Blog posts

Election Integrity: Black Box Voting, Part 1 by Janet Maker

Posted by on Nov 30, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

Election Integrity: Black Box Voting, Part 1 by Janet Maker

This is the fourth article in our series examining election integrity. Part 1 concerns the 2016 presidential election recount, which provides a good insight into the problems with voting equipment in the United States.  Part 2 next month will cover how we got into this situation and what can be done about it.  

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Election Integrity: Gerrymandering by Janet Maker

Posted by on Oct 31, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

Election Integrity: Gerrymandering by Janet Maker

After the 2016 presidential election, Hillary Clinton blamed her loss largely on Russian hacking, and Donald Trump blamed the fact that Hillary won the popular vote on millions of illegal ballots.  In my opinion, the chance that either of those claims is true ranges from zero to negligible.  But the election really was rigged, in ways that we are examining in this series of blogs.  This month’s blog focuses on the manipulation that occurred not during the presidential race, but before it — in the drawing of lines for hundreds of U.S. and state legislative seats. According to an Associated Press analysis, gerrymandering gave Republicans a huge advantage before a single vote was cast.

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Election Integrity: The Problems with the Two-Party System by Janet Maker

Posted by on Sep 30, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

Election Integrity: The Problems with the Two-Party System by Janet Maker

This is the second article in our series examining election integrity. A Gallup poll in August, 2017 showed that only 16% of respondents approved of the way Congress was doing its job; 79% disapproved.  The last time that Congress had an approval rating as high as 50% was in 2003.  Dissatisfaction with the two parties is a likely reason that voters were so attracted to Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump in 2016; neither candidate followed his party’s line.  For most of his political career, Sanders had identified as an independent rather than a...

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Election Integrity: The Electoral College by Janet Maker

Posted by on Aug 31, 2017 in Blog | 4 comments

Election Integrity: The Electoral College by Janet Maker

I first became interested in election integrity after the 2000 presidential election.  Not only had the Supreme Court arbitrarily stopped the Florida recount and handed the election to Bush, but I had become aware of other things that didn’t smell right, such as faulty voting equipment and voter suppression that made the vote count seem closer than it really was.  I joined the League of Women Voters’ committee for election integrity.  We analyzed the issues, put together a presentation, and gave it to local groups.  We hoped that the League...

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The Importance of Critical Reading and Thinking by Janet Maker

Posted by on Jul 31, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

The Importance of Critical Reading and Thinking by Janet Maker

Critical thinking and reading are not difficult to teach.  It would be easy to design a curriculum to teach those skills at every level from kindergarten through high school, not only in reading instruction, but also in social studies and science.  There is an obvious argument that critical thinking and reading are important skills for citizenship as well as for equipping students to lead productive lives.  Societies educate children for the type of citizens they want them to become.  Do we want to produce worker bees who will unquestioningly obey authority and do what they are told, or do we want to produce critical thinkers capable of taking part in democratic decision making?

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Neoliberals, Neoconservatives, and Neofascists by Janet Maker

Posted by on May 31, 2017 in Blog | 1 comment

Neoliberals, Neoconservatives, and Neofascists by Janet Maker

Political parties exist to secure responsible government and to execute the will of the people. From these great tasks both of the old parties have turned aside. Instead of instruments to promote the general welfare, they have become the tools of corrupt interests which use them impartially to serve their selfish purposes. Behind the ostensible government sits enthroned an invisible government owing no allegiance and acknowledging no responsibility to the people. To destroy this invisible government, to dissolve the unholy alliance between...

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Neoliberalism’s Newest Iteration: A Progressive Rip Off by Frank Fear

Posted by on Apr 13, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

Neoliberalism’s Newest Iteration: A Progressive Rip Off  by Frank Fear

This guest blog offers an explanation as to why all the progressive organizations and politicians seem to slither to the right.

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U.S. Political Parties and the Deep State by Janet Maker

Posted by on Jan 8, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

U.S. Political Parties and the Deep State by Janet Maker

Understanding the Deep State can help us explain things like why we have rigged elections and endless wars.

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Why Are We Letting This Train Wreck Happen? by Janet Maker

Posted by on Dec 10, 2016 in Blog | 0 comments

Why Are We Letting This Train Wreck Happen? by Janet Maker

Everybody also knows, or should know in view of the overwhelming evidence, that the 2016 election was crooked. We have known that U.S. elections were rigged since at least 2000—voter suppression, Republican-owned proprietary software that can’t be audited, and much more. All our elections should be audited. Yet the only person standing up to challenge this election is Jill Stein. Why isn’t everyone rushing to help her?

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How to Change the World in 3 Easy Steps by Nafeez Ahmed

Posted by on Nov 7, 2016 in Blog | 0 comments

How to Change the World in 3 Easy Steps by Nafeez Ahmed

I often get asked by people about what they can do to change things, to change the world, when each of us is just one person, in the face of so much that we cannot even hope to control or influence. What can we do? Why bother, given our powerlessness? As we look back on the key events of 2015, and the processes that led to them, it would be all too easy to succumb to despair. Despite fighting the ‘war on terror’ for 14 years since 9/11, we’ve only succeeded in seeing terrorism accelerate, metastasising into the so-called ‘Islamic State’ in...

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