Saturday, April 02, 2005

Mojwire for 04.02 -- PART II

Greetings fellow literate primates of the Sol System, and a hearty shout out to all the other sapient minds-- both natural and artificial-- within the reach of my voice. Here on S9 Station, it's been a slow week. We reported our income to the U.S. Infernal Revenue Service. One of our friends has suffered a ventricular fibrillation, and has still not regained consciousness after a week. We briefly considered selling our orbital insertion rights to some poor, hapless real-estate flipper-- leveraged up to his eyeballs and convinced that the difference between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies will never be an issue he needs to know about-- and after the asset bubble pops, buying the Satellite of Love back from him for less than he paid us to borrow it for a few months. But then we decided we like our neighbors too much to take a short position in the value of real property in our neighborhood.

So, we had plenty of time to review the bidding on the "black box voting" problem in the United States of America. You all remember the black box voting problem, right? That's the one where we kept whining at you about how the machines used in a staggering number of districts around the country to count the votes are ridiculously vulnerable to automated tampering, allowing the outcomes of nationwide elections for the highest political offices to be decided by a tiny cabal of criminals without there being any hope of even catching them in the act, much less proving it even happened afterward.

On Thursday this week, the Akron Beacon Journal in Ohio ran a story about a group of statisticians called 'US Count Votes' who analyzed the data behind the exit polls in the 2004 Presidential election in Ohio. They came up with a sensational statement to summarize their results: there's a one-in-959,000 chance that exit polls could have been as wrong as they turned out to be. As Mojo no doubt remembers so clearly, the exit polls in Ohio were showing Kerry with a three point lead, but when the final count was certified, the winner was Bush by 2.5 percent. This discrepancy in exit polling is unprecedented. If a result like this had happened in Soviet Russia, nobody would have trusted the official results-- not even in Russia, much less in the West.

Naturally, the usual suspects cried foul-- and, up here in geosynch orbit, you could even hear our howls of protest in the cold vacuum of space. We were convinced that the paperless, auditless, proprietary software voting systems used in Ohio were horribly insecure and that the Ohio Secretary of State was a lying, untrustable, contemptible hack who would not fail to find at least ninety-three different ways to cheat the election and get away with it. Nerfing the Kerry vote in the Diebold vote tabulation software was only the easiest of countless different methods of fudging the results.

The official party line on the exit poll discrepancies is provided by the firms that conducted the polls, Edison Media Research and Mitofsky International. They say the discrepancies are the result of Bush voters in Kerry strongholds being "too shy" to answer exit polls at the rate Kerry voters did. It turns out that you don't have to work very hard to shoot down the official story with a bit of high school algebra. See, the problem is that the discrepancies are *larger* in the Bush strongholds than elsewhere in the state-- which is the opposite of what the official story says to expect.

The statisticians at US Count Votes say the official story is "implausible," and that the "possibility that the vote count was not accurately recorded needs further investigation." Which is the polite academic pinhead way of saying, "The election was stolen. Your votes weren't counted. We told you fscking people this would happen."

The report also goes on to conclude, "All voting equipment technologies except paper ballots were associated with large unexplained exit poll discrepancies all favoring the same party, (which) certainly warrants further inquiry."

The response from Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell to the report? He sent a spokesman to say, "What are you going to do except laugh at it? We're not particularly interested in [the report's findings]. We wish them luck, but hope they find something more interesting to do."

The spokesman went on to say, "These (Bush) voters have been much maligned by outside political forces who didn't like the way they voted. The weather's turning nice. There are more interesting things to do than beat a dead horse."

Hear that, Democrats? The Republicans think you had your accountability moment last year, when you had a chance to do something about the vulnerability to election fraud posed by the black box voting system rolling out across the country into election precincts near you. But you blew it, and now it's too late.

If you're a Democrat, and you live in a heavily Republican district-- like every loyal wirehead inside the signal footprint of this radio station-- you gotta know now that your vote doesn't count. There's no reason to vote if there can be no assurance that the counting will be accurate. And there isn't. The Republicans have proven to the world that they can nerf the Democratic vote and shout down with laughter any attempt to call it fraud.

I never thought it would get so bad that I would find myself making a call this bleak, but friends-- it is time to start boycotting elections in America. If neither Democrats nor Republicans can take seriously such stark and obvious evidence of fraud and corruption as these glaring discrepancies in the exit polls, then voting in sham elections will only encourage further fraud and corruption.

Remember, if you cast a ballot without any confidence that your vote is counted correctly, then you give these authoritarian proto-fascists the false cover of appearing to operate with the consent of a democracy. I know it's hard to give up on the idea that America has free and fair elections, but there really isn't any alternative anymore. The Republicans aren't really trying to hide what they are doing.

"What are you going to do except laugh?" Remember that. "What are you going to do except laugh?"

Boycotting elections is a very, *very* serious step-- and it's more than just refusing to vote. To do it effectively, you have to join a movement that agitates for like-minded people to join the boycott and take a principled stand against fraud and corruption in the election process. And when the movement achieves a critical momentum, it has to be ready to demand
substantial reforms while accepting no compromise to the essential requirement that transparency and integrity be restored
to the election system.

Get involved. Read up on the black box voting problem. Get serious about democracy, for crying out loud. Do you need to have a Tianenman Square event before you start to get it? Because trust me, kids-- you do *not* want to see what this place will become if it pisses away its democracy. Some of us will not stay sitting down forever.

We have limits. Do *not* push us when we're fscked.

“Fatally contrary or inconsistent” seems to be a phrase more and more people in authority are using these days when describing Maximum Leader’s war on who the hell ever and the New American Mercantile Empire’s push for expanding Asian markets. I mean, first it was impediments to improving the military kangaroo courts masquerading as due process for people tortured into confessing crimes they never committed, then it was a Presidential commission’s impressisions of our national intelligence appareatus’ many screw ups, cover ups and omissions in the run up to our current Mesopotamian
adventure, as well as our apparent inability to accurately assess real threats from places like Iran or North Korea.

This seems to be a recurring theme these days in the quest to protect the American people from the terror of Al Qaeda piloted flying saucers and radical Communist sharks with lasers strapped to the foreheads...

But we will let people read those documents for themselves. For our part, the national intelligence commission’s work was a fat load of bunk designed specifically to deflect blame for the war from Maximum Leader’s mendacity and place it squarely where they think it belongs -- on Bill Clinton. The commission specifically notes that they were prohibited from examining the issue of whether the White House misused intelligence to sell the war to the American people or applied political pressure to the intelligence services to spin up politically correct assessments of the Iraqi threat.

So given all that, it is with no small amount of trepidation that we examine the release of the National Defense Strategy -- hey, Mike, is there some echo or reverb we can get when I say that... for real, that needs a little extra something there...

National Defense Strategy!

This document released recently purports to be the essential planning priniciples of how we are going to defeat the swarthy Mussel-man and his spineless and kniving French allies. At 25 pages or so, including a table of contents, two cover pages and executive summary, it really is little more than a basic manifesto for American international hegemony as opposed to a serious planning document. But nonetheless, there are some great bits.

This first one is the bit that got us into this opus in the first place, coming courtesy of Law Professor and part time legal ethics philosopher Jack Balkin at , who brought us the money shot: “Our strength as a nation state will continue to be challenged by those who employ a strategy of the weak using international fora, judicial processes and terrorism."

There, you got that, according to the organizing principles of American self-defense in the early 21st Century, those who try to hold the United States to some level of accountability through internationally recongized protocols and procedures are moral equivalents to terrorists. They are the tools of the weak, apparently. You know, that quote right there pretty much tells you all you need to know about this thing.

This is a perfect description of the current geopolitical groupthink that infects our foreign policy at present. Everyone who believes the U.S. is not acting correctly is with the terrorists and is a declared enemy of freedom and liberty and apple pie and mom and American SUVs and pick up trucks and Toby Keith. And you better watch out for TK, I hear any day now he is thinking about joining up, and then the bad guys will really be in for it. Any day now... that’s okay, we’ll wait... any time now TK...

But back to the (echo please Mike) National Defense Strategy... Sorry, dude, I love that...

Some of our other favorite rhetorical low-lights from this screed include this line, immediately proceeding the crack back against international law: “Our leading position in world affairs will continue to breed unease, a degree of resentment and resistance.” Really? Ya think? And just why is that Mr. Wizard? Could it have anything to do with the United States’ current disregard for the rule of law, normative international consensus and shameless hypocrisy? Could any of that be a potential causes of resentment and resistance?

But more than that, there is a tacit acknowledgement in that statement that the rest of the world hates us, will work against us, and instead of looking at our behavior to see what we might want to consider doing differently to smooth out relations, we are just going to take it from them and ascribe them to be enemies, all.

S. There is a flip side to all of this, though. It would appear through a thorough reading of the document that we have not learned one of the hardest lessons of the Cold War, and that is that fighting by proxy and arming psychopaths who will say whatever we want them to say as long we keep the lawyers, guns and money coming is not a particularly healthy form of international relations, especially given the fact that we are now engaged in not one, but two simultaneous asymetric wars of attrition in Asia, primarily fueled by Cold War blowback.

This all serves two larger overall Strategic Objectives of the report, which can be labelled thus: first, ecuring strategic access and retaining global freedom of action and second strengthening strategic alliances and partnerships. So forget the earlier rhetoric that would seem to make these two goals all but impossible, let’s just start with the first objective: “we will promote the security, prosperity and freedom of action of the United States and its partners by securiting access to key regions...”

“Prosperity?” When did prosperity become a national security issue? Yeah, I know, on 4 Nov. 2000, when W’s friends managed to steal a national election.

Okay, moving on with our lives, we come to objective number two, which states specifically: “we will expand the community of nations that share principles and interests with us.” Well, that’s bad on just so many different levels... remember what we were just saying about blowback? Right now this is a country who’s principles include torturing confessions out of people, or slaughtering civilians who have the temerity to want the U.S. to stop shooting up their country like crazed samurai hillbillies out of a Quentin Tarentino movie.

And this is being anticipated in the strategy given that one of the last thing document calls for is a reworking of international agreements that essentially coerce all other nation states into accepting U.S. military presense whenever the hell we feel like it, and specifically calling for legal arrangements to shield U.S. forces from any international rule of law, such as the International Criminal Courts. Let me repeat that for you, prohibiting international accountability for our actions oveseas is now an officialy policy goal of the adminstration.

Ours is a country who’s interests seem to be tied to securing as much oil-rich land as possible, while ignoring not only neighboring massacres and genocide, i.e. Darfur in the Sudan, but also giving the old wink and nod to places like Uzbekistan, where their idea of due process and rule of law is boiling people to death as regular police interrogation procedure.

And this is apparently all good, because our (echo please) National Defense Strategy also specifically calls for getting proxies to fight for us around the world in the war on terror, as we seek to take the fight to the enemy. Because as we all know, non-state terror organizations are bound by geography, so fighting them on the streets of Kabul or in the mountains of Turkmenistan will prevent them from attacking the United States... are these people drinking the bong water? What the hell is wrong with them?!

Look, this is not hating the United States, it is about asking some legitimate questions of the people who are currently trying to plan for its long term strategic place in the world. Unfortunately, their world view seems more influenced by “Dirk Pitt” adventure novels and Soldier of Fortune magazine, than by any real-world intellectual analysis of our place in the international order.

The last thing we would want to suggest is that Al Qaeda is not for real. Look, 9/11 happened and there are people out there who are undoubtedly plotting the next big American body count. Our problem is that we are not seeing effective strategies being promulgated here. This is a rehashing of tired, old Cold War concepts, dressed up in talk about smaller, lighter, more deployable forces. Those forces capabilities won’t mean anything if our doctrine sucks, which it really does at this point.

We know this sounds like a lot of wingeing from the sidelines on this one, but given that a Presidential commission has recently come out and described the horrible series of failures and incompetence that lead to the 9/11 attacks, we are seeing with almost prescient clarity a time when the next attack comes and the next commission looks back on this worthless strategy document and wonders aloud to the public, “what the hell were they thinking? Fat, drunk and stoopid is no way to go through life.”

That is a day we, at least, would sincerely like to avoid.

I just want to apologize in advance wireheads for the political speculation we are about to engage in. I know you are still working through your election 2004 hangover, and the acidic taste of the election night bile still rises up into mouth every night as you contemplate four more years of this dangerous administration and their various cranks exercising power in an increasingly perilous world.

But we really need to start thinking about the 2008 election. And yes, we understand that this is all predicated on the notion that we will have a real, open fair and honest election in 2008. Or that we will have any election at all in 2008, so at least indulge us that far. We have nice, fat, open seat in the oval office. And make no mistake, the 2008 campaign is going make the 2004 campaign look like Lincoln Douglas debate in terms of vicious slander and cruel, naked contempt for the intelligence of the electorate.

The Schavio debacle was really the opening salvo in the 08 campaign. Uncle Jeb, and yes, we are really going to have a candidate named after a character from the Andy Griffith Show, made the first play for the Jesus-facists and theo-Stalinists. Jeb already had some street cred with this crowd, but if 2004 is any guide, the open seat will summon the eerie blue skin, inbread zombie hillbilly from their dank caves out in the GOP hinterland who will slice off bits and pieces of that vote depending on which particular flavor of Jesus-facism they represent.

Bill Frist, a transplant surgeon before he sold his soul to Karl Rove, and another sure contender in the sad tragedy that will be the 2808 Republican primary, attempted to ingratiate himself with these people by pretending not to be doctor, just a politician who plays one on TV. He diagnosed the extent of Terry Schiavos brain damage by watching a video made by her parents of Terry demonstrating a variety of autonomic nervous system responses.

Props to Billy-Bob Frist, I thought your performance on ABC news a few months back where you refused to acknowledge the fallacy of HIV transmission through tears and sweat was the most craven act by a doctor for political gain I had ever seen. Thanks for raising the bar, Dr. Feelgood.

So we have Bill Frist and Jeb Bush, who else can we expect to join the festivities? Don't count out John McCain. If his health permits, he will make another try at it. He pissed in the cornflakes of the Jesus-facists in 2000, but he has been the biggest supporter of the Presidents War on Terror and the Iraq invasion.

His refusal to defend the Administrations grotesque stance on torture might undermine that however. But a ressurected and reconstituted Jackalope McCain could present a formidable campaign if he had a prayer of making it out of the primaries. He has always been a tough campaigner, and he has good grip on how the media works. But does he have the requisite brain damage and utter lack of a moral compass to go mano a mano with Frist or Jeb? Perhaps not, but time will tell.

Karl Rove will never allow John McCain to become President, if has to photoshop up the goat sex pictures himself. McCain almost derailed W's campaign in 2000, and that Darth Rove does not forgive. Ever. As far as other contenders, be assured of one thing. No pro choice republican will ever make it out of the primary. The Jesus-facists will make sure of it. They will vote for McCain before they allow Rudy Giuliani or Pataki or any other Pro-choice Republican get the nomination.

The GOP nominee will be the one that manages to buttsmooch the Jesus-facists and assure the corporate oligarchs that the gang rape of the Federal treasury will continue at the same time. If we were to handicap the race so far, Provider Mojo bets 200 Quatloos on Jeb. Provider Sean bets 250 Quatloos on a relative outsider with Jesus-facist cred like Lindsey Graham.

S. On the Dem side, don't get your hopes up yet. The suspected candidates so far represent the usual menagerie of Dem contenders. John Kerry will most likely try again, John Edwards might as well. The real drama on this side will be Hilary Clinton. Many of the elite handicappers on the chat shows and the political columns regard Hilary as a disastrous choice for the Dems, and a sure failure in a General election. That remains to be seen.

Certainly, Hilary is a DLC Center Left Dem like her husband in policy terms. And no one will confuse her carefully managed public persona with the natural ease Bubba had with a camera and a crowd. But we at the Mojowire say: Do not underestimate this person. Think about it. She has one of the most important skills a modern pol needs, she can raise money.

And that she does, by the boatload. She will have a national fundraising op by the 2008 campaign that will rival the one W had in 2004. She is tough. Tough like you only could get after the eight years of no rules political street fighting during the Ken Starr GOP investigations and the national bloodsport that was Monicagate. The Clintons are tough, and are at their best when they have their backs against the wall. The people who run their campaigns are smart, tough and mean; the kind of mean that comes from having Bob Barr, Trent Lott and Haley Barbour spend every waking ounce of energy on making your life a living hell. And we define mean using the Karl Rove standard. She is disciplined, she stays on message consistently, just like the President does. She has massive cred with liberal constituencies that could survive a break to the middle in the General election.

Don't get us wrong, she has a many serious issues. She has serious credibility issues with the general electorate, the Right hates her with a passion, and will have no trouble raising money to stop her. She is not a natural campaigner, and just think of the Kerry campaign when you want to know how much of a problem that is. But despite these issues, and more besides, do not count her out. And no geeks, try to relax, Barack Obama is too new and young to make a run for the Presidency yet. He's going to be President one day, but not in 2008. Let him get a term or two in the Senate first and distinguish himself there, then we'll get him to run for President.

The rest of the field seems to revolve around Dem Governors and Senators. Even Bayh, Senator from Indiana, who has already started raising money and putting together organization in Iowa and New Hampshire; Mark Warner, Governor of Virginia, Scweitze from Montana, a Progressive Dem Governor from a Red State. Dean has said he won't run now that he is DNC chair. Which is actually really good news. As much as we thought he would be a great President, the Doctor is currently needed more in his present post as message-czar and fundraiser in chief. The Dem primary hopefully will not yield us another candidate we have to cringe to support, though Don't hold your breath. Provider Sean bets 400 Quatloos that Hilary takes the nomination.

The most crucial question in this sort of speculation really is: what will the biggest issues be in the campaign. Without a doubt, the state of the Iraq occupation and insurgency will be the defining question. If we are still in Iraq engaged in quelling an insurgency, than that will be the essential question. We would assume though, that W will flee Iraq if for nothing else to allow Jeb to declare victory there.

But there are still some significant and dark domestic economic clouds on the horizon, as well. With Goldman Sachs, the world's leading energy futures broker, predicting $104 a barrel for oil this year, job creation and wage stagnation still a major concern, and the frightening visage of the Jesus-facists getting their run in Congress, this could actually manage to swing the so-called "vital center" back to the left. A lot of these people are looking at Iraq, they are wondering why they're jobs are getting shipped overseas and why they're paying $3 a gallon for gas, while watching the spectacle of a Congress convening in the middle of the night to get its Pharisee-on and attempt to destroy the rule of law, even actaully debating the return of debtors prisons, and many of them are thinking, "sure, I'm kind of conservative, and I voted Republican, but I sure as hell didn't vote for this nonsense." Too bad, Red-Stater, yes you did. Good news is you will be given a chance very soon to rectify your mistake. And remember, admission is the first step to healing.

So there you have it, our initial speculation on the 2008 cycle. We will update you on the state of this race as it continues to shape up. Let's hope it shapes up without tragic spectacles like the Schivio case. Considering the desperate greed and hatred of the GOP, don't count on it.

J. It's 587 days until the midterm election and our patriotic thought for the week is: free, fair elections means the terrorists win, or as John Ashcroft used to say... “Provider Ashcroft places 500 quatloos on 'theocratic trainwreck!'”

S. And that’s all for this week, tune in again soon for another exciting installment, until, of course, we are declared enemies of the state.

And remember, you can now email the Mojowire at, that’s Email, us hippies!

J. And now you can check out the Mojowire online at; you can read the entire archive along with our general ramblings...

This has been the Mojowire, brought to you by Mojohaus...Mojohaus-fine journalism, afflicting the comfortable since 1988, and produced by our super funky fly producer Mike Payne and the Darkling Eclectica, here on KUCI, 88.9...

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