In less than a week it will be over; a year and a half of maneuvering, jockeying, speechifying, electioneering and speculating will thankfully draw to a close, and the U.S., which once was a sort of free republic, will crown a new king, who promises to reward the innocent and punish the guilty.
In less than a week the polling places will open, and nice old ladies will ask you your name and your street address, put a line through your name, and hand you a ballot. When you hand it in they will give you a nice sticker that says “I voted”, which like the “You’re a Star!” stickers every student — regardless of his or her performance — gets on quizzes in first grade, makes a big deal out of a meaningless accomplishment.
So why should we bother? Wouldn’t our time be spent more productively and usefully if we drank a beer while playing pool with our friends, or curled up with a decent book, or gave the loves of our lives a nice back rub?
Why should we show up at a place filled with groups of people carrying signs, glaring at rival groups? Why should we stand in line, carry our paperwork to a curtained booth, and much like some man furtively watching a peep show at an “adult movie” theatre, call upon some man to be given the power to loot and pillage our neighbors at will, to hand out favors to his friends, and to risk our lives in war?
If we don’t show up, the only people marching into those booths will be people who love the pillagers, who want to egg them on to loot and pillage more thoroughly. The politicians will look at the totals and conclude that the only way they will acquire power is by promising more taxes, more spending, more jails, more police, more beatings, more prison rape, more death.
If we ignore the polling booths, then the politicians will look at the few thousand votes that were cast, all calling for higher taxes, and conclude that raising taxes isn’t so risky after all.
The system is rotten, intentionally designed to encourage tyranny and to limit the tendency toward freedom. It is biased against us. And when we withhold consent by ignoring it, our would-be masters congratulate themselves on their mandates and ability to continue with business as usual.
So I vote. My vote is statistically insignificant. Other than the few times I have voted against a tax increase, my votes generally go into the losing column. This is not so bad… the politicians are fractionally less brave because my vote makes them look fractionally less strong.
But who to vote for?
Next week, my ballot will contain the following names for the office of President:
1)Charles Baldwin – Christian Dominionist
2)John McCain – Warmonger
3)Cynthia McKinney – Insane Person
4)Bob Barr – Former Freedom Hater Claiming Road to Damascus Conversion – possibly a Karl Rove Plant
5)Barrack Obama – Economy Wrecker
It is tempting to leave the ballot blank, to quitely vote to decriminalize marijuana posession, do away with the income tax and to vote to permit dog racing to continue, and leave every office blank.
But that would result in a “spoiled” ballot. In order to accommodate people who might make a mistake in their first attempt to fill out a ballot, in polling places, a person can turn in a “spoiled” ballot and request a new, clean one. In order to prevent the fraus of having workers stuff the ballot box with those spoiled ballots, the machines that count votes are usually set to ignore ballots that are not completley filled out. Update: This is incorrect. I withdraw this claim.
Luckily, in most places, a voter is given the option of writing in someone who is not listed on the ballot. Thus, I usually write in None of the Above on my ballot. The write in votes are considered “unspoiled”, my pro-freedom votes are tallied in the system and occasionally, my votes for freedom are part of a dominant majority on some issue. Yay!
Of course, if you are stuck in some place with barbaric laws and a government that hates the citizenry (cough cough Oklohoma cough cough) you may not have the option of writing in a name; you must pick people from the list of candidates approved by the state government. Of course, there you can always vote for the most obscure candidate, and thus express your displeasure.
So how am I going to vote?
I am going to vote as follows:
1) U.S. President: Bob Barr.
I have long suspected that Bob Barr’s Road to Damascus conversion is not genuine. However, he is world famous in the United States, and will attract more than a few votes. As president, while he would be awful, but he has no chance of winning, meaning that he is safe as a protest vote – and for once people will pay attention to the votes he garners as an indication of dissatisfaction to the big government agenda of the dominant parties. I want to signal to the political classes that I – and several thousand like me – support freedom.
Of course, in doing so, I am committing fraud. I don’t want to vote for the winning candidate: then all the crimes he commits, the robberies, the destruction of property, the murders are all beign done in my name. Hopefully, no politician figures that out. ;)
2) U.S. Senate: Robert F Underwood
Mr Underwood is a member of Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership. I like the JFPO – they have a healthy understanding of the what the relationship between the state and the individual should properly be. That is, they recognize that the government is an attractive tool for homicidal maniacs to fulfill their sick fantasies, and that the citizenry should be in a position to put those maniacs 6 feet underground should it be necessary. I actually want this guy to win.
3) U.S. House: John Cunningham
Mr Cunningham is a Ron Paul Republican who wants to repeal the Patriot Act. This is, of course, shocking because here in Massachusetts, Republicans tend to be warmongers who love socialism but hate abortion. While I am not a fan of Ron Paul’s leadership style and have serious reservations about his judgment concerning other people, I love many of his policies. Even though I hate the Republicans, and swore never to vote for them again, I will be voting for this man; chalk it up to the erosion of moral standards inherent to politics, or a wise reconsideration of hasty, intemperate remarks. Whatever floats your boat. Again, I wouldn’t mind if he won. The outrage from coworkers over his victory would be reward enough.
Wow! That takes care of the Federal Races, and no NOTA’s yet! Luckily, all the state races, with one unopposed Massachusetts Liberal appearing on the ballot will allow me to keep my anarchist street cred.
4) Governor’s Councillor (Approves the governor’s judicial nominees): NOTA
The only candidate approved by the government is a Democrat. I will be voting None of the Above.
5) State Senator: NOTA
6) State Representative: NOTA
7) Register of Probate: (Administers family court (adoption, paternity, divorce, death etc.)): NOTA
And there we are. Sorry Democrats. Perhaps when you start fielding candidates who believe in civil rights, you might get my endorsement. This year you fielded people who love to tax the little guy and give the money to big business. Oh, and you support union laws that originally were intended to keep black people from moving into white enclaves in the North. Plus, I have seen what hyperinflation did to Turkey, and I have no desire to see it happen here.
Question 1: Should we repeal the Massachusetts Income Tax? Hell Yes!
Question 2: Should we partially decriminalize marijuana? Well, we should make it completely legal, but hey, I’ll take a small step in the right direction; Yes!
Question 3: Should we allow Dog Racing in Massachusetts? Dog Racing is a vile, disgusting sport, and I am boycotting it. But, it’s none of the state’s business what people do to dogs. Hell No!
And that’s it!
Happy voting come election day!