Asymmetrical Craziness

November 17, 2020

Asymmetrical Craziness

Asymmetrical Craziness

Mark Rubin

Dr. Scott Atlas encourages large holiday gatherings. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) has “inquired about” unlawfully tossing Georgia absentee ballots, while the person to whom he made the suggestion – Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger – gets death threats from Just Folks who want Trump to get the Georgia electoral votes. The Missouri Senate can’t meet because too many senators and staffers tested positive, after a mask-less retreat several days ago. (Same story. Different M state.) Meanwhile, the New York Times reports 166,581 new COVID-19 cases on November 16, 82% more than 14 days ago. And from President Trump? Silence.

Sheer stupidity. Arrogance too. A regular You Are Not The Boss of Me fun fest.

Against this backdrop people rant on about President Trump’s right to exhaust his options regarding the 2020 election, in furtherance of proving evident fraud.

Fraud facts. Like, from a lawyer facts. First, in civil cases the plaintiff must prove fraud with specificity. Specific facts. And proof must meet the clear and convincing evidence, or highly likely, standard in most jurisdictions. Why? Because it’s so easy to say “fraud” and expect others to say “Yep.”

Second, fraud in elections happens rarely. Proven fraud that will affect the tens of thousands of vote which must flip to change the election? Less likely than what you see in this painting – no, not a photograph – from my family room. (Even recounts – forget about fraud and assume honest errors, if one gives anyone a benefit of the doubt in these times – will not change the outcome of this election.)*

Asymmetrical Craziness

Nevertheless, the fraud blah blah and “the media doesn’t tell us who won” noise holds up the normal transition process. Wait. What? The media does not play a formal role. True dat, for sure, but remember the fact that POTUS demanded the declaration of a winner on election night, with no counting thereafter. Stupid, for sure, as we haven’t counted every ballot on Election Day in living history, if ever. And, we have laws in plenty of states – Michigan and Pennsylvania among them – which make counting all of the ballots on Election Day impossible.

What of it? Why not indulge a spoiled brat’s tantrum for a little while longer? Well, if you and yours believe government has no meaningful, positive role in our lives, why not? After all, none of our enemies – think China, Iran, North Korea, and Russia – will pay any attention to what’s going on here and try to take advantage of the situation. No, none of them would do that!

Then, of course, there’s the pandemic. Mr. Trump told us, in the run up to the election, the military would handle COVID-19 vaccine distribution logistics. (lots of logistics associated with this thing.) Then, peeved, he fired his DoD Secretary. (His fifth in less than four years.) Can the Department of Defense function with an acting Secretary of Defense? Sure. Does it work better as a cohesive unit with a leader, confirmed by the Senate, who POTUS supports. Absolutely, and if you don’t think that matters, you know nothing about cohesion in large organizations. Leadership matters. Really!

So here we are. The American people chose a new leader. Tens of millions of people voted for “stay the course” and millions more, living and voting in the right places, said No Thanks. And, now, a significant share of those who supported the Loser mess with the rest of us. Put our national security at risk. Reduce the potential effectiveness of a vaccine rollout. For what?

I expect that I will change no minds here. That said, when bad stuff happens after January 20, we should consider the asymmetrical craziness which has our country on pause for Lord knows how long, leading up to January 20, 2021. At best, the delays in moving forward with the transition disadvantage us not at all. Everything else is downhill, for no reason other than indulging the sorriest excuse for a public official we will likely ever see.

 

*I have Right Wing friends who tell me even one fraudulent vote is one vote too many. Of course, they never express a modicum of concern about legal or illegal acts which have as their sole evident purpose interfering with the right to vote.

2 Responses to Asymmetrical Craziness

  • The organized tortfeasors of Arizona, and their Republican allies in Arizona Legislature, are attempting to monkey with the standard of proof. For example, several years ago, I attended a Rotary meeting in Scottsdale, at which Sen. Carolyn Allen (now deceased) was the speaker. She was so proud of her latest legislative accomplishment, which was to secure enactment of a bill raising the standard from preponderance to clear and convincing in case of a malpractice suit against emergency physicians. She claimed that we had to do this, because we were losing qualified physicians to other states.

    I asked her, to which states are they going? In other words, which states have adopted the clear and convincing standard? She did not know. Okay, then, can you describe a case in which the standard of proof would have made a difference? She could not do that either. Realizing that she was on the spot, she blurted out, “you must be a lawyer, I did not know I was going to be cross-examined.” Typical heartless Republican. Follows the party line with any knowledge or concern about whether it is necessary or the effect it might have on ordinary people.

    Lately, a Republican legislator has ridiculed preponderance as “half plus a feather.” Actually, that is not correct. In civil matters, where “only money” is involved, the law is satisfied if the plaintiff has proven his case by the greater weight of the evidence. If the plaintiff is making allegations that impugn the defendant’s character (e.g. fraud), the proof must be clear and convincing. If the prosecution is attempting to deprive the defendant of his life or liberty, then the case must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt. What is a “reasonable doubt”? As a judge in Florida once explained to a jury, it is a doubt for which you can express a reason.

    • Thanks. As always, you bring light unto the darkness. Thanks as well for the vignette. Ideological solutions in search of problems; ugh! Aside: I did not realize Ms. Allen passed.

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