!! GUNS & BALLOTS !! ‚ÄĒ A WAKE-UP CALL

Photo by Jubre2016, Wikimedia Commons (fair use)

Q:¬† What’s more slimy than a salamander, and more slippery than a one-eyed eel after coitus?¬†Answer:¬†A Gerrymander!¬†

Many voters know that politicians from both sides of the aisle own the game simply because they know where you store your ballot, which is to say those slippery pols know where you live, and which¬† party you joined when you registered to vote.¬†¬† Both sides want to keep it this way so they can rig the primaries by redesigning the districts after each census ‚ÄĒ by drawing congressional districts to favor one party over another ‚ÄĒ first done in Massachusetts by a pol named Mr Gerry, which district was said to look like a salamander. ¬†And most voters feel powerless to do anything about these unbalanced districts. ¬†But wait!

Few voters recognize that the smoky backrooms of the party bosses are where elections are decided. ¬†Nobody can run for office on “their” ticket without kissing their ring.¬† If you were to be allowed onto the primary ballot, you owe them! And they will extract repayment, as this is how the parties control us..

Voters in a few states have been alert enough to prevent this.¬† How?¬† They’ve designed their voter-registration and primary balloting so that, once registered, any voter can show up on primary day and ask for a ballot for whichever party has the most interesting nominations. This removes predictability from the gameboys’ tool chest.

If un-affiliated registration became the law in your state, it would mean that your predictability can no longer be gamed by either party, simply by their knowing where you live, when it comes time to redraw districts, meaning they can no longer Gerrymander effectively, after each census. But it would take a ground-swell of citizen action ‚ÄĒ such as a public referendum demanding a chance to vote on a change of rules, for voters to retake ownership of the election franchise.¬† Got grit? ¬†Call for a referendum! ¬†Launch a petition drive.

So, what does this post have to do with guns?¬† If you don’t want the gummit to know that you own guns, shouldn’t we all be just as private about where we store our ballots?¬† He who snoozes, loses, kids!¬† WE the People need to take back our power.¬† We are the gummit, dammit!

 

 

¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†WE’RE ALL IMMIGRANTS

Duct-taped water bottle,  PHOTOS by Tom Keifer, series linked below.

All magicians use distraction: ¬†Look, over there! ¬†Invaders! ¬† (Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain, that armed bear, that loon with an extended-mag Glock who’s about to shoot up your place of worship, or your kid’s classroom, or your place of refreshment, or entertainment venue ‚ÄĒ who maybe can’t hold a driver license due to instability ‚ÄĒ but can easily buy military-grade assault weapons.) ¬†They¬†call this “states’ rights”, but whatever happened to our right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness? ¬†

Ah, 2nd Amendment. ¬†Our elected officials prefer to defend their own jobs rather¬†defending public lives by creating a federally-regulated system of checks on gunners’ “rights” to arm bears, crazy-angry bears. ¬†(¬Ņ They can regulate, federally, whomever is allowed to fly a plane, but not who can buy an assault rifle?) ¬†

Yes, a congress of cowards.  So, what about that phrase in the 2nd A? :  a well-regulated militia.  Apparently congress knows better than to poke a bear in its den, even if it will surely soon emerge again to ravage the nearest watering hole, or school, or church.  Yes, cowards, on both sides of the aisle.

Of course, the feds need to control borders, just as they need to control planes, and toxins, and fires, and weapons.  

I own a few long guns for sport. ¬†I spent four years defending this nation. ¬†I want our elected officials, many of whom have never served (other than themselves) to step up and defend the citizenry. ¬†Guys, you’re way late! ¬†You work for us. ¬†Get busy bringing federal regulation to this insanity. ¬†Be willing to lay down your careers for your neighbors! ¬†Greater love has no man than this: that a man lay down his life for his friends. ¬†~Jesus

Photographer/designer Tom Keifer has done an eloquent job depicting the risks and costs of fleeing poverty ‚ÄĒ just as nearly all of our ancestors did ‚Äď including President Trump’s first American ancestor, Friedrich Drumpf, who came to America in 1885, apparently to dodge the draft in Germany. ¬† (I have no idea what Mr Keifer’s views might be on assault weapons, or politics, but I admire his photographic work.)

All detainees are stripped of their belts which are generally discarded. As they move through the court system and eventually deported, they wear pants with no belt and shoes with no shoelaces.   (All photos by Tom Keifer.)

 

SEE TWO COMMENTS.

COMMENTS CLOSED, DUE TO ATTEMPTED HACKS.

 

VOTING: “2nd Amendment” & free elections

Photo by Tony Webster, WikiMedia

Photo by Tony Webster, WikiMedia

 

OPEN PRIMARIES 

Our ability to choose candidates in New York State (and a minority of other states) is restricted by two dominant political parties.  If rules prevent voters from crossing party lines to cast a ballot for a preferred candidate, the nominating process is closed, and it is no longer a free election.  

The politicians in this state have stolen the voting franchise so they can control the electorate, disallowing maverick-upstart candidates. ¬†(The US Constitution makes no mention of political parties, so state politicians designed it in their own favor.) ¬†A majority of states allow voters to choose whichever primary contest offers greater interest. ¬†Why is ours closed?‚Äď ¬†Because two bully parties want to know where you store your ballot [your affiliation]! ¬†Think Second Amendment: ¬†do you want the gov’t to know where your affiliation [your ballot] resides? ¬†It’s more useful than our guns, when things are normal. ¬†(Or have you forgotten the experience in Norway during WW2, of registered small arms being seized by invading forces.) ¬†Like guns, ballots can get “seized” too; and so they have in states with closed primaries.

Justice Felix Frankfurter said “We are in danger of forgetting that the Bill of Rights reflects experience with police excesses. It is not only under Nazi rule that police excesses are inimical to freedom. It is easy to make light of insistence on scrupulous regard for the safeguards of civil liberties when invoked on behalf of the unworthy. It is too easy. History bears testimony that by such disregard are the rights of liberty extinguished, heedlessly at first, then stealthily, and brazenly in the end. ¬†

Adolf Hitler said “The most foolish mistake we could possibly make would be to allow the subjugated races to possess arms. History shows that all conquerors who have allowed their subjugated races to carry arms have prepared their own downfall by so doing. ”¬† ¬†

¬ŅWhether or not you favor gun control, can you defend the politicians in this state who have confiscated your ballot? ¬† When the gov’t knows where your party affiliation resides, it’s easy for parties to gerrymander, resulting in districts designed to be almost solidly R or D, by agreement of both parties, making it nearly impossible to defeat an incumbent. ¬†That’s how the parties control us. ¬†The result: ¬†career politicians are rarely removed from office; and we suffer dictatorial anointing of who gets to run for office. ¬†(Just look at the obstacles put up by DNC to stifle Bernie Sanders!)

Those voters registered “independent” are in even worse shape in NY: ¬†the Independence Party¬†has no voice in nominating or choosing those who run in main parties in NY. ¬†Independent voters have abandoned their ability to nominate a candidate in what is arguably a more important balloting process ‚ÄĒ the primary, where potential office seekers are blessed-by and beholden-to party bosses; upstarts are scorned and obstructed.
    
In New York, voters tolerate this, although there is an effort to lobby for¬†repeal of closed primaries¬† which you could sign. ¬†We voters deserve what we got. ¬†The pol’s knew we were asleep, and stole our voting franchise. ¬†What’s even worse: ¬†voters who want to switch parties to cast a ballot in a more interesting primary have to do so long before a contest becomes exciting. ¬†The cutoff date to switch was October 25, for an April primary! ¬†That’s designed by them to prevent people from exercising their choice in a timely fashion, as a race heats up. ¬†Yep, more control by the pro’s. Not a free election!
Don’t New Yorkers deserve open primaries? ¬†We must hide our affiliation! ¬†It’s time to take back the electoral process. ¬†We, the people¬†of NYS want our voting power restored to full clout, by becoming a state with Open Primaries. We want a truly independent ability to opt out of party affiliation, without surrendering our ability to vote in a primary of our choice. ¬†Our party affiliation must be invisible to government! ¬†That’s why it’s called a Secret Ballot ‚ÄĒ but it’s not secret, if THEY know the address of your affiliation. ¬†And it’s not a free election if you can’t easily change affiliation to vote in the primary of your choice. ¬†Take back the power to choose! ¬†Demand an open primary for NY! (We need a revolution in balloting.)
(I would welcome learning of organized efforts in NY to press this issue.)