Thursday, October 14, 2010

Wheel of misfortune

We've known for years that 'Wheel Of Fortune' host Pat Sajak is a right-wing clod, but he just gets more extreme every time he opens his cavernous mouth.

Now Sajak - in an article for some right-wing blog nobody reads - says government employees shouldn't be allowed to vote. His so-called reasoning is that workers in the public sector have too much of a stake in government.

Sajak, you idiot, the whole reason voting exists is because people have a stake in things. For example, I have a stake in keeping nuclear waste dumps out of my state, so I'd be inclined to vote for a candidate who wants waste disposed of elsewhere. Folks in another state might have a stake in having it dumped here instead of in their state, so they'd vote for somebody else. In a democratic republic, voters vie for influence. We don't vote just because we like to collect "I Voted" stickers.

"I'm not suggesting that public employees should be denied the right to vote," Sajak writes. But keeping public employees from voting is exactly what he recommended.

As others have pointed out, Pat Sajak's stance is significant because the past 30 years have proven one thing: Ideas like Sajak's that seem wacky at first are inevitably incorporated into Republican campaigns - not to mention the DLC. I've also learned that once their bizarre ideas are put in force, it's nearly impossible to reverse them. (Does the Telecommunications Act of 1996 sound familiar?)

If Sajak's idea was enacted, there would have been several major elections in which I wouldn't have been allowed to vote, because I worked for a public agency like the library.

Maybe voting should be limited to where people actually have a stake. In 1994, a right-wing referendumb in Massachusetts that bars cities from having rent control laws passed because (in addition to the "election" being rigged) much of the vote was cast in wealthy suburbs where people owned their own homes and which lacked rent control laws. These suburbs had no stake in the measure, yet they voted on it.

Is it fair that wealthy communities that had no stake in rent control were allowed to deny affordable housing to the rest of the state? Pat Sajak apparently thinks it is. (Cow pies to the Massachusetts legislature for not overturning this measure. They've had 16 years to do so, and they've sat on their hands.)

A country run by Pat Sajak would be one of cheap elitism that bears no resemblance to how a democratic republic is supposed to operate.


  1. I agree with Tim. Maybe those who don't pay taxes should not vote in elections that directly or indirectly affect how tax dollars are spent. They have no stake because it's not their money being spent. Keep up the good work, Tim!

  2. Then maybe the rich shouldn't vote - since they don't pay their fair share.

  3. How do you determine what a "fair share" is? What's my "fair share"? What's yours?