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The Wide World of Canceling

I am doing my own mental audit of some of the voting results from last November. I have Biden winning North Carolina by 86.218 votes. I also have him very close in Iowa, but I have not finished my mental audit yet. I am trying to find out if some of the Iowa corn cobs were used by Trump supporters to change the ballots. Also, the letter “M” seems to be on a lot of the ballots I am mentally envisioning in my audit, so that could well be important. Or not. But it’s my audit, and I’ll do what I want.

It seems as if they have delayed the Cyber Ninjas’ audit of Arizona, because the gym needed to be used for other things, six months after the election. After they finish, there might be some other groups who would like to recount the ballots. The voting officials counted them right after the vote; then there were three more recounts, and now the Cyber Ninjas are doing theirs. There have to be more people in Arizona who would like to do their own recount, so let’s get this one done, and get the others started. If Trump wins any of these, then the counting stops, like “musical chairs.” They haven’t gotten there yet, though; the first four counts all came out the same, but the Cyber Ninjas had not sprung into action yet.

Have the Republican state legislatures finished with their voting laws? They’ve probably managed to reduce 10% of the Democratic vote, and that should be enough, but when you are fascists, you always want more.

Marc Elias noted that in one state, they were purging the rolls of “infrequent voters,” which they defined as voters who only voted every four years. You see, Republicans are more likely to vote in midterm elections than Democrats, so this will purge mostly Democrats, for the sin of only voting in presidential elections, which makes them “infrequent voters.” I’m waiting for Republicans to eliminate “unknowledgeable voters,” best identified by residing in a Democratic majority district. Get rid of those, and you might eliminate half of the previous Democratic vote. That should do it, but they’re still coming up with fun ideas, like armchair fans who think about ways to improve baseball. The difference is that the fans are not doing more than idly musing; while the Republicans are actually taking away millions of people’s right to vote.

Well, we’ve got the courts,and we’ve got HR1, to try and stop this. I think it would be very naive to expect that the ultimate decider, the Supreme Court, is going to throw out these voting laws. They’ll avoid it, they’ll write a bunch of verbiage which will not actually negate the laws. That leaves HR1, where we need 50 votes plus Harris, to pass the Senate and be signed into law. But of course there is the filibuster, which has to be overcome for the bill to even get to the floor. So we can see if Manchin and Sinema are more concerned about protecting the filibuster, or in saving the democracy. It seems an easy choice, not something to agonize over.

The media seems to be covering voting rights more, but always remember that Republicans really don’t care, they just pound on ahead. They don’t care if people are upset; or if historians see this as the potential end of democracy. It does not compute, as Julie Newmar used to say on “My Living Doll.” They see the end in sight, where they can take permanent power, and that is absolutely all that matters to them. Any words that come out of their mouths are utterly meaningless, they are just words that they put together to confuse or misdirect while they continue at their destruction. Why the media actually shows them talking, is only explained by their need to fill up their shows, plus their own rather deranged subservience to always presenting both sides of any issue. Except for Hillary’s emails, of course.

Well, it is the day of the Preakness, after the Kentucky Derby was ostensibly won by Medina Spirit, but who is on the verge of being disqualified (not the horse’s fault!) because the legendary trainer Bob Baffert apparently gave him an excess of a limited substance for his hooves. Baffert is currently suspended at Churchill Downs, but has been allowed to run Medina Spirit in the Preakness at Pimlico. Medina Spirit has not been officially disqualified from the win in the Derby, but he will be if the second test comes back positive.

I had admired Baffert, he seemed to be a good image for racing, which certainly has its legitimate detractors, but has its adherents as well. But not only have several of his horses tested positive for banned or limited drugs, Baffert has disgraced himself by first lying about not using the substance, saying that he didn’t know how it got there, and then saying that he “is a victim of cancel culture.”

I wonder who invented that term. It is now being used every hour by Republicans, as much as “Communism” or “Socialism,” or “giving aid and comfort to the enemy” were used in past decades by them. The woman who represents the arm of Heritage Foundation, found to have been sending voting suppression law templates to Republican legislators in multiple states, used the term as a response to critics. She said that they are not going to “let the left smear them or employ cancel culture.”

Of course, the ones who are canceling the right to vote for millions of people, are the Republicans. One can scarcely think of more effective canceling than that. But they coined the word, so they think that gives them the right never to have it used against them. Democrats are not nearly as good as coming up with such phrases, and I do not know why, since almost all of the bright and educated people are on that side. It may be that they are simply not comfortable with inventing nonsense phrases designed to propagandize, and disguise their malicious intent.

Anyway, Baffert had the absolute effrontery to use the term. Trump picked it up, too, in some of kind of inane even for him fashion. So anything that anybody on that side doesn’t like is “cancel culture.”

There is a story that some people who said that they bet large amounts on the Derby runner-up, Mandaloun, are suing Baffert and I don’t know whom else, claiming that they were cheated out of their money, and that there was some kind of drugging conspiracy. Well, it would be astounding if they had any chance to win. There is no proof that Mandaloun would have won the race had Medina Spirit not been in it. The pace would have been different. He might have, but who knows?

The courts never enforce gambling debts, and they certainly do not decide who might have won a horse race. It would be unfortunate if cheating changed the payout results, but the courts are not going to intercede. Medina Spirit will undoubtedly be disqualified, through no fault of his own, and Mandaloun will be declared the winner, and get the purse; but the people who bet on Medina Spirit all get to keep their winnings; and those who bet on Mandaloun do not, unless they bet him to Place, at good odds.

There was a person who apparently had a winning ticket worth $26 million in a California Lottery drawing of six months ago. But she could not find her ticket, and is pretty sure that she tossed her jeans into the washing machine, and the ticket disintegrated. I have inadvertently left dollar bills in my pants pocket, or receipts, but never a multimillion dollar lottery ticket. The store which sold the ticket can verify that, and will get $130,000 as the rules allow, but the Lottery spokesperson said that to win, you needed to have a picture of the front and back of the ticket, to at least show that it was in your possession. She could not, so the $26 million, or what remains after taxes, goes to the California Education Fund. This does not seem right, she did buy the ticket, the sale was verified, but she cannot absolutely prove it. Still, she has more right to claim “Cancel Culture!” than Baffert.

Republicans want to cancel everything and everyone who is not them, or for them. They will keep counting and recounting, and taking away votes until they get the results they want. When they cheat and get caught, they yell, “Cancel Culure!” The Cyber Ninjas are still counting votes, and looking for bamboo shoots to prove that the ballots were sent from China; and Bob Baffert is somewhere between, “I don’t know how the drug got there,’ and “They’re trying to cancel me.” When did so many people lose the capacity to distinguish between ethical and unethical behavior, facts and self-serving fantasy?