Sept. 10, 2020: Political Cartoon titled “Not a Good Sign”

Distributed by Cage Cartoons

The September 10th issue of the Chillicothe Gazette includes a political cartoon making fun of those who claim “Global Warming is a Hoax”. It does it by showing a long haired man holding a sign while the above slogan while the sign burns. Is that supposed to convince us that “man-made global warming due to use the use of fossil fuels” is actually occurring? While I’ve recently covered this topic in a prior post, I’m going to cover it again here.

Is global climate change real? Have we been experiencing warming temperatures? The obvious answer is “YES”! Why can we say that? We can say that because a short 20,000 years ago massive sheets of ice covered most of what is now called the Midwest and New England. That period of glacial activity is known as the Wisconsin Glaciation. ( Prior to that two other periods of major glaciation was experienced in North America. The last of those is known as the Illinoian Galciation.)

So if we start at 22,000 years ago we find cold temperatures and a thick sheet of ice, estimated to be as much as one mile thick, covering much of what is now Ohio. What must have happened since that sheet no longer covers Ohio. In fact it no longer exists in Michigan, the state north of Ohio. And that sheet of ice no longer exists in Canada where it got its start. In fact the only part of that massive glacial event that still exists are the glaciers in Greenland. And we’ve recently seen articles talking about how the Greenland glaciers are melting.

It’s pretty clear that sometime around 20,000 years ago the northern hemisphere started to experience warming temperatures. The increase in temperature must have been substantial if it was able to melt a massive sheet of ice one mile thick covering much of northern North America. And since the warming started around 20,000 years ago it’s been going on for quite awhile. Of course that’s the understatement of all understatements!

Call me crazy, but I’m glad global warming took place. I enjoyed my fishing trip to Ontario, Canada and my bird watching trip to Churchill, Manitoba, Canada. Neither of those trips would have been possible if global warming hadn’t occurred.

The current “man-made global warming” movement was spurred on by a climate chart of the 1,000 years produced by Prof. Michael Mann. It looked much different from other charts which closely match the one produced by climatologist Tim Ball. Tim Ball’s chart includes both the Medieval Warming and Little Ice Age, both well documented in Art, Literature, History and Science. Michael Mann’s chart excludes both. Last summer Prof. Mann’s liable suit against Tim Ball was dismissed when he refused a court order to share the underlying data his chart was based on.

So if the key evidence for the man-made global warming the movement turned out to be bogus, what does that say about the movement’s claims? It looks like global warming has been going on for quite some time. Any temperature increase we’ve experienced since the end of the Little Ice Age is most likely part of that long lasting global warming that started at a time when there were few humans , not something that just started 170 years ago.

Prior article.

Sept. 09, 2020: “Post says most Ohioans safe from virus”

by Anna Staver of the Columbus Dispatch

The September 9, 2020 issue of the Chillicothe Gazette included an article labeled “FACT CHECK” in which the journalist attempted to fact check a Facebook post on how safe Ohioans are from the the Covid-19 virus. The two statistics quoted in the Facebook posting referenced:

“chance of contracting the coronavirus”

“Survival rate” for “those who aren’t in prison or a nursing home”

It’s overall point was that the odds for both of those for residents of Ohio are very small.

In fact checking the “chance of contracting the coronavirus” claim Anna makes the following point:

“Perhaps more seriously, health officials have said all along that confirmed cases represent only a fraction of actual cases, many of which are asymptomatic.”

Ana goes on to state:

“That means using only confirmed cases to calculate the odds of getting Covid-19 will fall well short of the actual figure.”

After discussing the validity of both of the Facebook posts stated statistics, the article concludes:

“Our ruling: Partly false”

Some of the numbers in the Facebook post are correct, but the conclusions it draws about the likelihood of specific Ohioans to both contract and survive the coronavirus are inaccurate.”

The article goes on to list the sources it used to fact check the post.

Consistency is important for the purpose of fact checking the post. If it is important to include asymptomatic cases in calculating the odds of contracting the virus wouldn’t it also be important to include asymptomatic cases when calculating the odds of surviving the virus. However the fact checkers use it in the first, but not the second calculation.

The real answer to both questions is: “The odds depend on so many factors and unknowns that we have no meaningful way to calculate the actual odds, but the odds are quite low for both.”

Calculating a statewide statistic is even more meaningless than calculating a county wide statistic when determining our odds. But let’s look at Ross County numbers anyway. Last night I checked the Ross County Health District website for the latest posted information. This is what I found:

  • Confirmed Cases 806
  • Inmate, prison employee and healthcare worker cases: 295
  • Other occupations or no occupation cases: 511
  • Hospitalizations 107
  • Deaths 17
  • Total population 76,600

However those numbers reflect the entire period of time Covid-19 has been around and may not reflect current odds!

A key statistic that isn’t reported anywhere is the number of asymptomatic cases, but that’s for a good reason. Why would one get tested for the virus if you don’t have any of the symptoms? You probably wouldn’t. The articles states:

“…confirmed cases represent only a fraction of actual cases…”

The problem with that statement is it doesn’t give us any indication of what size fraction it is. Fractions range from “nearly equal” like 99.99% to only a small portion like 1.00%. So stating that “confirmed cases represent only a fraction of actual cases” doesn’t help in the least. Furthermore, if we did know the exact number of asymptomatic cases and included them both calculations it would increase the odds of contracting the virus, but decrease the mortality rate.

The real answer to the two questions is:

“We can’t give you an exact number on your odds of contracting and surviving the Covid-19 virus because it depends on too many factors and unknowns. However unless you are in a high risk group your odds of both are quite low.”

So why do we have an article in the Gazette fact checking a Facebook post’s statistics that can’t be properly calculated in the first place? Why challenge the facts with other meaningless facts? And how are the post’s conclusions “inaccurate” as the fact checker states? Maybe this article is in the Gazette and other Ohio papers because the post’s conclusions are actually true for many Ohioans and that might make the virus less important when Ohioans go to the polls in November?

The Gazette and Climate Change: Pushing the Climate Change Hoax

Occasionally we see articles and columns on the topic of Man-made Climate Change or Global Warming in the Gazette. They usually cover an event that is upcoming or has just occurred or a new report that has been issued. They always include warnings of the dangers humans face from projected warming and sea level rise. I usually just shake my head when I see them.

My undergraduate degree from the University of Kansas was a BA degree with a double major in Geography (the study of Planet Earth) and Anthropology (the study of humans). Both majors covered climate change. In my Geography coarse work I actually took a class on Climatology. While it didn’t make me an expert on all aspects of climates, it did introduce me to the various types of climates, where they could be found in the world and how they have changed over time. My main interests in Anthropology were North American Indians and North American Archeology. However I also took other courses which covered the development (evolution) of modern humans.

Most of the Anthropology courses included the impact of climate change and how humans adapted to it. I learned that there have been many changes to the world’s climate systems throughout the Earth’s life. One of the major changes in climate hit it’s peak around 20,000 to 25,000 years ago. That was when the last major glacial advance reached its peak expansion in North America. Since moving to Chillicothe I’ve learned that glacial advance reached as far south, in what is now Ohio, as Western Avenue. I also learned what we call Carlisle Hill is a ridge moraine. Moraines are large mounds of earth and rock created by the advancing glacier. In this case it was formed along the side of the glacier as it moved. It is much like the snow that mounds up along side your snow shovel when you push it through new fallen snow.

The last glacial advance was so significant that a huge volume of fresh water was frozen in the sheets of ice that extended from what is now Canada to what is now southern Ohio. Some estimate that sheet of ice was as much as one mile thick. There was so much water frozen in the glacier that the sea level dropped so much a land bridge from Asia to North America was exposed. That land bridge helped populate a previously unpopulated continent, North America. It is estimated that much of the continental shelf was also exposed during that time frame. The continental shelf is now under water and has been since the last glacier melted.

The period of major glacial advances and retreats has been going on for at least the last million years. In fact, what is now Ohio has been impacted by three major glacial advances and retreats during the last 600,000 years. The deposits left by the glaciers are discussed in a piece produced by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. You can find numerous articles on Ohio’s glaciers by doing a search on either “Ohio’s glaciers” or “Ohio’s Glacial Deposits”.

In addition to these severe changes in climate, there are less severe and more frequent changes in Earth’s climate. Two of them that have been well documented in Art, Literature, History and Science are the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age. The Little Ice Age ended around the middle of the 1800’s. That would have been 150 years ago when the major push regarding man-made global warming started. It is also about the time of the beginning of the Industrial Revolution.

So when the man-made global warming scare began to be pushed I became a skeptic. The main reason I was skeptical was the scare used a new chart of recent global temperature record that eliminated both the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age as its key piece of evidence. The chart was produced by Michael Mann and became known as the Hockey Stick chart. As someone familiar with the subject I wondered “How did a few new tree ring samples from eastern Russia eliminate the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age when they are both well documented in Art, Literature, History and SCIENCE?” However, Michael Mann’s Hockey Stick Chart became a key part of the UN’s climate report and movement.

In 2009 someone released thousands of emails that appeared to expose a major effort to push the theory of “man-made climate change” and suppress “skeptics” concerns. That release and the following discussion of it became known as “climategate”.

2019 is the year that the debate on man-made global warming and whether the new chart of recent climate history was an accurate depiction of actual climate change should have ended. That year Michael Mann refused a court order to turn over the underlying data used to create his chart so his chart could be verified. At question was which chart of recent climate history was accurate, Prof. Mann’s or Dr. Ball’s. (See above link to Hockey Stick Chart.) In August, 2019 the judge ruled that Prof. Mann’s liable suit against Dr. Ball should be dismissed and Prof. Mann was ordered to pay Ball’s court costs. The outcome of of this lawsuit also vindicates my skepticism regarding the UN’s IPCC hoax.

This court case and its controversy and conclusion have not been covered in the Chillicothe Gazette, yet it still covers articles regarding the man-made global warming hoax.

So if asked if I believe in Climate Change and Global Warming my answer would be “Of course! Earth’s climate has been constantly changing and the earth has warmed since I was young. But if you are asking if I believe that humans’ use of fossil fuels is causing the earth to warm and sea levels to rise and poses the greatest threat to humans, of course I don’t. If what is now Ohio has experienced changes in temperature large enough to cause massive sheets of ice called glaciers to advance and cover two thirds of its territory and then retreat three separate times in the last 600,000 years, why would I think that a minor increase in temperature since the end of a cold period known as the Little Ice Age isn’t part of naturally occurring climate change. It is pretty clear it is!

If you would like to learn more about actual climate change, the science behind the debate and the current man-made global warming hoax a great source of information is the SEPP website and weekly emails. I get their weekly emails. While there are some discussions that are too scientifically detailed for me to fully understand, it is a great source for many scientific discussions one can understand. I highly recommend it.

So my question is “When will the Gazette stop promoting this scientific hoax!”

The Associated Press and the 2020 Census

I’ve already written about Tom Purcell’s column in the Gazette regarding the 2020 Census. Since then I’ve come across two articles by Mike Schneider of the Associated Press. The first was in the August 31, 2020 Gazette titled “Census politicized in election year again”. The second appeared in the September 7, 2020 Gazette titled “Census Bureau must keep counting”. These aren’t the only articles on the census that have appeared in the Gazette this year, just the most recent that I’ve found.

August 31, 2020: “Census politicized in election year again” by Mike Schneider of the Associated Press

Just the fact that a journalist at the Associated Press is writing multiple articles on the 2020 Census can’t help but “politicize” something that should be non-political in nature. But the articles themselves show that Mr. Schneider seems to be approaching it from a political point of view.

This article addresses two main points about this year’s census. The first is whether people in the country illegally should not only be counted, but be used in determining the number of members of the U. S. House of Representatives a state receives. Mr. Schneider includes references to statements from individuals and groups that oppose a citizenship question and insist that individuals who are in our country illegally should be included for the determining a state’s share of the 435 representative. I’ve addressed the rational why that would be inappropriate in my previous blog regarding Tom Purcell’s column in the Sept. 3, 2020 Opinion section of the Gazette. The guarantee of equal representation for U. S, citizens argues against their position. Unfortunately the article doesn’t include comments from those supporting that position.

The second point is what some are calling the administrations effort to “…complete census a month early…”. They claim that it will result in an undercounting of minority communities. The fact of the matter is “Census officials asked for an extension of the end-of-the-year deadline to turn in numbers used for drawing congressional districts.” The end of the year deadline isn’t something that the Trump administration arbitrarily imposed, it has been a requirement of Censuses for years.

Another point Mr. Schneider makes is the fact that President Reagan’s administration refused to accept a “technical adjustment” to the count of minorities that some in the Census Bureau wanted to use because they felt the actual count of minorities didn’t properly represent their numbers in the country. A “technical adjustment” is a nice way of saying they wanted to increase the actual count of minorities to make it higher. Was their version of the “Technical adjustment” making the count more accurate? How could you know for sure. But it is certain that states with suspected higher than average minorities living in their state would be rewarded by the adjustment.

In each of these cases Mr. Schneider puts a positive light on those protesting the more conservative perspective and doesn’t give any opposing comments for those who believe the conservative positions are justified. Does that seem like fair journalism?

Sept. 7, 2020: “Census Bureau must keep counting” by Mike Schneider of the Associated Press

This is a short article that reports that a Federal Judge in San Jose, California has stopped the Census Bureau from “… following a plan that would have it winding down operations in order to finish the 2020 census at the end of September.” Again, the article gives no rational for why it might be necessary to end the counting as originally required and includes no comments from those opposing the continued counting.

As this topic is portrayed as being politicized, I think it is a valid question as to who is actually politicizing the 2020 Census count? Is it those who think the count should be an actual count, that it should be done by the required deadlines and that only the count of individuals in the country legally should be used to determine the number of U. S. Representatives a state should be awarded? Or are those who want illegal immigrants to impact apportionment of the House’s 435 members between the states and think “technical adjustments” should be used to make counts “more accurate” the ones who are making the 2020 Census more politicized?

Sept. 05, 2020: “Federal shutdown may be averted”

by Christel Hayes and Nicholas Wu of USA Today with contributions from the Associated Press

Saturday’s paper carried an article describing how House Speaker Pelosi and the Trump administration were undertaking negotiations to avert a federal government shutdown like the one that went for 35 days from December 2018 until January 2019. It goes on to explain some of the consequences of the last shut down and the concerns by some that another shut down at this time could have even more severe consequences.

So how would the shut down be averted? It would be averted by the Democrats and administration coming to agreement on a “continuing resolution”. A “CR”, as they are known in Washington, is a decision to avoid the normal budget process and instead allow spending to continue at current levels for a specified period of time. That timeframe is usually until after an election or other politically advantageous period. Unfortunately CRs have been much too common in recent years.

So if they want to by-pass the normal process, what is the normal process? The way our system of government is designed to work is for Washington to follow the following steps:

Step 1. The Congressional Budget Office releases a projection of what government spending and receipts will be for the coming ten years. This is released in January so that the White House’s Office of Management and Budgets can have time to produce their budget proposal and projections before it is required to be presented to Congress.

Step 2. The WH OMB releases it budget proposal outlining the legislative changes, if any, that would be required to adopt the president’s future plans. Again, the requirement is for the president’s budget to be presented to Congress early in the year so Congress can prepare and pass the necessary funding bills before the end of the start of the next fiscal year.

Step 3. The House of Representatives, which has primary responsibility for our nation’s fiscal well being, passes a framework from which individual budget bills will be developed.

Step 4. The House of Representatives passes individual budget bills and looks to the Senate for agreement.

Step 5. The Senate passes its own budget bills and compares them to those passed by the House.

Step 6: Negotiations take place between the House and Senate in order to agree on final budget bills.

Step 7. Once approved by Congress, the budget bills are presented to the President for signature or veto.

Once you see the steps, it is pretty clear that the process is well thought out and rational. So why are CRs necessary? They are necessary when the House and Senate don’t do their jobs!

Now that we understand the “normal budget process” what is wrong with an article that covers the fact that a CR is likely and a government shutdown is likely to be averted. The problem is there is no context for the reader to make any judgement from other than shutdowns are bad and CRs are good. But is a CR at this time a good thing?

What other context would be helpful? First off, some mention of the actual process that should be followed and an answer to why it wasn’t followed would be helpful. Secondly, some discussion of the current state of the nation’s financial situation would also be helpful. I’ve covered most of the first with the above outline of steps. As for the second, some discussion of the current financial crisis we’re currently facing might bring into question whether a “…deal that extend(s) government funding at the same levels they are operating at...” might not be in the best interests of the nation.

We will finish the current fiscal year with Gross Federal Debt of $27 trillion, up from $13.5 trillion in 2010. We will have a $3.3 trillion dollar deficit, after eleven years of successive deficits which have averaged nearly $750 billion per year.

So why do we have another CR near a presidential election. The House failed to do its job. It’s job would have been to set out the priorities it wants the undertake and to do so showing the impact of those priorities through calculations produced by the CBO. It looks like the leadership of the House felt it shouldn’t do what it is required to do. We don’t know why that’s the case, but we do know they didn’t pass the necessary budget bills that are required to fund the government.

What are the consequences of another CR? High levels of government spending and no chance for voters to hear how each party would bring our finances back under control. that is if it’s even possible to do that as large a financial hole Congress has allowed us to dig ourselves into!

How do we stop this fiscal madness is hard to see. Looking to candidates who set following the normal budget process and voting for them might be a good first step!

More on the Federal Government’s finances to come in future columns.

Sept. 6, 2020: Fox News Sunday on National Debt

While not an item from the Chillicothe Gazette, this is one of the most important topics our nation faces. Because of that, I thought it was important enough to cover.

During his interview with the U. S. Secretary of the Treasury (Steven Mnuchin), Bret Baier made a couple interesting statements regarding the level of our nation’s debt.

  • Our debt will be $27 trillion at the of fiscal year 2020.
  • The CBO (Congressional Budget Office) estimates that our Debt to GDP (Gross Domestic Product) will approach 100%.

In fact, I checked the CBO’s website and found their projections for the end of 2020 (and the following ten years). They are projecting a ratio value of 98.2% If you do the math, that would seem to indicate that they are projecting that our GDP will finish the fiscal year (9/30/2020) at more than $27 trillion. But they aren’t. They are projecting the GDP to finish the year at $20.6 trillion. That would seem to be a Debt to GDP ratio value in excess of 130%? Can both of his facts be true? What are we missing?

What are we missing is the fact that the CBO isn’t calculating the level of our Debt to GDP, but the level of only a portion of our debt, called Public Debt, to GDP. So what is the portion of our debt they aren’t including? It’s the portion that is owed to the various government trust funds. The largest of that debt is the amount owed to the Social Security Trust Fund at nearly $3 trillion dollars.

The Social Security Trust Fund does have a balance in it, BUT it has all been borrowed by the General Fund. That’s not a new thing, it has been going on since the beginning of the program. What the trust fund has in place of cash and investments are special government bonds. So the trust fund is full of government debt instruments that are only good as long as the federal government can afford to pay them off. In our current situation the federal government can only pay them off if it can continue to borrow the funds to do that.

So when did the CBO and WH OMB (White House Office of Management & Budget) start reporting our level of Public Debt to GDP rather than Gross Debt to GDP? I looked through my file of WH OMB Budget schedules and found the Public Debt to GDP was first used in their Table S-15 in the 2013 Budget. Prior to that no Debt to GDP ratio was shown.

In 2012 another new item appeared in WH OMB budgets. It is a item labeled “Primary deficit/surplus (-)”. I hope your reaction to seeing that was the same as mine. “What the heck is that?” The primary deficit is the budget deficit excluding net interest outlays. So the obvious questions are “Why would you calculate that? Isn’t net interest a real expense we have to contend with?”

President Obama’s first budget was his 2010 Budget projections. It showed a ten year projected deficit of $7 trillion dollars. His first budget was criticized for having overly optimistic values for the five key assumptions used in the budget projection process. So the 2011 Budget used more realistic values for the five assumptions, but the ten year projected deficit jumped up to $8.5 trillion. Suddenly the concern was the Obama/Biden team wasn’t taking our federal deficit and debt seriously. It wouldn’t be long until our Debt to GDP ratio would reach 100%, long held as the “point of no return”.

To counter that criticism the WH OMB and CBO introduced a new ratio in the 2012 Budget. It was the “primary deficit” or the deficit if you didn’t count Net Interest Outlays. Why would they create a ratio that excluded Net Interest outlays? Because our debt was increasing at an alarming rate and so was the interest expense. Along with that was the concern with our level of Debt to GDP . Gross Debt to GDP had reached 95.8% for fiscal year 2011.

The WH OMB’s 2013 Budget (released in early 2012) included a Debt to GDP ratio in the budget schedules for the first time in history, but rather than Gross (or total) Debt they used Public Debt. Many in Washington still refer to it as the Debt to GDP ratio though it only reflects a portion of our debt. Suddenly, by using Public Debt instead of using Gross Debt, our debt crisis was put off. Our Public Debt to GDP was only 70.3% at the end of 2012 (while our Gross Debt to GDP reached 100%). In fact our Gross Debt to GDP ratio value has exceeded 100% each of the last seven years, reaching 106.9% at the end of 2019. It now appears it will jump to over 130% at the end of 2020.

Over the last several years Democrats have told us there is nothing to worry about. In fact I attended a Senate Budget Committee hearing on our National Debt back in 2015. It appeared that the only Senator that had a real concern over the level of the nation’s debt was Sen. Johnson of Wisconsin. Sen. Sanders of Vermont was the ranking Democrat on the committee. His primary witness told us there was nothing to worry about since we had a much higher level of debt following WWII. Public Debt to GDP was 99.1% and Gross Debt to GDP was 111.1% at the end of fiscal year 1946. So the witness was correct in stating it had been higher. But what he forgot to tell the committee was the fact that during WWII over 80% of all spending was for National Defense. So we were able to dramatically reduce overall spending after WWII by having a significant cut in defense spending. In fact we went from a large deficit to a surplus in one year after the war ended. That was followed the next year by an increase in the surplus!

What he also didn’t tell the committee was the majority of spending that was driving the nation’s current deficits and increase in debt was a category of spending labeled “Payments for Individuals”. You can find information on it in WH OMB’s Historic Tables 11.1, 11.2 and 11.3. At the end of fiscal year 2019 ninety cents of every dollar collected by the federal government was spent on that category and that category doesn’t include the salaries of federal employees! (I’ll address that in a separate column.)

At the end of the greatest challenge the world has ever gone through (WWII) our Gross Debt to GDP ratio was 111.1% and now it will be over 130% and our Public Debt to GDP ratio was 99.1% and now it will exceed 100%. The obvious question is how do we stop it from increasing further!

Maybe the Senate Republicans were right in 1997 when they voted for a Balanced Budget Amendment. Maybe Democrats were wrong for voting against it. Sen. Torricelli (D-NJ) cast the deciding vote that defeated the amendment claiming it was no longer necessary?

Looking back, the only two items from the Republicans’ 1994 Contract With American that didn’t become law were:

  • Balanced Budget Amendment
  • Congressional Term Limits

Those were both opposed by most Democrats. Imagine if those had passed too!

Sept. 3, 2020: “An accurate Census 2020 count essential”

The Chillicothe Gazette carried an Guest Column by Tom Purcell with the above title. It is one of several articles and columns they’ve published with two things in common. I’ll take on each in separate blogs.

First, the column mentions the fact that “The population count determines the number of U.S. House seats each state will have.” This column adds “That’s why census results are so important to politicians.” But they aren’t just important to politicians, they are important to voters too!

The referenced column and recent articles have gotten around to describing a recent controversy. That controversy centers around whether the census should have a citizenship question. Here is why it should matter to all legal residents. Without a citizenship question the distribution of the 435 U. S. House of Representatives is made based on each state’s overall percentage of the countries census count. (The one exception is the fact that all states are guaranteed at least one representative.)

So why does it matter whether the count is based all people counted with no indication of whether they are legal residents or whether that question is included. It’s simple and logical! If those who are here illegally are counted and used in determining the number of representatives a state has, it gives states the incentive to attracted illegals and protect illegals from deportation. In short, it gives states an incentive to set up “sanctuary cities and zones” and to ignore federal law. Those that do will likely be rewarded with more representation in Congress while those that don’t will lose representation.

It is easy to set up a model to demonstrate this. Imagine a country with just two states and 4 “Representatives”. Imagine both states have 100 legal residents. Each state would be allotted two representatives and the legal residents in each state would be equally represented. There would be 1 representative for each 50 legal resident. Residents would be equally represented regardless of which state they lived in.

Now let’s look at an (overstated) case for the purpose of seeing the impact of including illegals when apportioning representation in the House. Let’s say one state has 200 illegals and the other state has none. Suddenly one state is awarded 3 representatives and the other state only 1. In the state with 3 representatives there is 1 representative for every 33 legal residents and in the other state the representation ratio is 1 representative for every 100 legal residents. Does it make sense that the legal residents of one state should have three times the representation than the other? Not in a Representative Democracy! Including illegals in a census may make sense for determining many things, but not for determining how many representatives each state gets. It doesn’t ensure legal residents in the various states equal representation in their government. And it actually gives representation to individuals who are here in violation of our laws.

Now we’re told that those who oppose including illegals in the count by which representation is determine are just Republicans who are wanting to increase there political power. But in my example we don’t know the political party preference of the voters in either state. But we do know that the legal residents in the state with more illegal residents are rewarded and the ones with fewer is penalized.

While my example is highly exaggerated for demonstration purposes, it is possible in the real world that illegal residents do have an impact. Take California and Ohio for example. In 1996 Ohio had 19 representatives and California had 52. California has encouraged illegal immigration and has many sanctuary cities. Ohio has far fewer illegal residents as a percentage of its overall population. In 2019 Ohio has only 16 representatives and California has 53.

It is well understood that California has a much higher percentage of its population that are in the United States illegally than Ohio does. Is it fair to the legal residents of Ohio that California is rewarded for that fact? Ohio may be a fairly consistent “Red State”. But there are “Blue States” that are being impacted too.

So having a citizenship question and only using the number of legal citizens for apportioning the 435 members of the U. S. House to states is important to maintaining “equal representation” for legal citizens of our Representative Democracy. I’m not sure why that’s not obvious to more people?

Sept. 1, 2020: “Ohio Voters confident on election integrity” (page1&2)

Article by George Nelson of the Youngstown Business Journal

The article is the result of a poll of Ohio voters conducted by the Center for Marketing and Opinion Research at the request of the Ray C. Bliss Institute of Applied Politics of the University of Akron. According to the pie chart there appears to have been four descriptions for people to chose from ranging from “A great deal of confidence” to “No confidence”. The results of the poll are shown in a pie chart as follows:

Poll by CMOR on behalf of Your Voice Ohio and Ray C. Bliss Institute of Applied Politics (University of Akron)

A result that surprised me was that only 35% of those answering the poll answered with a response of “A great deal of confidence”. But what really surprised me after seeing that result were the heading and sub-heading of the pie chart.

The heading of the pie chart was “Faith in vote-count is high”. The sub-heading was “Asked how confident they are that their vote will be counted, Ohioans overall are confident.”

Now match up those words and the overall heading of the article which reads “Ohio voters confident on election integrity” with the fact that only 35% of those polled had “a great deal of confidence”. Do the words match the numbers?

65% of those polled decided they couldn’t choose “A great deal of confidence”, but chose something showing much less confidence than that. That’s nearly two out of every three voters polled showing at least moderate lack of confidence their vote will be counted.

You might blame the individual(s) who created the poll questions for not having more than four choices. There is a big difference between “A great deal of confidence” and just “Some confidence”. Maybe there should have been a couple more choices giving more refinement to those who only had some confidence? Was the “some” “a lot” or was the “some” more than “a little” but not very much?

But considering the choices those polled had and their responses, I would have expected alarm instead of categorizing it as “overall all confident”. After all, well below 50% (only 35%) had “a great deal of confidence” their vote would be counted.

Confidence in the integrity of our elections is essential to our Democratic Republic. When confidence is eroded, as it appears it has been, that becomes a threat. Ensuring a high level of confidence that our votes will be counted is essential.

I for one will be very confident my vote will be counted because I plan to vote in person. I expect to show my proof of identity and watch that a paper read out of my votes is recorded by the machine. That’s about all I can do to gain confidence. I have to hope the system has integrity from that point on.

So how did the “journalist” who wrote the article come to the decision that he should portray the opposite of what the poll showed? And for the purpose of this blog, how did the editor of the Chillicothe Gazette come to decide that such a dishonest column was worthy of printing in our paper.

But most important, if the poll really does reflect that two thirds of Ohio voters don’t have a high degree of confidence their vote will be counted, what can we do about it?

PS: It would be interesting to know who came up with the heading for the article. Whoever did either wanted to purposefully mislead readers or they need some education on how to interpret pie charts. If the later is the case, I’m more than willing to help them!

Follow Up: I wrote a letter to the editor of the Business Journal (Ann Woods) and she replied by email stating she had received my letter and “We stand by the article.” As of 09/18/2020 I haven’t received a reply to my letters to either CMOR or David Cohen at the Ray C. Bliss Institute. I have sent additional letters to the President of the University of Akron and Ohio Sec. of State.