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Toups

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22 hours ago, JaneAusten said:

The challenge in the US is that each state sets their election laws so it's not the same across the country. Each state has their own rules for voting including ID. I live in Illinois and we do not have to present an ID at the time we vote. We do signature matching at the time of voting, which is harder to fake than an ID.   And there is no universal voting ID so many of the rules in place in states for example that want to discourage certain demographics from voting put stringent voter ID requirements in place and limit the types of ID's that are acceptable.  In Texas for example you can use your Gun ID card but not a Student ID.

 

And ID's cost money in many cases. Not everyone can afford or even get to a place to get an acceptable ID. In 2016 there was a story in Wisconsin about a 90 year old black woman that could not vote. Why? They just put in a voter ID law and she had none of the required ID's. And the only way for her to get for example a state ID was to get her birth certificate. She was born in Mississippi at home how many years ago. She had no certificate. And the only way for her to get one was to travel back to Mississippi to file for one. No she could not do it by mail. So a woman who had voted for the last 40 plus years could not vote in 2016. This is not by accident. These laws again are put in to discourage people that fit a certain profile from voting.

 

Every state having different voting laws is also messed up.   I understand IDs cost money, but it just boggles my mind that some people don't have ID - like how do you go through life without one, you know?  Weird.  Maybe have something like a "voting ID" (if you don’t have a passport or drivers license)  that's doesn't cost much, and something that's renewed every 10 years.   I'm not too sure about signature matching either.  I know my signatures aren't always the same, and it can change a bit over time.  So if doesn't match exactly, they throw your vote out?  

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“This is the first time in Kyrsten Sinema’s political life that she has been in power,” Kirkland told me. In Arizona in the 2000s, “There just wasn’t a lot that was possible. And I think she hasn’t really adjusted to a reality where big things are possible.”

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2 hours ago, Toups said:

 

Every state having different voting laws is also messed up.   I understand IDs cost money, but it just boggles my mind that some people don't have ID - like how do you go through life without one, you know?  Weird.  Maybe have something like a "voting ID" (if you don’t have a passport or drivers license)  that's doesn't cost much, and something that's renewed every 10 years.   I'm not too sure about signature matching either.  I know my signatures aren't always the same, and it can change a bit over time.  So if doesn't match exactly, they throw your vote out?  

People may have ID's but not the "right kind" in some states.  Like most people have a social security card if they work and/or file taxes and/or apply for assistance and the list goes on,  but that is not considered a valid ID. My neighbor across the street is 78 and she has never had a credit card or ever applied for credit even though she owns a house.   

 

As for signature matching it's not me saying this it's our former County Clerk David Orr who is known as a nationwide election and voting expert. People from all over the country have consulted with him over the years. he is the one who is responsible for the signature matching and no matter what you think about your own signature, the characteristics analyzed to determine if you are that person look at certain aspects of the signature that you may not realize are always the same even if you think it's difference. It's a science based process.  And more accurate than an ID since an ID is verified by a person, many that cannot determine what are and are not fake. The signatures are compared by the election system based on your current signature and what is on file when you registered to vote.

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Posted (edited)
18 hours ago, DRW50 said:

 

 

This is indeed very worrying, and IMO the US should defend Taiwan in any invasion attempt. It is a democratic nation and ally, and strategically hugely important. Not only does it produce the world's semiconductors (as the Twitter thread pointed out, US industries rely heavily on those), but its very existence resists China's encroaching dominance of the Asia Pacific region as a whole. Just look what is happening to Hong Kong. Taiwan will get that treatment tenfold -- China has no problem implementing the death penalty on its enemies.

 

Letting China ride roughshod over US bases in Taiwan (!) also sends the message that the US is weak, and will no longer support its allies. The message will resonate bigtime in Europe, Japan and South Korea, also home to US military bases. I know the US doesn't like to play Empire Police, but it is what it is. That is its role in the wider world, whether the NIMBYs like it or not. There needs to be balance between the world's major superpowers, and US-supported allies in the AP represent an important part of that balance.

Edited by Cat
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Freedoms that Hong Kong used to have are being taken away after Great Britain simply handed over the country to China without bothering to get those freedoms codified and enshrined constitutionally beforehand.

Also, Hong Kong has a much larger and powerful pro-China contingent within the government and a business class that were largely complacent, as well as compliant toward China, as China, is by far, their largest trading partner.

 

There are some similarities between Hong Kong and Taiwan, in terms of some ancestral connection to China (which proves to be a menace to both) but there are many differences, historically and culturally. 

China is a bigger existential threat to Hong Kong than it is to Taiwan, at this time.

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Just now, DramatistDreamer said:

Freedoms that Hong Kong used to have are being taken away after Great Britain simply handed over the country to China without bothering to get those freedoms codified and enshrined constitutionally beforehand.

Also, Hong Kong has a much larger and powerful pro-China contingent within the government and a business class that were largely complacent, as well as compliant toward China, as China, is by far, their largest trading partner.

 

There are some similarities between Hong Kong and Taiwan, in terms of some ancestral connection to China (which proves to be a menace to both) but there are many differences, historically and culturally. 

China is a bigger existential threat to Hong Kong than it is to Taiwan, at this time.

 

For sure mainland China is a bigger threat to HK, because it is already there, encircling the city-state with its 'National Security' Law which now allows China to detain any HK resident for as long as it wants, with no recourse to legal representation. It also allows the country to spirit detainees across the border to be 'tried' under mainland law. Which is a very different legal system than what HK has been used to until recently.

 

Having visited HK in 2014, it breaks my heart to see this thriving, dynamic place have its identity and spirit broken like this -- handed over lock, stock and barrel by the British, and with the blessing of the local HK establishment. To see so many unarmed, young kids protest, despite the threat to their lives, and be arrested by masses of militarized police as 'terrorists' is laughable -- obscene actually.

 

Taiwan's preference for independence has only grown after seeing what is going on in Hong Kong. Maybe, as you say, China will hesitate before invading Taiwan (as well it should). However, as the Tweet I was responding to suggests, Xi is surrounded by military advisers -- who, I imagine, are keen to tell Xi what he wants to hear, and not what he needs to hear to make informed decisions. The guy is so paranoid, he is practically micro-chipping the few Uighurs he hasn't forced into slave labor.

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1 hour ago, Cat said:

 

For sure mainland China is a bigger threat to HK, because it is already there, encircling the city-state with its 'National Security' Law which now allows China to detain any HK resident for as long as it wants, with no recourse to legal representation. It also allows the country to spirit detainees across the border to be 'tried' under mainland law. Which is a very different legal system than what HK has been used to until recently.

 

Having visited HK in 2014, it breaks my heart to see this thriving, dynamic place have its identity and spirit broken like this -- handed over lock, stock and barrel by the British, and with the blessing of the local HK establishment. To see so many unarmed, young kids protest, despite the threat to their lives, and be arrested by masses of militarized police as 'terrorists' is laughable -- obscene actually.

 

Taiwan's preference for independence has only grown after seeing what is going on in Hong Kong. Maybe, as you say, China will hesitate before invading Taiwan (as well it should). However, as the Tweet I was responding to suggests, Xi is surrounded by military advisers -- who, I imagine, are keen to tell Xi what he wants to hear, and not what he needs to hear to make informed decisions. The guy is so paranoid, he is practically micro-chipping the few Uighurs he hasn't forced into slave labor.

 

It's a very sad situation to see, with no easy solutions. I think that any solution that involves the possibility of an American or even American-led military presence in Taiwan will be anathema to the American people and not necessarily welcomed by the Taiwanese people either. 

From what I have read, the U.S. has been trying to produce microchips and transistors domestically and a few  Taiwanese companies have set up factories in the U.S., presumably in order to circumvent having to go through China's manufacturing and distribution system. That is all taking time, as technology marches on. Perhaps the power of the purse is the only way to have any influence in having a hand in turning back the repression on the Uyghurs but the world has become gluttons for cheaply made goods from China. Even Japan has given up the ghost in assembling and manufacturing their electronics.

I do think that if the Chinese government had less power to provide a prosperous life for their citizens, their people might begin to reconsider the "bargain" they made where they surrendered their civil liberties in order to eke out a more  "comfortable" lifestyle.

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Some like Matt Stoller, who unfortunately too often veers into hysteria about China which drowns out any positive points, have written a lot about the stupidity of the US moving the semiconductor industry out of the country, and how many of the supply chain issues that have slowed the recovery this year are down to the US moving so much overseas and relying on slave labor. Sadly I don't think this is likely to change - it is just going to get worse. 

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Posted (edited)

The HK/Taiwan issues are close to my heart bc of some of my personal and work connections over the last decade. I can't countenance another war, but I also can't accept the US doing nothing if China tries to invade Taiwan and the country is poised for a worse fate than Hong Kong. There are no good answers. As for Matt Stoller, he's just another loud white blowhard like Stancil. I think Stoller in particular is insane on a great many topics; I don't take that wing of the dead-end left seriously at all and don't consider it remotely influential outside of that increasingly-waning niche group, which (like the right) is consistently struggling post-Trump to lay a glove on Biden, having failed to get him pulled from the ticket over Tara Reade or his supposed dementia.

 

Meanwhile:

 

 

Edited by Vee
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3 hours ago, DRW50 said:

Sadly I don't think this is likely to change - it is just going to get worse. 

 

In a way, I do agree with this sentiment but it won't likely be China in years to come but a country where even cheaper labor can be exploited like Vietnam and Thailand. In fact, this is already happening. In a decade, or so, it is unlikely to be China though.

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2 minutes ago, DRW50 said:

The hatemonger Trump is pushing to replace Lisa Murkowski:

 

 

In the case of Mukowski she's been down this road before. If she gets beat in a primary, she can run as a write in again. The candidate who beat her in that primary was an RNC endorsed candidate.

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