Too Close to Call

Kenji Sugahara

Looks like we're in for the long haul...

Hold onto your britches.

I predict 2 weeks.

  • (Show?)

    Late-night November 2nd/3rd:

    Welcome To The Pre-Occupation

  • Brian Wagner (unverified)

    A 140,000 vote lead in Ohio for bush right now? As much as I'd like to call that too close to call, I just have a sinking feeling its all over.

  • Justin (unverified)

    It's Over!

  • (Show?)

    Is four, maybe four and a half, hours of sleep enough? I'm thinking I might need to go back to bed for a bit. That might not be enough rest for living in the United States of WHAT THE FUCK?!

  • (Show?)

    It's all but done. Kerry will call it by this evening. The numbers just aren't there.

    Oregon liberals did their part, though, didn't they? I'm trying not to think of the national reprecutions and look instead at the nice work in Oregon. It's clear that we have a whole lot of work yet in front of us ...

  • (Show?)

    They have 53 Senate seats, now that Daschle's out, and a gain in House seats. Bush is President again. They handed us our head on a platter, my friends.

    Senseless war in Iraq? Crappy economy? Candidate who can't string two sentences together coherently? No health care? No problem.

    Karl Rove is truly an evil genius.

  • (Show?)

    It’s morning in my house. And, yes, it’s morning in America. (Cue cheesy Reagan commercial.)

    Last night, I left an election party and told a friend I was “off to find a dull razor blade.” She replied, “well, at least find a sharp one.” That cheered me up a bit.

    Despite our national disaster, our country’s collective insanity, a Congress further to the right, a vision of 20 to 40 years of awful Supreme Court decisions, two awful ballot initiatives passing – despite all that, it’s a time for hope. A time to hope that we discover a time machine and can fix all this.

    No, actually it’s a time to wake up and be more playful. To have our moods less intertwined with the evil being done in the world, less tied to the news cycle, and more intertwined with the people around us.

    It’s a time to bring joy into our everyday lives. We should be cooking good foods, playing fun games, listening to each other’s struggles and triumphs, having great sex, following our dreams, dancing our dances, learning new things and enjoying good laughs.

    That’s a challenge for many of us who have tied our identities and emotions directly to what happens in the world. We’re the folks who make the news and listen to it – we’re the ones who file the lawsuits, who organize the grassroots, who educate the ignorant, who lobby the bills, and who fight the election battles. That’s excellent, very important work. But when the day is done, we’ve got to have something else in our lives. Something that we, not some ignorant voters and bad people, control.

    So, yes, grieve yesterday’s losses – and celebrate yesterday’s victories. Yes, there were many victories. Oregon’s solidly democratic win for Kerry and others. The first Oregon state Senate in over a decade (solidly so), and improvement in the state House. A Democratic Senator elected in Colorado. Bike/Walk PAC sweeping our candidate races, including Robert Liberty who took out an incumbent. And, hallelujah, mobile homes out of the Oregon Constitution.

    But don’t take too long obsessing over it. Don’t second-guess all the failed campaigns and pour over weird analyses and numbers and what-ifs. If we give over our happiness to the numbers, we’ve lost. We have plenty of crazy work in figuring out how to throw a wrench in the machine, and I'm confident we’ll rise to the occasion. When sanity is outlawed, only the outlaws will be sane. It’s a time to keep our sanity (terrorists hate sanity).

    Say it with me: let’s dance, flirt, make cookies, sing, play games, hug, make mad passionate love, and follow our dreams. Together, we can be happy.

  • (Show?)

    Great post, Evan.

    But I'd add one thing - well, three things, but they're related:

    • Read your Palast. Every. last. word.

    • Make it your personal mission to know as much about election law as Tim Mooney. I plan on studying for and taking my LSAT, just to determine if I possess the faculties required of a lawyer.

    • Give an old lady a break; sign up to be an election official.

    Because nationally, this election was stolen, just as sure as the 2000 one. Florida, Ohio, New Mexico.

    • Diebold machines.

    • Republican suppression activities, not as much designed to throw out votes (although, in the rare cases they succeed, it has that effect), but to slow down the line.

    • 6 hour waits in Florida. 9 hour waits in Ohio. Ask yourself why those people waited so long, as premature call after premature call filtered down to the line over radio and television: to keep the status quo?

    Even in Democratically-controlled New Mexico, the non-Catholic Hispanic vote is being suppressed at registration, at the county level. There was a public demonstration in Las Cruces - lowriders cruising the boulevard, just for the right to register.

    Thousands and thousands, denied. Just like Mississippi - circa 1950.

    People have the right to vote, and in some cases will wait as long as it takes to do so, but they also have things to do. If you've got to pick your kid up from daycare, you can't stay in line.

    I doubt Ohio Republican Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell is going to give up Bush's lead in the provisional ballots, but that's not where the battleground is. We've got to put some people in jail, and beat them until they talk.

    They cheated - AGAIN.

    Don't let it slide, even if the elections run smoothly and fairly here. What happens over there matters over here.

    Be vigilant.

  • Shetha (unverified)

    While we may not have our candidate elected to the office of presidency, that does NOT mean that we are the minority in this country. If everyone that did NOT vote for Bush decided that they were not going to fund a government that does not represent them, what would happen? Oh I know -- Bush would legislate it as a Tax Cut. He doesn't mind spending what he doesn't have. That's probably because he failed his accounting classes... Oh and not to mention that this would also fill Bin Laden's need to see us fail financially.

    History is going to look back at this and think "what a bunch of idiots" (Like the rest of the world is thinking right now). The current administration has been sure to appeal to those who are less likely to have read the 9/11 commission report by telling them that John Kerry would take viable babies out of their mothers and suck their brains out to kill them. And that makes those people vote. But what were they really voting for?

  • Tenskwatawa (unverified)

    Boycott Cable TV stops the hypnotist.

    Samples of reader/writer work worth noting.


    The wisest analysis, spot-on diagram of where we are now.

    The 2004 Party Realignment: New Progressive Era or Neocon fascist dictatorship? by Webster Griffin Tarpley, 31 October 2004 Excerpt: THE 9/11 MYTH AS KEY TO THE ELECTIONS Here the signs are mixed. Howard Dean noted that many thought the Bush administration knew about 9/11 in advance, and objected to a terror alert designed to step on Kerry’s convention bounce, but Kerry and Edwards have failed to hold Bush systematically accountable for his passivity before 9/11, and for freezing that day. ... A flash website on the internet debunking the government contention that a Boeing 757-200 hit the Pentagon has attracted a mass audience, forcing an article on this subject in the Washington Post. For the highbrow, last week BBC-2 television broadcast "The Power of Nightmares," a documentary which contends that al Qaeda simply does not exist, except as a "myth" and "dark illusion." This myth has been created by failed politicians whose slogans no longer work, and who are desperate to keep their power. ... For the lowbrow, Howard Stern has hosted spokesmen for the 9/11 truth movement told his 13 million listeners that he does not believe a commercial airliner hit the Pentagon; a cruise missile, he says, is a far more plausible explanation. To this must be added the collective impact of dozens of websites, plus ...


    The socio-political big picture.

    Beyond the Election by Ricardo Levins Morales, October 28, 2004 Excerpt: In the meantime it is only if we take to heart the notion that power resides in the streets, workplaces, and communities and not in the polling booth will we be able to build a movement strong enough that, in the end, our votes will mean something.


    The How-can-it-be? explained, 16 months ago.

    How George W. Bush Won the 2004 Presidential Election by Infernal Press, 25 June 2003 2003. 15 July 2003 Excerpt: Purging voter lists is just the beginning: the U.S. has embraced a form of electronic voting that is unreliable, unverifiable and funded by the radical Christian right.

    ES&S, Diebold and Sequoia may not be household names like Enron or Arthur Andersen, but these three companies will decide America's next president. In the 2004 presidential election, the full effect of electronic voting will be felt for the first time and these are the companies that will report the majority of the results.

    Despite assurances from the corporations that own these machines, the reliability of electronic voting is under intense criticism. One of the most comprehensive examinations of electronic voting fraud came from brothers James and Kenneth Collier. In their 1992 book Votescam: The Stealing of America, the brothers detailed the long history of voting fraud over the past twenty-five years with a special focus on voting machines. American politicians and large media outlets have ignored their book, and their charges remain unanswered.

    Now, their concerns are being echoed by a new group of writers, journalists and activists who have raised alarming and explosive details about electronic voting in America. While academics such as Professors Rebecca Mercuri and David Dill and organizations such as the Association for Computing Machinery have carefully documented how voting systems are vulnerable to fraudulent manipulation, journalists such as Lynn Landes, Jerry Bowles and Bev Harris are alerting Americans to an electronic coup d'etat in the making. If their charges are true, and there is little evidence to contradict their claims, George W. Bush has already won the 2004 election. Florida's Folly Goes National

    "Given the outcome of our work in Florida and with a new president in place, we think our services will expand across the country." -- Martin L. Fagan, ChoicePoint Vice-President

    To understand how George W. Bush will win the next presidential election, it helps to understand how he won the last one. While all public attention rested on hanging chads, butterfly ballots and a skewed recount in the wake of the 2000 Presidential election, the root of the problem has been overlooked. ...


    In such articles, and websites, truth is available that gives understanding. Truth that is hard to handle where it shows the fascist fist closed shut around us.

  • (Show?)

    Looks like the fat lady is about to sing. It's over guys.

  • The Prof (unverified)

    If you want to continue to live in a fantasy world, you won't be much help in pushing forward a progressive agenda.

    What were people really voting for? The electorate has spoken fairly clearly. Those "idiots" are millions of Americans who attend church every week, who believe in God, who don't believe in gay marriage, and who don't see any core principles in today's Democratic party. These people voted overwhelmingly for George Bush.

    If and until the Democratic Party figures out an agenda, and a leader, who can appeal to Main Street America again, then we'll continue to operate as a minority party.

    Dunagan: A stolen election? The early numbers were pro Kerry. Long lines? This was because turnout was heavy. Do you have any evidence that the lines were longer in Democratic than in Republican areas, or are you just blowing smoke?

    The raw numbers simply overwhelm the claim of election theft. We saw the creation of two of the largest "law firms" in the country on both sides -- both Democrats and Republicans had, literally, thousands of lawyers in all of the key battleground states. While there were certainly problems (not unexpected in a country of 250,000,000), all non-partisan reports are that voting went smoothly. There is simply no way that the Republicans could have suppressed 3,000,000+ votes.

    There are many non-partisan groups monitoring this election, and I suspect the conclusion will be that there were some egregious errors, but on the whole, things worked pretty well.

  • brett (unverified)

    Those "idiots" are millions of Americans who attend church every week, who believe in God, who don't believe in gay marriage, and who don't see any core principles in today's Democratic party. These people voted overwhelmingly for George Bush.

    If and until the Democratic Party figures out an agenda, and a leader, who can appeal to Main Street America again, then we'll continue to operate as a minority party.

    Hear, hear, Prof. I hope this argument is the dominant meme in Democratic circles today, and not the crap up above.

  • (Show?)

    I'm not going to cite the laundry list; you can go to Palast just as easily as I can, 'Prof.'

    I can program Access to siphon 300,000 votes off a supposedly-secure "voting machine" as easily as I could a million, or even a billion. You could, too. How big do you want the number? If you've got the hack, it's just typing.

    But riddle me these: why is it that Ohio and Florida are the only states to not match the exit polling? Why'd the networks make the call before 1.6 MILLION outstanding votes came in from Florida, and specifically, West Palm Beach and Miami-Dade? Why'd Betty Castor not concede when the networks made the call? Think she knows something about her own state that you don't?

    If that popular vote margin is such a gold standard, true statement of the American electorate, Republicans ought to be able to run and win on a straight, honest race without the racist intimidation of African-American voters, without the likes of Sproul and his crew of thugs, without 'Ben Over' denying D registrations in the South Park Blocks, etc., ad infinitum. And I'd even spot them their slanderous ads and the electronic highway signs on the I that distract drivers. But they lost here, big, with ALL that stuff - why? Because Hardy Myers and Bill Bradbury were on the case, and Ds were vigilant.

    Contrast Bradbury and our system with Glenda Hood and theirs. Tell me what YOU think is more easily rigged.

    Nevermind for a minute that there's not a documented, verifiable instance of D voter fraud since 1964, we're the party of inclusion. We don't pull that crap because we don't have to. We turn out under a fair system, we win. We always have, and we always will.

    I'm sure Officer Johnny Wingnut of Jax PD would rather be at home having a Coors than door-knocking the black neighborhoods, asking for IDs, and telling citizens a bunch of bullshit about when they can or when they can't vote.

    It's extra work from his point of view, it's flat out wrong from anybody else's, and in a democracy with laws, he should be stood down and taken into custody for committing a CRIME.

    That's your margin, Prof. CRIMES.

    Remind you of anybody?

  • (Show?)

    If you want to continue to live in a fantasy world, you won't be much help in pushing forward a progressive agenda.

    The Prof's nailed this one. You must know your enemies, and I have news: if we think our enemies are rural America, we better get real used to losing. The real enemies are in the GOP--those like Tom DeLay who wish to subvert democracy, like Dubya, who will vamp in costume, look you in the eye, and lie, and like John Ashcroft, who uses his authority as US AG to advance policies antithetical to the spirit and letter of the Constitution.

    What we need now is to remember our roots and get back to the people. A little prairie populism, perhaps? Remember what the man said:

    As I was walkin' - I saw a sign there And that sign said - no tress passin' But on the other side .... it didn't say nothin! Now that side was made for you and me! In the squares of the city - In the shadow of the steeple Near the relief office - I see my people And some are grumblin' and some are wonderin' If this land's still made for you and me. I've roamed and rambled and I've followed my footsteps To the sparkling sands of her diamond deserts And all around me a voice was sounding This land was made for you and me
  • Bubba (unverified)

    Rigged election machines from big corporations... Suppress the vote activities (in Democratic controlled Urban areas no less)... 9/11 was all a sham (like the Apollo Moon landings)... 90% of Republicans & 100% of people who voted for Bush are right wing Christian gay hating wackos... And stupid (like Bush) and idiots... Yeah that's the ticket! Keep on believing this. Please! And keep on getting your heads handed to you indefinately.

  • Randi Pugh (unverified)

    Any thoughts on the 150,000 "missing"ballots in florida that had to be re-issued and therefore counted again? makes me ill.

connect with blueoregon