Friday, September 12, 2008

An Even Uglier Side to the Foreclosure Crisis...

You know, eight years ago I would have seen this story and would have thought "You-Are-Shitting-Me!"

Now? It's just another day partying like it's 1799.

I'll save you the click through... GOP operatives are going to compile lists of foreclosed homes in largely minority neighborhoods in one particularly swing district of Michigan -- itself a so-called "swing state" -- in order to challenge mainly black voters.

The minor premise of this hideous little enthymeme being that if their home has been foreclosed, they no longer live there and can't vote in the district. But the major premise is a barely disguised push to disenfranchise an entire class of people; not racially, but economically, even if the financial status tends to track racially in places.

Only white property owners should be voting, apparently.

At first, reading this I thought, this can't possibly be an isolated thing, even as my eyes were tracking to this next section of story...
Vote suppression: Not an isolated effort

Carabelli is not the only Republican Party official to suggest the targeting of foreclosed voters. In Ohio, Doug Preisse, director of elections in Franklin County (around the city of Columbus) and the chair of the local GOP, told The Columbus Dispatch that he has not ruled out challenging voters before the election due to foreclosure-related address issues.

Hebert, the voting-rights lawyer, sees a connection between Priesse’s remarks and Carabelli’s plans.

“At a minimum what you are seeing is a fairly comprehensive effort by the Republican Party, a systematic broad-based effort to put up obstacles for people to vote,” he said. “Nobody is contending that these people are not legally registered to vote.

“When you are comprehensively challenging people to vote,” Hebert went on, “your goals are two-fold: One is you are trying to knock people out from casting ballots; the other is to create a slowdown that will discourage others,” who see a long line and realize they can’t afford to stay and wait.
These tactics have all the subtlety of roadkill. Expect to see a major nationwide push to challenge voters and purge voter rolls based on economic standing this election, not just in the "swing states" (I have always hated that bit of political cliche) but on a national level.

A couple of days ago, Biz posted some interesting voter registration data. I expect that this is largely a push back on those data; an attempt to fend off and discourage potential Democratic voters, especially new ones, who are perhaps getting on board Obama bandwagon out of a sense of economic self-interest. This would be understandable given the Bush administration's unremitting war against the middle class in this country.

This is the same kind of thinking that leads to cuts in college aid, small business aid and anything else that might seem like an egalitarian society's attempts at governance that genuinely gives a rat's ass about the economic mobility and potential of it's population.

No, the movement Conservatives at this point, think the American century has passed, and with it, the need for a broad, prosperous middle class. The plan now is to return people to the semi-indentured servitude of the 18th century by creation of a semi-permanent underclass, and by extension a more permanent ruling caste.

How else can a New American Mercantile Empire succeed? Where else you gonna find young people you don't like or respect anyway to go fight and die for your par-value share price?

mojo sends

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