Monday, November 05, 2012

The election blues

We are besieged by messages about voting. It's our duty, don't you know. It's important, right?

After all, people will proudly parade around tomorrow wearing inane "I voted" stickers and buttons like they've accomplished something.

The closest we get to a negative message is some folks saying you shouldn't vote unless you are informed.

I'm here to say it's ok. If you don't want to vote, don't worry about it. It's not your duty and it's not important.

And I'd say that the more informed you are, the harder it should be to get out and vote.


Drone strikes, the TSA, the Patriot Act, Messiah complexes, the War on drugs, idiotic trade policies, idiotic immigration policies, a huge bloated military, arrogant intervention into areas where it doesn't belong, bills that run thousands of pages long, big policy changes slipped into law via reconciliation, an almost complete unwillingness to face some aspects of reality.

These are not bugs. These are not the flaws of one particular party. These are bi-partisan FEATURES of the Federal government in the 21st century, and few if any will change based on the outcome of this election.

About the only thing this election will settle is where our government will most keep sticking it's illegitimate nose.

The authoritarian streak in Washington grew under Obama and will continue to grow whether it's Obama II or Mittens at the helm.

So tomorrow, I'll be getting quizzical looks and hostile remarks from folks who see my home-made "I Didn't Vote sticker".


Anonymous said...

I think a general "vote out the incumbents" strategy is the best we can do.

Power that sticks around proceeds to pile up, and become entrenched, and spread.

Jim D. said...

Thank you Angus – you and I are not exactly eye to eye here but you struck some important chords.

First of all, the goddamn stickers. I feel embarrassed for everyone I see wearing one, and I always wave off the poll volunteer who tries stick one on me.

“I voted.” Well congratulations, Pericles. Of course you voted. You’re a grown-up. You’re supposed to. What a way to infantilize the process. Perhaps I should offer you a sticker that says “I stopped at a red light” or one that says “I washed my hands after using the toilet.” (I mean, you did, right?)

I’m also okay with anyone who doesn’t want to vote, but I come at it a little differently from you.

First of all, a necessary disclaimer in an age of voter-suppression horseshit: I think anyone who is eligible to vote and wants to vote should get to vote, period. But I value the votes of people who care enough to jump through the very low, very capacious hoops the process traditionally entails. I do not value the votes of people who view it as a chore. Consequently I have little enthusiasm for early voting, motor-voter, and so forth. Take and interest, get off your ass, and show me this means more to you than voting for an American Idol contestant.

In conclusion I offer the Carthago delenda est for a new millennium: Get off my lawn.

Now, to go “waste my vote” (don’t get me started on that one) on Gary Johnson, and hope I wake up to find North Carolina in a perfect tie. Hee hee.

Gerardo said...

I wonder if those stickers are made in China?

Kyle said...

I submitted a letter to the editor of the Daily Tar Heel last week about why I don't vote.

It was not well-received.

Anonymous said...

Okay, good so far as it goes. And I agree on the question of voting for the president. But I live in Washington where marijuana legalization, gay marriage, and charter schools are on the ballot--basically a libertarian wet dream as far as ballots go. I don't think I could justify not voting.

And even if my vote is not going to tip the scale one way or another, I do think that the idea, which seems to be more prevalent among libertarians, that voting is dumb could actually decide the election if enough like-minded people just decide to take home.

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