Today’s message for my fellow Americans

And by “Americans,” I mean “U.S. citizens”. The NY Times has a good short article on what to watch for if you’re following the voting today (I won’t, as I’m out sightseeing and want to avoid the possibility of profound depression):

The admonition to abjure the cats does not, of course, apply to this website.


  1. Douglas E
    Posted November 6, 2012 at 4:49 am | Permalink

    Mail ballot sent. Any ex-pats or US folks in Heidelberg – see you at the German American Institute for the election watch program.

  2. Posted November 6, 2012 at 5:15 am | Permalink

    Good luck all y’all. I’m running a bit late on my way to the local precinct where I’m the inspector….


  3. Posted November 6, 2012 at 5:18 am | Permalink

    Nice to see those Ohio stickers. The early voting here in Ohio has been great, most people I know voted early. I haven’t voted early because I haven’t had time to go to our board of elections in downtown Cleveland.

    And we still have early voting despite the secretary of state John Husted trying to get rid of it all under the usual Republican guise of protecting us from voter fraud.

    This also shows something else I’ve seen. All adds I’ve gotten in the mailfrom Obama were about my voter information, when and where, encouraging me to vote and hey while you’re at it it would be super good if you voted for Obama.

    Where all the Romney adds I got were all about FUD with the other guy.

    • Notagod
      Posted November 6, 2012 at 8:53 am | Permalink

      I did my registration and voting by mail for South Dakota, looks like you could do the same in Ohio:


      Absentee ballot:
      Who is eligible to vote by absentee ballot?

      Any qualified Ohio voter whose registration information is up to date may request and vote an absentee ballot without stating a reason.

      • gravelinspector
        Posted November 7, 2012 at 7:20 am | Permalink

        Any qualified Ohio voter whose registration information is up to date may request and vote an absentee ballot without stating a reason.

        By implication then there are parts of America where you do have to declare a reason for wanting an absentee, postal or proxy vote?
        Actually, I’m having to try to remember what the exact rules are now in Britain. The last time I researched the topic it was for the trade union’s magazine, and everyone in our business automatically qualifies on grounds of working away from home for extended periods.
        [Checks] : POSTAL vote needs no reason given (but sending a postal vote to other than your address-of-record does require a reason to be given). Requesting a PROXY vote however does require a reason to be given and supporting evidence to be provided. I think the “send to another address” rule is new, in response to a scandal a few years ago of abuse of postal votes by party organisations.

        • Notagod
          Posted November 7, 2012 at 10:58 am | Permalink

          Not sure if that’s the case or maybe they were just trying to make it known that a reason wasn’t necessary for an absentee ballot. It seems that they don’t often make descriptions that clear without reason so your reasoning is sound.

  4. Occam
    Posted November 6, 2012 at 7:55 am | Permalink

    Andy Borowitz @ The New Yorker has a final and devastating envoi:

    WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report)—With only one day until the election, the Republican Party today released its official closing argument to the American people.

    In its entirety, the argument read as follows: “We’re strongly opposed to FEMA and health care, but basically O.K. with rape.”

    Reince Priebus, the chairman of the Republican National Committee, said that the Party’s message of “zero tolerance toward disaster relief combined with a more easygoing attitude about rape” would lead the Party to victory on Election Day.

    “Our argument couldn’t be simpler: when God wants to create a hurricane or make a woman pregnant, big government should get out of the way,” he said.

    Mr. Priebus also had this message for the American voter: “Your vote is important. We’ve spent billions trying to buy it.”

    • Posted November 6, 2012 at 9:09 am | Permalink

      I do enjoy reading Andy Borowitz, and watching Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert and of course, Bill Maher.

    • Notagod
      Posted November 6, 2012 at 9:11 am | Permalink

      So sad that we have to be mucking around at the Republicans level. There are so many important, non-childish, non-self-centered-money-grubbing, non-male-authoritarian, non-white-supremacist legislative measures that needs to be considered.

  5. Posted November 6, 2012 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    Voted last week, let’s win this!

    Vote democrat, if (as in TEXAS) many republicans are not challenged by a democrat, vote green or any other party. I am so tired of the obstruction in Congress.

    Obama/Biden –> FORWARD

  6. HaggisForBrains
    Posted November 6, 2012 at 11:06 am | Permalink

    Good luck with the vote. Remember, the rest of the world cannot vote, but is likely to be deeply affected by the result. We’re relying on you to get Obama back in.

  7. Torbjörn Larsson, OM
    Posted November 6, 2012 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

    And be careful with the vote, the d*gs have pre-selected Romney in the voting machines.

    “I then called over a volunteer to have a look at it. She him hawed for a bit then calmly said “It’s nothing to worry about, everything will be OK.” and went back to what she was doing.”

    • gravelinspector
      Posted November 7, 2012 at 7:53 am | Permalink

      But are postal ballots etc conventional sheets of paper with crosses on them? Or again, does it vary by state/ district/ county/ town/ phase of the moon?
      Our postal votes are exactly the same as polling station ballots, but with a couple of envelopes around them. The envelopes carry the administration information (“is this a valid postal vote?”) which is checked prior to the close of polls, and the inner envelopes are opened to expose the ballot papers at the counting area after the polls have closed (and while the ballot boxes are being shipped in from the polling stations for counting).
      I understand that American ballots are far more complex than the typical British one, but watching the various examples of malpractice associated with “voting machines” is really bringing that whole idea into disrepute. Searching … it appears that they’re only commonly used in Brazil, India, Venezuela and the US, with the Netherlands stepping back from their use of them. Which is hardly a ringing endorsement. I suspect that most of the rest of the world will end up going straight to internet voting and completely bypass the “voting machine” stage. After that, it’s simple, well known questions of access, privacy and authentication. Formidable enough problems, but people have systems which are good enough for our financial systems, so they’re not insurmountable. (The questions of which systems to implement … are a different set of questions ; no general consensus has been reached AFAIK.)

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