Peter

Rand Paul for President

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In any national election your vote means nothing to the political corpus for if it's close the outcome will be determined by fraud. It doesn't matter who votes. It matters who counts the votes. (Stalin.)

I'd say you have it backward. The fix is in long before the elections in places Stalin ruled. Though you are no doubt correct that election fraud is alive and well in the world, the Western world is generally free from this additional sin. In Canada, for example, we have an independent electoral body in charge of elections and a simple voting procedure for national polls. The provinces each also have independent electoral bodies. The parties and the government have no additional scope for mischief, as multiple scrutineers are part of the mix, and where recounts can be done under judicial supervision. We also 'sign on' to the electoral registers with each provincial/federal tax return. (not that there isn't sleaze in Canadian campaigns, but fraud in the counting that can knock off a winner? No)

In the USA, the history of electoral fraud has gone quiet, Brant, as far as I understand. I'd like to hear what are the types of fraud you consider still in play, where they occur and how, and why the practices still persist.

Can you quantify the frauds you have noted recently, tell us which races were decided by miscounting or other deceit or malfeasance? It's a very strong claim you have made, so it should be easy to show us very strong evidence if it is true.

Generally the Democrats use fraud and the Republicans don't.

Again, so says you. Anything to back that up with specific charges from recent history?

Things have gotten so bad I sort of yearn for Clinton, but I'd never let the bastard sit next to me on an airplane. I'd ask him if he actually raped that woman when he was governor of Arkansas.

If you refused to take your assigned seat and were disruptive, you would be put off the plane before it departed the terminal. That's the way airlines roll. You probably didn't want to take that flight anyway.

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Let's start with the Al Franken election to the Senate in 2008:

In the eyes of the Obama administration, most Democratic lawmakers, and left-leaning editorial pages across the country, voter fraud is a problem that doesn't exist. Allegations of fraud, they say, are little more than pretexts conjured up by Republicans to justify voter ID laws designed to suppress Democratic turnout.

That argument becomes much harder to make after reading a discussion of the 2008 Minnesota Senate race in "Who's Counting?", a new book by conservative journalist John Fund and former Bush Justice Department official Hans von Spakovsky. Although the authors cover the whole range of voter fraud issues, their chapter on Minnesota is enough to convince any skeptic that there are times when voter fraud not only exists but can be critical to the outcome of a critical race.

In the '08 campaign, Republican Sen. Norm Coleman was running for re-election against Democrat Al Franken. It was impossibly close; on the morning after the election, after 2.9 million people had voted, Coleman led Franken by 725 votes.

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/york-when-1099-felons-vote-in-race-won-by-312-ballots/article/2504163

Also, my position is that it is not "widespread," it is targeted.

It's not about the quantity baby, it is about the quality!

That Minnesota seat was the 60th vote for the PPACA.

A...

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How do we balance the unproven claims of fraud in Minnesota -- not yet specified -- with the results of a closely-contested recount?

If we don't know the specifics, the detail, the how in particuiar a fraud was accomplished, the crime is less likely to be prevented in future instances.

I mean, I know the history of the race Adam cites by way of a newspaper article touting a book. Does the book give the details we need, Adam -- does it shed more light on the nuts and bolts of the recount?

As for Mickey Mouse, did he make it to the polls? If he did, what race did he tip?

It must be very dispiriting to think that your political system is corrupt right where it needs to be clean and transparent. I am glad we don't have the same sick system up here in Canada if what Brant suggested is true.

Is it the too well-rooted party systems, the gerrymandering, the incumbent advantage, the lack of independent institutions of administration? Where is the sickness of fraud finding its home (if not as Brant suggested, only in Democrats)? How can it be detected and brought to criminal prosecution?

Maybe it's the cynicism and fatalism that I find notable, underlying the claims. If I were an Objectivist I could not vote in good conscience in such conditions and would be active in support of measures to Clean It Up. I'd hate to think that alone of the G-7 Americans can't run clean elections. It's such a basic failing for a modern industrial nation. It would make me sad.

Is this what Objectivist-ish people feel like all the time, when they look at politics, that it is all subject to elemental or applied electoral fraud?

Edited by william.scherk

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Again, it is the quality of the fraud electing a person that dramatically changes and corrupts the system exponentially by the way that person abuses power.

1948 Lydon Johnson Texas - now there is a witches cauldron waiting to boil over onto the body politic.

924-box13.jpg<<<< the chefs...

The mystery outcome in the Obama-Hillary caucus count has the makings of another Texas legend, along the lines of the fabled Box 13 that put LBJ in the Senate. An explanation from the History News Network:

Lyndon Johnson earned the nickname “Landslide Lyndon” after his 87-vote triumph in the 1948 Democratic Senate primary against Coke Stevenson. Texas custom at the time would have both sides in political races hold back the count from a few reliable precincts, so tallies could be adjusted as necessary in close contests. Johnson’s decision to report his returns too early probably cost him the 1941 Senate race against Pappy O’Daniel.

As Robert Caro wonderfully recounts the story in Means of Ascent, in 1948, Johnson was trailing six days after the election, and seemed certain to lose, when a protégé of George Parr, the “Duke of Duval” and political boss of the heavily Hispanic counties in southern Texas, “discovered” 200 allegedly uncounted ballots in Box 13, Alice, Texas. These 200 “voters” cast their ballots 198 to 2 for Johnson, putting him over the top. The election, of course, was stolen: the added 200 names were written in a different colored ink, and Stevenson’s attorneys tracked down the final name on the original voter list, who affirmed that he had voted just as the polls were closing.

The Caro book referenced above is must reading for students of Texas politics. He details how the thing ended up in court and how LBJ’s lawyers — including Abe Fortas, who would become a Supreme Court justice — outgunned Stevenson.

This is precisely the template that occurred in Minnesota with Franken.

Mr. Caro not only reviewed thousands of pages of court records, but also interviewed Mr. Salas, the election judge of Precinct 13 in Jim Wells County. Under Mr. Salas's supervision, Mr. Caro said, Johnson received the votes of the dead, the halt, the missing and those who were unaware that an election was going on.

On primary night, a Saturday, the first tallies of the Democratic primary showed Johnson trailing his opponent by 20,000 votes. Still unreported, however, were the votes from San Antonio, where Stevenson had defeated Johnson 2 to 1 in the first primary. When those votes finally came in, Johnson had won a stunning victory, carrying San Antonio by 10,000 votes.

Later that evening, the rural counties in the Rio Grande Valley further eroded the Stevenson lead, which was reduced to 854 votes.

A Precinct Is 'Discovered'

The next day, county officials ''discovered'' that the returns from one precinct had not yet been counted, Mr. Caro said, and those votes went overwhelmingly to Johnson. On Monday, there were more new returns from the Rio Grande Valley.

But on Tuesday, the state's Election Bureau announced that complete returns had given Stevenson a 349-vote victory, with 40 votes still uncounted.

There were no significant changes Wednesday, and Stevenson still led on Thursday. On Friday, the Rio Grande Valley precincts made ''corrections'' in their election returns, cutting Stevenson's lead to 157.

Also on Friday, Jim Wells County telephoned in its amended return, ''and suddenly, with virtually all the counting in the election over, Coke Stevenson was no longer ahead,'' Mr. Caro said. Johnson had won by 87 votes. Challenge and Affirmation Mr. Caro confirmed the charges made at the time by Stevenson supporters that county officials had cast the votes of absent voters and had changed the numbers on the tallies. For example, he said, Jim Wells County provided an extra 200 votes for Johnson merely by changing the 7 in ''765'' to a 9.

http://dallasmorningviewsblog.dallasnews.com/2008/03/wheres-box-13.html/

These are tips of ice bergs Bill...

A...

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Has anybody noticed that Paul announced his candidacy at the Galt House hotel?

From an article on Evita's upcoming declaration of her intention to lie her way to the Presidency.

It is from the L.A. Times, you remember them, they are the "newspaper" that refuses to release the video of President O'bama's speech from a dinner for an Islamic terrorist supporter.

It is entitled Launching of Hillary, kinda reminds you of seeing an jumbo sized battleax battleship from a WWII shipyard slipping down the slip into the water!

And libertarian Sen. Rand Paul went home to Kentucky’s Galt House hotel, which shares its name with a protagonist in one of the Ayn Rand novels he treasures.

http://www.latimes.com/nation/politics/politicsnow/la-pn-hillary-clinton-campaign-story-20150409-story.html

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A libertarian-type politician has no chance against a conservative neo-con. It's the same reason a governor has the advantage over a Senator, all else being equal: perceived and felt gravitas. It's a legitimate advantage for a governor for he's demonstrated some executive experience. It's not major but it is substantial. As for the conservatives, the neo-cons had more gravitas than the Taft Republicans and that was much more important than whether you were a Goldwater or Rockefeller Republican in the 1960s for they were all quite warlike. Here's why this is important: Americans love wars. Fighting wars and crushing the bad guys is so satisfying. It's part of the good guy, strong guy and we're the right guys national ID. It's become part of an imperial ID. Any weapon to dominate the world--we got 'em or we'll get 'em. Let the drones fly! (Iran's going to get clobbered. Let's hope so if that means no war centered on the Ukraine-Russia situation. Russia has more missiles plus a lot of nukes.)

--Brant

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galtgulch wrote:

I heard Rand say in his speech today.

end quote

She’s alive! Oh wait, him? Taken out of context that sentence is pretty startling, although you did say "his speech". Are you guys and gals already beginning to think "Paul" instead of "Ayn" when you hear the name "Rand?" I think I am. So from here on out until the primary and possibly until the election, he is Rand and she is Ayn Rand.

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Jerry Biggers wrote:

The church-going establishment has hardly begun to attack her. Nothing like the avalanche of opposition he would face if they (the Christians of any stripe) thought that an opponent and non-believer was going to be, or at least had a chance, of actually being elected.

end quote

And Brant replied to someone, perhaps to Jerry:

A libertarian-type politician has no chance against a conservative neo-con.

end quote

What bothers me is that the possibly necessary??? linkage of religion and politics is so blatantly expressed between the Republican contenders. I hope they are just nullifying Huckabee and being polite (so as not to offend) about their dichotomy of faith and governance. Briefly, some of them in their speeches have sounded more like Jerry Fallwell than of Ronald Reagan.

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Good grief, we identify as a country at least 80% religious, to one degree or another.

So accept that for now.

You are not going to get anyone, who has a chance to be elected, to denounce or not give homage to Judeo-Christian roots.

A...

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Are any of those contending for the GOP nomination in favor of a woman's right to choose?

I can remember scrubbing in, as a third year medical student assigned to a private teaching hospital, for a woman to have a therapeutic abortion. At the time I hadn't given any thought to the issue but tended to be sympathetic to the unborn fetus. The obstetrician told me that he had encountered many women in emergency rooms before Roe v Wade as they had back alley abortions and life threatening complications. It made more sense to have the procedure done properly by a doctor to preclude avoidable catastrophic outcomes from desperate women using unsterile instruments to terminate their unwanted pregnancies.

I am sure Dr. Rand Paul and Dr. Ben Carson are aware of the history. If the antichoice politicians achieve their goal of abortion being forbidden and prohibited, pregnant women will seek to end their pregnancies the old fashioned way with resultant deaths in back alleys again.

IT is unfortunate that Dr. Paul shares his father's medieval, unscientific notions based on theology that a microscopic fertilized ovum is a human being, a person with all the rights of a baby who has been borne. They undoubtedly believe such an ovum possesses a "soul" despite the fact that it has no nervous system and is not conscious.

I cannot quote a survey but I gather that 67% or more of the electorate favors a woman's right to choose. Those opposed are overrepresented in the Congress and Senate especially not that the traditional conservative Republicans control both houses.

It is just too bad that there is evidently no pro choice Republican in the running.

gg

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It is just too bad that there is evidently no pro choice Republican in the running.

gg

Is this "x" a life with rights at the 37 week if it can survive outside the womb?

A...

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Any Republican candidate nominated who is strongly against abortion will lose in the general.

--Brant

Glinda, er, Carly Fiorina sez conservatives are "winning" on the abortion issue:

Potential GOP presidential candidate Carly Fiorina told conservatives Thursday that they are "winning" on the issue of abortion and urged them to press their case to the public in 2016.

“I think it’s so important that we engage in persuasive conversations, conducted in an empathetic and reasonable tone,” Fiorina said at a gala hosted by the anti-abortion group Susan B. Anthony List.

“We are winning on this issue and so we have to keep going,” Fiorina added.

Fiorina said she is confronted “all the time” by people who condemn the Republican Party’s platform on abortion but know nothing about Democrats' stance.

"You can win with Democrats and moderates as a pro-life candidate," she said, pointing to her own Senate run in California.

The gala, which was attended by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell among other lawmakers, also recognized Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) for her support of the "pro-life" movement during her 2014 Senate campaign.

Ernst said she was proud that she maintained her opposition to abortion even as the race grew close.

The Iowa senator said she was warned, "Don’t talk about life.”

"But you know what? I did. I talked about life," she said to applause.

Both women touted the anti-abortion movement, which raised more than $16 million in the last election cycle.

Fiorina avoided the more fiery remarks on abortion that she gave earlier on Thursday during a breakfast hosted by The Christian Science Monitor.

During the event Thursday morning, she accused Democrats of supporting a platform that says “any abortion, any time, at any point in a woman’s pregnancy for any reason to be paid for by taxpayers and now, some would like to add, to be performed by a non-doctor.”

Edited by william.scherk

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William more folks in the US are advocating that the third trimester creates a strong argument against terminating what is clearly a life and deserving of protection.

A...

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That's what's needed, a tangential issue put on center stage. Never mind WWIII is getting closer and closer--closer as in closer from close enough already.

--Brant

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That's what's needed, a tangential issue put on center stage. Never mind WWIII is getting closer and closer--closer as in closer from close enough already.

--Brant

Wait, I thought it was climate change...

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William more folks in the US are advocating that the third trimester creates a strong argument against terminating what is clearly a life and deserving of protection.

So what? How many third-term abortions are performed in your state? How many second trimester? What is the actual state of affairs? What is the law of your state? What kind of law would you agitate for?

In Canada, as you likely know, there are no laws on abortion, none whatsoever (not since the Supreme Court nullified our earlier abortion law in 1988). This means that abortions are a medical procedure -- and the decision to abort is made between a woman and her doctor.

It is the case here in Canada that third-trimester abortions are exceedingly rare, and the reasons for late-term are usually serious complications of pregnancy that threaten the mother's health or life, or serious problems with the fetus that will lead to its death in utero or shortly after birth -- anencephalic or otherwise deformed and unable to survive.

The very ability of advanced neo-natal intensive care to 'save' an early delivery -- the cut-off for viability in the region of 22-24 weeks gestation -- makes the decision to proceed in third-trimester terminations subject to professional ethical guidelines developed by the medical profession. I doubt any doctor here would consider or perform a later abortion unless there were grave problems for the mother or fetus.

Please read this article for a view that might help you understand the real-world instances of third-trimester abortions in Canada. I think, if you did some research, you would find that the agitation for curbs on third trimester abortion procedures in the USA come from political campaigning, not medical opinion.

Frankly, I follow a line similar to Ayn Rand's position on abortion: it is a matter for the woman and her doctor, a matter of professional ethics and care. It is not a matter for a third-party to decide, in my opinion. Rand might sound like Wasserman Schultz, but she said it straight:

An embryo has no rights. Rights do not pertain to a potential, only to an actual being. A child cannot acquire any rights until it is born. The living take precedence over the not-yet-living (or the unborn).

Abortion is a moral right—which should be left to the sole discretion of the woman involved; morally, nothing other than her wish in the matter is to be considered. Who can conceivably have the right to dictate to her what disposition she is to make of the functions of her own body?

Brant, if you want to kill another thread with your telomere one-liners, be my guest. If you are making a complaint about the abortion issue intruding where you don't want it, er -- you made the comment I addressed. You brought in the abortion issue with the Gaede Doctrine: Any Republican candidate nominated who is strongly against abortion will lose in the general.

I happen to agree with you on this, more or less. The ability of a government to intrude on making medical decisions for citizens should shrink, not grow, to my mind. If the GOP cannot keep its snout out of other peoples' crotches, it will lose ...

I'll not make another comment on abortion until one of OL's women weigh in. Can you imagine Rand's reaction to the conservative evangelical obsession with the ability of women to make their own decisions in life?

Edited by william.scherk

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Since I'm a thread killer, I will stop it.

In my immodesty I was already afraid I was killing OL. (True story, recent observation.)

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And I thought it was a Rand Paul for President thread, but Rand on abortion is a neat way to get back to your Objectivist roots--if you have any.

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William more folks in the US are advocating that the third trimester creates a strong argument against terminating what is clearly a life and deserving of protection.

So what? How many third-term abortions are performed in your state? How many second trimester? What is the actual state of affairs? What is the law of your state? What kind of law would you agitate for?

In Canada, as you likely know, there are no laws on abortion, none whatsoever (not since the Supreme Court nullified our earlier abortion law in 1988). This means that abortions are a medical procedure -- and the decision to abort is made between a woman and her doctor.

It is the case here in Canada that third-trimester abortions are exceedingly rare, and the reasons for late-term are usually serious complications of pregnancy that threaten the mother's health or life, or serious problems with the fetus that will lead to its death in utero or shortly after birth -- anencephalic or otherwise deformed and unable to survive.

The very ability of advanced neo-natal intensive care to 'save' an early delivery -- the cut-off for viability in the region of 22-24 weeks gestation -- makes the decision to proceed in third-trimester terminations subject to professional ethical guidelines developed by the medical profession. I doubt any doctor here would consider or perform a later abortion unless there were grave problems for the mother or fetus.

Please read this article for a view that might help you understand the real-world instances of third-trimester abortions in Canada. I think, if you did some research, you would find that the agitation for curbs on third trimester abortion procedures in the USA come from political campaigning, not medical opinion.

Frankly, I follow a line similar to Ayn Rand's position on abortion: it is a matter for the woman and her doctor, a matter of professional ethics and care. It is not a matter for a third-party to decide, in my opinion. Rand might sound like Wasserman Schultz, but she said it straight:

An embryo has no rights. Rights do not pertain to a potential, only to an actual being. A child cannot acquire any rights until it is born. The living take precedence over the not-yet-living (or the unborn).

Abortion is a moral right—which should be left to the sole discretion of the woman involved; morally, nothing other than her wish in the matter is to be considered. Who can conceivably have the right to dictate to her what disposition she is to make of the functions of her own body?

Brant, if you want to kill another thread with your telomere one-liners, be my guest. If you are making a complaint about the abortion issue intruding where you don't want it, er -- you made the comment I addressed. You brought in the abortion issue with the Gaede Doctrine: Any Republican candidate nominated who is strongly against abortion will lose in the general.

I happen to agree with you on this, more or less. The ability of a government to intrude on making medical decisions for citizens should shrink, not grow, to my mind. If the GOP cannot keep its snout out of other peoples' crotches, it will lose ...

I'll not make another comment on abortion until one of OL's women weigh in. Can you imagine Rand's reaction to the conservative evangelical obsession with the ability of women to make their own decisions in life?

Bill, I think it's time for you to stop being pissed off at me. You have a point about my one-liners and it's hard to stand up to my ability to stick a knife between the ribs, but anyone's ribs is not the target but the substance and content. That's ego bruising. It's hard to do the same to me--but hardly impossible (I'm human, all too human too)--for a lot of my ego is not in my ego but existential so I'm continually correctable while immune to most bitch-slapping. Ironically it makes me quite socialable if that orientation is mutual. It seems that's rare in a tribal context of wanting to trade and share bullshit never mind what's really going on or advocated. Quite a few people seem to read this site compared to how many post even if that in turn is really not a lot. You come in in the morning and Brant's already there with five posts and likely all one-liners. I guess that gets old fast. Alternatively for some it may appear I'm a wood chipper for their pre-conceived preciousnesses, unless they parachute in blind as dead wood thinking they are Prometheus to hoi polloi. If they do--yeah, I'm a wood chipper or whatever is appropriate.

Over time sites like OL, like everything essentially organic, get old, whither and die. At the root reality itself may be essentially an organic but mostly incomprehensible construct seemingly a perpetual motion machine, but doesn't energy feed in from somewhere? That might be a sub-atomic sub atomic particle we set up huge machines to discover--a futile search?--or some string theory mega-reality we can only passionately infer never observe. (Science and God converge.) Living is a constant struggle against dying--acts of creation as the ultimate end-all and be-all of human existence with passivity and destruction at the other end of the human continuum. But in the universe at large all the destruction seems to be mindless necessity for mindless creation itself. In economics we have creative destruction. Quite a different kind of destruction than flying an airplane into a building out of a death wish to fuck virgins in paradise wish. (I wonder how the virgins enjoy being part of a dehumanized rape fantasy? I wonder how a female jihadist--a virgin--feels about going to paradise to be screwed? And if not a virgin will she find 72 virgin men waiting for her? Back on earth there's good if perhaps inadequate reason for dad to take his teenage son to a whorehouse and not his daughter.)

Yep. Most everybody is looking for God. The universal source of energy. But what makes the perpetual motion of existence possible is epistemological not metaphysical, not necessary to be found as such. It's simple: there is no such thing as non-existence. Existence is the only thing that exists. It feeds on itself in constant transmogrification for everything moves, only the speed changes depending on particulars. This must be why Barbara Branden once said (wrote), "There is no first cause." The first cause would have to be something from nothing and there is no nothing; that's a contradiction. (Isn't it interesting how you can use logic to explore the unknown--even unknowable if that be so--sans data, empiricism and research? The fallacy of humans unable to get their heads around reality is the fallacy of having to know God as if Man, being made in His own image, might be godlike enough to step outside reality and take it all in. That's not the way it works. We know--can know--reality for we are in reality. If we could be outside it we'd be oblivious to it except perhaps as a blob. (Maybe we'd put it into an accelerator to see what pops out.)

A granite rock held in your hand is just another expression of energy. Everything is organic, except in the supermarket (joke), for energy is organic. You're energy. I'm energy. Energy cannot stop being energy. All it can do and all it does is roil.

So even as OL waxes and wanes, comes and goes, as long as there are people there will be conversations; never mind me the "thread killer." I don't fly airplanes into buildings.

--Brant

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