November 1, 2008

HOPE ON Project, Day 13: Let’s Never Find Out Part 13 — ‘Thank You Military’ (for McCain’s Service)

Filed under: Taxes & Government,US & Allied Military — Tom @ 8:32 am

HOPEONlogo.jpgNote: This is the final part of what has been 13 daily posts on why Barack Obama is a dangerous, objectionable, and objectively unfit candidate to be president of the United States (while many of the other candidates are not). Previous Posts — Part 1 (Obama “Part of the Problem” on Fan and Fred); Part 2 (“Energy”); Part 3 (“Punished”); Part 4 (“Number One”); Part 5 (“Earmarks”); Part 6 (’The Chicken Button’ and the Chicken Who Pushed It); Part 7 (”Trust” on Bill Ayers); Part 8 (”Middle Class”); Part 9 (”Not This Time”); Part 10 (”Income Taxes”); Part 11 (”The Anti-Reagan”); Part 12 (“Left of Everyone”).

The daily videos involved are from NeverFindOut.org, a project of Let Freedom Ring (donation link is here).

This post is part of the HOPE ON Project (Help Ohio Prevent Electing Obama Now).

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Video (direct YouTube link):

Transcript:

THANK YOU, SENATOR

Senator McCain. We don’t hear much about your service to our country. You don’t talk about it very often. But that’s okay. We will.

We all know to judge a man’s character not by what he says, but what he does. You haven’t just told us you love America. You have shown us. The years you spent tortured as a prisoner of war, don’t just tell us you are honorable. They show us we can trust you.

What did our Founding Fathers hope for in a president? How about a war hero who sacrificed again and again for the love of his country? How about a veteran of the Senate who has tirelessly put America first?

Senator McCain, fads come and go, but they don’t last. You are not a fad. You are the real deal, Senator. We could never question your commitment. We can’t question your experience. We can’t question your associations and your motivations.

You have always been proud of America. You have always put your country first. And for that, we say, “Thank you, Senator.”

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Additional BizzyBlog comment:

Best line of the video: “You have always been proud of America.”

Not everyone has been.

Michelle Obama is on the record saying that she wasn’t FOR HER ENTIRE ADULT LIFE until earlier this year. And she said it TWICE:

Dont’ even try to tell me that Barack Obama is authentically proud of his country (unless it elects him, I suppose — maybe). Listen to or read the transcript of the 2001 audio that was exposed earlier this week. This isn’t someone who loves his country; it’s someone who despises all of the nasty “constraints” in our Founding documents that would keep him from arbitrarily imposing “redistributive change” on the rest of us.

I can’t imagine a starker contrast between someone who endured 5-1/2 years as a POW at the Hanoi Hilton and was willing to sacrifice his presidential ambitions in the name of doing the right and then-unpopular thing, compared to someone who has constantly criticized our military’s conduct, our supposedly excessive consumption of resources, and, just yesterday, our “selfishness.”

Ed Morrissey wonders, “Does he even like Americans?” I don’t wonder. He doesn’t.

Early Voting Is a Travesty

Filed under: Scams,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 7:50 am

Note: This column was originally published at Pajamas Media on Thursday.

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It is becoming more obvious with each election cycle that that the widespread adoption of no-excuses-needed early voting has been a big mistake.

Now pollsters are revealing exit poll results to the public weeks ahead of what is still quaintly referred to as “Election Day.” They do this by breaking out their results between “early voters” and “future voters.” The former amounts to de facto exit polling, which can all too easily be designed by an unscrupulous pollster to influence the latter.

Even worse, state officials are getting into the act. One such example occurred Saturday in Colorado:

Slightly more Democrats than Republicans have voted in Colorado, either by mail or at early-voting polling places.

State officials said Friday that 219,000 Democrats have cast their ballots, compared with 215,000 Republicans and 131,000 unaffiliated voters.

Doesn’t anyone care about how early voting is corrupting the process of free and fair elections?

As someone who has been involved at various times in either designing or evaluating accounting and control systems, I am astounded at the pervasive lack of controls early voting has created, virtually without organized objection.

There are at least ten other reasons why early voting is a really, really bad idea:

  1. The political landscape can change after you’ve voted. What if the vote on Henry Paulson’s bailout had occurred after your early vote, and your congressman’s or senator’s vote was the opposite of what you expected? Want your vote back? Sorry, too late.
  2. Candidates often reveal their less-than-desirable sides in the stressful runup to Election Day. Do you think any early voters might want their vote back (possibly going in either direction) as a result of Barack Obama’s “spread the wealth” statement to Joe the Plumber?
  3. Unpleasant or pleasant truths about candidates that should legitimately affect voter opinion sometimes arrive in the final days. A 2006 congressional candidate in Ohio was charged with domestic violence 80 days before the election. What if the arrest had occurred just eight days before Election Day, and you had already voted for her?
  4. Candidates can abuse early voting if they get into disputes over their residency or voter registration status. In April 2006, Ohio Second Congressional District residents learned that candidate Bob McEwen had illegally voted absentee in Ohio for at least six years while legally residing in Virginia. Later that year, based on his ownership of a condo in Columbus, Buckeye State gubernatorial candidate Ted Strickland’s eligibility to vote in the eastern Ohio’s Columbiana County where he was registered became an issue. Both McEwen and Strickland avoided pending litigation over their eligibility by voting early — something they could not have done under the strict absentee restrictions that had been in place the previous year.
  5. Early voting by mail corrupts the secret ballot (sorry, Washington State, where all voting in 37 of 39 counties is by mail, you have no assurance that you have representative government). Because the ballot is readily available to people besides the voter, a child, for example, can ensure that his infirm parent casts it “correctly” through coercion or deception. The child can also promise to mail the parent’s ballot and not do so if the parent voted the “wrong” way. But at the polling place, an unaccompanied person can freely vote his or her conscience with no “help.”
  6. There is no way to verify that only duly registered voters cast ballots (i.e., a person can use someone else’s ballot to vote).
  7. There is no way to absolutely safeguard ballots against loss or alteration. Ballots cast sit around for weeks, and are thus subject to destruction and/or alteration.
  8. It’s much easier for someone who wishes to vote in multiple states to do so.
  9. Boards of elections will want to start counting the votes before Election Day. In fact, that has already happened. In 2006, a Cuyahoga County, Ohio judge allowed that county’s board to begin counting at 7 a.m. on Election Eve, creating huge security issues over preventing election counters from telling outsiders about specific results.
  10. It’s even possible, because of the previous item, for an elections employee to determine whether or not a person who promised to vote early for a given candidate has actually voted. They can then communicate that information to a candidate or party, who can then redouble their efforts to round up that person. If that person really didn’t want to vote, that should be their right, free of harassment.

It won’t be long until candidates and parties will start using early voting poll results and other indicators as a strategy to discourage the opposition and suppress Election Day turnout.

All of this is way too high a price to pay for the ridiculously small convenience of not having to go to a physical polling place roughly once a year.

The good-old-days system that mandated voting on Election Day in the absence of a convincing exception, such as military service, true infirmity, or out-of-town business commitments, worked fine. Unlimited, no-excuses-needed early voting has accomplished nothing positive. It should — no, it must — positively end.