Monday, September 23, 2019

Georgia is up to no good

When we first moved to Atlanta from California back in 2005, we went to the Dept of Driver Services (what they call their DMV) to get Georgia driver's licenses. We brought in our California licences and basically just exchanged them for shiny new Georgia ones. They were good for 10 years because we paid a little extra fee. The clock re-started when we added motorcycle licenses so this was the first year we have had to renew our Georgia driver's licenses.

Now, our current licenses don't expire until December, so they are still 100% valid. I assumed that we would just take in the current ones, maybe take an eye test, pay a fee and get new ones. Was I wrong!

When we got our renewal notice in the mail, it came with a list of "New Document Requirements." In order to renew our driver's licenses - not to get new licenses, just to renew our existing ones - we were now required to present:

One Item to Show Who You Are

  • Certified US Birth Certificate
  • Valid US passport


  • Certificate of Naturalization


One Item with Your Social Security Number

  • Social Security Card
  • W-2 Form


  • Paystub with Last 4 Digits


One Item to Show Where You Live

  • Utility Bill
  • Bank Statement


  • Lease/Mortgage Statement

Why on Earth are they making this so much harder? I mean, I assume a lot of people would not be able to find their birth certificate, and a majority of Americans don't have passports. And for some reason, your current Georgia Driver's license is NOT an acceptable form of ID when renewing your Georgia Driver's license.

Maybe it's just a coincidence, but Georgia just happens to be one of the states that has instituted strict voter ID laws. (All the above documentation is also required to renew a state ID card). Is it possible that just maybe they want to  make it more difficult to get state-issued ID because that will make it harder to vote? Could it be possible that they might assume that poorer people might have more trouble coming up with all this documentation? Is it somehow possible that the Georgia GOP has managed to weaponize the driver's license bureau to depress voter turnout? Could such a thing be?

I mean, let's assume you don't have a passport because you can't afford to go traveling overseas. You don't happen to have a certified copy of your birth certificate. How do you get one? I don't really know. I have one because my parents kept one in a safety deposit box. If I needed a copy now, I guess I would have to contact some agency in San Mateo County, California? The courthouse? The Hall of Records? I don't even know. And would they issue a copy over the phone? And how much would it cost? If I'm only trying to get an ID card so I can vote, if I can't afford a car anyway, maybe this is the point where I say "screw it. It's not worth this much hassle."

There is nothing NOTHING these people won't do to hold on to power. They do not believe in democracy, they do not believe in the right of citizens to vote for their leaders. They don't believe in anything except obtaining and keeping power so that they can cut their taxes and de-regulate each other's businesses and generally try to re-make the USA along the Third-World model. And they're succeeding.

For example:

Chemours is Using the U.S. as an Unregulated Dump

for Europe’s Toxic GenX Waste
DuPont-spinoff Chemours is sending industrial waste from the Netherlands to North Carolina. The waste in question comes from the production of the toxic chemical GenX, DuPont’s replacement for the surfactant PFOA, which was long used in the production of Teflon and many other products.
Unlike the Netherlands, the U.S. has so far declined to regulate GenX waste, so disposing of the material is comparatively easy.

Thanks to 40-odd years of de-regulation, free-market bullshit, and lasseiz-faire approach to corporate governance, the US now finds itself an attractive dumping ground for Europe's toxic chemicals.

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