19 November 2013

In a Recent Austin American-Statesman editorial, Republican consultant Matt Mackowiak says I’m lying about why he wants to restrict the rights of our fellow Americans to vote:

“Increased Turnout Trumps Democrats’ ‘Suppression’ Argument”*

Okay then: fair enough. In my defense, I call Mr. Mackowiak out. In my opinion of Republican malfeasance, I am telling the truth.

It is Matt Mackowiak who is lying.

Please bear with me on this one. The defensive case to make can seem a bit convoluted:

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The Republican Party wishes to impose photo I.D. laws for the sole purpose of preventing more people of Democratic American values from voting in elections throughout the country.

Given (1) how hard it is for someone else to vote using someone else’s voter registration, and (2) how easy voter fraud is to detect, and (3) given how the preponderance of the evidence supports that such fraud does not practically exist, and (4) given that even voting registrars—even some Republican registrars—insist that voter fraud is no problem and (5) that photo-I.D. laws only serve to  reduce voter turnout—

The only real reason for Republicans to promulgate costly and inconvenient Voter I.D. laws is because, to paraphrase Mr. Mackowiak, “Republicans want fewer legal votes, not more. Anyone who claims otherwise is lying.”

By the abandoned virtue of his presumptive projection, Matt Mackowiak naturally must be included in the  “lying” group.
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This “presumption of guilt” on Mr. Mackowiak’s part does not just run counter to our Constitution. It also creates challenges for those who would defend against the accusations—when it is so often those first accusers who are guilty.

Take the current Obamacare controversy.

In the lead up to the bill that became the ACA, those on the Right kept saying, “Obamacare is a government takeover of healthcare! You will lose your current insurance! You will lose your doctor!”

These accusations forced the President to come out and say, “No, it’s not. No, you won’t.”

In my personal case, President Obama’s assertions have proved true. Over the course of the past year, I’ve received several notices from my insurer, describing the few, key changes that Obamacare has made to our “grandfathered” insurance plan. So what I have, as a direct result of Obamacare, is a policy that has increased about the same as, in past years or less this year than in some years, while the benefits have increased dramatically.
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It’s harder to defend against and to describe untruths succinctly than it is to make originating accusations in the first place. Republicans accused Obamacare of things that are mostly untrue.This led President Obama to respond in kind. The result is now commonly taken for a lie. But the President’s words have borne out exactly as promised, for me and for millions of other self-employed, formerly under-insured Americans.

Republicans such as Matt Mackowiak accuse me of lying about their voter-suppression issues. It’s harder to defend against and to explain how wrong these Republican activists are about voter fraud than it is to make the preemptive accusations in the first place. And it’s harder to convey the case that the only benefit served by photo-I.D. laws is to suppress Democratic voters. But this, here, has been my short version of that case.

Mr. Mackowiak is a liar: the only true reason for the epidemic of photo I.D.  laws is because Republicans want fewer [Democratic] votes. Not more.

Regards,
(($; -)}
Gozo!
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*Matt Mackowiak, Austin American-Statesman, 7:00 p.m., 11/17/2013

@GozoTweets
10 January 2013

In response to a piece by David Weigel posted on SLATE,* someone asked why it is that the views of so-called “Conservatives” are shown respect and consideration which it seems is disproportionate to the lack of respect and consideration such views merit. What follows is Gozo’s response.
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The Answer Involves the psychological concept of “projection”:

The Right continually accuse the Left of deliberate malfeasance. What does this projection say about those on the Right?

On the other side, the Left continually speak to the Right as if they—such as those “neocons”—are reasonable and honorable people, determined to do what is best for self and country.

What does this projection say about the Left?
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The Downside to the Left’s honorable and respectful expectations of the Right is that the whole of the country remains held up—obstructed and impeded—by the Left’s honorable need to include the malevolence of the Right in resolving our shared challenges.
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In America, the Right consists of that deadbeat brother-in-law, at the far end of the Thanksgiving table, who insists that, here in the United States of America, he’s got the God-given right to bring his assault rifle to the God-damn table and set it down on the table in front of his place, and what are you going to do about it?
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The Way I See It, that type of scenario represents the basic answer to the question of “Why?” Those on the Left are constrained by a unilateral sense of mutual respect.

That the Right is not similarly constrained by this putative “Christian” practice remains part of the puzzle.

And as for the brother-in-law’s question—“What are you gonna do about it?”—I haven’t any idea.

Regards,
(($; -)}
Gozo!

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*“Kristol vs. Hagel: The neoconservative’s campaign to stop Obama’s Defense nominee is smaller than it looks, and it might have peaked.” (Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013 at 1:15 PM ET)

@GozoTweets