voters and willingness to exploit the ignorance you presume about them, that you should be the person making this point.

    We all know that salient facts don't penetrate market consciousness as deeply and effectively as superficial glamour.

    So don't try to hide behind some pretense that Quadraphonics is somehow being insulting or dishonest by pointing out voter ignorance. In the first place, there is a valid consideration about how well informed voters are; and to the other, you have a much worse opinion of the average voter than that.

    What planet are you living on?

    • To function in society according to your standard of function one needs an ID. Look around; there are millions in this country without identification cards, and plenty of them are otherwise in fine standing to vote.

    • What is registering to vote like in your corner of the Universe? Around here, it's really, really easy. These voter ID laws would force my county to change its entire voting system, and only a decade or so after convincing everyone that it really was a good idea to change its entire voting system.

    —No, seriously. Snohomish County got rid of the ballot box. Not entirely; there are still some circumstantially-necessary voting sites, but we're a vote-by-mail county.

    —It's funny in a way: The concern used to be that we needed to raise voter turnout. That was the whole point of vote-by-mail. It's the major reason the whole of Oregon went to vote-by-mail. It's the reason Snohomish County, Washington is vote-by-mail.

    —Registering to vote is similar to voting at the ballot box in a certain way: At the end of the registration process, you sign your name under penalty of perjury. When you go to the ballot box to vote, you sign your name under penalty of perjury. This system works fine for Washington state. Adding a photo ID requirement is essentially telling Washington voters that their name under penalty of perjury isn't good enough. Our big "vote fraud" question up here is whether a convicted felon has re-qualified to vote. It came up in our 2004 election, in which the governorship was decided by 42 votes in the first tally. Over 1,400 names were challenged for felony records; some of these were juvenile dispositions, which don't affect voting rights; some were felons with restored voting rights; some lived in counties that published incorrect information that told them they had voting rights. The Brennan Center, in its 2007 study of voter fraud, reported, "We are not aware of any reports of citizens voting despite knowing that they were ineligible." After all of our efforts as a society to increase voter turnout, it simply strikes people as counterintuitive to cull the voting pool so dramatically in order to solve such an insignificant problem.​

    • You tend to look at the ID question from a very narrow perspective. The whole question of election integrity versus voter suppression has several major components. In Florida, there is the attempt to purge the rolls that is so severe and reckless that even Republican county officials have been refusing to carry it out. (Some of them remember how embarrassing the bad purge in 2000 was.) And they've tried to crack down on voter registration in a way that would have shut down the League of Women Voters with an extraneous and severe collection-to-submission limit of 48 hours; a high school teacher had her few minutes of fame in there, as well, because she was ending a longstanding project in which her students volunteered to register voters—she could not guarantee meeting the deadline, and would face felony charges if she screwed up. In Pennsylvania, the voter ID law is openly acknowledged to be about throwing the election, and only remains in effect because the judge took on faith that the state could provide identification to the people who don't have it in time for the election. Ohio, Florida, and other states are trying to curb early voting; it looks especially bad in Florida. In Wisconsin, DMV closures and service cutbacks suggest an interesting coincidence with Democratic-leaning districts. You find yourself responding to broad-spectrum concerns by reiterating a fairly narrow point of argument, and we cannot overlook that the narrow point only gets you so far—there are plenty, as you've noticed, who scoff at it.​

    ID cards aren't always free. I point that out to remind that the Court was considering specific circumstances as well as general principle. Steve Benen makes the point about the Pennsylvania law:

    [Judge Robert Simpson] said he took at face value promises by state officials that they would get ID cards into the hands of the vast majority of residents who needed them by Election Day, that they would carry out a broad outreach campaign and that those with manifest difficulties would be able to vote through a provisional or an absentee ballot.

    Lawyers for the American Civil Liberties Union and other groups opposed to the law said the judge was taking too much on faith. Forms for alternate identification have not been finalized, and staffing of public agencies dealing with such things has not been increased. They also said absentee-ballot rules in Pennsylvania are stricter than Judge Simpson implied.​

    So, the entire basis for the court ruling is that Pennsylvania officials will have the logistics of this completely under control, but the state still doesn't have uniform rules and doesn't have the time or personnel to process all the paperwork. The Republican judge simply ignored these details. Why? Just because.

    I mean, it's August. Judge Simpson appears to presume that Pennsylvania can handle all this by, what, mid-October?

    Attention to circumstance is worth something, I think.

    And Ethan Bronner reports that Judge Simpson, in his ruling, wrote that, "the photo ID requirement of Act 18 is a reasonable, nondiscriminatory, nonsevere burden when viewed in the broader context of the widespread use of photo ID in daily life". And that's a very interesting proposition: the broader context of the widespread use of photo ID in daily life.

    Voting is a right. Using a credit card isn't. Getting a drink at a bar isn't.

    Okay, so the proposition is that one must carry photo ID in order to validate their rights.

    Would you support laws requiring all citizens over the age of 18 to obtain, maintain, and carry valid state- or federal-issue photo identification?

    Why not? If your rights depend on having photo ID, then make sure everyone has photo ID.


    Leavitt, Justin. The Truth About Voter Fraud. 2007. Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law. August 21, 2012.

    Benen, Steve. "The face of the 'war on voting'". The Maddow Blog. August 17, 2012. August 21, 2012.

    Bronner, Ethan. "Pennsylvania Judge Keeps Voter ID Law Intact on Its Way to Higher Court". The New York Times. August 15, 2012. August 21, 2012.
  14. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

    Since it seems that certain posters here are having a lot of trouble understanding why some segments of the population tend to lack photo ID, this new piece of Slate may be enlightening:

    Why do minorities have fewer IDs?

    Because a lot of minorities don’t have much use for them. The most common voter ID is a driver’s license, and minorities are less likely to drive. A 2007 study found that in California, New Mexico, and Washington, whites were more likely to have driver’s licenses than nonwhites. In Orange County, Calif., about 92 percent of white voters had driver’s licenses, compared with only 84 percent of Latino voters and 81 percent of “other” voters. A 2005 study of Wisconsin similarly found that while about 80 percent of white residents had licenses, only about half of African-American and Hispanic residents had licenses.

    Minorities are less likely to have driver’s licenses because they are more likely to be poor and to live in urban areas. If you can’t afford a car, or if you don’t need one because you take the bus or subway, you are less likely to have a driver’s license. [...]

    Moreover, minorities may be more likely to have lost their driver’s licenses: The Wisconsin study found that an estimated 8 percent of Hispanic adults and 17 percent of African-American adults had no current license but had a recent suspension or revocation. Almost half of suspended driver’s licenses were due to failure to pay outstanding fines, which may explain why poor people are less likely to have licenses.

    Driver’s licenses are not the only accepted forms of identification, but minorities may face extra challenges in securing other legally valid IDs. [...] For voters who need to secure a valid ID, tracking down the necessary documents—such as a birth certificate and social security card—can take time and money, and the Brennan Center additionally reports that many voting centers are far away from minority voters and are rarely open. Minorities also move from state to state more frequently, which makes meeting varying requirements for documentation more difficult, and Hispanics often use different naming customs, which can make for additional confusion at the DMV or voting booth.​
  15. madanthonywayne Morning in America Registered Senior Member

    First of all, that's not true. Most people who voted for Obama were voting for a blank slate called "hope and change" upon which they could project whatever they wanted.

    However, to the extent it is true, it's still a lie. Obama the candidate specifically opposed the idea of an individual mandate and ran ads attacking Hillary Clinton for supporting it. Yet, once elected, it became the centerpiece of his healthcare plan.

  16. spidergoat Liddle' Dick Tater Valued Senior Member

    Uh, not really, he wanted universal health care and compromised by getting the exchange.
  17. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

    LOL, talk about contradictions.

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    "It is not true, but to the extent it is true, it is a lie". Only a Republican could come up with something like that!

    First, “Hope and Change” was the Obama campaign slogan. It was not his platform. Two, Obama ran on a platform that included many things in much more detail. Healthcare reform was one plank in Obama’s platform. And he delivered. It is true that in the primary he was against the individual mandate. But during negotiation with members of congress Obama did something totally amazing, something so un-Republican, he compromised – something our founding fathers knew something about - and the individual mandate became part of what Republicans are fond of calling Obamacare.

    And what did the Republicans do during Obama’s first term? They did something totally unheard of in modern times, they conspired to make President Obama a one term president at the expense of all else. If Obama was for it, Republicans were against it even if they were for it just moments before President Obama accepted their position. Republicans need to wake up and start acting like adults.

    The bottom line here is you are the one who is lying, not President Obama.
  18. ElectricFetus Sanity going, going, gone Valued Senior Member


    "Conspired" is not the right word, they openly claimed their primary objective is for him to be a one term president, few people do the simple mathematics to realise this means even short term national stability and progress are secondary concerns. Its simple logic that when things are bad the president is the blame, therefore the opposing party has incentive to destroy the nations economy and structure, are at best obstruct and reduce any attempt to improve or stabilise the economy. If significant evidence can be mounted that republicans are doing this it can be used to relieve concern on obama economic performance.
  19. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

    Actually President Obama has a pretty good record, especially given that Republicans were playing a game not seen since the Civil War, conspiring to make President Obama look bad no matter the cost.

    Since taking office, President Obama has reversed a growing and shrinking economy, turning an economy shrinking at an annualized rate of 9% to an economy that has been growing consistently for the last 3 years at an annualized rate of 2 percent. That is an 11 percent uptick in economic growth, which is a good thing in my book and certainly better than anything in the previous 8 years of Republican rule.

    When President Obama was sworn into office, the nation was losing more and more jobs with each passing month. And in the month of January of 2009, the nation lost nearly a million jobs that month alone. President Obama and his Democrats quickly reversed that trend and the nation has been adding 100k-200k jobs per month consistently for the last 3 years. That is not a bad record.

    Republicans like the ones we see here in Sciforums are doing what they do best, trying to deceive people in order to achieve more political power.
  20. Repo Man Valued Senior Member

    Don't forget how many people were terrified by an elderly Republican candidate with a hopelessly unqualified running mate. Caribou Barbie was enough to scare the Republican out of quite a few people.
  21. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

    It was a flip flopping elderly Republican, who reminds me of Romney in many respects. Romney like McCain has been on ever side of every issue at one point in time. The old, he was for it before he was against it applies.

    The Republican Party has become so extreme, it can only produce candidates this kind of candidate. They have to say the bizarre stuff in order to get win primaries. But should they get elected they cannot govern effectively with the economic demagoguery used in the primaries nor can they win the sensible middle with the extremism needed to win the Republican primaries.
  22. madanthonywayne Morning in America Registered Senior Member

    Lubbock County, Texas Judge Tom Head is seeking a tax increase to beef up the local police and DA's office. Why does it need beefing up? To deal with the civil war that will erupt if Obama is re-elected:

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    Meanwhile, President Obama was photographed while making some off the cuff remarks:

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  23. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

    Unfortunately, this is becoming an all too frequent Republican tactic. If they cannot win through the ballot box or vote rigging or voter suppression, then break out the guns (e.g. Sharon Angle). This is a very real threat to our democracy. And it is high time we, people who appreciate the Constitution and our democracy, stand up to this very real threat to our democracy and our way of life.

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