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Just wanted to check in with you all to remind you that the Texas Senate passed a really awful voter-suppression bill last month, since as you may have noticed, the whole thing blew up on Twitter all over again yesterday. As far as we can tell, there's not any new news about the bill, introduced by rightwing fartsack state Sen. Bryan Hughes, but we are very glad to see it getting renewed attention. Maybe even enough attention to make its passage in the Texas House a little less likely. No telling -- Texas Republicans have never liked voting, especially if poors or browns do it. And since the Texas secretary of state's attempt at a big voter purge failed in March, Hughes's Senate Bill 9 seems like the best shot for the Rs to take another swing at the ol' voter suppression piñata.

The bill has been touted as an "election security" measure, and it has precisely one good idea in it: requiring that all elections systems, including electronic voting machines, include a backup paper trail to allow auditing of election results. But the rest of SB 9 is a stew of terrible measures aimed at scaring people away from the polls. For instance, the bill would make it a "state jail felony" for anyone to submit "false information" (even something as trivial as a wrong zip code) on a voter registration form. That had previously been a misdemeanor; now it'll be subject to a two-year sentence and fine up to $10,000. Texas, we should note, is not actually plagued by a wave of fake registration info, but hey, why not criminalize it anyway?

Worse, Hughes's bill would create a whole new felony to punish anyone who submits a provisional ballot if they're not actually eligible to vote. As we noted when the bill first went forward, that's pretty evil, since as a Democratic opponent of the bill pointed out, the WHOLE POINT of provisional ballots is to allow someone who's unsure about their registration status to have their vote counted if they are qualified. As Democratic state Sen. José Menéndez pointed out,

Under state law, provisional voting ballots automatically serve as a voter registration application [...This bill] would criminalize people who aren't sure of their registration status and fill out a provisional ballot.

Now don't be silly -- obviously no one ever does anything in error, and all mistakes at the polls are actually attempted fraud. How naive do you think Republicans are to your constant tricks?

Yesterday's Twitter outcry against the bill highlighted another odious part of the bill that would effectively ban organized efforts to take people to the polls unless they are literally, in the bill's language, "physically unable to enter the polling place without personal assistance or likelihood of injuring their health." Fortunately, the person driving can simply fill in a detailed form; we imagine Hughes is saving medical exams for all elderly or disabled voters for his reelection bid.

You see, all Republicans believe in their hearts that Democrats bus mobs of voters -- probably illegal immigrants! -- from polling place to polling place to vote multiple times, despite the lack of any evidence. Look, Donald Trump said it's real, so it has to be real (It is not real).

Internet shitstain James O'Keefe even made a big production of tailing a pastor's bus on election day 2016, because bus = voter fraud.

Did O'Keefe find any illegal voting? HE HAD TO. THERE WAS A BUS AND BLACK PEOPLE!

SB 9 will forever free Texas from the scourge of pastors or anyone else driving people to vote, by Crom.

No more frauding by old people, hooray! Not that there was any to start with, but it's well-established that Texas Rs just HATE old black people voting. Maybe because they remember too much.

Instead, poor and elderly people will just have to rely on rural Texas's excellent public transportation services, like the Dime Box subway or the Bee Cave hyperloop.

Hughes insists there's nothing at all controversial about this, because he just wants to make sure people aren't up to anything funny.

The bill also would require people who help disabled voters cast a mail-in ballot officially certify that the voter they help is physically unable to enter a poll without risk to harm. In addition, it allows poll watchers to accompany both the voter and helper into the voting area. [...]

"This is not a partisan issue. ... It says if you're going to bring someone to the polls and help them cast their ballot ... then, yes. We want to know your names."

And watch you vote. Perhaps while we sneer at you. "Secret ballots" are so passe.

Also too, never forget: Were it not for John Roberts and other Republicans deciding racism was over in 2013, not a bit of this ballot-rigging fuckery would be happening.

You know, a cynical person might get the impression that Texas Republicans worry that if they had to face ALL the voters, they might not be carried to reelection on the sterling brilliance of their ideas. Which is why so many of their ideas involve not facing all the voters.

[Wonkette / Max Kennerly on Twitter / Don Moynihan on Twitter / Longview News-Journal]

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Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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Last week, Yr Dok Zoom talked a little bit about his damn dissertation, which looked at "Wabbit Literacy," the weird thing where we sometimes learn about the world from parodies and jokes long before we ever encounter the original stuff -- like learning about opera from cartoons. More than one person in the comments (which Wonkette does not allow and yet, like life, you find a way) mentioned they were disappointed, as kids, to learn that while roadrunners are real birds, the actual critter looks nothing like this:

Which is not to say that real roadrunners are the least bit disappointing, as animals go, because they're freaking incredible. Yes, even if they don't actually leave lines of flame down the center line of desert highways and go "Meep! Meep!" But they can sprint up to 20 miles per hour, which is faster than you, albeit slower than a real coyote's top speed. Also, yes, real coyotes are among the predators what eat roadrunners, which is why the wily birds adopted the evolutionary strategy of running right through fake tunnels coyotes paint on the sides of mountains.

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Once upon a time... about ten years ago, a group of entirely ridiculous men burst onto the scene wearing stupid hats and telling men that wearing stupid hats and telling men that walking up to women in bars and insulting ("negging") them would get them laid. This did not last long, as women also had televisions and computers and were completely aware of these tricks as well, so when some ass came up to us in a bar and said "Hey, nice nails, are they real?" we would laugh and laugh and loudly announce "Oh my god, this guy just tried to neg me! Can you believe that shit? HEY EVERYONE, THIS GUY JUST TRIED TO NEG ME!" and then refer to him as "Mystery" the whole night.

Most of the men who tried that shit only did so a few times before realizing that it wasn't going to work, and thus moved on to other things. Perhaps things that did not involve furry hats and coming off as a huge creep. We may never know, because I would assume that those who tried it are now extremely embarrassed and would never, ever admit to this to us.

Still, there were a few men willing to eat that shit up, as well as some grifters willing to take advantage of that. Said grifters tended to be extremely misogynistic and seemed more like they were teaching men how to be as despised by women as they were than teaching them how to actually be liked by women.

Some of them, like Roosh V, a creepy weirdo who actually does live in his mom's basement, actively encouraged men to rape women who were intoxicated to the point of being obviously unable to consent.

However, even that branch of the PUA tree is wilting away. Many "self-help" style PUA forums like Nextasf and RSDnation are shutting down or have already shut down. In March, Chateau Heartiste, a batshit crazy PUA turned White Nationalist/Alt-Right blog was shut down by Wordpress. This week, rape advocate Roosh V (whom you may recall once called yours truly a "Wonkette typist/clown face, would not bang") announced that he was renouncing his PUA ways and devoting himself to Jesus. He explained to the forum he manages that he would no longer be allowing anyone to discuss premarital "fornication."

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