To prefix my comments, I can only maintain that your vote is owned by you, and then it is owned by the candidate you cast it on.
Yeah, I guess that's why I get a little pissed off when someone tells me who to vote for.
After all, if by your logic why-bother-anyway, then it can't hurt, can it, to simply cast a vote that won't be counted, but noticed?
The problem is the opportunity cost. A vote for Mickey Mouse is a vote for Bush, and all, right? I mean, look, if it's not a close race, it doesn't really matter who you vote for. You might as well not bother voting at all. But if it is a close race, then I think you gotta go for the lesser of the two evils, at least if there are only two evils that have a shot.
And what about your local board of elections? The last time I checked, people worked there, and we can use that strange mode of communication called "talking" to find out how such a technical detail can be changed.
That technical detail can't be changed, though. What happens when "Anthony DiPierro" wins? How are we supposed to determine which of the hundreds or thousands of people named "Anthony DiPierro" that represents. You have to register before you can be a write-in candidate, to avoid that situation.
I was not just implying, but am stating directly, that the two-party control system is a strong mechanism for social destruction. Electing one vicious and lying thief over another one, is not the way to promote a general prosperity, since all that spite and falsehood crumbles the culture.
I completely agree with that, but you have to look at the options you have, and what you can do with them. In terms of a national election, it's less obvious, because in reality it doesn't matter who you vote for anyway. But in smaller elections there commonly are candidates who do win by a single vote, and the value of changing that vote is much greater than the value of sending a message which will probably not be heard anyway.
If people would actually vote on informed conscience, we'd have a more interesting political arena than the monolithic pro-corporate one we have now.
True, but if I had wings I'd fly to work instead of taking the bus. We don't make decisions based upon speculations of what reality could be. We make decisions based on what reality actually is. Again, there are options. Last election I voted for Nader, not Gore, and not Bush. But that's because that's the strongest message I felt I could send. Had I voted for my dad, or my best friend, or Mickey Mouse, my vote would not have been heard at all. Instead I managed to make the count 2.00038473% instead of 2.00038362%. Small, sure. Meaningless, probably. But it was the best I could do.
As far as real activism, money and actions speak much louder than votes anyway. And that's part of why I really do believe that we have the best country in the world. Smart people like you and I really can make a difference, and it's a much bigger difference than 1 in 150 million in a vote. I swear, if third party candidates spent just half the time and money they spend campaigning on something actually productive, we'd see a lot more progress than we see with their 2% vote count. I don't know, maybe it's necessary.
Sadly, following the court ruling allowing these soft-money bans, it's going to become a real black and white issue. Support your candidate, or support your cause. It'll be illegal for a non-profit to run a commercial about how horrible the PATRIOT Act was, and mention that by the way, Dennis Kucinich is the only presidential candidate to vote against the PATRIOT act. Good thing I'm not Rusty, 'cause I'd have just broken the law, i guess. But I digress, sort of (the fact that thee person I'm probably going to vote for in the Democratic party probably voted for this very law does bring up the fact that there simply is no perfect candidate).
Oh well, I've managed to stray way off topic, but I think maybe you understand a little of where I'm coming from.
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