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How can we survive without the D and R?

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    ÆthelredÆthelred Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    I think knowing the positions of the party you are voting for is usually sufficient voter-preparedness. Most people are simply voting by party (nothing wrong with that), so why should they be forced to learn who the local candidates are in all occassions?

    Æthelred on
    pokes: 1505 8032 8399
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    CouscousCouscous Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Irond Will wrote: »
    Saammiel wrote: »
    Irond Will wrote: »
    Elki wrote: »
    Would this also apply to congressional elections, or is just city-wide elections?

    You just need to make sure that this kind of voting procedure is limited to the southern black districts.

    You mean like the entire state of Nebraska? Or does that ruin your narrative?

    Nebraska doesn't have South Carolina's history of polarized racial politics and society nor South Carolina's heterogeneity.
    I don't see this as that different from restrictions on advertising and selling housing.

    Having nothing but white people in your advertisements for housing might mean you live in Alaska or it might mean your advertisement is discriminatory and a "wink wink".

    Couscous on
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    Knuckle DraggerKnuckle Dragger Explosive Ovine Disposal Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Yall wrote: »
    That was an honest question. I'm questioning your definition of this as racist and saying that the majority is always able to get their candidate elected if they are a traditionally discriminated against racial minority.

    This particular case, they really should switch the elections to districts for the city council and do the time honored gerrymandering of seats to satisfy the VRA. Which is probably natural, knowing the US.

    But having been discriminated against in the past doesn't mean you will be in the present. Where does it end?

    You should only get 'your' candidate in if that person gets the most votes. It's not like there are people with clubs at polling places. It's not like the majority is being kept down here through some institutionalized illiteracy programs that necessitates a single letter breaking everything down into a symbol that says "Ok everyone, White folks click this, Black folks click this."

    If you want respresentation, you vote.

    Regarding the primaries, what is preventing participation? Eveyone is acting as though there is some unseen exclusion on some level, but I've seen no evidence in this case to imply any such thing.

    Right, when does the Voting Rights Act need to expire, and how can we tell? I suspect, based purely on last year's Presidential exit polls, that voting in the South remains largely based on race.
    Alabama:
    White 88-10 McCain
    Black 98-2 Obama

    Arkansas:
    White 68-30 McCain
    Black 95-5 Obama

    Georgia:
    White 76-23 McCain
    Black 98-2 Obama

    Louisiana:
    White 84-14 McCain
    Black 94-4

    Mississippi:
    White 88-11 McCain
    Black 98-2 Obama

    North Carolina:
    White 64-35 McCain
    Black 95-5 Obama

    South Carolina:
    White 73-26 McCain
    Black 96-4 Obama

    Tennessee:
    White 63-34 McCain
    Black 94-6 Obama

    Texas:
    White 73-26 McCain
    Black 98-2 Obama
    Hispanic (since it's Texas) 63-35 Obama

    Virginia:
    White 60-39 McCain
    Black 92-8 Obama

    Especially in the Deep South, these states aren't polarized by partisanship so much as race. Suggesting to me that the VRA is still necessary.

    Alright, now please provide similar numbers for the previous election or two, because on their own, those stats are meaningless; even in Democratic strongholds like California, you are looking at Obama getting at 94% of the black vote vs 52% of the whites (in NY, it was 100% and 52%).

    Knuckle Dragger on
    Let not any one pacify his conscience by the delusion that he can do no harm if he takes no part, and forms no opinion.

    - John Stuart Mill
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    ElkiElki get busy Moderator, ClubPA Mod Emeritus
    edited October 2009
    Next: The Washington Times will take its interesting in covering race, politics, and the south to its logical conclusion, and do a story on how different southern states fuck black people out of a vote.

    Elki on
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    Irond WillIrond Will WARNING: NO HURTFUL COMMENTS, PLEASE!!!!! Cambridge. MAModerator Mod Emeritus
    edited October 2009
    The thing that really confuses me about this is why this measure was voted for in the first place. Why is giving voters more information (about the party they belong to) a bad thing?

    Like I said before, minority parties in localities and states are constantly trying to get these provisions put on referendum ballots. They are especially popular among looney third-party types, since in elections - and especially local and state elections - people rarely know anything about the candidates and generally go by party ID.

    The fact that this thing passed in this particular district is testament to the basic fact that referenda are a fucking terrible idea and almost harmful.

    Irond Will on
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    Irond WillIrond Will WARNING: NO HURTFUL COMMENTS, PLEASE!!!!! Cambridge. MAModerator Mod Emeritus
    edited October 2009
    Æthelred wrote: »
    I think knowing the positions of the party you are voting for is usually sufficient voter-preparedness. Most people are simply voting by party (nothing wrong with that), so why should they be forced to learn who the local candidates are in all occassions?

    But but the residents of this small SC town is trying to revolutionize our moribund political system! They no longer want to know the partisan affiliation of the candidate they are voting on!

    Tyranny!

    Racism!

    Irond Will on
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    YallYall Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Irond Will wrote: »
    You are advancing the stupid idea that because southern black folks vote overwhelmingly Democratic, it's an indicator that black people are racist. You are also somehow trying to somehow pretend that it's offensive to imply that these voters in SC would benefit from more information regarding party affiliation on their ballots - even though this is true of all voters. You are holding black people in a poor SC town to a standard of civic literacy that no population group could be reasonably held to, and then ridiculously crying "racism" when anyone objects. You are trying to pretend as though the federal government has no compelling interest in monitoring the conduct of elections in the South and occasionally overturning local preference in some conduct.

    So yes of course I assume you are arguing in bad faith. The only other possible conclusion is that you are ridiculously ignorant.

    I am arguing no such thing!

    If that's what you are coming away from my posts with, then please go read them again.

    I'm saying that it's offensive for a judge to say these people don't know what is good for them, against their wishes, and basing her decision on race. To me that is racist. The act. The decision. Not people or persons. Not the people in the town, be they white or black.

    Yall on
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    Irond WillIrond Will WARNING: NO HURTFUL COMMENTS, PLEASE!!!!! Cambridge. MAModerator Mod Emeritus
    edited October 2009
    Elki wrote: »
    Next: The Washington Times will take its interesting in covering race, politics, and the south to its logical conclusion, and do a story on how different southern states fuck black people out of a vote.

    As far as I can tell, the argument is:

    Problem: black people vote for Democrats too much

    Solution: we should make it harder for them to know the party affiliation of candidates

    The Washington Times is probably not the worst newspaper I've ever read, since I have read the Boston Herald. It might be the most disingenuous newspaper I've ever read though.

    Irond Will on
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    YallYall Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Yall wrote: »
    Again - you put words in my mouth. When did I state or imply that the voters right's act should be abolished? Furthermore our argument (or at least mine I shouldn't presume to speak for others) has been the weak logic used in this one conclusion by this one justice is illogical and possibly racist in nature. There is no evidence of gerrymandering, issues with polling places or discrimination of any type. In fact I see no one thing in this case that is counter to the voting rights act. So please stop acting as though I've so much as suggested overturning anything.

    Sorry, I'm raising points that are interesting to me that happen to be vaguely related to what you're saying. Not saying you necessarily believe the opposite of what I'm saying. It's just that the conditions that required the VRA are still operable. The law is pretty rigid and errs on the side of caution, which is how we get to this here case.

    Fair enough. I guess I'm just failing to see the connection between the town voting to remove the party from the equation as an inherently discriminatory act.

    Yall on
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    TheMarshalTheMarshal Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    This smacks of the desire by many Republicans to divide up California's electoral votes. "We're not winning here, so let's try and change the rules of the game to benefit us"

    TheMarshal on
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    Irond WillIrond Will WARNING: NO HURTFUL COMMENTS, PLEASE!!!!! Cambridge. MAModerator Mod Emeritus
    edited October 2009
    Yall wrote: »
    I am arguing no such thing!

    If that's what you are coming away from my posts with, then please go read them again.

    I'm saying that it's offensive for a judge to say these people don't know what is good for them, against their wishes, and basing her decision on race. To me that is racist. The act. The decision. Not people or persons. Not the people in the town, be they white or black.

    Would it be racist for a federal court to override a voting referendum in a white community because the court held that the referendum did not serve the purposes of democracy?

    Because the clear answer is "no".

    Would it be "offensive"? Gosh maybe but I guess I don't care that much. Federal election courts exist for this basic purpose, and I really don't believe that you are actually offended on behalf of some SC town that you had never heard of before.

    That black people in the south still enjoy some higher level of protection and oversight by the courts than do white people in Nebraska is a result of not-so-distant history.

    There is a lot more to "the end of racism" than extrapolating from a single sentence from Martin Luther King.

    Irond Will on
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    DocDoc Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited October 2009
    TheMarshal wrote: »
    This smacks of the desire by many Republicans to divide up California's electoral votes. "We're not winning here, so let's try and change the rules of the game to benefit us"

    Hah, reminds me of this:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2003_Texas_redistricting

    Doc on
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    juice for jesusjuice for jesus Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    The problem is not that certain voters will be "tricked" into voting for the wrong candidate, it's that people will be less inclined to vote at all. And this will affect people "on the fence" more than dedicated voters (read: people with strong ties to a certain party or candidate).

    Like, you know those non-partisan judicial and school board elections? Yeah, I just skip those. Why? I have no idea who the fuck all these people are! They don't advertise, they don't hold debates, newspapers don't run endorsements. I'm relatively politically conscious and I can't find any information about these people. How is a potential first-time voter supposed to know who to vote for?

    Now you look at a place with a large pool of potential voters with low participation rates. Removing the one very clear piece of information available to them about the candidates is sure to be discouraging.

    juice for jesus on
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    enlightenedbumenlightenedbum Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Alright, now please provide similar numbers for the previous election or two, because on their own, those stats are meaningless; even in Democratic strongholds like California, you are looking at Obama getting at 94% of the black vote vs 52% of the whites (in NY, it was 100% and 52%).

    Slightly different question wording, but fortunately almost all the white people in all of these states identify as non-Catholic Christians of some kind. Also, most of them don't have significant non-Black minority populations, with Texas and Virginia being the exceptions.
    Alabama:
    White: 86-14 Bush
    Nonwhite: 81-16 Kerry

    Arkansas:
    White: 66-33 Bush
    Nonwhite: 87-13 Kerry

    Georgia:
    White: 79-20 Bush
    Nonwhite: 80-20 Kerry

    Louisiana:
    White: 81-18 Bush
    Nonwhite: 82-16 Kerry

    Mississippi:
    White: 87-13 Bush
    Nonwhite: 87-12 Kerry

    North Carolina:
    White: 78-22 Bush
    Nonwhite: 79-19 Kerry

    South Carolina:
    White: 83-17 Bush
    Nonwhite: 76-23 Kerry

    Tennessee:
    White: 71-29 Bush
    Nonwhite: 80-18 Kerry

    Texas:
    White: 80-20 Bush
    Nonwhite: 62-38 Kerry (Wish I had this split up a little bit better, over half the nonwhite population in Texas is Hispanic and they've only become super alienated with the GOP since the immigration debacle in Bush's second term)

    Virginia:
    White: ~71-29 Bush (there's a significant Catholic population that was just slightly more Democratic than the non-Catholics)
    Nonwhite: 80-19 Kerry

    Hey look, still polarized, though less so. If you go back through every election since probably '68 with the exception of Carter it'll look like that. Though I'm not sure if Carter won southern whites or just it close enough to take the states.

    enlightenedbum on
    Self-righteousness is incompatible with coalition building.
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    enlightenedbumenlightenedbum Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Yall wrote: »
    Yall wrote: »
    Again - you put words in my mouth. When did I state or imply that the voters right's act should be abolished? Furthermore our argument (or at least mine I shouldn't presume to speak for others) has been the weak logic used in this one conclusion by this one justice is illogical and possibly racist in nature. There is no evidence of gerrymandering, issues with polling places or discrimination of any type. In fact I see no one thing in this case that is counter to the voting rights act. So please stop acting as though I've so much as suggested overturning anything.

    Sorry, I'm raising points that are interesting to me that happen to be vaguely related to what you're saying. Not saying you necessarily believe the opposite of what I'm saying. It's just that the conditions that required the VRA are still operable. The law is pretty rigid and errs on the side of caution, which is how we get to this here case.

    Fair enough. I guess I'm just failing to see the connection between the town voting to remove the party from the equation as an inherently discriminatory act.

    I would agree it's tenuously connected to race and that the justification for the ruling I'm not entirely sure of the legitimacy for. But it's if anything an overbroad interpretation of VRA, which is probably the safer side to err on.

    I still think removing partisanship from the ballot information is dumb for reasons Jeffe and juice for jesus have pointed out.

    enlightenedbum on
    Self-righteousness is incompatible with coalition building.
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    TheMarshalTheMarshal Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Doc wrote: »
    TheMarshal wrote: »
    This smacks of the desire by many Republicans to divide up California's electoral votes. "We're not winning here, so let's try and change the rules of the game to benefit us"

    Hah, reminds me of this:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2003_Texas_redistricting

    Damn... and I thought my district was pretty wonk-ily shaped...

    TheMarshal on
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    SaammielSaammiel Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    The thing that really confuses me about this is why this measure was voted for in the first place. Why is giving voters more information (about the party they belong to) a bad thing?

    Because it makes politicians beholden to the party at large, in terms of funding and support. Removing part affiliation can increase the diversity of the candidate pool since they aren't beholden to the traditional party structures(there is a study out there comparing Nebraska to Iowa and Wisconsin somewhere out there). It also eliminates decision making within party caucuses (not really an issue at the local level, but it can be in legislative bodies). And it can make commitee assignments more merit based, since you aren't just voting along party lines (again not really relevant to the OP).

    I mean, non partisan elections really aren't that exotic. The state of Texas elects all city-wide positions in such a manner. Nebraska elects their unicam in non partisan elections. Judges all over the place are elected in non partisan elections. Hell, almost every other municipal election in NC is non-partisan.

    The decision seems more stupid than racist. The DoJ is attempting to root out trouble where none exists. The president of the local NAACP stated it wasn't a harmful law. The citizens voted for it in an election that was fair as far as I can tell. Voter turn out was not low, since the ballot initiative corresponded with the presidential election, in which 11,000 of the 15,000 residents voted and black voters outnumbered white voters.

    The reasoning of the quoted bureacrat is terrible. She posits, that in a town with 2/3's black residents, eliminating the D in front of a candidates name will render black citizens unelectable. That doesn't seem supported. If the DoJ monitored the town, and examined the impact of the statute on local elections and then if it noticed problems and acted I'd be supportive. This is not that scenario.

    And this is not the reason ballot initiatives are stupid. Ballot initiatives are stupid when they allow people to make spending decisions with a simple majority and contain no provisions on how to actually pay for the spending.

    Saammiel on
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    monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Isn't the Washington Times the mooney paper?

    *Checks Wiki*

    Yep, newspaper run by right-wing cult. Not the most unbiased of sources.

    Just checked google news, and the only sources for this story I can find at FOX News and the National Review Online.

    Anybody have a source that isn't biased as fuck?
    moniker wrote: »
    King, in a letter overturning the election, said the city did not meet its burden of proof that the change “has neither a discriminatory purpose nor a discriminatory effect.” King’s letter went on to declare, “Removing the partisan cue in municipal elections will, in all likelihood, eliminate the single factor that allows black candidates to be elected to office. In Kinston elections, voters base their choice more on the race of a candidate than his or her political affiliation, and without either the appeal to party loyalty or the ability to vote a straight ticket, the limited support from white voters for a black Democratic candidate will diminish even more. And given that the city’s electorate is overwhelmingly Democratic, while the motivating factor for this change may be partisan, the effect will be strictly racial.”

    moniker on
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    monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    So somebody clarify something for me - my reading of the DoJ's underlying rationale here is that, regardless of the stated reasons for this rule change, both the intent and the ultimate effect will be to effectively disenfranchise and marginalize black folks, and that is why they're intervening. Is this accurate?

    In related news, you know what the effects would be of completely eliminating party affiliation in this nation? It would lower voter turnout while resulting in the exact same election results. You would get rid of straight-ticket voters who completely ignore politicians and instead just get the straight-ticket voters who don't completely ignore politicians. Only instead of voting for the D or the R, they would vote for the code words that all politicians started putting out there. So all of your former Dems would now make sure that every time they spoke they included the phrase "social justice" and all former Pubs would talk about "family values". And so as to ensure that they captured the entirety of the former-straight-ticket crowd, they would probably stick more closely to the party line.

    So basically you would get unofficial parties and increased polarization. Meanwhile, people would be just as ignorant when they were voting. Unless you think the guys who believe Obama isn't a US citizen are well-informed just because they listen to crazy pundits spewing conspiracy theories all day.

    You can't force the electorate to be informed - they simply don't want to be. They like their echo chambers.

    It will also manage to make ballot design even more critical for people who want to hold elected office. Being the first name for an office already has a statistically recognizable influence on the number of votes you get. Take away the party identifiers and it would seemingly increase the impact that this has, as well as the influence of incumbency seeing as you would be a known name.

    Of all the things that could address problems with the representative nature of our government, I really don't see how non-partisan elections make that much of an impact.

    moniker on
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    mrdobalinamrdobalina Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    So somebody clarify something for me - my reading of the DoJ's underlying rationale here is that, regardless of the stated reasons for this rule change, both the intent and the ultimate effect will be to effectively disenfranchise and marginalize black folks, and that is why they're intervening. Is this accurate?

    In related news, you know what the effects would be of completely eliminating party affiliation in this nation? It would lower voter turnout while resulting in the exact same election results. You would get rid of straight-ticket voters who completely ignore politicians and instead just get the straight-ticket voters who don't completely ignore politicians. Only instead of voting for the D or the R, they would vote for the code words that all politicians started putting out there. So all of your former Dems would now make sure that every time they spoke they included the phrase "social justice" and all former Pubs would talk about "family values". And so as to ensure that they captured the entirety of the former-straight-ticket crowd, they would probably stick more closely to the party line.

    So basically you would get unofficial parties and increased polarization. Meanwhile, people would be just as ignorant when they were voting. Unless you think the guys who believe Obama isn't a US citizen are well-informed just because they listen to crazy pundits spewing conspiracy theories all day.

    You can't force the electorate to be informed - they simply don't want to be. They like their echo chambers.

    You're correct, especially on a larger level. For a small municipality of 15,000 people? Local issues would trump pretty much everything.

    mrdobalina on
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    YallYall Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Irond Will wrote: »

    Would it be racist for a federal court to override a voting referendum in a white community because the court held that the referendum did not serve the purposes of democracy?

    Because the clear answer is "no".

    If the decision were to based on race and the voting preferences and relations to the race of the electorate, then possibly. Why can't you concede that as being a possiblity?
    Irond Will wrote: »
    Would it be "offensive"? Gosh maybe but I guess I don't care that much. Federal election courts exist for this basic purpose, and I really don't believe that you are actually offended on behalf of some SC town that you had never heard of before.

    That black people in the south still enjoy some higher level of protection and oversight by the courts than do white people in Nebraska is a result of not-so-distant history.

    I'm offended at the decision itself, as stated before. You can continue to ignore that claim if you wish.
    Irond Will wrote: »
    There is a lot more to "the end of racism" than extrapolating from a single sentence from Martin Luther King.

    Yes, because I said racism was over. Or I implied it. Or not. Your call.

    Yall on
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    monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    moniker wrote: »
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    So somebody clarify something for me - my reading of the DoJ's underlying rationale here is that, regardless of the stated reasons for this rule change, both the intent and the ultimate effect will be to effectively disenfranchise and marginalize black folks, and that is why they're intervening. Is this accurate?

    In related news, you know what the effects would be of completely eliminating party affiliation in this nation? It would lower voter turnout while resulting in the exact same election results. You would get rid of straight-ticket voters who completely ignore politicians and instead just get the straight-ticket voters who don't completely ignore politicians. Only instead of voting for the D or the R, they would vote for the code words that all politicians started putting out there. So all of your former Dems would now make sure that every time they spoke they included the phrase "social justice" and all former Pubs would talk about "family values". And so as to ensure that they captured the entirety of the former-straight-ticket crowd, they would probably stick more closely to the party line.

    So basically you would get unofficial parties and increased polarization. Meanwhile, people would be just as ignorant when they were voting. Unless you think the guys who believe Obama isn't a US citizen are well-informed just because they listen to crazy pundits spewing conspiracy theories all day.

    You can't force the electorate to be informed - they simply don't want to be. They like their echo chambers.

    It will also manage to make ballot design even more critical for people who want to hold elected office. Being the first name for an office already has a statistically recognizable influence on the number of votes you get. Take away the party identifiers and it would seemingly increase the impact that this has, as well as the influence of incumbency seeing as you would be a known name.

    Of all the things that could address problems with the representative nature of our government, I really don't see how non-partisan elections make that much of an impact.

    And, seriously, ballot design is horrible in some places. I mean, what the fuck? It isn't that hard to do well but you wouldn't know it from some of the samples I've seen. Thank God my district (and maybe all of Illinois) doesn't have its head up its ass on this.

    moniker on
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    DeebaserDeebaser on my way to work in a suit and a tie Ahhhh...come on fucking guyRegistered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Saammiel wrote: »

    The decision seems more stupid than racist. The DoJ is attempting to root out trouble where none exists. The president of the local NAACP stated it wasn't a harmful law. The citizens voted for it in an election that was fair as far as I can tell. Voter turn out was not low, since the ballot initiative corresponded with the presidential election, in which 11,000 of the 15,000 residents voted and black voters outnumbered white voters.


    Only 4,977 voted for this out of 11,000. Only 7,700 people out of 11,000 even voted on this initiative. That seems like a pretty large undervote.

    Deebaser on
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    DocDoc Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited October 2009
    Deebaser wrote: »
    Saammiel wrote: »

    The decision seems more stupid than racist. The DoJ is attempting to root out trouble where none exists. The president of the local NAACP stated it wasn't a harmful law. The citizens voted for it in an election that was fair as far as I can tell. Voter turn out was not low, since the ballot initiative corresponded with the presidential election, in which 11,000 of the 15,000 residents voted and black voters outnumbered white voters.


    Only 4,977 voted for this out of 11,000. Only 7,700 people out of 11,000 even voted on this initiative. That seems like a pretty large undervote.

    For a non-presidential election? It doesn't make me raise an eyebrow.

    Doc on
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    CouscousCouscous Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Doc wrote: »
    Deebaser wrote: »
    Saammiel wrote: »

    The decision seems more stupid than racist. The DoJ is attempting to root out trouble where none exists. The president of the local NAACP stated it wasn't a harmful law. The citizens voted for it in an election that was fair as far as I can tell. Voter turn out was not low, since the ballot initiative corresponded with the presidential election, in which 11,000 of the 15,000 residents voted and black voters outnumbered white voters.


    Only 4,977 voted for this out of 11,000. Only 7,700 people out of 11,000 even voted on this initiative. That seems like a pretty large undervote.

    For a non-presidential election? It doesn't make me raise an eyebrow.

    "Who the fuck cares" applies to these stupid feel good kind of initiatives.

    Couscous on
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    monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Doc wrote: »
    Deebaser wrote: »
    Saammiel wrote: »

    The decision seems more stupid than racist. The DoJ is attempting to root out trouble where none exists. The president of the local NAACP stated it wasn't a harmful law. The citizens voted for it in an election that was fair as far as I can tell. Voter turn out was not low, since the ballot initiative corresponded with the presidential election, in which 11,000 of the 15,000 residents voted and black voters outnumbered white voters.


    Only 4,977 voted for this out of 11,000. Only 7,700 people out of 11,000 even voted on this initiative. That seems like a pretty large undervote.

    For a non-presidential election? It doesn't make me raise an eyebrow.

    Yeah, that seems to be a pretty good turnout.

    moniker on
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    DeebaserDeebaser on my way to work in a suit and a tie Ahhhh...come on fucking guyRegistered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Doc wrote: »
    Deebaser wrote: »
    Saammiel wrote: »

    The decision seems more stupid than racist. The DoJ is attempting to root out trouble where none exists. The president of the local NAACP stated it wasn't a harmful law. The citizens voted for it in an election that was fair as far as I can tell. Voter turn out was not low, since the ballot initiative corresponded with the presidential election, in which 11,000 of the 15,000 residents voted and black voters outnumbered white voters.


    Only 4,977 voted for this out of 11,000. Only 7,700 people out of 11,000 even voted on this initiative. That seems like a pretty large undervote.

    For a non-presidential election? It doesn't make me raise an eyebrow.

    No, 11,000 people voted. 30% of those people didn't click a box on this item on the ballot. That's a pretty major undervote.

    edit: 2008 was a presidential election

    Deebaser on
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    enlightenedbumenlightenedbum Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Wasn't it on the ballot in November?

    enlightenedbum on
    Self-righteousness is incompatible with coalition building.
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    ElJeffeElJeffe Not actually a mod. Roaming the streets, waving his gun around.Moderator, ClubPA Mod Emeritus
    edited October 2009
    moniker wrote: »
    Doc wrote: »
    Deebaser wrote: »
    Saammiel wrote: »

    The decision seems more stupid than racist. The DoJ is attempting to root out trouble where none exists. The president of the local NAACP stated it wasn't a harmful law. The citizens voted for it in an election that was fair as far as I can tell. Voter turn out was not low, since the ballot initiative corresponded with the presidential election, in which 11,000 of the 15,000 residents voted and black voters outnumbered white voters.


    Only 4,977 voted for this out of 11,000. Only 7,700 people out of 11,000 even voted on this initiative. That seems like a pretty large undervote.

    For a non-presidential election? It doesn't make me raise an eyebrow.

    Yeah, that seems to be a pretty good turnout.

    Ditto. Unless you could show me that, like, white folks almost unanimously voted for it and blacks all either voted against it or didn't show, I would be hard pressed to see concern there.

    ElJeffe on
    I submitted an entry to Lego Ideas, and if 10,000 people support me, it'll be turned into an actual Lego set!If you'd like to see and support my submission, follow this link.
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    Irond WillIrond Will WARNING: NO HURTFUL COMMENTS, PLEASE!!!!! Cambridge. MAModerator Mod Emeritus
    edited October 2009
    Saammiel wrote: »
    And this is not the reason ballot initiatives are stupid. Ballot initiatives are stupid when they allow people to make spending decisions with a simple majority and contain no provisions on how to actually pay for the spending.

    SO your average citizen is not capable of making responsible spending decisions on a ballot but are capable of making fair, responsible and judicious decisions concerning the conduct of elections in referenda?

    This makes no sense. If anything the sanctity of elections are a much more sacred, sensitive and non-correcting mechanism than spending or budget issues.

    Irond Will on
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    DeebaserDeebaser on my way to work in a suit and a tie Ahhhh...come on fucking guyRegistered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Does anyone have the text of this ballot initiative?

    Deebaser on
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    SaammielSaammiel Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    moniker wrote: »
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    So somebody clarify something for me - my reading of the DoJ's underlying rationale here is that, regardless of the stated reasons for this rule change, both the intent and the ultimate effect will be to effectively disenfranchise and marginalize black folks, and that is why they're intervening. Is this accurate?

    In related news, you know what the effects would be of completely eliminating party affiliation in this nation? It would lower voter turnout while resulting in the exact same election results. You would get rid of straight-ticket voters who completely ignore politicians and instead just get the straight-ticket voters who don't completely ignore politicians. Only instead of voting for the D or the R, they would vote for the code words that all politicians started putting out there. So all of your former Dems would now make sure that every time they spoke they included the phrase "social justice" and all former Pubs would talk about "family values". And so as to ensure that they captured the entirety of the former-straight-ticket crowd, they would probably stick more closely to the party line.

    So basically you would get unofficial parties and increased polarization. Meanwhile, people would be just as ignorant when they were voting. Unless you think the guys who believe Obama isn't a US citizen are well-informed just because they listen to crazy pundits spewing conspiracy theories all day.

    You can't force the electorate to be informed - they simply don't want to be. They like their echo chambers.

    It will also manage to make ballot design even more critical for people who want to hold elected office. Being the first name for an office already has a statistically recognizable influence on the number of votes you get. Take away the party identifiers and it would seemingly increase the impact that this has, as well as the influence of incumbency seeing as you would be a known name.

    Of all the things that could address problems with the representative nature of our government, I really don't see how non-partisan elections make that much of an impact.

    There are ways to change the listing of candidates on ballots in an attempt to eliminate first name advantage. That is a problem that is seperate from non partisan elections anyhow, since it even extends an advantage in partisan ones, though perhaps not as large an advantage.

    On the non-national stage, I really don't know if El Jeffe's theories hold.

    When you are dealing with smaller districts, on the level of a couple hundred thousand per district, you generally aren't going to get the sort of socio-economic polarization that lends itself to a divide alongside strongly partisan lines. At least that I've seen, but maybe it is different in other areas. Now, as you get into larger geographic areas, the divide gets larger. So states like California, with its roughly 500,000 citizens per assembly member (wtf California?), would probably see something like non partisan candidates hewing to generalized templates, at least at first.

    But in say Minnesota, with about 35,000 people per House seat, I think you would probably get two candidates who are fairly similiar but who fit the socioeconomic profile of the area. So you would be voting for candidate A because he is supportive of an education bond and candidate B is not, or whatever.

    And that is largely how it plays out in Nebraska at least. The divide is urban vs rural, not social justice vs family values. And the Senators here certainly don't stick to stringent party lines. Even Senators who are registered Democrat in terms of voting record almost universally run on pro-life positions for instance.

    Saammiel on
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    Irond WillIrond Will WARNING: NO HURTFUL COMMENTS, PLEASE!!!!! Cambridge. MAModerator Mod Emeritus
    edited October 2009
    Yall wrote: »
    Irond Will wrote: »

    Would it be racist for a federal court to override a voting referendum in a white community because the court held that the referendum did not serve the purposes of democracy?

    Because the clear answer is "no".

    If the decision were to based on race and the voting preferences and relations to the race of the electorate, then possibly. Why can't you concede that as being a possiblity?

    Wait - are you really saying that simply acknowledging that black people in the South vote overwhelmingly Democratic is "racist"? Are you saying that it's "racist" that black people in the South will organize within the Democratic party for local elections?

    The court held that the effect of the law would be to make it difficult for black people in this district to continue voting for "their" candidates. This is, in fact, true, as is obvious to everyone here. In fact, it is precisely because this is true that you'd like to see the referendum upheld.

    I am really trying to get at what, specifically, you consider racist here. It is not clear to me, but it seems as though you are trying to get offended for someone else. It would be awfully chivalric if it weren't transparently self-serving.

    Irond Will on
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    mrdobalinamrdobalina Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Irond Will wrote: »
    The court held that the effect of the law would be to make it difficult for black people in this district to continue voting for "their" candidates. This is, in fact, true, as is obvious to everyone here. In fact, it is precisely because this is true that you'd like to see the referendum upheld.

    This strikes me as a special measure of silly.

    mrdobalina on
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    Irond WillIrond Will WARNING: NO HURTFUL COMMENTS, PLEASE!!!!! Cambridge. MAModerator Mod Emeritus
    edited October 2009
    mrdobalina wrote: »
    Irond Will wrote: »
    The court held that the effect of the law would be to make it difficult for black people in this district to continue voting for "their" candidates. This is, in fact, true, as is obvious to everyone here. In fact, it is precisely because this is true that you'd like to see the referendum upheld.

    This strikes me as a special measure of silly.

    Look, if upholding this measure didn't have the effect of giving Republicans an advantage in a majority-black district, the Washington Times wouldn't have published it and you wouldn't care about it.

    Irond Will on
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    KanamitKanamit Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    moniker wrote: »
    ElJeffe wrote: »
    So somebody clarify something for me - my reading of the DoJ's underlying rationale here is that, regardless of the stated reasons for this rule change, both the intent and the ultimate effect will be to effectively disenfranchise and marginalize black folks, and that is why they're intervening. Is this accurate?

    In related news, you know what the effects would be of completely eliminating party affiliation in this nation? It would lower voter turnout while resulting in the exact same election results. You would get rid of straight-ticket voters who completely ignore politicians and instead just get the straight-ticket voters who don't completely ignore politicians. Only instead of voting for the D or the R, they would vote for the code words that all politicians started putting out there. So all of your former Dems would now make sure that every time they spoke they included the phrase "social justice" and all former Pubs would talk about "family values". And so as to ensure that they captured the entirety of the former-straight-ticket crowd, they would probably stick more closely to the party line.

    So basically you would get unofficial parties and increased polarization. Meanwhile, people would be just as ignorant when they were voting. Unless you think the guys who believe Obama isn't a US citizen are well-informed just because they listen to crazy pundits spewing conspiracy theories all day.

    You can't force the electorate to be informed - they simply don't want to be. They like their echo chambers.

    It will also manage to make ballot design even more critical for people who want to hold elected office. Being the first name for an office already has a statistically recognizable influence on the number of votes you get. Take away the party identifiers and it would seemingly increase the impact that this has, as well as the influence of incumbency seeing as you would be a known name.

    Of all the things that could address problems with the representative nature of our government, I really don't see how non-partisan elections make that much of an impact.
    No kidding. My hometown has non-partisan elections, and the city council has had the same people on it for at least a decade and organize themselves based on gender. Not to mention that instead of getting things done they're usually arguing over petty things like proper etiquette when encountering stray kittens (no joke).

    Kanamit on
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    mrdobalinamrdobalina Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Irond Will wrote: »
    mrdobalina wrote: »
    Irond Will wrote: »
    The court held that the effect of the law would be to make it difficult for black people in this district to continue voting for "their" candidates. This is, in fact, true, as is obvious to everyone here. In fact, it is precisely because this is true that you'd like to see the referendum upheld.

    This strikes me as a special measure of silly.

    Look, if upholding this measure didn't have the effect of giving Republicans an advantage in a majority-black district, the Washington Times wouldn't have published it and you wouldn't care about it.

    In order to reach that conclusion you have to state that black voters are incapable of voting based on merit and issues (in a LOCAL election, nonetheless) and are beholden to seeing a party affiliation label in order to exercise their rights.

    That's such a stretch, such an insult and such a....

    I mean, you wrote that by removing the "D", black people will have difficulties voting for their candidates. That strikes me as patronizingly racist.

    mrdobalina on
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    Irond WillIrond Will WARNING: NO HURTFUL COMMENTS, PLEASE!!!!! Cambridge. MAModerator Mod Emeritus
    edited October 2009
    mrdobalina wrote: »
    In order to reach that conclusion you have to state that black voters are incapable of voting based on merit and issues (in a LOCAL election, nonetheless) and are beholden to seeing a party affiliation label in order to exercise their rights.

    That's such a stretch, such an insult and such a....

    I mean, you wrote that by removing the "D", black people will have difficulties voting for their candidates. That strikes me as patronizingly racist.

    It would be true of most localities. I'm sure that the Democrats would love to remove partisan signifiers on ballots in Republican districts and I'm sure that if they proposed this you would object to it.

    Do you know the name, party affiliation and positions of every candidate running for dog-catcher in your district? Do you expect your neighbor to know this? So why to you so strongly expect black people in bumfuck SC to know this that to imply otherwise would be deeply offensive, racist, patronizing, etc?

    For all their incessant whining about political correctness I have never heard so many people so quick to pull the trigger of crying "racism" as insincere Republicans.

    Irond Will on
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    mrdobalinamrdobalina Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Irond Will wrote: »
    mrdobalina wrote: »
    In order to reach that conclusion you have to state that black voters are incapable of voting based on merit and issues (in a LOCAL election, nonetheless) and are beholden to seeing a party affiliation label in order to exercise their rights.

    That's such a stretch, such an insult and such a....

    I mean, you wrote that by removing the "D", black people will have difficulties voting for their candidates. That strikes me as patronizingly racist.

    It would be true of most localities. I'm sure that the Democrats would love to remove partisan signifiers on ballots in Republican districts and I'm sure that if they proposed this you would object to it.

    Do you know the name, party affiliation and positions of every candidate running for dog-catcher in your district? Do you expect your neighbor to know this? So why to you so strongly expect black people in bumfuck SC to know this that to imply otherwise would be deeply offensive, racist, patronizing, etc?

    You're attributing an opinion to me that I don't hold.

    I couldn't care less if party affiliation is included at that level. I couldn't care less if it happened in a conservative area. All of that though is beside the point. This city made that decision. They did it in a way that doesn't seem to be fraudulent, racist, or designed to disenfranchise voters.

    The DOJ decided to come in and tell them that you don't know what's good for you, so you better listen to us.

    mrdobalina on
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    YallYall Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Irond Will wrote: »
    Yall wrote: »
    Irond Will wrote: »

    Would it be racist for a federal court to override a voting referendum in a white community because the court held that the referendum did not serve the purposes of democracy?

    Because the clear answer is "no".

    If the decision were to based on race and the voting preferences and relations to the race of the electorate, then possibly. Why can't you concede that as being a possiblity?

    Wait - are you really saying that simply acknowledging that black people in the South vote overwhelmingly Democratic is "racist"? Are you saying that it's "racist" that black people in the South will organize within the Democratic party for local elections?

    The court held that the effect of the law would be to make it difficult for black people in this district to continue voting for "their" candidates. This is, in fact, true, as is obvious to everyone here. In fact, it is precisely because this is true that you'd like to see the referendum upheld.

    I am really trying to get at what, specifically, you consider racist here. It is not clear to me, but it seems as though you are trying to get offended for someone else. It would be awfully chivalric if it weren't transparently self-serving.

    Perhaps if you spent more time considering what I've said and less time trying to insult me it would be more clear.

    But as a sucker for an argument, I guess I'll continue to explain and defend my assertion that the decision itself was racist, but I'll deal with that in a moment.

    Personal BS not germane to the topic :
    I'm not "trying to get offended". I saw something that I perceived as being racist. Regardless of whether I'm right or wrong in this instance, do you really have a problem with the fact that I find something racist offensive? I can assure you when I see something that my wee little mind perceives as unfair, it offends me. You could say it offends my sensibilities or whatever. Another way to phrase it might be "I don't like that because I believe it to be unfair". Would that be more to your liking?

    Apparently you are having difficulty understanding that, or based upon part of my posts are assuming something about me (like that I'm republican or racist - I'm neither) and it is causing you to view my opinion as one of ignorance or racism.
    Back on target. As stated earlier, I believe that this perceived necessary protection (where there is no reason to believe it is needed, as evidenced by the NAACP's comments) is in and of itself racist. It's tantamount to being told - "no, no without our intervention you poor black folk won't be able to decide things on your own".

    Yall on
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