I thank Craig Kaufman, and the Bohemian, for the news about the rank-choiced voting (RCV) victories in San Francisco. Ranked-choice is a clever instrument; one can vote positively, for one’s candidate of choice, and leave the negative strategies for one’s second and third choices. Money and time are saved avoiding run-off elections, while the joy of voting for perceived good rather than lesser evil is invaluable. I vote the Bohemian as the Best North Bay Outlet to Breach the Wall of Corporate Bullshit for yet another year.
But while Kaufman’s example of how RCV avoids “third-party spoilers” is good for explaining the mechanics of RCV, it is horrible for the myth it perpetuates—that Bush actually won in 2000. He did not. Bush lost in Florida, lost in the electoral college and lost the election. Kaufman uses Ralph Nader as an example of an election spoiler, which is a pernicious lie. Great, big, humongous lies get perpetuated and made into fact by mere repetition in the mega-corporate, owned-by-the-1-percent media, but especially when repeated in sources like the Bohemian.
The associated lies that support this coup-d’état-by-fraud are mostly lies of omission. Did you know that Kathleen Harris, in her capacity as the highest election official in Florida, who stopped the unfinished vote counting and gave the election to the Supreme Court, where five “friendlies” were waiting with their unconstitutional “votes,” was also Bush’s campaign manager for the state of Florida? That’s a conflict of interest in the extreme, and straight-up election fraud in most countries, except maybe Honduras.
Did you know that Republican-owned company ChoicePoint removed over 80,000 voters from the Florida voter roll in 1999 for felony convictions in the future? The voters removed from the roles did have common demographics, besides “future convictions”: all were either African-American or Jewish, and thus profiled as suspected Democratic voters.
These two squelched items are just the tip of the fraudberg that sank our flailing attempts at organized democracy in the Bush “elections,” thoroughly corrupted by the lenses through which we view this carnage.
Thanks again for bringing this big lie to light: that Gore lost. May it die soon.
Open Mic is a weekly feature in the Bohemian. We welcome your contribution. To have your topical essay of 350 words considered for publication, write [email protected].