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Not A Democracy

by Oui Wed Sep 29th, 2021 at 02:52:40 PM EST

Gerrymandering


The plot against democracy: how Texas Republicans plan to steal power from minority voters | The Guardians |

Voting Laws Roundup: July 2021 | Brennan Center |

As many state legislatures conclude their regular sessions, the full impact of efforts to suppress the vote in 2021 is coming into view.

Between January 1 and July 14, 2021, at least 18 states enacted 30 laws that restrict access to the vote. These laws make mail voting and early voting more difficult, impose harsher voter ID requirements, and make faulty voter purges more likely, among other things. More than 400 bills with provisions that restrict voting access have been introduced in 49 states in the 2021 legislative sessions.

The new laws restricting voting access are not created equal. For example, four of these laws are mixed, meaning they also contain pro-voter policies (IN S.B. 398, KY H.B. 574, LA H.B. 167, OK H.B. 2663). Other restrictions are narrower in their scope (e.g., NV S.B. 84, UT H.B. 12).

Three states have enacted broad omnibus voter suppression laws this year (GA S.B. 202, FL S.B. 90, IA S.F. 413), while Arkansas, Montana, and Arizona all passed multiple restrictive voting laws (Arkansas and Montana passed four such laws each and Arizona passed three).

This wave of restrictions on voting -- the most aggressive we have seen in more than a decade of tracking state voting laws -- is in large part motivated by false and often racist allegations about voter fraud.

Trump plans to sue to keep White House records on Capitol attack secret

Unpacking the DOJ Letters: No "Executive Privilege" for Trump-Era Witnesses on 2020 Election Machinations

The Age of America First -- Washington's Flawed New Foreign Policy Consensus | Foreign Affairs - Nov/Dec 2021 |

Donald Trump was supposed to be an aberration--a U.S. president whose foreign policy marked a sharp but temporary break from an internationalism that had defined seven decades of U.S. interactions with the world. He saw little value in alliances and spurned multilateral institutions. He eagerly withdrew from existing international agreements, such as the Paris climate accord and the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, and backed away from new ones, such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). He coddled autocrats and trained his ire on the United States' democratic partners.

At first glance, the foreign policy of U.S. President Joe Biden could hardly be more different. He professes to value the United States' traditional allies in Europe and Asia, celebrates multilateralism, and hails his administration's commitment to a "rules-based international order." He treats climate change as a serious threat and arms control as an essential tool. He sees the fight of our time as one between democracy and autocracy, pledging to convene what he is calling the Summit for Democracy to reestablish U.S. leadership in the democratic cause. "America is back," he proclaimed shortly after taking office.

But the differences, meaningful as they are, obscure a deeper truth: there is far more continuity between the foreign policy of the current president and that of the former president than is typically recognized. Critical elements of this continuity arose even before Trump's presidency, during the administration of Barack Obama, suggesting a longer-term development--a paradigm shift in the United States' approach to the world. Beneath the apparent volatility, the outlines of a post-post-Cold War U.S. foreign policy are emerging.

Tracing Afghan Defeat

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by Oui on Wed Sep 29th, 2021 at 07:40:08 PM EST
EU court annuls Morocco trade deals over Western Sahara | Al Jazeera |

Western Sahara, a mineral-rich region, is a major point of contention for the North African nation. Rabat sees Western Sahara as its own territory, but neighbouring Algeria has backed a Western Sahara independence movement known as the Polisario Front.

"EU states and the UK have been complicit by the inclusion of Western Sahara in trade deals with Morocco, legitimising and providing material support for Moroccan occupation - in contravention of international law," War on Want, a non-profit organisation focused on social justice, said in a statement following the EU court's decision.

EU states have a legal duty to stop normalising, entrenching and profiting from occupation, War on Want added.

The EU's General Court, the bloc's second-highest chamber, determined on Wednesday that the Polisario Front was "recognised internationally as a representative of the people of Western Sahara," and that the bloc did not consent of the Saharawi people before securing the deals with Morocco.

In 1991, Morocco and the Polisario Front agreed to a United Nations-brokered ceasefire that also invited a mission to monitor the peace.

In 2018, the court said including Western Sahara waters would contravene "certain rules of general international law" such as the right to self-determination.

Morocco Signs Abraham Accords in Quid Pro Quo for Oil-Rich Western Sahara | Dec. 10, 2020 |

From my comment ...

Trump's wet dream won't carry water into the Arabian desert

by Oui on Wed Sep 29th, 2021 at 07:40:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]

The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), which monitors rightwing hate groups, describes the CNP as "a shadowy and intensely secretive group [which] has operated behind the scenes" in its efforts to "build the conservative movement".

The leaked membership list dates from September last year, and reveals the 40-year-old CNP put influential Trump administration figures alongside leaders of organizations that have been categorized as hate groups.

The group was founded in 1981 by activists influential in the Christian Right, including Tim LaHaye, Howard Phillips and Paul Weyrich, who had also been involved in founding and leading the Moral  Majority. Initially they were seeking to maximize their influence on the new Reagan administration. In subsequent years, CNP meetings have played host to presidential aspirants like George W Bush and 1999 and Mitt Romney in 2007, and sitting presidents including Donald Trump in 2020.

In videos obtained by the Washington Post in 2020, the CNP executive committee chairman, Bill Walton, told attendees of the upcoming election: "This is a spiritual battle we are in. This is good versus evil."

Heidi Beirich, of the Global Project Against Hate and Extremism, said in an email that "this new CNP list makes clear that the group still serves as a key venue where mainstream conservatives and extremists mix", adding that CNP "clearly remains a critical nexus for mainstreaming extremism from the far right into conservative circles".

The Anti-Semitic Zionist God Squad  by ManFromMiddletown @EuroTrib - 2006

by Oui on Thu Sep 30th, 2021 at 06:51:17 PM EST
Sidney Powell Drags Justice Samuel Alito and Supreme Court into January 6 Mess

Attorney Sidney Powell said the January 6 riot at the Capitol could have caused a delay which would have allowed Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito time to stop the certification of Joe Biden's election victory--but that chance was lost when Nancy Pelosi reconvened Congress to complete the process.

She said that as a pro-Trump mob stormed the Capitol that day, her team was seeking an emergency injunction to prevent the certification of Biden's win.

"We were filing a 12th Amendment constitutional challenge to the process that the Congress was about to use under the Electoral Act provisions that simply don't jive with the 12th Amendment to the United States Constitution," she said. "And Justice Alito was our circuit justice for that."

by Oui on Sun Oct 3rd, 2021 at 06:59:03 AM EST
This country has been riveted to the Tangerine Latrine's shit-shoveling for over four decades.  Which shows just how far gone we are.  And also explains Reagan's election.
by rifek on Wed Oct 6th, 2021 at 05:05:38 AM EST
Policy limited to what works to win the next election. The weakness in a democracy are the elections as the USA demonstrates repeatedly for as long I remember ... 1960 Democrats in Illinois and Chicago mayor Daley and the mobsters. A close call.

What we have witnessed in 2020 and its aftermath in the Red states is beyond anyone's comprehension. Democrats need to go on the attack with a 51st state of the Union or halve the number of senators representing a state with smaller population than 0.5% of total US census. The Republicans would lose some 8 senators. Gerrymandering should be banned or severely reformed. Biden should do a Roosevelt and add two judges for efficiency reasoning (and to compensate Republican bullying last two nominations).

The US should advance into the modern age and accept justice of the Wild West is passé. Vigilantes, kangaroo court, posse on horse back, shootings and hangings.

by Oui on Thu Oct 7th, 2021 at 11:11:49 AM EST
Supreme court, Facebook, Fed: three horsemen of democracy's apocalypse

This new court seems ready to overrule Roe v Wade, the 1973 ruling that anchored reproductive rights in the 14th amendment; declare a 108-year-old New York law against carrying firearms unconstitutional; and strip federal bodies such as the Environmental Protection Agency of the power to regulate private business. And much more.

Only 40% of the public approves of the court's performance, a new low. If the justices rule in ways anticipated, that number will drop further. If so, expect renewed efforts to expand the court and limit the terms of its members.

The Pandora papers have exposed the `for sale' sign hanging over Britain

by Oui on Sun Oct 10th, 2021 at 09:45:44 PM EST
by Oui on Sun Oct 10th, 2021 at 09:47:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]

House Capitol attack panel ready to urge prosecution of Trump aides, says Schiff

by Oui on Sun Oct 10th, 2021 at 09:48:10 PM EST


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