Today I’d like to talk, perhaps for the last time, about election fraud.
[EDIT: It won't be the last time, because, try as I might, I couldn't get everything into this essay. Even though it's as long as Moby Dick.]
After this, I will assume that American elections are fraudulent just as often as they need to be in order to ensure that no challenge to the existing order succeeds. I will believe this until such time as I encounter significant evidence that that situation has changed. To put it simply, I’m ceasing to give the establishment the benefit of the doubt.
Here's another one, and a hearty hat tip to entrepreneur for posting this here originally:
In addition to the points made in Lee Camp's video there are, of course, other indications that the 2020 Democratic primary has followed the lead of the 2016 Democratic primary and the general elections of 2000 and 2004 (and possibly the general election of 2016 as well, though Russia had nothing to do with it) and embraced total fraudulence. First there was the Shadow app which screwed up the reporting of the Iowa Caucus' vote count. I want to go through this one bit by bit. Imagine the following things are true:
1)Someone decides to count and report the votes in an entirely new way, for no stated reason.
2)They get a software company to develop an app for that. The company is named Shadow (you can't make this up).
3)This company is funded by a combination SuperPAC/dark money group called ACRONYM (again, you couldn't invent this shit).
4)The wife of a senior advisor to one of the candidates running in the race is on the board of ACRONYM.
5)That same candidate gave $42,000 to Shadow to fund the development of the app.
6)On caucus night, the app screwed up the vote count and the reporting of the vote.
7)As the caucus results were slowly reported, all the caucuses that favored the candidate in question came first, enabling the candidate to announce a win when nobody had won anything
8)The caucus results didn't get reported within a time frame which would allow the results to matter. Results continued to dribble in over time. The other candidate, who actually won the state, could not claim it as a "real" win, but had to refer to his winning the popular vote.
Now, where I come from, that would stink to high heaven and would, in itself, be enough to spark an almost Watergate-like investigation, only less intense because the President was not involved. Those of you who are old enough, think back to the 70s. Think back to who you were then, and what your expectations were. Imagine Walter Cronkite reporting this story to you on the nightly news. Would this, or would it not, be a serious scandal with reporting done on it probably for weeks?
Then there's the bog standard voter suppression. The closing of polls, the opening of polls with broken machines or no supervision, you know the drill.
Now, it's easy to say "That's the Republicans' fault! Texas is run by Republicans!" But, quite apart from the fact that there were similar phenomena in California, which is run by Democrats
why do we persist in assuming that the parties never cooperate in their electoral aims? It seems odd to just assume, on the face of it, that if Republicans are committing election fraud or voter suppression, then 1)they couldn't be working with Democrats to prevent the election of someone that they both would like to fail, and 2)they couldn't be working separately but concurrently, each party making its own effort to suppress the same person, whom neither of them like.
Then there was this:
In Illinois, the results of the Democratic primary were broadcast the day before the election. The prematurely broadcast results showed the establishment candidate winning. The day before the election.
Of course, people immediately tried to claim a technical explanation: it was just a test that got accidentally aired. "We often put in numbers like 999 9999 and run the graphics so that we can be sure they will work right on Election Day." Yeah, but you didn't put in a number like 999,999, or the name Abraham Lincoln, or anything that would make it immediately apparent that this was not a real result. Instead, you posted numbers which gave the establishment candidate a plausible win.
And anyway--look at the faces of the candidates. Look at the pictures you chose to broadcast, and then tell me again that this isn't any kind of pre-planned "loss" for one and "win" for the other.
These facts are evidence of election fraud and voter suppression. They may not be conclusive proof of election fraud. I think, in order for evidence to become proof, these matters would have to be investigated systematically. Of course, they will not be investigated, and if they were, by some well-meaning organization, like ElectionJustice USA who investigated the Democratic primary election fraud in 2016, their findings would still not be investigated formally by law enforcement nor prosecuted in criminal court. Neither would they be investigated by journalists working for the five major media corporations. The political, legal, and media establishment--and even some independent media--do not wish to find the answers to those questions.
And a lot of ordinary people don’t want to find those answers either. This is understandable in light of the fact that ordinary people have no resources with which to punish the wrongdoers and deter future crimes of the sort—no recourse. Since we can’t do anything, it’s a lot less painful just to believe that our republic and its elections are intact. It’s easier to believe that election results are authentic, that it is possible for the people to wield political power in our current system, and that the only problem here is the unenlightened, unintelligent unkindness of a large portion of the American electorate.
But in order to believe this, we have to keep recreating the idea of an innocent, or at least a neutral, political system with innocent, or at least neutral, political parties and an innocent, or at least neutral election process. We have to keep erasing history, or at the very least shoving it to some unregarded corner of our minds. We create, and maintain, an asymmetrical burden of proof. The establishment can do a veritable shitload of suspicious and unsavory things and still be regarded as neutral, or at least, neutral enough for government work (heh). However, if anybody thinks there might have been some dirty tricks or even criminal behavior going on, that person has to provide proof like they're standing in a court room. It's not enough to present evidence that creates a suspicion, which should create an investigation. It's not even enough to show the results of certain investigations (like Max Blumenthal's investigation of Shadow Corp). You practically have to present jury proof.
Yet I'm not sure that requiring that level of proof is appropriate. In fact, I'm pretty sure it isn't. When a courtroom is working correctly, my understanding is that the burden of proof that someone committed a crime should be very high. Well, that makes sense. After all, you are debating whether or not to deprive someone of their liberty or even their life. But we aren't debating whether or not the Democratic leadership, or the candidates, or the state party officials, should be shot in Central Park, to borrow a meme from Chris Matthews. We're not sending people to the guillotine. We're not contemplating putting them in prison. We're simply deciding whether or not we want to participate in an operation they're running. Do we feel safe doing so? Do we feel it is in our best interests? We're more like people deciding whether or not to enter into a business venture with someone than we are like a prosecuting attorney, with the DNC in the dock. We don't have that kind of relationship with the DNC.
Even worse, we treat each separate instance of fraud as a new roll of the dice, virginal, with no relationship to history. I noticed this when I was trying to get Democrats on board to fight George W. Bush's fraud in Florida in 2004. They didn't want to believe it happened again. I had evidence, at least of what happened in my precinct, but I couldn't believe they needed it. It was the same presidential candidate: George W. Bush. His brother was still in charge of the state, and people he hired were in charge of its elections. He got away with fraud and voter suppression four years before to great effect; a member of his family became President, and he walked away with his reputation barely scratched, no accountability for him at all. Yet somehow we give him a complimentary factory reset because...well because that was then, this is now, I suppose. Certainly nobody ever explained it to my satisfaction. Maybe Jeb Bush saw a bright light on the road to Damascus.
I've noticed that this sort of asymmetrical burden of proof always turns up when establishment forces are attempting to repress, one way or another, insurgent forces. When I was young, there was a lot of (I believe justified) consternation in certain circles about the IRA and its violence. It took me a while to realize that there was little or no consternation in those circles about British Army violence, which seemed to have, for my interlocutors, all the solidity of fog. But at least the British Army violence was visible--barely. The fact that there was another paramilitary organization of Protestants who also committed violence was completely unknown, invisible as air. The story was that the IRA was a violent, horrible organization. And that was that.
If we are living in an oligarchy, perhaps it’s time we acknowledge that fact rather than giving the fact lip service and then going about our lives with the expectations, or the pretense, of living in a republic. By this I don’t mean that we should accede, within ourselves, to the oligarchy’s norms. I’m fully in support of C.S. Lewis’ Puddleglum when he says:
My values are still those of a citizen of the American Republic, and I don’t intend to abandon them. They are the values I was trained to have: independence, responsibility, honesty, fairness, restraint, mutual respect among equals, inventiveness, curiosity, civic concern, and hard work. My ideals go somewhat higher and farther afield from my early training. Neither my inherited values nor my imagined ideals can be encompassed by the oligarchy I live under. And I certainly would not recommend to anyone that they should follow Lewis Powell’s lead and reorganize their internal moral landscape or re-jigger their reasoning apparatus in order to remain in step with the cultural engineering of the last fifty years, which he pioneered. And that’s what it takes to continue to believe in the honesty of the political system.
Let me state that again. When we say we believe that election results are authentic, even in the face of indications to the contrary, we are relying on the idea that, on any given day, the American political system has a better than even chance of doing its business honestly. And to do that, we have to forget recent history, or, to some extent, change what we value and even the way we think.
What I’m calling for, and hoping for, is that we will refuse to cede our minds to the power that has already taken our country, our rights, our prosperity, our health, and our self-determination: the power that has rearranged our culture to suit itself, keeping the qualities that will serve its ends--American greed, bigotry and barbarism--and throwing everything else in the dumpster and tossing a match. What we have left is ourselves. What we have left is the freedom of our own minds. If we work at it, we will also have each other, in a meeting of minds. These things are worth fighting for, but if we do not assert our intellectual independence, we will not even be able to conceive of the fight. We will instead participate in a series of pro wrestling angles, making America great again, joining the Resistance, fighting over whether Bernie was mean to Tulsi or Tulsi was mean to Bernie, slotting ourselves neatly into the roles pre-written for us.
This is the greatest political divide of the age. It is not race, gender, sexual preference, party affiliation. It is not even age or class (both of which are among the most important political distinctions of the present). The greatest political divide is between those who choose to have faith in the political system and the media, those who presume an innocent, or at least a neutral, establishment—and those who believe the system has proven itself repeatedly to be fraudulent.
Annie, are you OK?