Voter Suppression in Arizona

Discussion in 'Politics & Current Events' started by will_shred, Apr 1, 2016.

  1. Varland

    Varland Baker of Rage

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    This reaffirms my conviction that our government is an unfortunate mixture of greed, corruption and incompetence. Regardless of whether this was intentional or not, a country as practiced in democracy as the US should not have trouble funding and organizing a state primary. It terrifies me that it is having trouble.

    Slippery slope followed by a lack of evidence. Socialism isn't a bad word. Try to understand that. Try to understand that many of our best policies were socialist in nature (Square Deal, New Deal, Marshall Plan, National Highway Act). Notice the significant economic growth that followed the implementation of such policy.

    What happened when we became less socialistic? Reagan. What happened under Reagan? Reaganomics. What happened with Reaganomics? The economy briefly flourished due to reduced taxes, then downturned anyway because the government could no longer pay for all the social programs that Reagan didn't cut. Because people love social programs. And then Bush had to raise taxes, which in part cost him the next election. Don't even get me started on the consequences of the deregulation that happened under the conservative watch.

    Sorry about the rant. Even what I've said here is far too reductive. I'm just tired of socialism being a bad word in the American psyche. We would all be a lot better off if we would help each other.

    edit: for the grammars.
     
  2. NicePants

    NicePants ok

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    If Muddy Waters had started today instead of 70ish years ago I bet he would've made some groovy ....ing doom metal.
     
  3. tacotiklah

    tacotiklah I am Denko (´・ω・`)

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    I don't understand why the idea of helping other people is such a bad concept. If they lose their job through no fault of their own, wouldn't the right thing be to be a good neighbor and lend them a helping hand while they look for another one? Maybe they got fired just because they're gay (which is still legal to do in 28 states despite gay marriage being legal in all 50). Does that make them any less worthy to have help when discriminated against?

    How about if a person gets hired at a job (like at a certain popular retail/grocery chain *cough* walmart *cough*), then has their pay slashed through no fault of their own because the owner is greedy and is using taxpayer money to subsidize their abysmal wages and that person is forced into a schadenfreude of choosing between accepting the low wages or being unemployed because no one else is hiring?

    And speaking of greedy owners, when did it become wrong to rein in capitalism from some of the negative aspects of it? Anyone who didn't sleep through high school history remembers that the late 1800s and early 1900s were rife with bunk "home remedies" that did nothing more than lighten your wallet at best (in which case, you were VERY lucky) and rob you of your life at worst. Are you suggesting that we were wrong to institute the FDA to stop crooked con men from poisoning other human beings because unfettered market is the way to go?
    Are you suggesting that it was okay for groups like Goldmann Sachs to give giant bonuses to their CEOs even as the government was bailing them out of a financial crisis that THEY started?
    Are you okay with the idea that no matter WHO you vote for, the only vote that matters are the super wealthy that pay tens of millions of dollars to lobbyists and super PACs so that they can get regulation that favors them at your personal expense?
    Are you okay with at the start of the industrial revolution, there being children under the age of 13 being made to work 18+ hours a day and being paid LESS than the average adult male for the same job?

    These are examples of a sad, but factual side of capitalism. Wealth can and does corrupt people. Now I feel that there are many great aspects of capitalism and that on the whole, it DOES work. But it needs regulation to keep it from being about the almighty dollar at the expense and suffering of other human beings.

    I love how so many people claim "religious beliefs" when a trans person has to piss, but then those values of love, tolerance, and helping your fellow man are quickly forgotten when it comes time to help out someone less fortunate than them because "OMG SOCIALISM!"

    [​IMG]



    Now more on-topic:
    Voter suppression is nothing new in politics. Gone are the days of egregarious, Bull Connor-esque techniques of beating the .... out of people you didn't want voting and it has been replaced with things like gerrymandering, voter id registration (knowing FULL ....ing well that the group this would most likely affect are minorities that wouldn't vote right wing anyways), and this new latest trend of suddenly there being almost 50,000 registered voters suddenly finding themselves not on the registration rolls and there being no accounting for this at all...
    New Yorkers File Emergency Lawsuit To Give Voting Rights Back To 3.2 Million People | ThinkProgress

    It's more cloak and dagger-like now, and the gutting of the voting rights act was just the tip of the iceberg on that score.
     
  4. vilk

    vilk Very Regular

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    ^I think you forget. Those CEOs "earned" those bonuses by "working hard" and "being smart", and you can do it too if you'd just "stop being lazy".
     
  5. tacotiklah

    tacotiklah I am Denko (´・ω・`)

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    I'm sorry, but I believe that you earn bonuses only when you actually do a good job (hence the monetary incentive to keep doing so), NOT when you cause one of the worst financial disasters since the great depression that caused much of middle class Americans to lose their jobs and their homes. That kind of "talent" should have had immediate pink slips, not giant ....ing paychecks from taxpayers.
     
  6. russmuller

    russmuller Cramblin' Contributor

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    We're kind of derailing the original conversation, but I don't think anyone minds.

    Most conservatives are not bad people, and generally they're not opposed to helping people either. Their philosophical stance has three legs that are both strong and largely valid. 1- It's not morally justifiable to FORCE a person to give up their own property to another, even if it is for a good cause. 2- The role of the government is not to "help" people overcome the challenges in their life. 3- Government is inherently inefficient, so charity is better executed by private individuals and organizations.

    From those two points you can connect the dots to construct most conservative viewpoints. This can lead to all manner of ethical and logical deformities, but it can also lead to some very compelling arguments.
     
  7. tacotiklah

    tacotiklah I am Denko (´・ω・`)

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    I'll offer some rebuttals to that...


    1.) No one is being forced to give up anything, except maybe more money in taxes. And everyone, regardless of political party, has to pay them. I pay them when I manage to find the odd job to help pay my rent, and I pay my taxes every time I buy anything because of sales tax. And people do enjoy the fruits of their taxes via police and firefighter services, clean and safe drinking water (maybe not so much in Flint, MI but you get the point), paved roads that aren't completely destroyed, a free public K-12 education, and much more. These services are ones that EVERYONE has the expectation to have, yet somehow grumble when it comes time to pay to have them. These are all functions funded by taxpayers, administered by the government, and given to the American people regardless of their political affiliation. Which brings me to the next point...

    2.) The role of the government is what its people determine it to be, especially when it comes to America. Of the people, by the people, for the people, correct? That's the basic founding principle and one that I hold near and dear to my heart.
    We elect people to represent us in government, so we as a people very much have the power to remove those that we find not doing that very thing. It's just that it's a power that we seem to afraid to use for whatever reason. But if people feel that the government isn't there to help them with their life challenges, by all means... don't go to state hospitals when you're sick, do not call the cops when there's trouble, and most definitely homeschool your kids. Otherwise you just might be a hypocrite whenever you take advantage of these programs that are paid for by other taxpayers and administered by the government. ;)

    3.) If the government is inefficient, we have a process called "elections" to remove the inefficient parts of it. Unfortunately many people do not take advantage of this process and then grumble about its inefficacy. :lol:
    As a person that helped my uncle get disability for his mental illness (he is schizophrenic), I'm all too aware of how slow the process is when you involve the government. However, I also know that he would end up homeless or worse if he did not have assistance from the government for his disability, and the only other option would be a state mental facility which is still run by the government and paid for by taxpayers. In the end, you cannot completely divorce from getting assistance from the government because in some way even the most wealthy and hard working will need the government's assistance. It's NOT a bad thing, nor is it a personal failing to ask for help when you need help. If that were the case, anyone here bugging others about how to play x scales/chords/songs/etc. would be considered crappy people for not already knowing it. The same is true if you legal or government assistance. In fact, programs such as social security are NOT handouts because you paid into it your whole damn working career. It's no different than if you paid your insurance premiums and got into a fender bender. If you paid your taxes for a long time, but then lost your job, you can collect unemployment benefits that you PAID for with your own check as an "in case sh*t happens" fund.


    Where I agree with conservatives is that people do need to work and pay their fair share. I'm with them on that. But I disagree vehemently when people act like bad things only happen to bad people. Life doesn't work that way and never has. If that were true, then everyone that lost all their savings during the great depression or their homes during the housing crash of 2008 suddenly becomes bad people and I think that idea is complete garbage.

    Are there people gaming the system? I have no doubts that there are and I dislike them just as much as everyone else. But the numbers of them doing so are far lower than people seem to believe. I'm also aware that not every rich person is evil, just like I know not every poor person is good. People will be people regardless of income. But that doesn't excuse the rich people that crap all over people's lives anymore than it excuses the poor people that game the system to take advantage of it. They are BOTH wrong and both deserve to be publicly shamed.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2016
  8. pwsusi

    pwsusi SS.org Regular

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    I think in the end conservatives and liberals want the same basic things but disagree on how to get there. IMO a big part of it is trust (or lack thereof) of the govt. You mentioned people enjoying the fruits of their taxes (police, roads, bridges, etc). I don't think anyone on either side minds paying taxes for those things...but when is enough enough? We keep paying and paying and doesn't seem the roads and bridges are getting any better. The difference seems to be those on the left seem to trust govt more with spending and willing to pay more and giving the benefit of the doubt that there will be improvement. I think conservatives tend to take the pessimistic view that we already pay for these things and there should be transparency around where the money we are already paying is being spent. How about an audit...if it's not enough pay more in taxes...if the money is being spent elsewhere (i.e. pensions for govt workers which is the case up here) then we should rethink things. Left complains about corporate welfare, right complains about special benefits for public sector...it's a circular argument and more and more money continues to go out the window.

    I think people are frustrated though because it's the same result no matter who we put in. Sure there are differences on the left and right when it comes to social issues, but when it comes to financial issues we are continue to be inefficient no matter who is in charge. Whether it's welfare, corporate welfare, oil subsidies or green energy subsidies money lots of money is spent and we continue to fall further into debt. I think there is a feeling that people's votes don't count...because the party establishment, the media etc pretty much shove who they want down our throats...and because of the two party voting system we have, people tend to vote for the lesser of two evils instead of who they really want in fear of putting someone in charge that they dislike. Trump (love him or hate him) is evidence that people want to disrupt the system and are fed up. His whole platform is based on these themes. You're seeing it on the left too with Sanders. On both sides you have the people voting outside the box.
     
  9. russmuller

    russmuller Cramblin' Contributor

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    Sweet! I just want to take a moment to point out that I'm just playing devil's advocate here with the points I think have merit. I myself swing liberal, but I am sympathetic with true fiscal conservatives.

    Taxes are exactly the issue. Philosophically, some people view taxation as a form of theft. Income is property and the government takes some of it from you without your consent. Yes, you do get something in return, but it isn't a voluntary transaction. Those funds are often misappropriated, mismanaged, and produce low quality returns.

    I'm not saying that taxes are all bad, I'm just saying that there is some merit to the other side of the coin and I think that it's a conversation worth having. There's no "right" answer, but rather an evolving discussion where both sides have valid points and we're trying to find the best balance between what IS and what we think SHOULD be.

    I agree with you here about the role of government is what we think it should be. Except what do you do when half the country disagrees about what it should do? We know that "majority rules" is not always the right way to run or decide things. And whether I go to a state hospital or not, I'm still paying for it. If there is no choice, that is not liberty. If I am forced to have my income taken from me in a way that isn't justifiable, that is not justice. What happened to liberty and justice for all? It's just a different perspective.

    And the whole concept of "you're a hypocrite if you use government services" thing (which I understand that you're not calling anyone a hypocrite, you're just making a point with tongue in cheek) is totally bogus though. Unless your parents raised you entirely off the grid and with no government systems or services, you were born into this world with a societal debt with no opportunity to avoid it. It's like the homeless guy who just starts washing your windshield. No matter how dirty it was before and how much or little improved it is after, now you're a jerk if you don't give him a buck even though you never asked for his services.

    Elections themselves are inefficient. They happen only periodically, and sometimes they're very poorly run. The person who is the best at raising funds and persuading voters is not necessarily the best person to be in office, in the same way that the person who scores highest on a standardized test is not the smartest. It's incredibly difficulty to remove anyone from a government position, elected or hired. A private organization can say "You're performing terribly and haven't improved despite feedback and coaching. You're fired. We're replacing you with someone/something better." That process takes YEARS in government, and the problem of poor performance persists the whole time. And it's not just that the government is inefficient, but it's also incompetent.

    I want to be clear that I'm using that word in a different way than most people do. The government has a monopoly, thus there are no alternatives in the market for those services. Where can you go to stand in a shorter line to get your drivers license? Who is allowed into that market to do a better job? Nobody. The government does not have to COMPETE with anything, therefore it is inCOMPETEnt.

    In regards to your uncle, it's not his fault that he is schizophrenic. It's not a personal failing of his that he will require long term medication, psychiatric care, etc... He didn't do anything to deserve that, nor did he do anything to deserve any of the other life complications that follow from living with such a condition. Does that somehow make it morally justifiable to take money from someone else and force them to pay for his care? Do two wrongs make a right?

    Again, I'm just playing devil's advocate. I believe that there is a net benefit to society when people who suffer from disability and misfortune are given the care and support that they need, and I'm more than happy to see my tax money go to that. Just like I agree with Bernie Sanders that if you think it's too expensive to care for our troops, then it's too expensive to send them into harm's way and it needs to be factored into the cost of war. But over the past few years (especially in AZ) we've seen how terrible a job the VA does. Who can I vote for in an election that's going to fix the VA here in Phoenix? Nobody. And where else can those veterans get the care they need under their benefits? You're forcing me to give money I earn from my paycheck to be the only provider of poor service? This is the kind of thinking that leads many conservatives to see the government as an incompetent, monopolistic thief.

    I think you and I are largely in agreement on these issues, but I think it's important to recognize the merits and rational concerns of an opposing ideology. Being in Arizona and surrounded by Mormons, I've been exposed to a lot of conservatives who are very kind and educated people. I've also been exposed to lots of bigoted and ignorant conservatives, but the former are much more enlightening than the latter.
     
  10. Varland

    Varland Baker of Rage

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    I had written a much longer post - apparently it took so long that the page timed out.

    Suffice to say, I really appreciate your post. My point rested on the fact that the government will spend money on things that are not profitable (parks, wildlife refuges, etc.). A business has no incentive to fund such projects.

    Also, my problem rests in that most of the conservatives I interact with are unable to be articulate. They simplify their perspective to fed = bad, tax = bad. It's sad to me that I'm seeing this kind of articulation from someone who claims to be liberal leaning instead of someone who is wholly committed to the doctrine.
     
  11. russmuller

    russmuller Cramblin' Contributor

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    I wholeheartedly agree. And if the government has a duty to protect its citizens, that necessarily includes regulations. While market forces do have self-regulating properties (when they aren't being gamed through collusion or other unethical tactics), businesses and industries are not always effectively motivated to regulate themselves in the best interest of consumers. While these are difficult and cumbersome tasks, they're important and necessary.

    SO MUCH THIS! I know very few conservatives who can clearly explain and justify their beliefs, and even fewer who can do so from a standpoint of logic without making judgements. But when I find them, I always find that we agree on much more than I'd expect.

    FWIW, Bernie wins my vote hands down.
     
  12. ASoC

    ASoC Downpicker \m/

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    I won't say that every conservative I know is ignorant, because I do know some actual principled conservatives that actually believe in small government instead of corporate socialism and unregulated capitalism for the rest of us.

    However, those people are few and far in between. Most conservatives I know are willfully ignorant and they absolutely refuse to even make an attempt at empathy. Our political spectrum is so ....ed. Republicans are straight evil, Democrats are too weak to actually fight for liberal principles, and they're all too corrupt to give a .....

    Edit: And before someone tries to jump on me for saying that Republicans are evil (the actual politicians, not the electorate. I have a different but no less offensive word for them) think about it. These people who say that government has no right to touch their money (mostly immorally, if not illegally, obtained) and isn't supposed to help people but will turn around and say that it IS government's job to tell me who I can or can't marry, what I can or can't put into my body, and where I can ....ing pee. You don't get to have your cake and eat it too. You don't get to have few fiscal regulations and low taxes and then come into my bedroom and tell me which of wife's holes is OK for me to put it in. ....ing pick. You either get small government or big government, and if you wanted something in the middle, then the only correct answer would be to be socially liberal and fiscally conservative. If you're socially conservative and you legitimately believe in what the Republicans are doing, then you're either just as bad of a person as them or you're brainwashed by your barbaric bronze age philosophy and it's masters who are merely using it to control you and the masses.

    Let me put this in caps for any Republican voters who might see it: YES, YOU ARE ENTITLED TO YOUR BELIEFS. NO, YOU ARE NOT ENTITLED TO HAVE THE GOVERNMENT USE YOUR BELIEFS AS JUSTIFICATION FOR INTOLERANCE. DON'T LIKE GAYS? THEN DON'T HAVE GAY SEX. PRO LIFE? DON'T GET AN ABORTION. ANTI DRUGS? DON'T DO THEM. WORRIED THAT OTHER PEOPLE MIGHT BE DOING THOSE THINGS AND DETERMINED TO STOP IT? GET A LIFE AND WORRY ABOUT WHAT YOU'RE DOING. OH, AND IF YOU CONSISTENTLY VOTE REPUBLICAN WHILE NOT BEING WAY UP INTO THE TOP TAX BRACKET, YOU'RE A MORON.

    I'll thank the Republicans to kindly get their ignorant noses out of my business.
     
  13. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    The part you typed in all caps is something I'm rather sure most republicans have seen before. Posting here, yelling, or making signs to hang on streetlights is not going to change anything, at this point. Getting out to vote, and voting for people who will make a difference, not just as PotUS, but in local government, in congress, as the Sheriff, etc., is the way to actually make a difference. I'll say this as well, another Bush, or another Clinton, or whatever establishment candidates are around (again, not just President, but it all starts with local level government) staying in power, or transitioning from one level of power to the next, it's not going to change this country.
     
  14. ASoC

    ASoC Downpicker \m/

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    Just let me vent, man. I know your typical Republican base voter doesn't care about logic or rationality (the same applies to typical Democrat base voters, but at least their morals aren't quite as compromised).
     
  15. TheAbstract

    TheAbstract SS.org Regular

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    This problem isn't going to fix itself.

    Until we get away from the electoral college, we will continue to have jerrymandering.

    It's just the game the rules force. Fix the rules and the game changes. That's the only way.
     

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