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Saturday, March 25, 2006

Playdoh & Guns

More about lost arguments later, but here's a couple of weird stories that made me think.

The first was Tommy's look at the proposal to extend mandatory public schooling to lower and lower ages. As always, he discusses the issue simply and clearly. I don't think public school should be made mandatory before six, because some kids aren't ready and because the state is not always capable of doing better for kids than their parents. Take, for example, this story about what happened in a nursery school program:
Parents in the Deer Lakes School District say ninth grade students who helped with a nursery school program made inappropriate figures with their play-doh.

Parents say some ninth graders assisting their children formed male body parts with the dough.
There are also other allegations that the teenagers were not treating the toddlers nicely.
The second was Broder's column, entitled "An End Run Around The Constitution", about a proposal for states with large electoral votes to band together and potentially change the way electoral votes are counted:
...the advocates propose that states with sufficient electoral votes -- 270 of the 538 -- to constitute an electoral majority enter into an interstate compact, pledging to give their votes to the candidate receiving the largest number of popular votes. That action could allow the legislatures of as few as 11 states to change the whole system of electing a president.
It is no accident that the Founders chose to elect the president by counting votes in the states, since they wanted to emphasize that this is a federal republic with sovereignty shared between the states and Washington. Past efforts to abolish the electoral college have foundered on the objections of small states, which worry that they would be ignored in the pursuit of giant voting blocs in big population centers. Have their claims no merit?
The FEC has page showing electoral votes by state. The eleven states that have enough votes to swing it include mine:
CA: 55, D
FL: 27, R-ish
IL: 21, R
NY: 31, D
OH: 20, R-ish
PA: 21, D
TX: 34, R
209, 7 states

GA: 15, R
MI: 17, D
NJ: 15, D
NC: 15, R-ish
62, 4 states = 271
This group is not exactly monolithic. So what is the advantage for any individual state in signing on to this proposition, I ask? If GA signed on, GA would be bound to vote the way the nation voted, which requires us to rely on each individual state's ability to count their votes accurately and promptly. Like, say, Florida. We in Georgia like to be able to know who we decided to vote for a day or two after the election, rather than waiting for two months while all the lawyers in the US have a party and figure out how Palm Beach County voted.

What this proposal really amounts to is a clever way to allow the Democratic party to fix the votes in their traditional city strongholds, thereby skewing the national total and picking up a few more presidencies over the next couple of decades. We in Georgia are not that dumb. You have to admire the pure chicanery of the Dem strategists though. They must have had a meeting and discussed the proposition "Why let those rural bastards vote at all?"

I really put all this up so I could point out that the south is rising again peacefully, and I really don't care if it is pushed into rising again in war. Not only are we gaining in electoral votes, we also have more guns and more people who can shoot accurately than the coastal nutcase states. The men of Douglas and Fitzgerald, GA could probably take LA in a day as long as they rolled in about 7 in the morning, because the Joel Steins would be hiding under their beds whimpering, the cops would be having breakfast, and the drug dealers would be sleeping off the night's business.

Whether Douglas would want to keep LA is another story.... The guys would probably just hang out in the strip joints for a few days and then decide to come home. That is the traditional way for rural Baptist Georgians to behave when they go to the big city. Given the STD stats for LA, I think the women of Georgia might assign the LA invasion to the Cajuns, who are more than capable of doing the job.

I don't think the Dems figured on the guns 'n ammo factor, so I would suggest that Democratic strategists not tinker with peace. If I, as a Georgian, have to rely on some local politician in Philly counting votes properly in order to get equal representation, I, as a Georgian, want my state politicians to have some say in how Philadelphia counts votes. And that means we need to invade PA, which would at least provide us some justification for all those gas guzzlers we're driving.

Anyway, you'll do better with our beneficient rule. So either way it works out. Just let us know.

Well we know they wouldn't stay for long, there is a lot to California that's nice, but they don't have good grits. I'm not even sure they know what grits are.
No GRITS? They really need our help.

This could explain why the folks on the FluClinic were claiming that it would cost hundreds of dollars to stock an emergency food supply at home in case of quarantine. They were probably thinking of buying a couple hundred of Lean Cuisine dinners and a freezer for them.
Nope, no grits. They have hominy, but that isn't grits. I'm not sure what it is, but grits it isn't. (I'm thinking that they don't allow butter, either. So if they did have grits, they'd probably do some damnyankee thing like put sugar on them.)

But I do like the idea of GA taking over the rest of the country. Not that it's a good idea, but it's certainly entertaining!
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