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Comment Archives: stories: News & Opinion: The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch

Re: “There's Election Integrity, and Then There's Election Integrity

I'm an independent, non-aligned voter veering between progressive and libertarian. In the past election, I was chastised for refusing to vote for Clinton (or for that matter, Trump).

Here's my beef with the Democrats (I have seen the enemy and they are Republicans): decide if you (Dems) want an open party or a members-only club. Open parties hold open primaries - everyone is invited, let's boogie!. Members-only clubs want to see your ID or inked wrist before admitting you to the dance.

Eliminate and disavow Superdelegates. This will gain points from folks who believe in one person, one vote - a quaint notion. While eliminating the obvious references to Orwell's "some animals (the pigs) are more equal than other animals."

Stop taking truckloads of donations from the folks you promise to rein in and impose new regulations on. It makes you look stupid or deceitful (pick your poison). And for goodness sake, don't take millions in speaker's fees from the same folks because "that is what they offered."

The Dems screwed the pooch bigtime, they nominated (with an assist from the DNC) the only candidate on the planet capable of losing an election for POTUS to the biggest and worst joke to ever run for the office in our history.


22 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Rick Spanier on 07/13/2017 at 5:14 PM

Re: “There's Election Integrity, and Then There's Election Integrity

Proof positive that there is no election integrity.

2 likes, 18 dislikes
Posted by Norm T on 07/13/2017 at 4:27 PM

Re: “There's Election Integrity, and Then There's Election Integrity

Then what did you call the election of Barack Obama, who by all accounts had missed the majority of votes, never run a business, or proposed a piece of legislation, opposed same sex marriage, and touted Christianity as "his" faith?

The Democratic Party dumped Hillary to present us a candidate who was not exactly as he said. Yet voters fell for the hope and change schtick. You were not bothered. Trump comes along and tells us exactly who he is. Enough Americans can look past his flaws and give him an electoral college win. Even in the face of major corporations, the mainstream media, most American colleges and even the Republican party.

I would say you are unable to give voters the credit that they deserve. The nation will survive and possibly thrive the next eight years.

3 likes, 21 dislikes
Posted by Betsy Ross on 07/13/2017 at 3:56 PM

Re: “There's Election Integrity, and Then There's Election Integrity

To what extent will a substantially inequitable economic base always subvert a theoretically equitable political / electoral superstructure built on it?

"The market measures influence in dollars, while a democracy, in principle, measure votes. In practice, at some level of inequality, the dollars infect and overwhelm the votes. Reasonable people can disagree about the levels of inequality that a democracy can tolerate without becoming an utter charade. My judgment is that we have been in the 'charade zone' for quite some time."

James C. Scott, Sterling Professor of Political Science at Yale

16 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Electoral integrity? Electoral politics measures $s, not votes. on 07/13/2017 at 3:48 PM

Re: “There's Election Integrity, and Then There's Election Integrity

Our Democracy, as any Democracy, is inherently contentious in the competition of Political Ideologies; initially with the Federalists vs. Anti-Federalists; now with, in the main, Democrats vs. Republicans. We have developed, sadly and dangerously, into a "Democracy" that is controlled by powerful Financial Interests Groups that are using their money to "buy" "Politicians" and, as a result, control the electoral process.

The American Voter needs to wake up and participate in the electoral process at all levels of Government; critically evaluate each Candidate, using their notion of what is in the best interests of all US Citizens and their Understanding of our Constitutionally Protected Liberties. We will lose the latter if we do not.

The question is: as a car driving toward a precipice; are we at the fulcrum or have we moved beyond? The Election of Donald Trump is NOT Hopeful and dangerously symptomatic.

21 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Francis Saitta on 07/13/2017 at 3:22 PM

Re: “There's Election Integrity, and Then There's Election Integrity

Seems like you're assuming, David, that your party has some kind of monopoly on the "clean" or "honest" use of terms like "electoral integrity." But of the two major parties, it's the "Democrats" who are more out of alignment these days with their own supposedly "democratic" electoral goals, putting them in a situation where to accomplish their ACTUAL goals they must constantly dissemble and dress their real goals up in language that conceals what they are. Of the two parties, their public language surrounding electoral politics is, in general, more dishonest.

The Rs do what they've always done and always claimed to do, represent the interests of capital: the wealthy, business owners, financiers and corporate executives, and that should be no surprisie. They imply in the title of their party (Republican) that they believe that some are better qualified to make governance decisions than others, and from their practice when it comes to the management of access to voting, it appears that they may tend to generalize that attitude a little further, to cover fitness for enfranchisement, not just fitness for governance. It outrages Democrats, but it's consistent with their overall clearly expressed outlook and goals. The Democrats, on the other hand, imply in the title of their party that everyone deserves a seat at the table and everyone's vote deserves to be counted. Yet when it comes to primary contests, which, as Lessig has repeatedly pointed out, are a critical part of getting governance to democratically reflect the policy priorities of the electorate, they stack the deck with Superdelegates and primaries in which Independents cannot vote. Then, if the electoral college undermines them in the general election, a circumstance greater proportions of the population observe and understand than the more "under the radar" manipulations in the primaries, they hypocritically protest how unfair and un-democratic it is.

The question that occurs to me frequently these days is: why should I believe a word the Ds say any more, on any subject? They tell us they want to help immigrants when there are many indications they're actually serving the interests of capital by diluting the labor pool, suppressing wages. They tell us they want to help borrowers when a thorough examination of their policy proposals would seem to suggest they're again serving the interests of capital by in effect enabling irresponsible banks to give out bad loans and then bail themselves out with taxpayer-sourced funds. They tell us they're against outsourcing while they outsource vulnerable labor pools and try to hide the fact that they've done so in public forums. More of same. They tell us they're for integration while they tolerate, excuse, and enable segregated public school systems which deliver poor services to low-SES minorities and superior services to high-SES Anglo-majority populations, a blatant and inexcusable violation of the kinds of ideals the party has managed to stand for in past decades.

I donated to, walked for, phone banked for, and voted for Democratic candidates for decades. It was watching, at both the local and national level, the electoral cycle leading up to November 2016 that brought me face to face with what the Democrats have become. You know, little things like catching local Democratic operatives in conspicuous lies and watching their local and national media lapdogs blather on about Trump, Trump, Trump ad infinitum, ad NAUSEAM while reps of the party opposing Trump busily sold their laboring constituents down the river to their corporate masters, kicked grass-roots funded candidates to the curb, and funded the campaigns they favored almost entirely with money from special interests. Out of town corporate donations for the TUSD Board elections. Wall Street money for that great defender of labor and the consumer, Ms. Clinton, while she and her cronies in the DNC and "unbiased" media outlets like the NYTimes schemed to undercut and disparage Sanders, her grass-roots funded primary opponent, a seasoned public servant who happened to be a much more genuine and credible defender of the interests of labor and the consumer than she was.

Bottom line is the outraged citizen response you're looking for vis a vis the opposing party's behaviors, schemes, and definitions of terms simply cannot be there for you, David, when the conflict between the parties is no longer, as it used to be to some degree, between capital and labor, business interests vs. the Common Good, but rather what it has become: special interest cohort A vs. special interest cohort B. Vanilla flavored capital vs. rainbow flavored capital.

Ordinary citizens have little reason to back either one, and, as was pointed out above, neither has much credibility when we're talking about "electoral integrity" in the properly democratic (not "Democratic") sense of the term.

20 likes, 18 dislikes
Posted by Your party doesn't serve "Electoral Integrity" either. on 07/13/2017 at 1:52 PM

Re: “The Weekly List: 11 Things To Do In Tucson In The Next 10 Days

Thank you so much for this amazing description of Los Guapos!!!! We certainly appreciate the love of our fans, and promise to only get better. Tucson Weekly, once again, you have made my day!!!! Engel Indo.

11 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Engelbert Indo on 07/13/2017 at 11:28 AM

Re: “There's Election Integrity, and Then There's Election Integrity

There are about 20M non-citizens of voting age in this country. We should probably figure out how many of those people are illegally voting in our elections. And frankly, there's more evidence of non-citizen voting than there is of voting machines being hacked to change the vote count. No, Diebold did not steal the 2000 election for George W. Bush.

3 likes, 21 dislikes
Posted by Nathan K on 07/13/2017 at 10:11 AM

Re: “Koch Bros. and ALEC Shout From the Rooftops: "Stop Rooftop Solar!"

[phone ring]
"Hello. Oh, hi John, what's going on?"

"Oh, running out of space on your batteries?"

"Sure, sure, I have space on mine, and I'll pay you for your excess. Sure, just bring the batteries over to my house later this evening, I'll swap 'em out with you for a couple of my empty batteries, and pay you what we usually pay each other. No need to involve the utility companies. Okay, see you then. Bye."


Go to Hell, Koch.

Death to ALEC!!

11 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Agnostick on 07/13/2017 at 9:21 AM

Re: “There's Election Integrity, and Then There's Election Integrity

"It should get rid of any computer voting system without a paper trail" --- yes, this. Every computer system is hackable.

22 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by bslap on 07/13/2017 at 5:27 AM

Re: “There's Election Integrity, and Then There's Election Integrity

Being against illegal immigration, or wanting to reduce immigration to more historically normal levels, doesn't make you "anti-immigration". Dishonesty in the media today is just astounding.

9 likes, 31 dislikes
Posted by bslap on 07/13/2017 at 5:24 AM

Re: “There's Election Integrity, and Then There's Election Integrity

The use of euphemisms or benign titles to carryout nefarious acts has a long history around the world and in America.

Who can forget "lebensraum" (living space) -- one of the so-called justifications for Nazi Germany to seize and occupy neighboring nations in Europe, or "citizens united" -- which removed any hindrance to the open buying and selling of elected officials?

And speaking of Nazi Germany and the collection of personal information and political affiliations, may I present "The Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity."

36 likes, 9 dislikes
Posted by sgsmith on 07/12/2017 at 5:41 PM

Re: “Koch Bros. and ALEC Shout From the Rooftops: "Stop Rooftop Solar!"

So then, solar is going to eliminate climate change. That is great news.

2 likes, 22 dislikes
Posted by Hot Damn! on 07/12/2017 at 2:08 PM

Re: “Koch Bros. and ALEC Shout From the Rooftops: "Stop Rooftop Solar!"

I beg to differ with this statement:

"The reliability of roof top generation at this time is quite questionable, very few of us can live off of roof top generation."

On the contrary, learning to live with consuming far less energy per capita than U.S. energy hogs do now is the ONLY way we will be able to avoid catastrophic climate change. Wind and solar, as critically important as they are, do not buy us a get-out-of-climate-catastrophe-free card, and will only become sufficient to meet our needs if we reduce the amount of energy we consume. It's time for Americans to grow up and accept that fact.

That said, we have a looong way to go before we run up against the sort of system limitations to renewables that are discussed above. In the meantime, we need to do everything we can can to transition to renewables as quickly as possible, which certainly includes preserving net metering. Even in a state like Arizona, where we could meet all of our energy needs with solar alone, renewables are still just a tiny fraction of our energy profile.

23 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by skinnyman on 07/12/2017 at 12:22 PM

Re: “Koch Bros. and ALEC Shout From the Rooftops: "Stop Rooftop Solar!"

...and in the interim until a renewable based system can be implemented, we won't be requiring representatives of the renewable and conventional energy industries to work together to achieve that with a minimum of damage to their respective labor forces and at minimal cost to the consumer? Rather, under a Republican administration we will allow people who profit from the conventional system to try to delay, or, if possible, shut down the growth of the renewable energy sector, in a context where it's clearly in the long term best interests of the environment and the American economy as a whole (not certain sectors of it) to become less dependent on energy available through the oil, coal, and natural gas industries? Or, if the other major political party were in power, we would allow their affiliated elected representatives to manipulate policy to stimulate growth of the renewable sector before the grid has been altered to use the energy the renewable sector generates efficiently?

Where is the authority that should be able to mediate between self-interested parties to ensure that the goal is the common good, not competing individual goods? (What the government SHOULD be doing, if there is any justification for the collective economic power of the people being pooled through taxation.)

Nowhere, it does not exist. Not in this system, where the government, which should represent the people, has been hijacked by the money interests, and we now have a system where the Rs represent one set of money interests and the Ds another. The LABOR & CONSUMER components of the capitalist system have been left unrepresented, while various factions within the CAPITAL & VENDOR components occupy all the effective seats at the collective bargaining table.

If there is a solution to the current gridlock, it is to organize to give LABOR & the CONSUMER, who need clean, efficiently organized, and affordable energy, a voice in the conversation. Contra Safier, this is not something we should still be looking to the Democratic Party and its candidates to do. They have long since made themselves part of the problem. Whether the ultimate goal is to reform the Democrats from within or take over the place in the system they have in the past sometimes occupied, it's only the kind of external pressure a third party can apply that can at this point improve the situation of "all the rest of us: teachers and nurses, cops and factory workers, new immigrants and small business owners, the unemployed, the retired, veterans, and the plain old middle and working class."

Not many of us have a stake in the energy industries, either renewable or conventional, but the vast majority of us are in the position of having to LABOR to earn the money to PURCHASE energy, and it's the so-called "Democratic" Party's failure to effectively organize the laboring and purchasing power in the country (instead of a subset of the capital and vendor power) that is a very large part of the problem on this policy issue and on many, many others.

14 likes, 17 dislikes
Posted by It is well past time for a viable, grass-roots funded 3rd party. on 07/12/2017 at 7:24 AM

Re: “Koch Bros. and ALEC Shout From the Rooftops: "Stop Rooftop Solar!"

This issue is more complicated than most of the discussions about it. There is no question that renewable engery sources are the future and possible large job creator in The countries that act positively to promote. The US can be the Saudia Arabia of wind power and the west is a natural source of solar power. Solar Power is the source of all power on the planet and is available in quantities that far exceed our future needs. However, transition to renewable energy is a complicated process that completely transforms our electric utilities. There will always be a need for a backup engery source and electric utilities provide that and will provide that for the foreseeable future. The problem utilities face is that renewable energy sources are not continuous and availableability usually does not match demand. The current system is a real time system with very little energy storage capability to shift energy availableability to times of peak demand. The technology for this is developing but not proven and very expensive.

The reliability of roof top generation at this time is quite questionable, very few of us can live off of roof top generation.

The result is redundant generation and transmission capabilities until a newer renewable based system can be implemented. This is going to be a very expensive but necessary process. Yes, like in most situations the consumer will be paying and that is not an easy sell even if Utilities were willing to take on the task.

22 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by VerusX on 07/12/2017 at 5:37 AM

Re: “Koch Bros. and ALEC Shout From the Rooftops: "Stop Rooftop Solar!"

If people have not figured it out by now, governments and corporations will ALWAYS do what is best for them, regardless of all the public releases, public relations, advertising, and public service announcements and on and on.

The electorate and consumers are only a revenue stream for both governments and corporations.

Decreasing costs and increasing the bottom line is the primary goal. If the public is served or services are provided, consider yourself fortunate and move on, but always remember whether it is the government or corporations caveat emptor ALWAYS applies.

27 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by sgsmith on 07/12/2017 at 3:13 AM

Re: “Koch Bros. and ALEC Shout From the Rooftops: "Stop Rooftop Solar!"

Isn't the issue here that the utilities are stuck with the ongoing costs of maintaining the grid, while, as more people adopt solar, the utilities have fewer rate payers to whom to spread that cost?

8 likes, 24 dislikes
Posted by Nathan K on 07/11/2017 at 6:24 PM

Re: “T.H.R.E.A.T. Watch: The Frog Pot Heats Up

Francis( Big Words) Siatta is big on the constitution. Wonder how he feels about the 2nd amendment? Or does he just like the ones he agrees with.

3 likes, 20 dislikes
Posted by CW13 on 07/11/2017 at 2:20 PM

Re: “Koch Bros. and ALEC Shout From the Rooftops: "Stop Rooftop Solar!"

The first paragraph reads like every Democratic proposal to punish/reward those they decide on. Nothing new.

12 likes, 34 dislikes
Posted by Things Go Better With Koch on 07/11/2017 at 12:14 PM

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