Democracy in 2004
The state we're in
First, let me recommend Theodore Roszak's excellent essay on the changes in the Republican party: Where did the middle go?. Using factual, verifiable information every step of the way he explains far better than I could how the Republican party has changed from the party of Eisenhower to the collection of single-issue contituencies united by political ambition and little else.
Second, Bob Harris, a very active blogger (see BobHarris.com : Serving the Reality-Based Community) has gathered some recent poll data that shows that most republican supporters of President Bush do not know his publicly stated positions on major issues. He also has a picture of the 3 Oregon school teachers kicked out of a Bush rally for wearing subversive t-shirts. Click here to see these dangerous subversives in their t-shirts.
Third, the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights issued a report recently: Redefining rights in America" (in .pdf format). This is scathing and as Bob Harris points out "This is from inside Bush's own government."
Fourth, Gov. Jeb Bush and Jim Crow by computer. Not only did the Florida Secretary of State Glenda Hood attempt to keep the felon purge of the voter rolls secret, but Gov. Bush stated publicly that he did not know of any problems with the list. Recent release of the list along with a state officials' e-mail message proves that 1.) Bush lied, he had been told of the problems and refused to halt the purge and 2.) the list included a few thousand voters who had their voting rights restored and 3.) The list contained thousands of black voters (likely democrats) and about 62 latino ones (likely republicans). The Herald Tribune of Southwest Florida has an article that documents the whole mess. Refer back to the Roszen essay above for a possible reason why the Republicans hardly bother to hide their efforts to rig the election.
And thanks to my friend John Gear for sending me this: there's a little ray of hope as librarians in Washington (state) stands up to the F.B.I. and the Patriot Act: Small Library Stands up to FBI. They have one State Trooper to patrol the entire coast of Oregon (part-time) but they have agents and resources to try to find out who wrote a Bin Laden quote in a book about Bin Laden.
If bringing democracy to Iraq is the administration's last justification for the war (see below for more about that) then how about bringing democracy to the U.S.?