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QUOTATION: People often say that, in a democracy, decisions are made by a majority of the people. Of course, that is not true. Decisions are made by a majority of those who make themselves heard and who vote - a very different thing. - Walter H. Judd

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2004-11-05 - 4:46 p.m.


O.K. Folks, Back to Work.


By Bob Herbert

“Much has been made of the support Mr. Bush has gotten from religious people. He's going to need all of their prayers that some miracle happens to suspend the laws of simple arithmetic and keep his fiscal house of cards from collapsing.

…Democracy is a breeze during good times. It's when the storms are raging that citizenship is put to the test. And there's a hell of a wind blowing right now.” – Bob Herbert

+O+O+O+O+O+O+O+O

The wind is not only blowing,folks. I do believe I hear fiddles playing in the background amidst the flames of Fallujah. Here’s a letter written before the election by John Le Carre, as published in The Guardian:

And here’s a letter from England…

Letter to America.

Maybe there's one good reason - just one - for re-electing George W. Bush, and that's to force him to live with the consequences of his appalling actions, and answer for his own lies, rather than wish the job on a
Democrat who will then get blamed for his predecessor's follies.

Probably no American president in all history has been so universally hated abroad as George W Bush: for his bullying unilateralism, his dismissal of international treaties, his reckless indifference to the aspirations of other nations and cultures, his contempt for institutions of world government, and above all for misusing the cause of anti-terrorism in order to unleash an illegal war - and now anarchy - upon a country that like too many others around the world was suffering under a hideous dictatorship, but had no hand in 9/11, no weapons of mass destruction, and no record of terrorism except as an ally of the US in a dirty war against Iran.

Is your president a great war leader because he allowed himself to be manipulated by a handful of deluded ideologues? Is Tony Blair a great war leader because he committed Britain's troops, foreign policy and
domestic security to the same hare-brained adventure?

You are voting in November. We will vote next year. Yet the outcome in both countries will in large part depend on the same question: how long can the lies last now that the truth has finally been told? The Iraq
war was planned long before 9/11. Osama provided the excuse. Iraq paid the price. American kids paid the price. British kids paid the price. Our politicians lied to us.

While Bush was waging his father's war at your expense, he was also ruining your country. He made your rich richer and your poor and unemployed more numerous. He robbed your war veterans of their due and reduced your children's access to education. And he deprived more Americans than ever before of healthcare. Now he's busy cooking the books, burying deficits and calling in contingency funds to fight a war that his advisers promised him he could light and put out like a candle.

Meanwhile, your Patriot Act has swept aside constitutional and civil liberties which took brave Americans 200 years to secure, and were once the envy of a world that now looks on in horror, not just at Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib, but at what you are doing to yourselves.

But please don't feel isolated from the Europe you twice saved. Give us back the America we loved, and your friends will be waiting for you. And here in Britain, for as long as we have Tony Blair singing the same lies as George Bush, your nightmares will be ours.

John Le Carre

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and an e-mail comment from a soldier in Iraq [Posted by RR59 at 11.01.2004 09.10 PM]:

optruth.org

Bite me. You must like that AC in your house...you must be rich. That is the only way I can see a resonable (sic) person supporting Bush-money. He has sent us into this stupid war--and sent us with crap equipment and not enought (sic) people to do the job properly. Iraqis hate us. We get shot at here every single damn day. I am in this war and I dont support this president anymore. I cast my vote from Iraq for Kerry. So should you. I dont love the guy--but Bush is a total failure. He doesnt get a second chance to screw this up. Many of the guys in my squadron feel the same way: Bush must go.

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We’re sorry to have let you down, England and this U. S. GI somewhere in Iraq. We tried. About half of the country is well aware of the threat to the country as we have known it. To be fair, the other half of the country believes our more liberal views a threat to the country they’d like to have. We won’t give up…there’s too much at stake.


No Surrender

By Paul Krugman

“I don't hope for more and worse scandals and failures during Mr. Bush's second term, but I do expect them. The resurgence of Al Qaeda, the debacle in Iraq, the explosion of the budget deficit and the failure to create jobs weren't things that just happened to occur on Mr. Bush's watch. They were the consequences of bad policies made by people who let ideology trump reality.

Those people still have Mr. Bush's ear, and his election victory will only give them the confidence to make even bigger mistakes. …

Democrats shouldn't cave in to Mr. Bush when he tries to appoint highly partisan judges - even when the effort to block a bad appointment fails, it will show supporters that the party stands for something. They should gear up for a bid to retake the Senate or at least make a major dent in the Republican lead. They should keep the pressure on Mr. Bush when he makes terrible policy decisions, which he will.

…But Democrats mustn't give up the fight. What's at stake isn't just the fate of their party, but the fate of America as we know it. “ - Paul Krugman

Watch this film at votergate.org. It’s Started…Will We Ever Trust Our Election System Again?

In this case the computer has not been our friend…although maybe we’ve always been deluded into thinking that our votes have been counted honestly.

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- An error with an electronic voting system gave President Bush 3,893 extra votes in suburban Columbus, elections officials said.

Franklin County's unofficial results had Bush receiving 4,258 votes to Democrat John Kerry's 260 votes in a precinct in Gahanna. Records show only 638 voters cast ballots in that precinct.

Bush actually received 365 votes in the precinct, Matthew Damschroder, director of the Franklin County Board of Elections, told The Columbus Dispatch.

And here’s another article about voting irregularities in the South:

Group Finds Voting Irregularities in South

By DOUG GROSS, Associated Press Writer

ATLANTA - A national voting rights group said Friday it documented hundreds of voting irregularities affecting poor and minority voters in seven Southern states — from long lines and faulty equipment to deliberate voter intimidation.

"While the United States of America is a strong democracy, it is also a flawed democracy," said Keith Jennings, director of Count Every Vote 2004, formed after the 2000 election to assure voting rights for "underrepresented and marginalized sectors of the population."

The group sent monitors Tuesday to 700 precincts in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina and South Carolina. Their goal was to observe such issues as the timely opening of polls, the presence of correct ballots and functioning machines, and the impartiality of elections officials.

Among their preliminary findings, the group listed a shortage of early voting locations in Duval County, Fla., the largest county in Florida in area and voting-age population, the failure of electronic voting machines in three South Carolina counties, and the loss of votes at a North Carolina precinct when too much information was stored on a computer unit….

Never, ever give up!

P. S. If you'd like to send your good wishes to Elizabeth Edwards, who has been diagnosed with breast cancer, you can do so at this site.

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