Nowhere in the United States has fraudulent voter identification at the polls been known to be a significant enough concern to merit fresh legislative attention. There is broad concensus among fact-based, evidence-focused people that the opposite is true. Cases of voter identification error or falsification have proven virtually nonexistent, or at worst, so few in number anywhere as to have no effect on election results. Were a big election to run so closely as to be determined by a tiny handful of votes, the loser would inevitably demand a recount and irregularities be found and discounted.
Pennsylvania Republican Turzai let the cat out of the bag on TV, saying their measure “would let Romney win that state.” That is what it’s all about. Not “voter fraud” but fraud against the electorate. Fraud by Republican authorities against the public once again displays a characteristic of pseudo-conservative, way too-far right outlook and behavior. Fraud is so deeply engrained in Republicans’ customary ways of thinking and operating that they see it as universal, part of the standard “tool kit” of political public-relations. The reason for this is not far to seek. Business ethos without Puritan work-ethic and traditional Christian, social morality produces financial muggers, thugs and mobsters. They may dress elegantly and hire chauffeurs like mafia dons. Nowdays, they inhabit board rooms, party headquarters, think-tank and PAC offices. They hire legislators and agency personnel. They operate K Street and the revolving door.
Acquisitive avarice tends to be a stronger motive than personal integrity or business ethics. Ethics in business get squishy. Wishfulness gets the better of morality where no one is around with the standing or wish to question or object. Where nobody involved still has old-fashioned, American scruples, anything goes that doesn’t look like it will get the culprits caught under spot lights, so to speak, cash box in hand, by a swat team.
Watergate was the perfectly crude if small-time example. Republicans are more deeply embued with the models and mentality of sharp business practice than with broad sensibility refined by the humanities. This was not aways so generally the case. The ideas of honor and honesty used to figure more prominently in the conservative soul. The result was comity in legislation and fairness to the other guy, stronger or weaker, a sense of obligation to the country to serve all the people while in office, more than just one’s loudest or richest constituents.
To House Republicans nowdays, the notion of comity has become comedy. May they soon laugh and sneer themselves out of office. One can wonder how they are able to text and tweet with their thumbs while sitting on their hands to stall governance. It is quite a spectacle they put on, dancing about the microphones to get nothing done.
This voter fraud charade demonstrates again that the GOP (Greedy Oil Prevaricators) is only a minority party. Their only chance at the “parity-plus-1” needed to win an election can be gained by four means: (1) confuse real issues with unimportant but emotional side-shows, (2) fool a lot of voters with Big Lies repeated often by many voices, (3) buy a lot of votes with promises, and (4) dissuade democrats from coming to the poles by scaring them, boring them or over-elevating their confidence in the outcome. The more desperate they become, the more extreme their measures.
Why this madness on the Far Right? It’s much more than anger from the frustration of being out of power and able only to prevent good governance. It accompanies the most cowardly fear! The conservative has always been afraid of not having total control of his circumstance. The future is imperfectly predictable, therefore scary. Change can have unexpected results. This is unacceptable to the fear-burdened conservative. No one wants to look like a coward, so conservatives find ways to pretend courage by the bravery of jingoism and support for war with opportunity for glorious heroism in face of death and destruction. The Ultra-rightist compensates for native cowardice by displays of rash over-confidence, bombastic pronouncements and decisions that get other people killed or maimed. Their conscience is salved with “principled” rationalization and profits variously channeled from the Military Industrial Complex. They pamper themselves with false visions of their own righteousness, correctness and goodness. Everyone engages in our rotten ways, right? So we must be all right.
No group in America manifests such cowardice and false consciousness more than the “Tea Party” fraction of the Republican Party. Likelihood increases that their influence has already peaked, that they will lose more seats than they gain in November, and thereafter decline in importance, retiring into mainstream Republicanism as an earlier, more sensible kind of conservatism. Goodbye, “redshirts,” you’ve had your day. You may hang on for a while, but yours is a “dead gang walking” to execution. By the end of Obama’s second term, you’ll rouse interest only among historians trying to explain the strange behavior of people led into sick, socio-political movements by powerful people who are utterly depraved.