Late In The Game

Yeah, we’re all tired.

Yes we are.

But it’s almost over. Three-and-a-half days to go.

However, when normal, rational people are tired, that’s when they say silly things. So I’m gonna take a minute to call out the Votemaster I love the site. I check it every day, and it’s chock full of great information–for free! So it might seem less than gracious for me to complain. Yet here I am.

Today, in commentary, Dr. Tanenbaum said two things that raised flags for me. First, there’s this:

A new NY Times/CBS
shows that 59% of the voters feel that Sarah Palin is not qualified to
be Vice President, let alone President.
These people question McCain’s ability to pick qualified people for his
administration. The ironic thing is
that the choice of Palin was probably forced on him by Steve Schmidt.
McCain barely knew her (he met her once
for 15 minutes), whereas he has traveled extensively with his long-time
good friend Joe Lieberman. The choice of Lieberman would have enhanced
McCain’s maverick status, shown that he was willing to buck his own
party (“Country first”) and given the ticket an experienced politician
who most people feel could be President (as demonstrated by
polling in 2000).
Schmidt undoubtedly told McCain that the base wouldn’t accept him due
to his pro-choice stance on abortion. The old McCain
would have said: “Screw the base” to Schmidt, but McCain V2.0 did what
he was told. If McCain loses, the
conversation between McCain and Schmidt probably won’t be real friendly.

Look, I know it’s hard to accept this, but McCain was never a Maverick. That was all hype. You can’t say that he’s now selling out things he once strongly believed, and ain’t it a shame to see such a great man brought so low by the meatgrinder of politics. No. He’s always pandered to his base. What’s different now is that he’s pandering to a different base than in 2000. He knew that he couldn’t out-crazy Alan Keyes (among others) with the religious nuts in 2000. So he pandered to the media. And it worked beautifully. They just couldn’t get enough of Mr. Straight Talk, who wasn’t like all those other career politicians, despite the fact that McCain was, uh, a career politician. In 2008, when he was basically the last man standing after the primaries, he knew he’d have to pander to the religious nuts, and be hostile to the media. I mean, the power of the press notwithstanding, there are a LOT more votes to be had among the megachurch set than among the Beltway chatterers. Also, you don’t win elections by bucking your own party. Duh. They are the ones who donate and volunteer. You don’t get to move into 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. without them.

Secondly, there’s this:

The [election] battles could end up in the courts again, revolving about issues
like which precinct people whose
house has been foreclosed should vote in (where the house is or where
the homeless center they are now in is), etc. Also, what happens to
someone whose name on the voter rolls
doesn’t match the name in the drivers’ license data base (possibly due
to a clerical error)? Both sides have thousands of lawyers already
chartered to fight these cases in court. It is even conceivable that
the Supreme Court makes a key decision
again, as in 2000, and Obama doesn’t accept it (as Gore did). There is
one level appeal above the Supreme
Court: Congress. The new Congress will be sworn on on January 5, 2009
and will count the electoral votes on
January 6, 2009. If one or more members of both the House and Senate
object to the electoral votes from some state claiming
the election there was tainted, Congress will debate the matter.
Ultimately, it could vote (with
each member having one vote) to disqualify a state because the members
do not believe the election there was run
correctly. If no candidate gets 270 electoral votes after any
disqualifications, then the House
would elect the President, with each state getting one vote. It would
be messy and controversial, but
having 435 newly elected representatives elect the President would be a
lot less controversial than having
9 appointed Supreme Court justices do the job. In some countries, the
leader of the largest party in the lower house of parliament becomes
Prime Minister,
so the idea of the legislature choosing the executive is quite common.

I know that Dr. Tanenbaum is a talented programmer and stat compiler, but he apparently isn’t too plugged in to the crazy right-wing scene in the US. Not that he should be, mind you. Those people cause lots of stress. But having the House of Representatives pick the President would NOT be less controversial than having the Supremes do it. It doesn’t matter that there’s a Constitutional provision for it. Itreally doesn’t matter if something is common in other countries. If there’s anything but a clear win on (or shortly after) election day, the right-wing crazies will be shrieking like harpies about the second coming of Abu Bakr Schickelgruber Antichrist Lenin (or something like that). Even if there is a clear win by ten p.m. on the fourth, they’re still gonna have to be dragged, kicking and screaming, into the next administration. 

The talk-radio bozos are already melting down. Theshit I heard today seemed like grounds for slander suits. They’re flinging all the shit they can, and they’re completely disconnected from anything approaching reality. If there’s anything but a clear victory, these yahoos are going to start screaming for secession.

So, Dr. Tanenbaum, I have nothing but respect for you, and gratitude for the service you provide us. But please, sir. Get some rest. And don’t worry about paying attention to the crazies. That’s what we’re here for.

6 thoughts on “Late In The Game

  1. It’s scary; I had a nightmare the other night about Obama’s plane being shot down by the US Army. Wouldn’t put it past them, frankly, the way the right wing is stirring the shit.

  2. It’s been a long, hard day and the radio station at my job just switched over to an all-Christmas-music format. Midafternoon on Halloween. I am now listening to “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree”, ohnowait, we’re now on “We Three Kings”. It’s official. I can’t be shocked by anything anymore.

  3. If there’s anything but a clear victory, these yahoos are going to start screaming for secession.
    And that would be just fine, but they don’t get to pick what parts seceed; but get to move to the part designated for secessation.
    That would be Guantanamo. Pack the wingnuts into Guantanamo and say “okay, that’s no longer part of the USA!”
    Problem. Solved.
    If Guantanamo is too small and hot for them, I suggest ANWR.

  4. And why would a clear victory mean anything to these crazies? After all, they make up their own reality.

  5. Sue, I think that’s against the Geneva Conventions. You might want to get in touch with Amnesty International or something.
    That said, I think such a fate would be perfect for the wingnuts.

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