Tuesday, November 05, 2002

Pre-Election Day Musings

As I sit here on the eve of the 2002 elections, I can't help but wonder what it all means. Whether the Donks extend their lead in the Senate or lose their plurality by one seat or two, does anybody really see a diffeence? OK, the passsing of control to the GOP will grease the skids for some judges to be confirmed. But history shows that the party in power can not predict how its nominees will perform once ensconced on the federal bench. The single party that almost all of our elected legislators are members of is the party of incumbency. But:

All of this needs to be taken in context. In Reason magazine online this month, there is an article about the different approach of the government to violent crime. England is about to take steps to protect the public:
Prime Minister Tony Blair’s government plans to combat crime by extending those "restraints on personal liberty": removing the prohibition against double jeopardy so people can be tried twice for the same crime, making hearsay evidence admissible in court, and letting jurors know of a suspect’s previous crimes.
Wow. They already have repealed the right to refuse to testify against yourself, they have video cameras everywhere, run by and managed by the police, and they are amassing a DNA databank of as many citizens as possible, with a goal of getting DNA on file for "everyone."

So we can quibble about the lack of choice in our elections. But, with that magnificent document, the Constitution, to protect us from the venal, self serving members of the incumbent party, no matter who we elect today, it could be a lot worse.