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Make Sure You Vote. Or Don’t.

More than a half century ago Emma Goldman said “If voting changed anything they’d make it illegal.”

Now we’re all being encouraged to vote vote vote, rock the vote, get out the vote, make your heard, push for change, to blah blah blah blah blah…

I used to think people who didn’t vote had no right to bitch. I was wrong. Voting is to self government as security is to the TSA. It’s theater. It’s the illusion of participatory government. The only place it really makes a difference is on local elections. Sometimes.

It might make a difference in some close states, but I live in NY, and Obama is a foregone conclusion. My vote will make no difference at all. And what’s the alternative, vote for McCain, which may very well be a vote for a Sarah Palin presidency? No thanks.

Neither of the presidential candidates intend to:

  • Restore our lost civil liberties by repealing the Patriot Act, FISA, or abolishing the TSA.
  • Reduce the size of government. They’ve both made noise about eliminating pork, which isn’t going to happen, and neither of them have pledged to get rid of a single government agency. We could easily eliminate about 90% of them and have more money and more freedom. Apparently, this has never even occurred to either of them.
  • Stop, or at least modify, the War On Some Drugs. I never heard either of them mention it, even briefly. So we can expect more of the same – more of our citizens imprisoned for non-violent crimes, more corruption fueled by drug money, more crime putting innocent lives at stake, and military style police raids killing innocent people.
  • Abolish the Federal Reserve, returning the control of our money to the government, and return to the gold standard, which would dramatically reduce inflation.
  • Allow capitalism to work, instead of giving government handouts to financial intuitions. Both candidates voted for the bailout.
  • Bring the troops home. Not just from Iraq, but from most of the 120 countries where we have military bases.

If either of them had plans to do just one of those things, I’d vote for them. Any one of those things would be a huge improvement in our situation. But no, we’ve got the same old same old, two candidates whose differences are mostly superficial. Either one will give us bigger government with more laws, regulations and restrictions on our personal freedom and civil rights. Either one will directly and indirectly cause us to have less money in our pockets, money that will be increasingly worthless.

I will vote, but more out of habit than any sense of obligation, and with no illusion that it will make a difference. I do want to vote for one congress weasel because she had the guts to vote against the bailout, twice, and her opponent has shown himself to be a major slimeball. As for the rest, I’ll make a list of incumbents and vote against them on general principal. I’ll be writing in Ron Paul for president. (Talk about a fruitless endeavor.) And when I leave the voting booth I won’t be feeling like A Great American who has participated in the grand scheme of things. I’ll just feel a heightened disgust for the scam, the illusion that we have any real choice.

Here’s another viewpoint from one of America’s greatest philosophers:

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