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Early but not often

October 8th, 2004

In keeping with my Labor party roots, I’ll be down at the local school early to vote, though in the spirit of modernisation, I’ll vote only once. My electorate of Ryan was famously won by Labor at a by-election a few years back, and the local member is thoroughly unappealing, but I don’t suppose there’s any chance of the seat changing hands.

Meanwhile, in the US, Michigan Republicans tried to have Michael Moore prosecuted for encouraging people to vote. He was giving out stunt prizes like clean underwear and noodles to ‘slackers’ who promised to vote and this was, the Republicans claimed, a payment to vote, which is apparently illegal. Police and prosecutors gave the case short shrift, but it reflects a consistent Republican policy of preventing people from voting whenever possible. They hate democracy almost as much as they hate Democrats[1].

Update Jack Strocchi kindly sent me this catalogue of recent crimes against democracy, from the Washington Post a few days ago. I wasn’t aware of any of these particular incidents – there are dozens of others that fit the same pattern.

fn1. Of course, this excludes Southern Democrats like Zell Miller. Virtually all of the old Dixiecrats have joined the Republicans, bringing with them their rich heritage of poll taxes, grandfather clauses and so on.

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  1. Fyodor
    October 8th, 2004 at 18:02 | #1

    Good luck, ALP – you’re going to need it.

    For any undecided voters out there, check out the Crikey team’s editorial @ http://www.crikey.com.au. The best analysis of the day, and thoroughly on the side of progress, not regress.

  2. pete
    October 8th, 2004 at 18:31 | #2

    The ALP will win by about 20 seats. By 7.30pm the swing will be on and from then on, it’ll just be a matter of “how much”. The history-forgetting, lazy, pack-following Canberra press gallery be damned!

    -pete

  3. Gaby
    October 8th, 2004 at 20:56 | #3

    Hear, hear!!!

    Let’s hope for a Bracks-like “below the radar” swing to the ALP. And minority party control of the Senate.

  4. October 8th, 2004 at 21:47 | #4

    Does “They dislike democracy almost as much as Democrats” mean they dislike it alsmost as much as the Democrats do, or almost as much as they dislike Democrats? Or some combination thereof?

    Please explain.

  5. George
    October 8th, 2004 at 23:46 | #5

    There are dozens of other examples of this, too. Like when the Republicans illegally entered their opponents’ campaign offices in co-ordinated attacks across various states, fired rifles through campaign office windows, and broke into offices to steal their opponents’ computers…

    Oops, hang on – that was the Democrats and the AFL/CIO just this week. My bad.

    Nope, no-one could ever accuse Professor Quiggin of ugly partisan bias.

  6. Blair Fairman
    October 9th, 2004 at 02:50 | #6

    Sorry, John you have given me no where else to call the elections. I stick by original prediction of the ALP by 6 seats. But it will not occur in the seats which everyone has been following. It shall be a “donut revolution” spurred on by the doctors wives. Non marginal seats fall where as marginals stay put.

    P.S. Can I copyright “Donut Revolution”?

  7. gordon
    October 9th, 2004 at 14:14 | #7

    The link to the Washington Post requires “registration”. I’m reluctant to do this any more as I suspect the registration details are often sold to spammers.

  8. cp
    October 9th, 2004 at 17:33 | #8

    [gordon] Go to the site bugmenot.com. This will give you a registration you can use.

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