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Gender: Do not display
Current location: Snohomish County, WA
Member since: Wed May 18, 2011, 02:12 AM
Number of posts: 1,824

About Me

Retired corporate paralegal.

Journal Archives

No, it's not only democratic voters

however, it's known that the higher the voter turn-out, the more likely the Democrats will win. So, in order to keep the turn-out as low as possible, the repubs are willing to sacrifice their own. And, I suspect, a bit of repub snobbery - if you cant afford to register or get to the polling place, they don't want your vote anyway. And as far as "cant possibly be so may people", the exercise of democracy requires that voting be accessible to all citizens.

Yes, there would be pro-bono attorneys, but the bottom line is the same. Every document necessary for voter registration costs money, some more than others. When the choice is $50 worth of groceries for the kids or $50 for a certified birth certificate, it is more likely that the groceries will be top priority. That's why the 24th amendment to the constitution banned the poll tax, and any document that requires a fee for purpose of registration is de facto a poll tax.

Not everyone has a SS#. The requirement for a SS# changed over time and it was not required for children to obtain one (for tax identification purposes on parent's returns) until 1986. And the real killer was the Real ID Act of 2005 which "Establishes State driverís license and identification security standards which requires States to confirm with Social Security a SSN for issuance of a drivers license or identity card". (P.L. 109-13) Prior to 2005, a drivers license or identity card was sufficient ID for any purpose, including voter registration.

These voter ID laws contain other voter-suppression tricks besides specific ID documentation. For example, by reducing Sunday early voting, it hampers inner-city people who have, for years, gone to their local church on Sunday and the church taking them by bus to their polling place. This was particularly important for people who work all week and not able to take time off for voting, for those without cars for transportation to the polling place and for the elderly and/or handicapped people who have mobility difficulties.

Another trick used is the relocation of the polling place without adequate notification. When it is difficult enough to get to a local polling station, the problems are prohibitive in locating and getting to a new station. I saw a news item on MSNBC a couple of months back where they interviewed a woman (it was Detroit, if I recall correctly) who said that her polling place was previously just a couple of blocks from her home, but since its been relocated it takes two bus transfers just to get to the new place. The time involved and the bus cost is a sure deterrent to voting.

Some of the voter suppression laws have required re-registration, even when people have been voting for decades. This is the most hard-hit demographic as they are the least likely to have any of the documentation required.

Fortunately (for me anyway), I live in Washington State. We have on-line registration; when my granddaughter turned 18 I helped her register to vote on-line. We have mail-in ballots. Those of use who have been registered to vote since dirt was young have not been required to re-register or provide any additional ID documents.

In my opinion, the answer to the voter suppression laws is to expand registration availability, require fee-less documentation and vote by mail, with no postage required. Naw -- that would be too simple.
Posted by HeiressofBickworth | Tue Oct 14, 2014, 03:12 AM (0 replies)

While you may be right about gains in the States

I think that more pressing is keeping the Senate out of the hands of the Republicans. If they control both the House and the Senate, I believe we would see more and more effort by Repubs to cancel/repeal/re-write any national gains that have been made since Obama took office. It will be a two-year battle between the President's veto and a Senate over-ride of the veto. For example, Ted Kruz has said a priority would be to repeal every word of Obamacare. Impeachment is a foregone conclusion if they have both houses, regardless of the fact that there are no impeachable charges, just their general wish to change the outcome of the last two elections.

So, no, there is no consolation in winning governorships.
Posted by HeiressofBickworth | Sun Oct 5, 2014, 01:19 AM (0 replies)

Rachel Maddow made it all clear to me tonight

when she went over the list of military equipment used in last night's bombing raids by our so-called "allies" in the area. With the exception of the French jet, all of the planes used by the five "allies" were either new or used US military. I saw in an instant that the real reason behind this new war is to create new and larger markets for US war producers. As I've said many times before, boys and girls, it's ALWAYS about the money. You can never go wrong if you remember that.
Posted by HeiressofBickworth | Wed Sep 24, 2014, 02:34 AM (17 replies)


I was opposed to the draft during the Vietnam War and remain opposed to involuntary servitude, regardless of how well wrapped in the flag it comes. While I sympathize with the dead and injured from Iraq/Afghanistan, at least they volunteered and made an actual decision to put their lives on the line for multi-national corporate interests.

Likewise, I'm opposed to a war tax. Not that the lack of funding for a war ever deterred TPTB from entering into war, as an individual, I don't want to pay even more in taxes to support the warmongering that seems continual.
Posted by HeiressofBickworth | Sat Sep 20, 2014, 09:07 PM (0 replies)

Police brutality spans ages and races.

My mother lived in Chicago as a young woman in the early 1940's. I recall her telling me that a neighbor of hers, a Chicago policeman, used to laugh and tell her how funny it was that so many people they arrested fell down the stairs at the station, breaking bones. No one race, age or gender was targeted -- just people who could not defend themselves against the police.

So many reports like this, both current and in the past, indicate to me that the police force attracts the type of person who wants the cover of job and badge to commit the acts of brutality that would land them in jail otherwise. It is due to the prevalence of cell phones, and other video recording devices, that the extent of their actions comes to light. And as long as the police are in charge of investigating accusations of police brutality, nothing will change. What's needed is a civilian review board who are completely independent of the police. Not a prosecutor who comes from a family of cops, one of whom was killed on the job, like the prosecutor in the Michael Brown case.

The citizens of Ferguson are understanding that they have the power to change things by the power of their vote. There is a voter registration effort going on. I wish them luck.
Posted by HeiressofBickworth | Mon Aug 25, 2014, 09:30 PM (0 replies)

No, won't watch it.

I think Mr. Foley deserves some respect -- watching some terrorist behead him does nothing to preserve his dignity. He was a brave person to put himself in an arena so he could report to the world. Thanks to him, we now know the extent of the barbarism practiced by ISIS -- and I WON'T call them "Islamic State". It demeans the majority of Islamic people who would never behave this way and it gives legitimacy to their conquest of foreign territories. They are terrorists, plain and simple.

Someone on DU suggested that the aim is to return to the values of the 7th century, which ISIS seems to so admire. They need to re-read their Koran. There is nowhere in the Koran that advocates using jeeps with mounted machine guns and rocket launchers. If they were truly adhering to their holy book, they would use spears and rocks which were the war weapons at the time of Mohammed. Since they are not following their holy book, we can only assume they are violent psychopaths whose only goal is to maim and kill. I feel sorry for people who wind up in their path.

And, no, I don't have a solution. If we stay out of it, they will continue genocide against anyone they think are lesser humans. If we go into it, there is no end to the amount of troops, treasure and time required to make any kind of difference. Saddam may have been a brutal dictator, but he was their dictator and he prevented this kind of violence against innocent people. Who wodda thot that we'd be missing HIM. Thanks, George Bush, for stirring up this hornet's nest.
Posted by HeiressofBickworth | Thu Aug 21, 2014, 02:40 AM (0 replies)

Here's where I call bullshit.

In their statement, they say: "Today, your military air force is attacking us daily in Iraq, your strikes have caused casualties among Muslims." (emphasis provided). They are outraged that Muslims are being killed but they themselves have no qualms at all about killing each and every person who is NOT Muslim. They have shown their lethal intent against the Yazidis, Christians, and any other religious group who don't share their extreme version of Islam. And still ISIS claims to be of the religion of peace. The hypocrisy makes me sick.

I have no doubt that there are many Muslims who are NOT violent and do not wish to see anyone suffer. I live in a small near Seattle town that has a Mosque. I have no concerns about them whatsoever.
Posted by HeiressofBickworth | Tue Aug 19, 2014, 09:26 PM (1 replies)

Before retirement, I was a corporate paralegal

and worked on quite a few mergers/acquisitions (M/As) in my time. What the author says in this piece is absolutely true. M/As are not done to improve products, appease consumer demands or anything other than a way to line the pockets of the seller's investors and increase the returns to the purchaser. Large amounts of money are spent to merge or acquire a business. The purchaser who paid out all that money wants a return on that investment -- and soon. There are two ways to increase the bottom line so they can put the money back in their own pockets -- increase the price of the product and reduce labor costs. So essentially, you could say that in addition to the other negative outcomes, M/A's are a contributing factor to inflation.

Having worked on M/A's, I knew the drill. So when the company I worked for was going to be bought by a mega-corporation, I checked the calendar, checked my finances and figured it was time for me to retire. I didn't want to assist them in the demise of the company. Despite the assurances before the merger that there would be no lay-offs and business would be pretty much as usual, within a year the lay-offs started. Now, five years later, they are all gone, the company changed its name and has disappeared into the bowels of the mega-corporation. It's a real shame, too. It was a nice company, good management, generous salaries and benefits and periodic parties and bonuses. They were respected in the field and had satisfied clients and employees. And now they're gone.

Microsoft is doing what has been done many times before and with the same results. There are the handful who prosper and the mass who are looking for jobs that don't exist. Some, usually over 50, will never have anything other than a part-time, minimum-wage service job ever again in their lives. Another win for capitalism, right?

Posted by HeiressofBickworth | Mon Aug 18, 2014, 12:28 AM (0 replies)

Powell's cover-up of the My Lai massacre soured him for me.

Most of you are probably too young to remember the incident of March 16, 1968, but Colin Powell, who was a Major in Vietnam, deliberately lied about relations between US and Vietnamese and failed to investigate the massacre, issuing a statement that said essentially, nothing to see here, move along.

I was not surprised when he declared himself to be Republican -- the party seemed to offer the same kind of lack of moral center that he has. A perfect fit. I'm glad he never sought higher office. He could have -- he was popular by that time and could have been the first African American president. Instead he chose a role much like his cover-up of My Lai -- lied, denied and misled. It never would have been in his character to resign instead of lie.
Posted by HeiressofBickworth | Wed Aug 13, 2014, 02:44 AM (0 replies)

Just a little pet peeve of mine

Since I read that ISIS is flogging people for calling them ISIS instead of "Islamic State" or IS, I cringe every time I see the term IS used. It's like legitimizing ISIS's brutal take-over of territory. When IS is used instead of ISIS, it's like caving in to the rabid mob. Calling them the Islamic State implies that they have established a separate country when the truth is that they have been engaged in deadly conquest. Let's be sure that we keep calling them ISIS -- don't let them make us acknowledge their territorial occupation.
Posted by HeiressofBickworth | Sat Aug 9, 2014, 07:10 PM (1 replies)
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