Skip to main content

View Diary: RNC funds voter supression efforts (229 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  EC & how can courts abuse pardon override? (none)
    Fighting to eliminate the EC directly is pointless. If you want to get rid of the EC fight for a ranked voting scheme like IRV or Condorcet. Once people are using a ranked voting scheme and liking it, you make the case that ranked voting and the EC don't really work together.

    What's the abuse of courts invalidating pardons? There's no reason for the courts to review pardons of people that have served their time. But as my father notes, it's kinda fishy to pardon someone before they're even prosecuted.

    •  Why? (none)
      "If you want to get rid of the EC fight for a ranked voting scheme like IRV or Condorcet."

      Who knows what that is?  You'd have to spend years educating the public about it.  Even a lot of its proponents can't give a coherent explanation of it.  Getting rid of the Electoral College is something that people can easily understand.  What you're proposing needlessly complicates the issue, like getting rid of Prohibition by making speakeasies legal.

      "What's the abuse of courts invalidating pardons?"

      Oh please, are you really so naive that you don't know how easy it is to bribe a judge, or to get a politically partisan jurist to fix something?  Just take a look at how a panel of the latter spun the nothing that was the Whitewater investigation into an impeachment that had absolutely nothing to do with what the original investigation was supposed to be about.

      The point is that those who abuse pardons need to be held accountable, either through the court system, or in making sure that neither they nor their political allies ever hold power again.  Obviously what's necessary for that is an informed, active citizenry.  

      Naderite is to America what Kryptonite is to Superman - fatal.

      by JJB on Wed Oct 13, 2004 at 05:13:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  why small states give up EC? (none)
        Why should small states vote to get rid of the EC?

        You only need 13 states to block the amendment. And you'd never get 2/3 of the Senate to support it anyway.

        Three EVs
        AK
        MT
        WY
        ND
        SD
        DE
        VT

        Four EVs
        HI
        ID
        RI
        NH
        ME

        That's thirteen right there. And the states with five or six EVs would be voting against their interests to ditch the EC too.

        NV
        UT
        NE
        KS
        AR
        MS
        WV

        People from big states have tried to directly attack the EC since... probably 1789. The EC is here to stay unless you get a ranked voting scheme that's popular.

        •  Yeah (none)
          "The EC is here to stay . . ."

          They said the same thing about slavery.

          And the election of Senators by state legislatures.

          Naderite is to America what Kryptonite is to Superman - fatal.

          by JJB on Wed Oct 13, 2004 at 05:31:15 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  you didn't address my point (none)
            That's not an argument. And invoking slavery inappropriately makes you sound like Alan Keyes.
            •  Yes I Did Address Your Point (4.00)
              And since you've stooped to moronic invective, you're aware that I did and you have no comeback.

              Careful, or soon you'll be saying things like the following:

              you're right (0.06 / 32)

              Well, a syphilitic goat would probably make a better sex partner than you.

              Collective Interest Radio appears on WUIC.
              by Carl Nyberg on Mon Jul 19th, 2004 at 02:18:20 GMT

              We wouldn't want that to happen again, would we? :-)

              Naderite is to America what Kryptonite is to Superman - fatal.

              by JJB on Wed Oct 13, 2004 at 05:44:45 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Do you really want to go there? (3.50)
                Person A compared a human being to a syphilitic goat.

                I pointed out this was an inappropriate personal attack. Person A disagreed and said the comparsion was legit.

                I compared Person A to a syphilitc goat to show that in fact comparing a person to a syphilitic goat is a personal attack.

                I regret the way I made the point and stayed away from the community for a long time after it. But the point was still valid. Comparing a human being to a syphilitic goat is an inappropriate personal attack.

                I'll unconditionally apologize for comparing you to Keyes. Will you acknowledge you said nothing of substance to rebut the points I made about small states opposing an amendment to eliminate the EC?

                •  You Must Be Kidding (none)
                  "Will you acknowledge you said nothing of substance to rebut the points I made about small states opposing an amendment to eliminate the EC?"

                  No.

                  Because I did say something of substance, in an oblique fashion, and they help refute you quite well, IMHO.

                  Naderite is to America what Kryptonite is to Superman - fatal.

                  by JJB on Wed Oct 13, 2004 at 06:00:51 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  In Point Of Fact (none)
                  You twice used that term against a person other than the one who originally posted it.  As far as I know, you've never apologized to her.  

                  Anyway, I accept your apology.  Sad to think that's the sort of thing you consider to be a witty rejoinder these days.  Nine months ago, you made a hell of a lot more sense.

                  Naderite is to America what Kryptonite is to Superman - fatal.

                  by JJB on Thu Oct 14, 2004 at 05:38:07 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

      •  does the judicial system work? (none)
        I would allow people to appeal a judicial ruling to the SCOTUS. The chance of bribing a judge seems pretty low compared to the chance of bribing the President.

        The absense of a pardon isn't a conviction, it's a trial. You sound like you don't trust the courts to try cases.

        •  This Is Really Too Funny For Words (none)
          "The chance of bribing a judge seems pretty low compared to the chance of bribing the President."

          A number of years ago, when the best players in the NHL were making at most $25,000 a sportswriter quoted a bookie as to why there was never any gambling action on professional hockey.  "Because you can buy a hockey goalie with a bag of lollipops."  Substitute "judges" for "hockey goalie" and "a few dates on the lecture circuit" with "bag of lollipops" and the sentence works just as well.

          I really don't think you want to keep pursuing this line of argument.

          Naderite is to America what Kryptonite is to Superman - fatal.

          by JJB on Wed Oct 13, 2004 at 05:36:58 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  what have you got against the judiciary? (2.50)
            If the judge makes a heinous call the defendent appeals.

            I don't see how you can have confidence in the system for 99.999% of the cases and think the system sucks for 0.001% of the cases.

            Can you point to an example of a presidential pardon that would be a miscarriage of justice to overturn?

            •  Yes (none)
              The Vietnam draft dodgers that Jimmy Carter pardoned.  That was the first act of his presidency, IIRC.

              Naderite is to America what Kryptonite is to Superman - fatal.

              by JJB on Wed Oct 13, 2004 at 05:45:48 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  play it out (none)
                OK. So some ambitious prosecutor makes the case these pardons were a conflict of interest. And this prosecutor venue shops to find a judge that buys an exceedingly liberal definition of "conflict of interest".

                What's the appeals court gonna do?

                Right now there is no check against Bush pardoning Jeb Bush, Katherine Harris, Tom DeLay, Ahmed Chalabi and every other crook that could finger him. This is a problem in my mind.

                •  Well (none)
                  You're supposed cure would probably have had GOP judges revoking those pardon.

                  So what's worse, the disease or the cure?

                  Naderite is to America what Kryptonite is to Superman - fatal.

                  by JJB on Wed Oct 13, 2004 at 05:58:18 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  the disease is worse (none)
                    Bush (or any prez) being able to pardon criminals makes it more likely the executive branch will engage in criminal behavior. This is a real threat.

                    I just don't think an appeals court would buy the argument that a blanket pardon to draft evaders constitutes a conflict-of-interest. Among other things couldn't the prez just instruct the AG to decline to prosecute?

                    •  One Howler After Another (none)
                      "I just don't think an appeals court would buy the argument that a blanket pardon to draft evaders constitutes a conflict-of-interest."

                      Have you been paying any attention to what's happening in the legal system the last few years?  You should change your handle to Rip Van Nyberg or Carl Van Winkle.

                      ". . . [C]ouldn't the prez just instruct the AG to decline to prosecute?

                      And then face possibly impeachment proceedings?  Besides, the Attorney General could proceed anyway no matter what the President instructed on the grounds that the President's order was illegal.  

                      There must be a court of last resort for citizens to petition to have their name cleared, and in most societies that last resort lies with the head of state.  If abuses do occur, there should be legal remedies to investigate and bring those who abuse the system to justice.  Allowing courts to overturn pardons is giving the judicial branch too much control over the executive.

                      Naderite is to America what Kryptonite is to Superman - fatal.

                      by JJB on Thu Oct 14, 2004 at 05:29:08 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  good faith; draft evaders; relative importance (3.50)
                        If you assume everybody in the system is acting on bad faith there is no system that produces good outcomes.

                        By the time Carter pardoned draft evaders it was not a big deal except with the Right Wingers who thought we should still be in Vietnam or carried insatiable grudges over the culture war.

                        In the context of Ford pardoning Nixon, pardoning Americans that evaded the draft to avoid a war the Republican hawks ended Carter pardoning draft evaders wasn't contraversial. Did anybody run for Congress the next cycle criticizing the decision? How'd he do?

                        Allowing courts to overturn pardons is giving the judicial branch too much control over the executive.

                        Courts wouldn't overturn anything without a request from a prosecutor, so it's not power the judiciary would own itself.

                        I see the threat of the executive branch and its supporters committing crimes in support of their politics as a greater threat than the courts overturning pardons. You disagree.

                        The fact that I have numerous current examples and you have to go back almost 30 years for an example suggests the problems I'm addressing are more numerous. But you are free to think your example is more important. I disagree.

                        •  Response To Your Hot Air (4.00)
                          "The fact that I have numerous current examples . . ."

                          Such as?  You mention some pardons the current Bush might make.  Other than that?  You're so outraged about this alleged abuse, and yet you cite no examples of abuses that have actually occurred.  I'm not saying such abuses have not occurred, Bush Sr.'s pardons of all the Iran/Contra figures are the ones that come to mind.  Then again, even as loathsome and crooked a person as Nixon didn't abuse the system when he could have during the Waterside scandal.  

                          And I don't know how old you are, but Carter stated quite clearly that he would pardon the draft evaders during the election campaign, and Ford made quite a bit of hay out of it.  Carter barely squeaked into office, and if 5,700 Ohioans and 7,500 Mississipians voted for Ford instead of Carter, Ford would have won the electoral vote while losing the popular vote by over 1.6 million votes.  Yet one more reason to get rid of the Electoral College.

                          As to going back 30 years, it's an excellent idea to go back at least that far to see if there is a pattern of abuse that needs to be corrected.  You're basing your argument on the hypothetical supposition that Bush will make certain pardons in the near future.  That's not sufficient reason to amend the Constitution.

                          Naderite is to America what Kryptonite is to Superman - fatal.

                          by JJB on Thu Oct 14, 2004 at 06:30:29 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  current examples of exec using crime (3.00)
                            The following violations of voting rights have occurred.

                            In 2000 Jeb Bush and Katherine Harris deliberately disenfranchised Floridians for partisan purposes.

                            In 2004 Bush and his appointee tried to do this again.

                            We have reports of Republicans committing illegal acts to disenfranchise voters in NV, SD and OR.

                            Tom DeLay engaged in illegal bribery and coercion to pass Bush's Medicare bill.

                            The person that outed Valerie Plame and the people covering for him are probably emboldened knowing that Bush can pardon them.

                            Need more examples?

                          •  Examples Of What? (none)
                            No pardons have been issued in those matters!

                            What is this, your attempt to do you own version of Minority Report with pre-crime?  

                            That no one prosecuted Jeb Bush and Harris is certainly grounds for complaint, but that has nothing to do with abuse of the pardon system.  Try sticking to the point.

                            Similarly, the failure to move against Tom DeLay is a failure of the judicial system, as well as the failure of the legislative branch to police itself.  No pardon abuses.

                            Ditto for the rest.

                            Naderite is to America what Kryptonite is to Superman - fatal.

                            by JJB on Thu Oct 14, 2004 at 10:08:55 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I'm Going To Be Computerless (none)
                            For the next 7-8 hours, and as I mentioned, my home computer is probably not going to let me see your comments, something I'm going to have to email Kos about, I suppose.  Cleaning out the cache doesn't do the trick.  Anyway, if the horse we're beating isn't dead, it will be by the next time I can return to the debate, so I'll cut off my contributions here.  

                            Thanks for the stimulating conversation, conducting on gentlemanly, if at times heated, terms.

                            And just for the record, I think you're right that Bush will grant those pardons.  I simply don't feel amending the constitution is the way to correct the abuses.  Not yet, anyway.

                            Naderite is to America what Kryptonite is to Superman - fatal.

                            by JJB on Thu Oct 14, 2004 at 10:19:53 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  last 3 Prez all made tainted pardons (3.00)
                            Clinton's pardon of Mark Rich was tainted.

                            Bush 41's pardon of Cap Weinberger was tainted.

                            Reagan's pardon of George Steinbrenner for making illegal contibutions to the Nixon campaign was tainted.

                            And these are just the ones off the top of my head with no research.

                          •  Thanks (4.00)
                            I generously gave you the Bush 41 pardons, so let's not indulge in any bragging.

                            The Marc Rich pardon was payoff to the Israelis for agreeing to the proposal that Arafat rejected out of hand.  Rich gives hundreds of millions a year to Israel, and is apparently some kind of ambassador without portfolio for them.  If that's the price that had to be paid to get the Israelis to make the offer they did, it was well worth paying.  Just because Arafat was too stupid to even make a counteroffer is no reason to renege on the deal Clinton made with Barak.  If they'd abandon the West Bank to the Palestianians, I'd even be willing to pardon Jonathan Pollard.  The brouhaha over the Rich pardon, incidentally, is the very thing I'd be worried about if it were possible to overturn pardons.

                            The Steinbrenner pardon?  I hate Reagan, Steinbrenner, and the Yankees, and even I can't get worked up about that.  Jesus, talk about making a mountain out of molehill.  Those potatoes are so small they can't even be called potatoes.

                            I also wouldn't brag about not having done any research, if I were you.  Then again, judging from your posts on this matter, you're not giving away any secrets.

                            Naderite is to America what Kryptonite is to Superman - fatal.

                            by JJB on Thu Oct 14, 2004 at 10:03:35 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  please don't respond to my posts in the future (none)
                            Please don't respond to any of my posts in the future. It's clear you don't like me and aren't attempting to be civil. So, don't go away mad, just go away.
                          •  If I See Something I Feel Like Responding To (none)
                            I'll respond to it.  If you don't want feedback concerning what you post, then don't post.  It's that simple.

                            Maybe if you devoted a bit more thought to what you posted, you wouldn't be at such a loss for words.  In any event, this is the coward's way out of a discussion, and I'm surprised to see you take it.  But then it's not the first time I've been surprised to see a poster I came to respect about 10 months ago disgrace himself.  

                            As I said earlier, life's a bitch when you can't shut somebody down, isnt' it?

                            Naderite is to America what Kryptonite is to Superman - fatal.

                            by JJB on Fri Oct 15, 2004 at 05:46:32 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

      •  what's so complicated about ranking? (none)
        What's so complicated about telling voters they get to rank candidates?

        Sportswriters rank teams and players in polls all the time. Nobody says this is too convoluted.

        But as the author of Clueless in Academe: How Schooling Obscures the Life of the Mind says we get much more sophisticated discussion of sports in the USA than of politics.

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site