1
   

What sources from 'your own side' do you tend to ignore?

 
 
Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Aug, 2006 04:45 pm
blatham wrote:
For example, with the recent SC ruling on re-districting, the example set in Texas seems likely to gain in popularity. It's repugnant, without question, and democracy can and will suffer the more it goes on. So what ought Dems to do if more jurisdictions controlled by Republicans ramp up their computers and start redrawing more lines?

Actually, that was a bad example. If you read that case, you will find some opinions pointing out that the Republican redistricting changed an earlier redistricting from the early nineties, in which the Democrats had gerrymandered Texas in their favor. The opposing opinions didn't dispute the point, so I'm guessing it's true. The direct answer to your question, then, is that the Democrats shouldn't have started it in the first place.
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Aug, 2006 06:07 pm
Thomas wrote:
If you read that case, you will find some opinions pointing out that the Republican redistricting changed an earlier redistricting from the early nineties, in which the Democrats had gerrymandered Texas in their favor. The opposing opinions didn't dispute the point, so I'm guessing it's true.

True.

Back in Sep 2003, I was looking into this and I found:

nimh wrote:
Has anyone yet compared the share of the vote for Republicans and Democrats in the last elections with the share of the seats they won?

nimh wrote:
2002 Congressional elections

Republicans
53,3% 15 House seats
Democrats
43,9% 17 House seats
Libertarians
2,5%
Greens
0,2%

see http://clerk.house.gov/members/election_information/2002election.pdf

[Edit, using PDiddies link: There were 8 relatively "close" races, in which the representative elected won with less than 60% of the vote; 6 times a Democrat won, and 2 times a Republican.] [..]

nimh wrote:
I must admit - looking at those figures - the current districting does seem to give a distinct advantage to the Democrats - if US Congress elections would suddenly switch to proportional representation, the Dems would lose 3 seats as well.

Of course I get the point about having only once-ten-yearly redistricting sessions - and the complete arbitrariness of doing an impromptu "mid-term" redistricting in Texas and not anywhere else. Once you go down that path ...

But still, it does seem the Reps could argue that the previous redistricting did not translate into a fair representation of voters' political preferences.

But then, they were there, they woulda gotten their regularly scheduled chance the next time round - and the district system doesnt fairly represent voters' political preferences, period.

Still, had never realised that the Reps do have a valid enough point here.

nimh wrote:
For further comparison:

2000 Congressional elections

Rep 49,0% 13 House seats
Dem 46,8% 17 House seats
Lib 4,1%

see http://clerk.house.gov/members/election_information/2000election.pdf

That was before the last redistricting, wasn't it? After the redistricting, two new districts were added, which translated into two new seats for the Republicans - but that was only a partial compensation of the Democratic advantage.


For fairness sake, this was PDiddie's counterpoint:

PDiddie wrote:
After the election and census of 2000 the Texas Legislature--controlled by Dems--redistricted. The Republicans, furious at the unfairness of it all, walked out.

That's right; they did the same thing four years ago that the Dems did this year. The Republicans denied quorum. [..]

Here's the difference, as I see it:

The genie is out of the bottle as it relates to redistricting on whim; no longer will this be a once-a-decade event following the US Census but will take place every time the legislative majority shifts, and not just in Texas but in Colorado and other states (as we have seen). [..]
0 Replies
 
kelticwizard
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Aug, 2006 06:46 pm
Thomas wrote:
If you read that case, you will find some opinions pointing out that the Republican redistricting changed an earlier redistricting from the early nineties, in which the Democrats had gerrymandered Texas in their favor.


Thomas and Nimh:

The first year of every decade we have a census, which purpose is to count the number of people in each state for representational purposes. There are lots of other questions on the census form which have a lot to do with economics, health, etc, but the original reason was to establish the number of people in the districts.

After the census figures are in, which takes some time, then early in the decade the Congressional districts are drawn based on that census data. Gerrymandering is the norm, and always has been. That is, the party that is in power at the beginning of the decade draws the district lines with the aim of helping it stay in power.

What DeLay did was something out of the ordinary. He got the state Legislature to redraw the districts in mid decade, which is not done, or has not been done for many decades. Before that, if the majority party changed in mid decade, they just let the districts stay as they are until the next census-and assuming they are still in power then, THEN they gerrymander the districts.

Gerrymandering, for better or worse, is perfectly normal. Gerrymandering in mid decade is dirty pool.
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Aug, 2006 06:49 pm
Yeah that was PDiddies defense that I just posted above back then as well. But hmm. Seems to me merely gradations of dirty pool, then.
0 Replies
 
SierraSong
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Aug, 2006 07:26 pm
kelticwizard wrote:
SirraSong, you have got to be one of the least competent people to appear in quite awhile.


And you're competent? Hey - I'm not the one doing the complaining here - you are. Seems to me that if you can use a computer well enough to make home-made graphs to prove how BushHitlerHalliburton has driven our economy straight to hell, you can do simple searches for information you are curious about. You being so competent and all.

kelticwizard wrote:
I asked a single question days ago. Has the Iraqi Army won a single battle or skirmish on their own where, without assistance from US forces, they went up to a position held by mioitias or insurgents, engaged the enenmy and overran their position.

I asked the question politely.


And I answered politely. I said "Yes. Yes, they have".

kelticwizard wrote:
Instead, Sierra Song here responds with long screeds, no doubt fresh from her favorite right wing talk radio heroes, about how the mainstream media is not reporting all these successes the Iraqi Army is racking up.


I rarely listen to right-wing talk radio and I don't have to to know that lots of good things that are happening in Iraq, lots of progress that's being made, is not reported by the MSM. My sources vary - from regional newspapers to military websites, and I'm generally successful when searching for specific information on various search engines.

Call my responses screeds if you wish - I'm farily amused at your misrepresentations and lack of knowledge, but I find most liberals aren't reality-based, preferring instead to believe what furthers their own agenda. Doesn't usually do much good to point out the facts, they'll continue to whine and bitch, completely oblivious and that suits me just fine. Nobody knows how to entertain America better than the Democrats. Laughing

kelticwizard wrote:
Yet when I politely ask her days ago to post some links to these occurrences, she is mum. She is too busy going off of the lack of reporting the mainstream media is doing to the Iraqi successes she is unable to prove.


Well, since you yourself admit you're totally ignorant on the successes of the New Iraqi Army, I've more than proved my point about the mainstream media to which you're so attached, no? Didn't read about it in the NYTimes, the LATimes, the WAPO, did you? Huh? Laughing

kelticwizard wrote:
SierraSong seems to think she is covering up this fact by her long, silly, overemotional posts. She is wrong.

She has painted herself into a corner, and is trying to scream her way out.


I gave you several hints. I think it would do you good to use them in your search for the truth and who knows, maybe during the process, you'll discover there's more to the story than the MSM is telling you. If you're as competent as you like to think you are, that is. :wink:
0 Replies
 
Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Aug, 2006 08:22 pm
Empty; linking is far, far, far too easy. And I would really like to be able to find those articles.

So please, link a few articles for us. I would like to read them, and it would validate your argument.

Cycloptichorn
0 Replies
 
McGentrix
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Aug, 2006 09:10 pm
Cycloptichorn wrote:
Empty; linking is far, far, far too easy. And I would really like to be able to find those articles.

So please, link a few articles for us. I would like to read them, and it would validate your argument.

Cycloptichorn


timberlandko wrote:
kelticwizard wrote:
Has the Iraqi Army won a single battle or skirmish on their own where, without assistance from US forces, they went up to a position held by mioitias or insurgents, engaged the enenmy and overran their position.


Quote:
Kidnapped Ramadi Police Employee Rescued by Iraqi Soldiers
Tuesday, 29 August 2006
Multi-National Corps - Iraq
Press Release
Public Affairs Office, Camp Victory
APO AE 09342


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Aug. 29, 2006

RELEASE No. 20060829-04

Kidnapped Ramadi Police Employee Rescued by Iraqi Soldiers

REGIMENTAL COMBAT TEAM-5 PUBLIC AFFAIRS

CAMP FALLUJAH, Iraq - An employee of the Ramadi police was discovered in the trunk of a Black Daewoo Prince in Fallujah by Iraqi soldiers from the 1st Iraqi Army Division during a cordon-and-search operation Sunday, Aug. 27.

"The rescue of the Iraqi citizen during Sunday's intelligence-driven counterinsurgency operation in Fallujah is a result of the dedication and professionalism of the soldiers of the 3rd Battalion, 2nd Brigade, 1st Division of the Iraqi Army," said Marine Lt. Col. James Teeples, the senior military transition team advisor to 3-2-1. "From conception through execution, this was solely an Iraqi Army effort." ...


Quote:
Iraqi Forces Conduct Two Raids in Central Iraq
Sunday, 27 August 2006
Multi-National Corps - Iraq
Press Release
Public Affairs Office, Camp Victory
APO AE 09342


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Aug. 27, 2006

Release No. 20060827-01

Iraqi Forces Conduct Two Raids in Central Iraq

BAGHDAD - Iraqi army and security forces, with coalition forces observing, conducted multiple early-morning raids on August 23, capturing three primary suspects associated with emplacing improvised explosive devices and participating in illegal armed groups.

The first raid captured a person suspected of emplacing IEDs and targeting U.S. military personnel in Ar Ramadi. The raid was conducted without incident and five other persons were detained for questioning.

The second raid captured two persons who allegedly belonged to a cell that engaged in promoting sectarian violence through kidnapping and murder in southern Baghdad. The raid, conducted as part of Operation Together Forward, occurred without further incident.

No civilian, Iraqi forces or coalition forces were injured during the operations




Quote:
IA soldiers rescue 3 kidnapped policemen after terrorist attack

Thursday, 17 August 2006
Multi-National Corps - Iraq

Press Release

Public Affairs Office, Camp Victory

APO AE 09342


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

RELEASE No. 20060817-03



August 17, 2006



IA soldiers rescue 3 kidnapped policemen after terrorist attack

Multi-National Division - Baghdad PAO

BAGHDAD - Soldiers from 4th Brigade, 6th Iraqi Army Division, rescued three kidnapped Iraqi policemen Wednesday during a small-arms engagement with terrorists in a rural area outside of Babil province.

The freed Iraqi policemen reported being kidnapped from another checkpoint only minutes away from where the gunfight took place.

The IA soldiers discovered the kidnap victims after they were attacked by small-arms fire from four vehicles passing by their checkpoint. They returned fire, capturing two of the vehicles ...


Quote:
IA soldiers detain 6 suspected terrorists, seize large weapons cache
Tuesday, 08 August 2006
Multi-National Corps - Iraq

Press Release

Public Affairs Office, Camp Victory

APO AE 09342


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Aug. 8, 2006

Release No. 20060808-02



IA soldiers detain 6 suspected terrorists, seize large weapons cache



Multi-National Division - Baghdad PAO

BAGHDAD - Soldiers from 2nd Battalion, 1st Brigade, 6th Iraqi Army Division, detained six suspected terrorists and seized a large weapons cache during a raid of the Al Hassana'n Mosque in southwestern Baghdad at approximately 10:30 p.m. Sunday.

The weapons cache consisted of four PKC machineguns, 13 AK-47 assault rifles, two rocket-propelled grenade launchers, three RPGs, four RPG fuses, five 60mm mortar rounds, a 60mm mortar tube, a box of mortar cartridges, a flare gun, various bomb-making materials and terrorist propaganda.

The suspects were detained for questioning.


Iraqi Forces target 'DeathSquad' activities in four Baghdad operations

Iraqi National Police capture gang members[/i][/b]

Iraqi Forces raid takes down 'Death Squad' cell in Baghdad

Iraqi Forces capture two insurgents in raid near Fallujah

Iraqi Army soldiers capture IED manufacturers

Iraqi army soldiers kill 5 terrorists, wound 13, detain 47 during firefight

Two Iraqi Forces raids in Baghdad net four insurgents

Iraqi army soldiers detain 6 terrorists, capture multiple weapon caches



1st Mechanized Brigade, 9th Iraqi Army Division conducts large operation

Iraqi Army captures entire insurgent cell

Iraqi Forces raid nets 7 insurgents in Baghdad

Iraqi Forces capture High-Level Insurgent Leader

National police thwart attack on Salman Pak Mosque, NP headquarters

Iraqi Security Forces capture terrorist leader in Karbala

Iraqi security forces quell sectarian skirmishes, restore order

Iraqi Forces raid nets 2 cell leaders, kills insurgent financier

6th Iraqi Army detains 19 in morning raid

Iraqi Security Forces continue to take charge against terror

Iraqi Army Leads Operation; Weapons Cache Found, Destroyed


An ongoing, and expanding, independent Iraqi Army operation:

Quote:
Fierce fighting reported between Iraq Army, Iran-backed militia

SPECIAL TO WORLD TRIBUNE.COM
Tuesday, August 29, 2006


he Iraq Army has engaged in fierce clashes with the Iranian-sponsored Mahdi Army which is represented in the government of Prime Minister Nouri Al Maliki.

Troops from the Iraqi Army's 8th Division fought street battles with forces from the increasingly powerfuly Iran-backed militia in the central Iraqi town of Diwaniyah. The fighting, which initially included police units, began on Aug. 27 and involved hundreds of soldiers and insurgents ...

... On Tuesday, military sources said a Mahdi commander reached agreement for a ceasefire on Tuesday. They said the militia has begun withdrawing from checkpoints established around town.

"We have also asked for more troops from other provinces because a large military operation has been planned," an Iraq Army officer said.


Now, of course, Coalition advisors were present, and in some instances, Coaltion Forces provided logistic support, and in some instances provided perimeter security, cordoning the operation area but taking no part in the raids and assaults, and in some cases provided air and/or heavy weapon support not operationally organic to the Iraqi Forces, so I suppose you could say the Iaqis weren't entirely on their own ... Rolling Eyes
0 Replies
 
Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Aug, 2006 09:38 pm
None of those answer the question, namely, have the Iraqis won any battles without US support?

Also, I'd like to see stories that aren't written by our military, if possible. Surely there are other 'non-msm' stories which detail what SS is claiming.

Cycloptichorn
0 Replies
 
Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Thu 31 Aug, 2006 01:19 am
kelticwizard wrote:
Gerrymandering, for better or worse, is perfectly normal. Gerrymandering in mid decade is dirty pool.


nimh wrote:
Yeah that was PDiddies defense that I just posted above back then as well. But hmm. Seems to me merely gradations of dirty pool, then.

I agree with nimh on this one. (Thanks for reposting the earlier election results, nimh!)

Also note that Blatham's concerns, which I responded to, were about the redistricting itself and not about its timing. His question was, "So what ought Dems to do if more jurisdictions controlled by Republicans ramp up their computers and start redrawing more lines?" Blatham's question seemed to imply that Republicans were the ones who started the compurter-generated redistricting scheme. As an aside, the scheme without computers is old: Elbridge Gerry remodeled his own district in 1812. The scheme rapidly caught on among enough politicians to merit a name. In 1813, the Massachussetts Spy, a newspaper, came up with "gerrymander" because Gerry's new district had the shape of a Salamander. The rest is history.

Gerrymandering is not a case of "the Republicans started something ugly, how do we Democrats react?" And that was my whole point.

PS: It turns out I gave the wrong answer to Blatham when I said the democrats shouldn't have started it in the first place. I tried to figure out Gerry's party, and he seems to have been a Federalist. So it was the Federalists who started it in the first place. Don't vote Federalist, people!
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Thu 31 Aug, 2006 06:17 am
Cycloptichorn wrote:
Also, I'd like to see stories that aren't written by our military, if possible. Surely there are other 'non-msm' stories which detail what SS is claiming.


Specifically, SS sneered at KW for his reliance upon "mainstream media" (inferentially whining the popular conservative whine about "liberal media") and in particular, sneered at KW for reading The New York Times. The burden of SS's sneer was that if KW read something other than the "mainstream media," he would be able to learn the "truth." Therefore, a request for evidence not from the "mainstream media" is precisely what is called for.
0 Replies
 
kelticwizard
 
  1  
Reply Thu 31 Aug, 2006 06:38 am
SierraSong wrote:
kelticwizard wrote:
I asked a single question days ago. Has the Iraqi Army won a single battle or skirmish on their own where, without assistance from US forces, they went up to a position held by mioitias or insurgents, engaged the enenmy and overran their position.

I asked the question politely.


And I answered politely. I said "Yes. Yes, they have".


And you were also politely asked to provide some kind of link or report to back it up, which you have not done. Instead, Timber had to come running to try to rescue you with all these links to Multi-National Force press releases.

Sierra Song wrote:
......and I'm generally successful when searching for specific information on various search engines.

So why haven't you privided a single report?


Sierra Song wrote:
Well, since you yourself admit you're totally ignorant on the successes of the New Iraqi Army, I've more than proved my point about the mainstream media to which you're so attached, no? Didn't read about it in the NYTimes, the LATimes, the WAPO, did you? Huh?

You were asked to provide instances where the Iraqi Army, acting alone, engaged the enemy and overran their position. You provided none. Instead, you argue the fact that I have found none proves there is something wrong with the meanstream media which I read. What nonsense.

Sierra Song wrote:
I gave you several hints. I think it would do you good to use them in your search for the truth ......

You gave me ungots. You were asked to provide some sort of examples where the Iraqi Army, acting alone, engaged the enemy and overran their position and you haven't done it yet.
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  1  
Reply Thu 31 Aug, 2006 06:48 am
Thomas wrote:
blatham wrote:
For example, with the recent SC ruling on re-districting, the example set in Texas seems likely to gain in popularity. It's repugnant, without question, and democracy can and will suffer the more it goes on. So what ought Dems to do if more jurisdictions controlled by Republicans ramp up their computers and start redrawing more lines?

Actually, that was a bad example. If you read that case, you will find some opinions pointing out that the Republican redistricting changed an earlier redistricting from the early nineties, in which the Democrats had gerrymandered Texas in their favor. The opposing opinions didn't dispute the point, so I'm guessing it's true. The direct answer to your question, then, is that the Democrats shouldn't have started it in the first place.


To what degree or in what manner the SC decision has altered the likelihood of further gerrymandering of the Texas sort is another question thomas (though there's certainly no lack of informed opinion that it has, and with likely detriment). And who "started" it in Texas is a different matter as well, not one which engages my point.

The dilemma regards the difference between our notions of a 'proper' of 'ideal' or 'moral' range of strategies Dems ought to use now or ever, and the simple reality of what their opponents get up to, and how the advantages/disadvantages actually play out, and whether or not it is responsible (in the civics sense) to tout the nobility of one's adherence to Marquis of Queensbury while the other felow pulls out a knife.

My point is that the answers here are not at all obvious.
0 Replies
 
kelticwizard
 
  1  
Reply Thu 31 Aug, 2006 07:13 am
As for Timber's links, I read all of them. They were very revealing.

What they mostly did was reveal that the Iraqi Army seems to have two basic functions.

A) Man traffic checkpoints.

B) Conduct early-morning raids in cities against militia/insurgents based on local tips as to where leaders are. Most of these "raids" result in no resistance, although some do.

The Iraqi Army, based on Timber's links, seems to be less of an army than a collection of SWAT teams. They don't seem to do much that any medium-city police force doesn't do against drug dealers.

When they do stage a raid-more like an arrest-they are assisted by Multi-National Force troops.

In at least one of those larger raids, the Multi-National press release did not mention it, but US planes did provide cover and fired . That was the one entitled "Iraqi forces Capture High-Level Insurgent Leader". The raid was covered by AP, Reuters, and ABC News at least. So much for this business that the mainstream press doesn't cover what is going on.

In one example, the "operation" was the Iraqi Army guarding a checkpoint was fired on by four vehicles. They fired back, captured two of the vehicles, in the trunk of which was an Iraqi policemen kidnapped earlier from another checkpoint. that was without Multi-National Force Assistance, true, but it is also more like cops-and-robbers stuff than a military battle.

I really don't know why Timber highlighted the confrontation in Diwaniyah, as I had covered that in detail previously-me, the fellow who misses out because he reads and views the mainstream press and TV. There, the Iraqi Army arrested a Shiite Mahdi Army leader, and as a result the Shiite militias took over two whole neighborhoods in the whole town. After a 12 hour engagement, the army had to turn to an underling of Sadr, (Sadr controls 30 seats in the Iraqi Parliament) to negotiate a cease fire. Basically, everyone went home. Nobody seems to be arrested after the battle, more Iraqi Army men were killed than Mahdi Army people. And that was with support from the Multi-Natonal Force.

In short, the Iraqi Army seems more like a police force, taking a very supplementary role, than an army.
0 Replies
 
Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Thu 31 Aug, 2006 07:19 am
blatham wrote:
The dilemma regards the difference between our notions of a 'proper' of 'ideal' or 'moral' range of strategies Dems ought to use now or ever, and the simple reality of what their opponents get up to, and how the advantages/disadvantages actually play out, and whether or not it is responsible (in the civics sense) to tout the nobility of one's adherence to Marquis of Queensbury while the other felow pulls out a knife.

If that's what you think the difference of our notions is, we are even further apart than we think. I see myself as a citizen, not any party's stragtegist. I don't feel any strong party affiliation to anyone. As a consequence, I look at parties from the perspective of someone being governed by them, not as a part of the Democratic machine, in a position to tell it what to do. I lack both the position to define and any interest in defining "a proper, or ideal, or moral range of strategies Dems ought to use".

But from this subjective perspective as a Green Card holder, a potential subject of your federal government, I am simply saying this: Since 1994, there has been a gross difference in dishonesty and incompetence between the two big American parties. So far, this difference has persistently kept me on the Democratic side of the fence, even though I'm not a Democrat. This competitive advantage Democrats have on people like me disappears as soon as the difference disappears. When Al Franken morphs into a Bill O'Reilly clone, Moveon becomes Swiftboat Veterans II, Barbara Boxer assumes the role of the 1994 Newt Gingrich, and the party installs a folksy, incompetent puppet for president, I am left with few reasons to continue preferring the Democrats. To be sure, I don't know how representative I am of other Independents. But for what it's worth, that's my reaction as a kind-of-citizen.
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  1  
Reply Thu 31 Aug, 2006 07:44 am
thomas

I wasn't talking about the differences between our views. I was talking about the dilemmas involved in present day american politics and candidacies. You said that you didn't have an interest in party strategies, but you've just followed up that claim with details on possible strategies that catch your interest negatively and acutely.

I'm just making the unhelpful claim that it ain't simple.

Personally, I'm less certain about these issues than I have been ever before. That is, I'm probably less "idealistic" than previously. In great part, that is because of this administration and the movement supporting it and their operations to gain and maintain power. Is one prudent to play poker using the same sorts of attitudes and personal rules whether one is playing poker with a nun or with a cheat? Probably not.

But I doubt we are much different in notion here. There are a whole bunch of things I wouldn't want the dems to do (lying, corruption, keeping folks out of the voting booth, Ann Coulterisms, etc) not merely for the obvious moral reasons, but because I think it more likely such tricks will be counter-productive in the long run both to the party and to the state.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Thu 31 Aug, 2006 08:01 am
There is a practical consideration which does not (at least yet) apply to either of you gentlemen, and that is how one should vote. I have had a method for determining that for some time, which, if not arguably the "best" or the most "pure" method, does give me the opportunity to know how i will vote before i enter the voting booth.

The major candidates for national office--i.e., the candidates for President, the candidates for the Senate in the State in which i reside, and the candidates for the House of Representatives for my district are those about whom it would be irresponsible for me not to be well informed. Obviously, it is difficult to separate the bullshit from the reality of a candidates stated positions, so i consider it important to look at who is supporting and promoting the candidate, and the issue of incumbency. Incumbents have advantages out of all proportion to their putative worth as working politicians, and i therefore will vote against the incumbent, if all other things are equal. I will vote for an incumbent, however, on the simple criterion of "do no harm." If the challenger is reasonably suspected of being corrupt, of being beholden to special interest in a greater degree than the incumbent, then i will vote for the incumbent. I once again acknowledge that it is difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff in terms of campaign propaganda, but i consider it the duty of the citizen to make his or her best effort. I apply pretty much the same standards to significant State offices, such as governor, secretary of state, treasurer and attorney general (which are all usually elective offices in the States)--lieutenant governors so rarely succeed the governor in office, that i don't consider that one need exercise the same care in reviewing the candidate.

One might argue that a faithful citizen ought to exercise a highly rigorous care in reviewing all candidates and all ballot initiatives at all times. However, in elections which also involve national office, i will be entering the voting booth to select a Presidential candidate, usually one Senator, a member of the House, and often all of the major state offices (some state do intentionally run terms which fall outside the national office election cycle, but not all, and i don't believe even most do so). Additionally, i will very likely be voting for a State Senator and Representative, and might well be voting for one or more county commissioner, and a mayor and city councilman. I will likely be voting for one or more judges, and voting on one or more tax levies, and one or more ballot initiatives.

Therefore, when overwhelmed by the amount of data to be sifted, i apply a last rule of thumb, which is basically a contrarian or "obstructionist" criterion. If i haven't time to vet a candidate, or am no comfortable that i've been able to effectively sift the date, then i will vote for a woman running against a man, for a minority member running against a white, a Democrat in a primarily Republican area, or a Republican in a primarily Democratic area. Based solely upon anecdotal evidence, i long ago became convinced that i am actually working harder to vote responsibly than most people around me. With tax levies and ballot initiatives, i find it important to carefully read the proposals, and to attempt to determine what unintended consequences might ensue, apart from reviewing the merits of the levy or ballot initiative.

Not perfect, certainly, but one needs to do something a little more responsible than just voting a straight party ticket, or choosing candidates whimsically and at random--in my never humble opinion.
0 Replies
 
 

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