Friday, August 31, 2012

Everything I need to know I get from the comics, part 4,791

It's been a long week here at the Undisclosed Location and at the Curmudgeon home besides. The carefully thought out, scrupulously sourced post that I've been planning will just have to wait -- and probably die a lingering death in my Drafts section.

It's Friday, and a three day weekend stands before us. It's time for cartoons.

From the webcomic Married to the Sea by Drew and Natalie Dee
Um, wait a minute -- I guess that's what I just did, didn't I?

Thinking about that makes my head hurt, so I'll just go to today's Brewster Rockit strip, by Tim Rickard; it's one of my daily favorites:

Image obtained from Yahoo! Comics
Brewster's running for Galactic President, see, and Dirk Raider is running against him and... wait, this is getting political here isn't it? Voter ID laws are controversial because, allegedly, poor people and old people and young people don't necessarily have photo IDs. Really? About the only place I don't carry a photo ID is in the shower. One of my kids had to get a State ID when he went on his Washington trip because he needed a photo ID to get into tours of particular buildings. No, he didn't have any other photo ID -- but he was 13 at the time.

Maybe it's because I'm from Chicago, where the dead have been known to rise from their graves -- in close races, anyway -- to vote the Democratic ticket, but I'm not entirely certain that I'm reflexively opposed to any sort of photo ID requirement. In Chicago, we sign ballot applications, and our signatures can be compared to the ones on the desk in front of the election judge. Really, why is that so fundamentally different from presenting a photo ID? Because the laws as drafted try to make it as difficult as possible to obtain acceptable photo IDs? That would be a valid objection -- but, to say that all photo ID requirements are per se bad, evil, racist, ageist, sexist, etc., etc., etc. strikes me as excessive. Nobody is really in favor of vote fraud, are they? Or does it really depend on who'd benefit from the fraudulent votes?

Oh, sorry, I'm getting political again. Weren't we supposed to be doing cartoons this morning? I could look at Doonesbury, I suppose -- no, wait, that certainly won't work.

How about dropping in on Pearls Before Swine, drawn by recovering lawyer Stephan Pastis? Maybe Zebra is finally getting along with the Crocs.

Image obtained from Yahoo! Comics
Also obtained from Yahoo! Comics
Apparently not.

Everyone is just so tense these days. It's definitely time for a three day weekend.

And a nap. A nap would be good about now.


AndyK said...

All the hearsay stories of Chicago vote fraud I have ever heard were always perpetrated by the poll workers. I have never heard of individual voters showing up to cast multiple votes (unless a fifth of whiskey was also involved in the story).

The picture ID laws are just another step towards a "papers please" police state.

The Curmudgeon said...

AndyK, if you mean that most Chicago vote fraud has been done by people working the polls, I'd probably agree. A lot of the more egregious stuff happens outside the polling places, when campaign workers 'help' nursing home residents vote, for example. But no good precinct captain would ply a voter with a fifth of liquor, even in the bad old days -- a half-pint or pint at most -- after all, they have to see the ballot to punch the holes (or, in the old days, pull the lever -- that was easier).

As you've probably noticed, I bristle at the increasing police-state-tendencies in this country. You've never seen a hymn of praise to the TSA on this page, for example. But I don't know what's unreasonable per se about verifying that the person presenting himself at the polling place as John Smith of 123 Main Street really is who he says he is. The question is how much verification should be required; how much is reasonable.

Maybe I'm inclined this way, not just because I live in Chicago, but because when we got our most recent voter ID cards (would you oppose requiring those? I've never brought mine to the polls, but I suppose I could if that were the rule) -- anyway, when we got our most recent voter ID cards, Older Daughter got one -- and she's been married and living out of state for three years now and I know for a certainty that she's registered in Indiana. But someone -- an imposter or a faithless polling place judge -- could pull a ballot for her.

This discussion deserves a more serious treatment than I'm able to give just now.