A few days ago, I posted about the excellent bill Congressional Democrats have introduced to begin the overdue cleanup of corrupted democratic processes. The bill includes curbs on gerrymandering and safeguards against vote suppression, among other things.
The one element of the bill that I figured was unlikely to be controversial was the proposal to make Election Day a national holiday. Good government groups have been lobbying for this for years. I mean, how can you argue against making voting easier for people who work long hours and have other problems getting to the polls?
Mitch McConnell–aka the most evil man in America–just answered what I thought was a rhetorical question. He has labeled the proposal “a power grab.”
I suppose if you are convinced that facilitating citizens’ ability to cast their votes will lead to higher vote totals for your political opponents–if you know, in your heart of hearts that you and your party are historically unpopular– that might seem like a power grab…Still, it’s hard to imagine McConnell offering this argument with a straight face.
There has been a lot of outrage expressed in the wake of McConnell’s chutzpah, but I think Ed Brayton’s response at Dispatches from the Culture Wars is my favorite.
The man who refused to allow even a committee vote on Obama’s Supreme Court nominee for nearly a year so a Republican could appoint the next justice is accusing someone else of a power grab? The fact that he wasn’t immediately struck dead by lightning is powerful evidence that there is no god (or that god is a first-class jerk, take your pick). This is Trumpian-level lack of self-awareness and shamelessness. I can’t imagine how the man sleeps at night, other than on a pile of money.
McConnell was recently described by a historian as “the gravedigger of American democracy,” a description he has clearly earned. (Even Donald Trump, who never met a greedy thug he couldn’t relate to, evidently told aides that McConnell was “meaner than a snake.”)
McConnell has defended his opposition to making Election Day a holiday by claiming it would cost money, because it would require government workers to be paid. In Mitch’s world, the country can easily afford to give billions in “tax relief” to corporations, but can’t manage continuing to compensate government employees for one extra day off.
Hoosiers like to make fun of folks from Kentucky, characterizing them as not-too-smart hillbillies. I’ve always maintained that bigotry–even geographical bigotry–is always wrong. But to the extent that there is evidence for that characterization of our neighbors to the south, it is that they have repeatedly voted for Mitch McConnell.
41 thoughts on “Words Utterly Fail….”
WORDS UTTERLY FAIL if they’re not backed up by CIVIC COURAGE. It’s as simple as that.
If you really want to something worthwhile, I strongly recommend that you take the time to read the 50 pages at the following referral, especially the three pages on CIVIC COURAGE by Ulla Gudmundson, the former Ambassador to the Vatican from Sweden.
We’ve been communicating for about five years, specifically, tweeting for the past two:
Election Day as a national holiday sounds good until you consider WHO isn’t working on our current national holidays…primarily government offices, court systems and some banks. Business goes on as usual, with more shoppers, unless they would be required by government to shut down on election day which would be a violation of their civil rights. And remember; drunks still got drunk but didn’t vote when bars were closed from 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. every election day.
Are businesses currently LEGALLY allowed to deny workers time off to vote; assuming they have their vote registration identification to qualify them?
“The bill includes curbs on gerrymandering and safeguards against vote suppression, among other things.” This is step one which needs to be addressed to the Supreme Court to reestablish our civil rights. This will never be done unless and until Citizens United is repealed. Round and round we go; and where it stops nobody knows.
Regarding the Trump/McConnell duo’s corporate leadership of this country (despite their petty differences); “When the blind lead the blind, both fall in the ditch.” Trump, who is intellectually blind and McConnell fit’s into the “There are none so blind as those who will not see.” category; will eventually land in that ditch. But what will survive of democracy, Rule of Law and our Constitution until that happens? Goethe stated; “The coward only threatens when he feels secure.” Currently; both are in a secure position so their threatening postures continue. Where are those shadow-figure Republicans alluded to who disagree with both and have the Constitutional responsibility – and the numbers – to overpower them?
Isn’t it interesting that three of the most notorious/infamous American characters to emerge in the past decade all come from Kentucky? There is the last of the racist, courtly southern gentlemen using his elected power to divide the nation. And there is the mean and selfish little doctor legislator who cannot get along with his neighbor, and finally the bible thumping county clerk who’s hypocrisy pours from her every action and statement.
Perhaps instead of questioning what happened to Kansas we need to find out what happened to Kentucky.
For my above referral, you can also search: Ulla Gudmundson and Henning Melber. That will take you to the site.
i could nt say it better,anyone who reads takes notice and votes with the ability to reconize a con game,and deliberate disregard for America,is practicing democracy. mcevil is a process,and hes won by propaganda,and using the ignorance of Amaerica for gain,by his party. no less 1933 germany. instead of a dictator,we have money.
we now have a movement of new voters,and a new awareness, i am seeing this in my conversations with the working class i associate with..the bill,will die,the voters,will not…
Theresa mentioned that little doctor legislator from KY
He who hates Canadian / British style medical insurance
When he needed surgery, HE went to Canada for treatment
From the KY Newspaper
“Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, one of the fiercest political critics of socialized medicine, will travel to Canada later this month to get hernia surgery. ”
Thomas Novelly, Louisville Courier Journal Published 10:45 a.m. ET Jan. 14, 2019 | Updated 7:41 p.m. ET Jan. 16, 2019
Didn’t Scalia rule the same thing when he struck down the VRA? He also said there was no evidence of voter suppression, except right after the VRA was struck down, all the Southern states filed bills to allow for voter suppression.
Gerrymandering in states like Indiana is a power grab. Eliminating gerrymandering is terrible for the GOP and would be considered a power grab.
We could go on down the list of tactics used to make voting more difficult or look at our international ranking of global democracies…not in the Top 20.
Nonetheless, here we are orchestrating a coup in Venezuela with the help of our mass media giants. The Oligarchs, or more specifically, the Oil Barons, want access to their oil reserves. Not to mention their gold reserves and natural gas.
The media puppets play the tape of democracy saving yet another failed socialistic country. The only problem is the USA, and it’s puppet allies have sanctioned the sale of their oil or primary source of revenue even after the price dropped.
We are Pirates. Period.
And as for sleeping patterns, you assume Mitch and other Washington actors have a conscience like us. Here’s a wake-up call, THEY DON’T!!!
The people with consciences bailed a long time ago because you cannot drink enough liquor or take enough drugs to sedate their conscience.
Here’s the problem…we think they are like us and they should follow the rules of decorum, democracy, laws, and conscience.
For them, it’s about money and winning. Period.
It’s also why the DEMOCRATIC PARTY has been losing for decades. The people on the left want politicians who will fight for their interests, but we don’t get that. We elect “nice guys and gals.”
The Democrats who kiss babies and talk about equality and justice. LOL
Instead, we need Democrats with courage who will stand up and kick some ass because the other side ain’t playing nice and they want to screw us and have been for three decades. Send a Biden/Beto ticket to the general, and you’ll get another four years of Trump.
The Democratic Party is milquetoast because Wall Street owns the party thus removing their spines. You cannot serve Main Street and Wall Street at the same time. Even the bible teaches about serving two masters…
“Instead, we need Democrats with courage who will stand up and kick some ass because the other side ain’t playing nice and they want to screw us and have been for three decades. Send a Biden/Beto ticket to the general, and you’ll get another four years of Trump.”
We should call this what it is. Rich white people suppressing the votes of non-whites and poor whites. If we had truly fair elections, our current system which favors rich white people over everyone else would be dismantled. McConnell and his cronies fear that above everything else. So sure he sees it as a power grab. He must have nightmares about retribution for the sins of white folks.
Mitch is the same guy who called for Democrats to put country ahead of politics during the government shutdown. He is the consummate liar.
Not much more to add to the above characterizations except to note that McConnell has been in the pocket of the Koch brothers for decades. One of his rewards is having his wife being given the cabinet position of Sec.Trans. You can’t spell utter corruption any better than Mitch McConnell.
The “gravedigger of democracy” is most apt. So, can the nation survive two more years of these bastards shredding the Constitution, urinating on the people and laughing at the poor?
Are there any among us who will do the right thing to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic? The whole world wonders.
Oh, and don’t forget that our experts in the intelligence community are all wrong about their assessments. So, why do we pay them?
HR 1 Might just be the greatest piece of legislation since the 60s. It would also require the Supreme Court to follow ethics rules, require Super PACS to name their donors, allow for automatic registration for all citizens at age 18, allow same day registration, and require two weeks minimum of early voting in each state, among other things. I love it. It is most certainly a power grab for the citizens of this country.
Unfortunately, it will be DOA on the steps of the Senate. The Speaker needs to make sure it gets brought up in the next Congress, as well. That will be the one in which the Dems take the Senate.
It’s a power grab, absolutely. For the benefit of the citizens.
But the GOP doesn’t want citizens, it wants subjects.
To: All Indiana readers of this column – Important Info below.
Indiana Redistricting Reform Lobby Day – SB 91 Authored by John Ruckelshaus.
The Senate Elections Committee will have a hearing on SB 91 at 10:00 a.m. this coming Monday at the Indiana Statehouse, Room 431. SB 91 would establish a nine member commission to hold public hearings and recommend plans to draw electoral maps approved by the General Assembly.
After the hearing supporters are invited to gather at the Indiana State Library for lunch and a legislative briefing. * RSVP at firstname.lastname@example.org
Everyone who can attend this hearing is asked to do so to show the committee that we want fair redistricting in Indiana.
If you are unable to attend this hearing, please contact your legislators to tell them you support this bill.
State Reps: 1-800-382-9842
State Senators: 1-800-382-9467
“Are there any among us who will do the right thing to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic? The whole world wonders.”
We’re looking at the wrong era to guide us. It’s not the ’60s and Civil Rights, but Nazi Germany in the ’30s.
We do we not have the Senate behind us, nor do we have a Supreme Court, like the Warren Court to protect us.
The MASSIVE RESISTANCE against civil rights was only ABATED. It is now back in the form of, what appears to be a non-stoppable, POLITICAL TSUNAMI.
To ALL Indiana residents:
RE: REDRISTRICTING REFORM in Indiana
SB 91 would establish a nine-member commission to hold public hearings and recommend plans to redraw electoral maps to be approved by the Indiana General Assembly. The Bill is authored by Republican John Ruckelshaus.
SB 91 will have a hearing at the Indiana State House, Room 431 on Monday at 10:00 a.m.
All who can attend the hearing in support of this Bill are encouraged to be there. After the hearing supporters will gather at the Indiana State Library for lunch and a legislative briefing.
Please RSVP for the lunch at email@example.com
Reading a 50 page document hardly qualifies as CIVIC COURAGE in my book,
I invite you to my town in the heart of Trump and gun country, and stand with me on a busy intersection on Hwy 17, with an anti-Trump sign. AND THEN you can talk about CIVIC COURAGE.
I’m just saying . . . . .
I take it, you still believe we live in a Democracy?
I suspect if this country wishes to put an end to politicized gerrymandering, It will have to happen on a state level especially since we have a conservative Supreme court.
Meantime I’m concerned about what is going to happen with the reproductive rights of women. People who think a woman should not have access to abortion when she has been raped, a girl who has become pregnant due to incest, or when her life is endangered by the pregnancy are not “pro-life” if you ask me.
“Marv,Reading a 50 page document hardly qualifies as CIVIC COURAGE in my book,”
I didn’t say it did.
How do you know how many “street corners” I’ve been on in Dallas or Jacksonville? Or have any knowledge of whatever I have accomplished, being much more than holding an anti-Trump sign.
Nothing surprising here about McConnell, he is a part of the Right Wing-Reactionary-Evangelical-Jim Crow -Corporatist Republican Party. It is all about winning. If they have to change the rules, not enforce rules, move the goal posts, that is what they will set out to do.
The Democratic Party should have learned this lesson a long time ago. The Corporate Wing of the Democratic Party decided to go Republican “Lite” and embrace Wall Street over Main Street. Then the Republicans move farther to the Right and the Corporate Democrats think they have to move Right also. Joe Donnelly is a good example.
Todd’s comments are as we said in the 1960’s Right On. The McMega Media in the form of CNN and MSDNC, are already favoring a “Centrist” Democrat, which excludes Elizabeth Warren, or Bernie Sanders. “Centrist” Democrats have tacked to the Right as the Republican Party has made their hard turn to the Right.
After reading some of Jeff Shaara’s books on the Civil War, I keep getting this creepy feeling that we are re-living the 1850s. How long will it be before the poor and the down-trodden middle classes rise up to defend democracy?
Many on this blog claim that our democracy is dead. Well, not quite. As with the 1850s, there will be the 30%-40% who will retain pig-headedness and drive forward into disaster no matter what. Democracy is supposed to be about majority rule. Marv keeps talking about the United States being an emerging Nazi re-run of the 1930s. He isn’t wrong about that, but we aren’t there yet.
The great Steve Schmidt contends that our political system is broken and that only some centrists can rescue us from oblivion. Was the Nazi takeover of Germany a centrist movement? Was the recovery after our Civil War a centrist movement? Was the Reagan/Regan/Friedman takeover of our economics a centrist movement? Nope. We have wasted at least 20 years thinking that Republican centrism was the right thing. We now realize that it too was a great lie, just as fascism is a lie and just as conservatism is a lie.
The pendulum of democracy has swung so far to the right, that an earthshaking event is required to break it loose and return it to somewhere near the center where we actually practice egalitarian justice and economics. We no longer have the luxury of incrementalism in change. Too many people are hungry, sick and being trod upon by corporate/banking America, aka Republicanism.
I just hope we can make it through the next two years with an intact country with a shred or two of democracy remaining. If we don’t demand government by majority rule, cretins like Mitch McConnell will finish the job of destroying our nation, its economy and subjugating its people. Why prove Marx correct?
“Mitch McConnell–aka the most evil man in America–just answered what I thought was a rhetorical question. He has labeled the proposal “a power grab.”
To which some democrat replied to the effect, ” Damn right it’s a power grab. By the American people.”
As for McConnell’s problem with the cost of giving government workers a day off, I can’t recall his getting miffed at Trump for giving federal workers 34 days off with full pay. He’s not only America’s most evil man, but is also in the running for the most hypocritical (Paul Ryan is in the competition for pretending to care about debt and deficits for umpteen years).
“The McMega Media in the form of CNN and MSDNC, are already favoring a “Centrist” Democrat, which excludes Elizabeth Warren, or Bernie Sanders. “Centrist” Democrats have tacked to the Right as the Republican Party has made their hard turn to the Right.”
As you know, this, continuous, disastrous course started, full force, with Bill Clinton’s “triangulation strategy.”
Marv Kramer, I took your suggestion to heart and just finished the 50 page conpendium on Civil Courage. What a read! Thank you for the suggestion as it articulated so well what we are up against and the consequences that may well be ours if we so choose the road that is Civil Courage.
Warren makes a good point when he writes that the GOP doesn’t want citizens; it wants subjects. McConnell and his Koch/Mercer/Russian-owned party know that the demographics strongly favor the Democratic Party and, being outnumbered, must suppress the vote in any way they can in order to hold on to their fleeting advantage. Thus, thanks to Citizens United and other voter suppression means at both state and federal levels, we have rule by minority, which is at odds with one of the fundamental tenets of democracy since and including the Athenian experiment, to wit: that governors rule by consent of the governed. Our present governors are not ruling by consent of the governed when the peoples’ representatives (like McConnell) rule by consent of their libertarian and Russian overlords.
My constitutional law professors lectured in the 50s that where a constitutional issue is close, the court will come down in favor of expansion of the voting franchise rather than suppression of it, but that was in the era of the Warren court before the GOP removed such “close questions” from the court with democracy-denying voter suppression legislation in the hope of maintaining their electoral advantage, and before the Supreme Court was populated by right wing jurists. Things have changed.
The solution to antics practiced by those such as McConnell who would destroy our democracy? Return to majority rule via the polls, repeal or render toothless such atrocities as Citizens United and go all out in favor of Pelosi’s omnibus bill for reform, taking no prisoners, since it is not only Trump and Putin who would destroy our democracy, but Trump’s congressional henchmen seeking political advantage and framers such as Fox and the WSJ as well. To arms!
(P.S. McConnell has recently taken 3.5 million dollars from Russian/Ukrainian oligarchs and Lindsey Graham has taken 800,000 dollars from the same or similar sources, so it appears that under Citizens United politicians can collect “campaign contributions” from Lower Slobbovia,
assorted despots and others from around the globe in their “representation” of their constituents back home, but the overhanging question is “Where is back home? Moscow?” To reiterate > To arms!)
Mitch is up for re-election in 2020. We should do everything we can to Vote Him Out! As much as I despise IQ45, I despise MM more.
Thanks. Ulla Gudmundson is magnificent. She’s a great little “d” democrat. Although she’s a Lutheran, she is still one of the leaders attempting to empower women inside the Vatican.
You most certainly did link CIVIC COURAGE to reading an article — see your second post.
You are right — I don’t how many times you’ve stood on a street corner in the South.
But as I have asked you before, PLEASE give us specific examples of what you believe we (all of us who read this blog daily) need to be doing other than: physically protesting in the streets; writing, calling, FAXing our government reps; working for pro-democracy candidates; attending public hearings on issues; etc.
It’s all well and good to call others to civic courage, but please lead by example.
I’m still waiting for your response to that inquiry, with clear examples of WHAT to do.
BTW – the link you posted http://www.daghammarskjold.se/wpcontent/uploads/2014/08/critical_currents_vol9_web.pdf
leads to this:
Oops! Page not found
The page you are looking for does not exist; it may have been moved, or removed altogether. You might want to try the search function. Alternatively, return to the front page.
Search: “Ulla Gudmundson and Henning Melber.” The page does exist. See my instructions at 7:11 A.M.
Also see Mary Crowley’s comments at 10:59 A. M.
1. Wanna learn more about Mitch the Witch, read the NYT magazine cover story from last Sunday.
2. A possibly better suggestion regarding Election Day? Make it the same day as Veteran’s Day (already a national holiday) and “market” it as “Go vote to honor the folks who put their lives on the line to allow you to do it”.
If there is one phrase that describes the GOP since Reagan it is “power grab”.
Unfortunately through the magic of a kind of pervasive entertainment media advertising called fake news they have been successful but now the damage that has been done has become more evident to the average American than the ploy. People like Mitch have become naked rulers. (There’s an image that lingers.)
That puts Democrats on a cusp. Should we adopt the means of their success or does their obvious failure put an end to the means?
So far IMO the Democrats continue to respect and uphold democracy. Let’s hope that holds but if it doesn’t it will be due to another cancer, divisiveness. Can we remember that united we stand divided we fall? E Pluribus Unum?
I’ll take you a step further, Sheila. I will not purchase goods or services from companies headquartered in Kentucky or South Carolina. I even call or write to let them know why–because your state elected Mitch McConnell and Lindsey Graham. Their actions have adverse implications for me and my family for decades to come–for instance, Gorsuch and Kavanaugh who are there because of them, and who will sway rulings to the right. It’s just one small way to fight back. Whatever service or item you might want to purchase is probably available in California or New York, anyway.
Here is a link to a good article and cartoon for those interested.
Marv wrote @ 10:52 am
“As you know, this, continuous, disastrous course started, full force, with Bill Clinton’s “triangulation strategy.”
I agree. IMHO, Bill Clinton did more to destroy the old Democratic Party of FDR than any Republican could have hoped to do. He did so many favors for Wall Street (NAFTA) and the financial community in terms of de-regulation they rewarded him and Hillary with big speaking fees.
The Corporate Democrats and their talking heads on CNN and MSDNC are still triangulating, i.e., we need a Woman, a Black, a Hispanic, or the perennial loser in primaries – Joe Biden. A thin veneer of Progressiveness will do, along with some lip service. They must walk that fence carefully, and give the nod and the wink to Wall Street, just so they know it is all talk.
Progressive Issues take second place for the Corporate Democrats.
Democrats who don’t stand united will fall divided.
“Hoosiers like to make fun of folks from Kentucky, characterizing them as not-too-smart hillbillies. I’ve always maintained that bigotry–even geographical bigotry–is always wrong. But to the extent that there is evidence for that characterization of our neighbors to the south, it is that they have repeatedly voted for Mitch McConnell.”
I love this left-handed diplomacy! Thank you for your steadfast blogs.
Please Kentucky – McConnell has got to go.
As a student and teacher of political science I have serious concerns about Mitch McConnell, he obviously skipped all his classes when “democracy “ was discussed. He does not have a clue. I was taught that the whole decision to have the election on “the first Tuesday after the first Monday” was because the writers of our Constitution believed that Election Day would become a national holiday. Since most bills came due the first day of the month in colonial times, allowing the election to be on the first would hit businesses in the pocket. So this “power grab” should have been done long ago. Mitch your middle name should be “power grab” considering how you control the Senate. Get over your partisan behavior and start doing what is best for the United States of America!! Better yet, retire and go home! Let someone who understands the Constitution run the Senate.
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