On Voting. And Why You Shouldn’t, Unless You Agree With Me, In Which Case, Yes, Get Your Ass to the Polls Tout De Suite, You.

by anna on November 4, 2008

I resisted the idea of doing a political or pro-voting post today, for the same reason I don’t like to do Halloween posts on Halloween, or Fourth of July posts on the Fourth of July: they are hard to do well. And so many people do them that, after a while your eyes start to cross. Like maybe the first one or two are OK, but after ten you’re like, “Oy, if I have to read another post about the wonderful political process in America I’m going to vomit all over your electoral college.” And also, I’ve never really been able to get behind this “Get out there and vote! It’s your duty!” crap.

Let me explain why.

You know that video that was going around the interwebs, with all the celebrities encouraging us “not to vote”? And yeah, it was sarcastic and everything? But yeah, for a minute I was like, “FINALLY. Finally.” Because whenever I see somebody on TV talking about how freaking important it is to vote, you know what I want to say, “Bullshit. Bullshit.”

Because if it were me, if they called me up and said, “Hey, Anna? We understand that you’re a mover and a shaker. People listen to you–will you do a PSA re: voting?” I’d be all, “Yeah, sure I will. As long as I get final cut.” Because you know what, I don’t want you to vote today, unless you are voting for Obama. And if you’re a Californian, I don’t want you to vote unless you’re voting No on Proposition 8. Seriously. I don’t care about all the flowery feel good talk about the democratic process. Fuck that noise.

My thoughts are this: if you want to vote for McCain, then while I (intellectually) respect your right to make that choice, and while I wouldn’t dream of actually getting in your way of making this choice–a courtesy you, as a McCain supporter, would not extend to me or any other woman who might want to make certain choices about themselves and their bodies, incidentally–there’s not a chance in hell I’m going to encourage you to go out and vote for McCain. Not only because he’s not my choice, but because clearly, you are demonstrating that your decision making process is inherently flawed. You are demonstrating that, given the choice, you would choose “a platter of shit with bits of broken glass in it” over chicken, as David Sedaris puts it. And if that’s the case, it seems like maybe we’d all be a little better off without your vote being counted. Now, if you’re in Florida, there’s a good chance that might happen anyway. And with the electoral college, well–none of our votes truly count anyway, who are we kidding? But just in case–if you plan on voting for McCain, I’m OK with you not voting today. It’s fine with me. Stay home. Save yourself the secondary embarrassment, I say.

But why should the McCain people take all the flack? They’re not the only ones I don’t mind staying home. Like any magnanimous, open-minded liberal, I do have one Republican friend, and I don’t want him to feel singled out. No, if you plan to make a vote for the Green party, then you should go ahead and stay home as well. Look, Nader or not, we’ve already had an assload of you people on the world stage. At least the Republicans can blame their behavior on 1) stupidity; 2) gullability; 3) sociopathy; 4) greed; or 5) all of the above. But you people! You have lost all grasp of reality, and enough with the “it’s never a good time” for a third party crap. There are better times than when George W. Bush is running, mmkay? Can we at least acknowledge this now? No? THEN STAY HOME.

I had a friend in college named Stu. Stu got a 1600 on the SAT and was a legacy member of MENSA. Stu was also crazy. But crazy smart. And though he would also do things like walk down the street and kick parking meters, because he was so full of rage he’d have to do things like this periodically, he also had a saying that I still use today. When presented with an instance of stupid human behavior, Stu would say, “I understand why they should be allowed to vote. I don’t understand why their vote counts the same as mine.”

How about today, instead of telling everyone to vote, we encourage everyone to stop blowing sunshine up each others’ asses? Or, better yet, just stop the constant lying. I have a dream, people, and that dream is that Americans start a national pastime of telling the truth. The ugly, mean, nasty, but spiritually cleansing truth for once.

I’ll start. Those PSA ads? are almost always funded by Democrats or groups with largely or exclusively democratic leaning memberships. Know why? The Republicans are better at getting out and voting. They always have been. Know why? Because they don’t want to pay more of their money in taxes, and they’re worried that if they don’t stay in power, that’s exactly what will happen. So when they are telling us to “Rock the Vote,” they are talking to Democrats. Almost always. I wish they would just say that, lest any stray Republicans get the notion that they should vote. Or Independents. Or–God Help Us, the Libertarians. Oh yeah, and incidentally, you guys–there is a HUGE difference between being “very liberal” and being a Libertarian–check your dictionaries. I’m sick of you guys giving us a bad name.

Where was I? Oh yeah, the cutesy Hollywood Celebrity messages to vote are not for you people! No Pro-voting messages for you! We will let you continue to watch Entourage, Saturday Night Live, and Lost, no questions asked, but don’t listen to any announcements telling you to vote because YOU ARE NOT THE TARGET AUDIENCE.

And, no, it’s not PC, and it doesn’t make us feel all lovey dovey about each other, and yeah, I’m all for freedom and shit but I’m fucking tired of the morons ruling the country. Or worse than the morons–the people who exploit and control the morons! OK? You guys that think that to be “American” is to be simple, good folk, who like the “real American” way. Who drop the “g”s in words that end in “-ing”? That talk about “values”? And are ostentatiously Christian? Christian with a thesis statement? And who hate Muslims, and who have a general policy of fear of difference? All of those things are BAD. They are things you should try NOT to do. The candidates that pander to you? Are using you. When they are alone, they talk like us. Like us FAKE AMERICANS. Yeah! They go to our schools and read our books. They eat our food and watch our movies, shop in our stores. And sometimes, after they’ve had a full day of using your own ignorance against you, they even go to our therapists to assuage their guilt. And, what is possibly the worst travesty of justice–I have seen them actually drink French wine without wasting a drop!

And finally, to those of you who talk about being “undecided.” If you’re “undecided,” doesn’t that just mean you don’t want to admit that you’re voting for McCain? By the same token, if you’re a registered “independent,” doesn’t that just mean either 1) you’re embarrassed to be a Republican; or 2) you’re really a Democrat, but you’re worried about being audited by the IRS?

See, I feel better now. Do you guys have anything you want to get off your chests?

{ 17 comments }

Casey November 4, 2008 at 5:28 am

I had a hard time not telling people in FL the same thing… good for you for yelling at the McCainians. Jerks.

Casey´s last blog post..Back In The Saddle Again

jenni November 4, 2008 at 6:07 am

I hate undecided voters. I lothe them. I mean, really, undecieded? Especially in a year like this one, when there are huge differences in the candidates. Do those people not have an issue that is most important to them? Come on, losers, get it together, make your choice and fucking vote already. Or, stay home.

jenni´s last blog post..35 Weeks – HOLY SHIT I’M ENORMOUS!

MommyNamedApril November 4, 2008 at 7:25 am

I totally agree with the ‘don’t vote’ sentiment. But, ya know, I don’t want YOU to vote. Not gonna lie, I want my $$$ and a smaller government. Totally voted against the gay marriage ban, so don’t get on me about that.

But I think it says something that the Dems have to bus in people to vote and get every actor they can round up to lecture people into voting to have a fighting chance. Hrmmm… Also, stats show the higher your education level the more likely you are to vote Republican. And the vast majority of small business owners are Republican.

Anyhow, just my opinion. I don’t hate all things Democratic and I don’t like all things Republican, but I just can’t see how raising taxes while the economy is down is EVER a good idea.

MommyNamedApril´s last blog post..Boys will be Boys.

anna November 4, 2008 at 7:39 am

A smaller government? PSHAW. The Republicans say they want a smaller government, but then they railroad in a giant government that runs everything else into the ground, plus spies on people and imprisons people without due process!

It’s true that once you have money, it’s easier to become a Republican. It’s also true that there is a tendency to become more conservative as one becomes older. Taxes will not be raised under Obama, unless you make over $250,000 a year. And yeah, that sucks if you’re in that bracket. But in my mind, now is when the rubber meets the road. When I was off getting my *advanced education* and making no money, and my husband was off getting his *advanced education* and he had no money, we needed to have tax breaks on our tuition. We needed that money to live, to EAT. And now we are paying the piper. And you know what, that’s not a bad thing. That’s the RIGHT THING TO DO.

Amy- playhereoften.com November 4, 2008 at 7:44 am

The only part I don’t agree with is the registering independent. I register independent because sometimes the best choice is a Democrat and sometimes the best choice is a Republican. I would rather not be associated with either group.

J. November 4, 2008 at 11:34 am

Thank you for expressing my sentiments! My point of view is that stupid people shouldn’t vote. Period. And WHY is there still an electoral college? I mean, the “one person, one vote” thing is totally possible these days, and yet the popular vote still doesn’t mean shit. I’m sick and tired of states like Ohio determining the course for the entire country.

J.´s last blog post.."It’s Alright To Cry,

Ginger November 4, 2008 at 12:07 pm

Preach it (particularly for those of us who are too chicken shit to do so on our own blogs)!

Ginger´s last blog post..Ice cream floats for grownups

Ann November 4, 2008 at 1:18 pm

YYEEEEEESSSSSSSSS!
Fantastic!!!!
Whew…
good post!

Ann´s last blog post..I’m Foggy!

blissfully caffeinated November 4, 2008 at 1:38 pm

Yeah, the whole “Republicans are for less government” thing is bullshit. They all want big government, they just want it to be bigger in different ways. I understand your frustration, and get where you’re coming from with this. You know I disagree about the people staying home thing, I think everyone should vote. I just want them to vote for who I like.

Great post though. Glad you feel better.

blissfully caffeinated´s last blog post..Get Up and Go Vote!

Cat November 4, 2008 at 2:00 pm

So odd to read the thoughts I didn’t know I was thinking.

Cat´s last blog post..For Which I Won’t Be Thanking Jesus

MommyNamedApril November 4, 2008 at 2:05 pm

@ anna – I have no problem with educational tax breaks or incentives and I’m not sure why you think otherwise. I am FOR tax breaks, up and down the ladder. My problem is primarily with entitlements. Again, I see positives and negatives in both parties, neither is even close to ideal. I’m not sure what you mean by “when the rubber meets the road” but I’ll tell you I’m nowhere close to the $250k mark, so my fiscal conservatism is unbiased in that respect. In fact, I may actually benefit personally if Obama gets into office – but I think the economy as a whole will suffer, which is why I’m choosing to vote for McCain.

@ ginger – Just because not everyone chooses to take their blog into the political arena, doesn’t mean we should be stifled elsewhere.

@ blissfully caffeinated – I’m sorry you feel that way. Many of us devil-horned Republicans really do want smaller government. I want the federal government controlling as little as possible.

MommyNamedApril´s last blog post..Boys will be Boys.

anna November 4, 2008 at 3:14 pm

@MommyNamedApril: there are negatives in both parties, no question. And perhaps I wasn’t being clear before: what I meant was, when I was on the lower end of the economic spectrum, every little dollar counted. I never had to pay taxes because I made no money and I had tuition payments that I could deduct. I was a child born into privilege, so I was able to take on student debt with a relative confidence that I would pay everything back someday. I didn’t need to lean on the system heavily outside of the tax breaks because I did not come from poverty, and have not been a victim of institutional discrimination (for the most part).

It may be difficult for people to understand that not all people on public assistance are freeloading off your tax dollars. It may also be hard to understand why people have to rely on public assistance when they hit hard times–if you have never done so, then perhaps you are blind to the fact that not everybody is born with the same privileges. I don’t know.

But would I rather have a healthcare system (or a welfare system) that occasionally provides the lazy ne’er do well with a free ride (if this indeed happens, which I kind of doubt since it’s not like living on welfare is so much fun) but also helps one of our best and brightest, Barack Obama, child of a single mother, graduated cum Laude from Harvard Law, for god’s sake, eat when he’s a child? Hell yes, I’m going to support a system like that. HELL YES. Even if it means I have to pay more.

Why on earth would the economy suffer from Obama winning? If anything, the world might think, “Oh thank god, the morons have finally been ousted from America’s oval office.” I mean, the Republicans, money grubbers that they are, have only succeeded in taking our nation’s budget surplus and putting in the hands of Halliburton! Halliburton! Fucking Dick Cheney’s great grandchildren are going to be going to Choate and Yale, raising up their own little miniature sociopath families for centuries off what has happened in the last 8 years. McCain is better than Bush et al., but that is not saying much. And fuck if I would ever vote for anyone–for dogcatcher, even–who is pro-life. Not going to happen.

Let me go over the economic history for the past few decades for you, which btw are not usually affected as much by who is in office but rather what time in the ten year economic cycle it has to be, anyway, but just for the sake of argument:

Carter: Economic downturn/recession(?not sure)
Regan: Prosperity
Bush: War and Economic downturn, recession as he leaves office
Clinton: recession as he enters office, Prosperity throughout second term, budget surplus
Bush: Great prosperity during first five minutes in office, then economic downturn second only to the Great Depression, and possibly not that, jury is still out.

Why are the Republicans better with national economy, again? I’m not seeing it. They’re good at making war and lining their pockets, oh yeah–but we’re not talking about personal finance here.

MommyNamedApril November 4, 2008 at 6:29 pm

@ anna – I appreciate that you’re passionate about your views, but I would also appreciate your being respectful of my own and refrain from name calling.

Again, I don’t have a problem with incentive programs and I’ve yet to meet a Republican who wants to completely do away with social services. It’s just a matter of dialing back a bit and, also, letting the state governments take some responsibility for their citizens. The point is, we shouldn’t have to pay more – what we’re paying should be enough to accomplish this goal. Let’s take a look at where the money is going and try better allocation as opposed to continually asking for more.

Thanks for the cliffnotes history lesson, but I’m well versed.

Why do I think the economy will suffer if Obama gets into office? Because, as I said before, you don’t raise taxes on ANYONE when the economy is down. Raising taxes depresses the economy further and that’s exactly what we don’t need. All the small businesses that file as individuals (because they’re s-corps) are going to get hit with a bigger tax bill which means their going to cut back. They’re going to cut spending, they’ll cut employee salaries, benefits and positions and wherever they can trim the fat. Those employees (or former employees) will, in turn cut spending, which will make the businesses they’re no longer patronizing suffer… and on and on.

Do I think we’ll go plummeting into the proverbial abyss if Obama is elected? No. But, I don’t think he’s what the country needs right now.

Thanks for the banter. I’ll check back in later to see if you felt like responding, but I’m done for the night. Gonna cycle through the news stations and eat some (several) ice cream sandwiches.

anna November 4, 2008 at 6:52 pm

OK, I am not really sure what namecalling I’m doing. Calling Cheney a sociopath, I guess? Well, I believe that to be a fact. I believe he has no conscience. It is the only explanation I can see that makes any logical sense. Do you have a better explanation?

Obama has said, repeatedly, that taxes will not be raised in the current economy. I invite you to check out this link to sort out what is true about the tax plans of both McCain and Obama. You will note that, with the exception of the taxation of the richest 5%, there is hardly any difference between the two, when you get down to it. Taxes are not going to be raised. Are you worried that the richest 5% being taxed will result in a lessening of spending? Hardly.

I have spent many years trying to understand a legitimate, objectively moral justification for being a Republican. I try to understand. I am passionate about it not because I hope for a better world–in fact, I don’t hope for that, I am a die hard cynic. I get angry and frustrated by it because I feel like there must be some obvious thing that I am missing, the way people talk. I understand the impulse to look out for number one, I would appreciate people just admitting that this is what they are doing. And not pretending like it’s a populist party–those people that are exploited by the Republican party are the real victims of this, they will never see their situation improve, and it seems like the bigwigs in the party are just fine with that.

anna November 4, 2008 at 6:54 pm

PS we are an S-corp and let me assure you taxes are not going to have an effect upon our business behavior. The thing that will have an effect is the fact that there are less people spending money out there–this is already the case. Taxes on the top 5%, nah–they never stopped patronizing, trust me.

Robin November 5, 2008 at 4:36 pm

Hey Anna,
Found you from your post on Stiletto Mom… and just wanted to say HOORAY for a blogger like you who’s not afraid to discuss her political views! I am an Obama supporter (YAY!!!!) and am not nearly as brave about discussing my very strong feelings about politics and the republicans who are so-called running this country (not to mention the disgusting damage they’ve done to every aspect of our lives). I read posts like yours and wish I had the balls to speak my mind… GOOD FOR YOU! At the same time, I’m shaking my head at those people who get all pissed off when you do. I definitely come from the tough-shit-if-you-don’t-like-it school! Keep it up… so many of us truly benefit from someone like you.
All the best,
Robin

cwn November 5, 2008 at 9:06 pm

Anna, you are clearly a smart girl but you shouldn’t be so mean. For the well being of your soul you should try living in a state that is more diverse (liberal and conservative) for a time. I think you might be surprised by values you might have in common with people who make inherently logical decisions to vote in a way that you might not agree with.

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