So what happens this time?

120 Responses

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  • Don Christie,

    On the push plling issue I wonder how prevalent it was here during the last election campaign. I received a fairly bizarre call from "The Office of Ridney Hide", which presumably escaped the AGs eagle eye. but which whilst vaguely dubious (to my sensitive sole) in no way reached the depths of those that take place in the USA.

    Aside from the Brethren school boys was there much of this going on? It seems a particularly nasty habit, even before the Reps started making nuisance calls on behalf of their Democrat opponents. So the question is, can we and did we keep it cleaner here in NZ?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1645 posts Report Reply

  • Eddie Clark,

    So the question is, can we and did we keep it cleaner here in NZ?

    Yes. Because our version of a serious electoral scandal is Labour's pledge card, or National's GST bill. The amount of money involved in those two combined would buy you like 30 seconds of air time for one political ad in NYC.

    Incredibly dirty, dare I say corrupt, tactics, are not part of the NZ political landscape. People got dreadfully upset about the personal attacks that happened with Don Brash and Peter Davis, and those were several hundred times milder than the worsts of the vile US attack ads. Plus, look at our nice shiny "we're number 1 least corrupt nation (equal)" rating from Transparency International.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 273 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Young,

    Thanks to Hard News, clicked on the Rolling Stone article on how corrupt the Republicans have become over the last decade. There appears to be massive rorting and pork-barrelling, but I suspect the result will be closer than the polls suggest, simply due to the F Factor - fundies. You should see the US Christian Right websites, particularly Focus on the Family [http://www.family.org] trying to get out the godbot vote for the midterms. However, this time, they may be facing a tidal wave of disillusionment and anger at the Iraqi War quagmire.

    Lame duck? If Bush faces a hostile Congress after today, I hope it decides to impeach the cokesnorting one. According to Rolling Stone, there's certainly enough to get him on...

    Craig Y.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 560 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Robyn, something very cool on youtube is HBO doco "Hacking Democracy" linked on Scoop FP....

    It's out there on the torrent wires too. I grabbed it this week, but went out and left the torrent running: uploaded 1.4GB. Whoops.

    And may I say Al, I think it's a feather in Scoop's cap that all this way down the road, the black box voting issue you guys helped kick off has made it to the status of a major HBO doco. I liked the way that HBO told Diebold to jam it last week when Diebold demanded the programme be yanked ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22744 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Boden,

    A view from an American living here in NZ... (I vote absentee in Virginia, where I last lived in the US)...

    I must object somewhat to the notion that the American people have failed to repudiate the gang of thugs currently running things over there. It's pretty well accepted (in some circles, but not in the corporate media for the most part) that the results of the presidential elections in 2000 and 2004 subverted the will of the people; the first via shenanigans in Florida (and the resultant interference by the Supreme Court), and the second via large scale election fraud, particularly in Ohio. There is also evidence of election fraud in the 2002 mid-term elections. And according to Greg Palast and others, the fix is in once again:

    http://www.buzzflash.com/contributors/06/06/con06219.html

    http://www.gregpalast.com/how-they-stole-the-mid-term-election#more-1530

    I've bet my kiwi brother-in-law Brett $5 that the election will be fixed and the thug/pervert party will retain control of both houses. I'd be very happy to lose that money, but I'm afraid it's a bet I'm likely to win.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 80 posts Report Reply

  • Michael Savidge,

    I have to admit that my earlier hopes of a Bush backlash are fading. The Republicans are masters at getting their voters to the polls and too many would-be Democratic supporters have given up on the political process altogether. I'm sure many of us here share their pain in that regard.

    What leaves me staggered is that there is so much evidence of corruption and cronyism in the Bush administration yet the mid-terms will still be a close call. Seems the fundies will stick together no matter What Jesus Would Do.

    Somewhere near Wellington… • Since Nov 2006 • 324 posts Report Reply

  • Alastair Thompson,

    Pennsylvania Voter Smashes Touch-Screen Machine
    2:45 PM ET, from the Morning Call of Allentown, Pa.:

    "A man entered an Allentown polling site, signed in and proceeded to smash one of the electronic voting machines with a metal cat paperweight, poll volunteers said.

    "Michael Young, 43, will be charged with felony criminal mischief and tampering with voting machines, according to Ronald Manescu, chief of investigations for Allentown police. Police gave no motive, but a source said Young, a registered Independent, believed Republicans had conspired to win the election by using electronic ballots."

    link

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 220 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Boden,

    Let the Democrats die a natural and well deserved death while the Republicans run the country into the ground. Maybe a decent political system will rise from the ashes. It's better than acting as co-enablers to a cabal of religious idiots.

    An interesting theory, and perhaps workable if it weren't so dangerous. The religious nutcases behind the current party in power would like nothing more than to see the Rapture taking place right now, and bush doesn't seem to be disappointing them in that regard.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 80 posts Report Reply

  • Andre Alessi,

    What leaves me staggered is that there is so much evidence of corruption and cronyism in the Bush administration yet the mid-terms will still be a close call. Seems the fundies will stick together no matter What Jesus Would Do.

    "Sure the Republican party is corrupt and filled with hypocritical adulterers, but the Democrats want to teach evolution in schools and let gay people marry, there's no way I could support a party with policies like that!"

    I was trying to make that sound like parody, but it just didn't turn out that way...

    Devonport, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 864 posts Report Reply

  • Andre Alessi,

    From TPM:

    From the GOP handbook of Maryland politics:

    (1) Recruit homeless men in Philadelphia;
    (2) Bus them into Maryland;
    (3) Arrange for the Republican governor's wife to greet them upon their arrival;
    (4) Outfit them in hats and T-shirts for the governor's re-election campaign;
    (5) Have them pass out flyers in heavily Democratic areas that erroneously identify the GOP candidates for governor and U.S. senator as "Democrats."

    Wow. Just...wow.

    Devonport, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 864 posts Report Reply

  • Alastair Thompson,

    ...wait there is more... from TPM

    From the GOP handbook of Maryland politics:

    (1) Recruit homeless men in Philadelphia;
    (2) Bus them into Maryland;
    (3) Arrange for the Republican governor's wife to greet them upon their arrival;
    (4) Outfit them in hats and T-shirts for the governor's re-election campaign;
    (5) Have them pass out flyers in heavily Democratic areas that erroneously identify the GOP candidates for governor and U.S. senator as "Democrats."

    The complete primer here.

    Update: A first-hand account here.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 220 posts Report Reply

  • James Bremner,

    As a Kiwi who has lived in the US for 10 years and who follows politics here pretty closely, it is interesting to read the views of Kiwis back in NZ. Some are close to the mark and some have been led well off the reservation by reading the likes of the rabid left wing blogger, DailyKos. The NZ media (which I read daily) is a few sausies short of a BBQ on the subject of US and US politics as well; you won’t do yourself any favours by relying on it to gain any insight.

    The following couple of sites will give you a much better grasp of what is going on and why.

    A good round up of insightful articles and polling summaries
    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/

    The best polling in the US is done by Scott Rasmussen at:
    http://www.rasmussenreports.com/

    Most likely result, Dems take the House by a handful of seat, Repubs keep the Senate, not the "giant Blue Wave" like 1994 that the mainstream liberal media has talked up for months.

    So what are the implications? I bet none of you know much about Nancy Pelosi, the loony tunes San Fran lib who would become speaker if the Dems win. Well, Osama, Al Zawaheri, Kim Jong Il, Armdinajad the head hackers in Iraq and various other assorted despots will be happy campers indeed if Nancy is the new Speaker. She sees terrorism as a law enforcement issue. Not much use if you become one of the people who have to jump 100 floors to your death (like the people in the top floors of the WTC on 9/11) in the next terrorist attack that she would make much easier for terrorists to successfully launch , if she got her way.

    Fortunately Pelosi will have limited powers as the House is only one branch of Govt, and quite a few of the new Dems are very moderate, even conservative in nature, who have the mental capacity (it doesn't take much) to see that terrorism is a game much better played on the opposition's turf, rather than on your own turf at home.

    When one party controls the White House and the other controls one or both Houses of Congress, it is described as gridlock. Not too much can get done, which means not too much will change. Not what a lot of Kiwis will want to hear, but not many Kiwis appreciate what a bunch of twats the current crop of Dems is. Al Gore, John Kerry, Howard Dean, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid. What a bunch of imbeciles. And yes, much, much worse that Bush.

    NOLA • Since Nov 2006 • 353 posts Report Reply

  • Alastair Thompson,

    snap....

    :)

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 220 posts Report Reply

  • Lee Wilkinson,

    Basically, given the abysmal reports about the hackability of e voting systems and the inability of individual states to want to do something about putting democracy into practice, the population of america will end up with the government they deserve.
    To paraphrase Jimmy Carter " there aint no way the UN could monitor this election"
    Also, it is not that dissimilar to New Zealand in the sense that there is no discernable opposition to vote for.
    Im predicting a narrow win to the Republicans that will not balance with exit polling or any physical recounts. Its kind of amusing and sick/sad that the voting machine manufacturers are the same people that make atms, and I can't recall an atm ever not giving me a paper receipt.
    Eisenhower's quote about "absolute power of the military industrial complex, to be the only thing we need to fear and fight against" is true and I have yet to see a light anywhere inside the tunnel.

    Whangarei Heads • Since Nov 2006 • 45 posts Report Reply

  • tony ricketts,

    A million years ago I studied Politics at varsity, and learned that First-Past-The-Post encourages 2-party systems while PR encourages multi-party systems. I wrote an essay on the USA once, in which I concluded cutely that they have a no-party system, as the philosophical and demographic foundations of both main parties are so vague as to be meaningless.

    I visited the States once, and found that no power on earth (or heaven) will persuade them to make different values of paper money in varying size or colour; it's how they've always done it, and they'll keep miles and gallons too. So what chance they'll make huge changes in their 18th century political system?

    katikati • Since Nov 2006 • 3 posts Report Reply

  • Robert Wilson,

    If you want to predict the results follow the money I say.
    As of yesterday (odds no longer available) www.sportsbook.com had odds of:

    3:4 Republicans hold Senate
    4:13 Dems take Senate

    4:15 Republicans hold House
    15:19 Dems take House

    which means the R's are pretty heavily favoured to win the Senate and the D's are heavily favoured to win the House.

    California, USA • Since Nov 2006 • 11 posts Report Reply

  • Lee Wilkinson,

    oops rethink.....
    The internet is the only thing that can allow us to function in a truly democratic sense. There is a light~!

    Whangarei Heads • Since Nov 2006 • 45 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Boden,

    When one party controls the White House and the other controls one or both Houses of Congress, it is described as gridlock. Not too much can get done, which means not too much will change. Not what a lot of Kiwis will want to hear, but not many Kiwis appreciate what a bunch of twats the current crop of Dems is. Al Gore, John Kerry, Howard Dean, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid. What a bunch of imbeciles. And yes, much, much worse that Bush.

    Would that be the same bush that allowed the 9/11 terrorist attacks to occur?

    I'm glad you don't get to vote.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 80 posts Report Reply

  • Alastair Thompson,

    So what are the implications? I bet none of you know much about Nancy Pelosi, the loony tunes San Fran lib who would become speaker if the Dems win. Well, Osama, Al Zawaheri, Kim Jong Il, Armdinajad the head hackers in Iraq and various other assorted despots will be happy campers indeed if Nancy is the new Speaker. She sees terrorism as a law enforcement issue. Not much use if you become one of the people who have to jump 100 floors to your death (like the people in the top floors of the WTC on 9/11) in the next terrorist attack that she would make much easier for terrorists to successfully launch , if she got her way.

    Nancy Pelosi is actually a bit soft she has indicated she doesn't want to impeach the shrub. Hopefully she will change her mind once her committees start using subpoena power to get some evidence on among other things how Bolton was spying illegally on his perceived opponents in the State Dept and how Dick Cheney lied to the 911 commission.

    Welcome to Public Address System James....

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 220 posts Report Reply

  • Tim Michie,

    The opinion polls closing up shouldn't faze hopeful Democrats too greatly as it's typical as the day approaches. If anything it may motivate those assuming a slam dunk (and we know how reliable those are, don't we George).

    Whatever the results, my worries are that these Midterms will be the anti-Bush catharsis swinging voters are asking for and they'll return to the plainer messages of the Republicans for the Presidentials and, should the Democrats win both House and Senate, the lauching of investigation gridlock will not only distract eyes from the ongoing death but also tar US politics so thoroughly voters will stay away in droves 2008.

    But on with the race...

    Coverage:
    Web graphics thingys on:
    Washington Post:
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/politics/elections/index.html
    New York Times:
    http://www.nytimes.com/ref/washington/2006ELECTIONGUIDE.html?currentDataSet=senANALYSIS

    Video:
    (From 19:00 EST ~13:00 NZ - Eastern Poll Close - expect much filler - free trial/fine print alert):
    http://edition.cnn.com/pipeline/landing/index.election.html
    (From 20:00 EST ~14:00 NZ):
    http://inside.c-spanarchives.org:8080/cspan/schedule.csp

    tim

    Auckward • Since Nov 2006 • 614 posts Report Reply

  • Eddie Clark,

    Nancy Pelosi, the loony tunes San Fran lib who would become speaker if the Dems win.

    As far as I can tell from looking at their policy platforms, "looney tunes libs" in the US would fit squarely in the middle, or possibly slightly towards the left, of the Labour party here.

    Besides, voter fraud/intimidation has been documented, recorded, and reported on by the MSM as well as those nasty looney left bloggers... the fact that people are trying to lie/cheat/steal their way to an election win is shocking, whether or not you like Nancy Pelosi, and whether or not the Dems end up taking control of either house.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 273 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Good grief. The Republican robo-pestering calls in Nebraska have gone a step further. They're using the Democrat candidate's voice.

    Meanwhile, the usual chaos and under-provisioning at polling places ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22744 posts Report Reply

  • Andre Alessi,

    We should definitely get a prize for that, Alistair!

    Devonport, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 864 posts Report Reply

  • Alastair Thompson,

    Yeah.. you must have beat me by a few seconds only....

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 220 posts Report Reply

  • James Bremner,

    "Would that be the same bush that allowed the 9/11 terrorist attacks to occur?"

    I see loony tunes exists in NZ as well as San Fran. Do you seriously think that any American would have allowed the 9/11 attacks to occur? I mean seriously?! To describe such views as "silly", is an insult to "silly'.

    NOLA • Since Nov 2006 • 353 posts Report Reply

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