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asleep at mal 9/09
alumiere
thought provoking at any rate... 
10/28/08 17:27
asleep at mal 9/09
presidential election if we were all in the same high school...

http://fd-midori.livejournal.com/295378.html



note; i'm not sure i agree with any of this, much less all of it, but it has gotten me thinking

i know who i'm voting for and why both nationally and locally (and the reasons have little to do with who they'd be were we in h.s.)

but the real question is - is this how many of the election age voters determine who to vote for? i mean i understand that it's ultimately a popularity contest but what makes one candidate more popular than another...

i hadn't thought about it in these terms, and i can see where this thought process pretty much shows the way the country's looking in terms of which state is leaning toward which president/vp pairing... and i'm really curious - not how are you voting, but does your choice come down to something like this?



that said, everyone who can vote should (and not just for president either - spend a few minutes and research your state and local candidates/referrendums/etc), regardless of whether you think your vote will make a difference or not - you lose all right to bitch about how bad things are if you don't participate
Comments 
10/29/08 0:58 (UTC)
but the real question is - is this how many of the election age voters determine who to vote for?

Not me. I'd probably have hung out with all three in high school. I was always the peacemaker, the guy who focused on the stuff you were saying I agreed with and amplified that when conversing.

Oh, my, how things change as we get older... I'd be too busy laughing at McCain's desperate attempts to garner votes*, sneering at Obama's ideas about socialism, and spitting on all three of the smug bastards for being christians.

*If you don't live in a swing state, you probably haven't heard as much of it as I have. 10-12 recordings per day on the answering machine...

State and local around here are pretty quiet, save one issue that has all of Ohio between a rock and a hard place-- and none of the pro- OR anti- ads has focused on the fact that if this thing gets voted down, Ohio loses thirty to forty thousand jobs overnight, and another ten thousand or so in a year or two. Because, you know, that's not as important as whether one guy's gonna pay taxes or not. sigh.
10/29/08 2:12 (UTC)
but the real question is - is this how many of the election age voters determine who to vote for?

i guess that was a kind of dumb question given my friends list; i'd expect most of my flist to be more together than that...

i'm definitely not in a swing state re: the presidential election but i agree w/ you on the xtian thing

but ca has a few hotly contested propositions on the ballot (like banning gay marriage) - otoh, i don't have a landline so no-one calls me with political stuff, i just get tons of email and junk mail and shouted at by various pro or con prop 8 groups...

and i know what you mean - that was why i suggested people spend a bit of time checking out their local and state issues - le sigh indeed - uninformed voters are in some ways worse than people who don't vote at all...
10/29/08 2:33 (UTC)
but ca has a few hotly contested propositions on the ballot (like banning gay marriage)

We had that one four years ago. It passed. Not surprisingly, none of the supposedly ultra-liberal folks who got voted in in the same election have said word one about trying to get it overturned.

Meet the new boss, etc.
10/29/08 11:43 (UTC) - ...
sneering at Obama's ideas about socialism

I'm not sure if you're calling Obama a socialist or not here, but it's pretty hilarious that his plan to return us to the tax rates we had in 1999 is considered socialism by some voters.

[note to self: read what you type before hitting "post comment" in case you just had an aneurism.  Weirdness fixed.  Twice.  Coffee needed.]

Edited at 2008-10-29 11:46 am (UTC)
10/29/08 12:38 (UTC) - Re: ...
I'm not sure if you're calling Obama a socialist or not here,

Well, using the phrase "redistribution of wealth" is a pretty dead giveaway. It's a direct quote from Marx and Engels, and it's become so laden with socialist trappings that no one who isn't a socialist would ever consider using it.

Then, of course, there's the terrifying "universal" health care plan.

But in response to your particular point,

it's pretty hilarious that his plan to return us to the tax rates we had in 1999 is considered socialism by some voters.

It is. Every income tax we've had since the first revision to the (arguably unconstitutional) sixteenth amendment's income tax provision has been, to some degree or other, socialist-- because the first one is the only one we've ever had that imposed the same percentage on everyone. The idea that the rich should pay a higher percentage of their taxes than the poor is... wait for it... redistribution of wealth!

(I should note as I say this that my current income puts me, if not below the poverty level, pretty damn close to it. I'm not saying this because I'm pulling down a couple million a year and pissed because I have to shunt it all overseas or anything.)

I grant you that I've never heard a flat tax plan worth supporting, but that's only because none of them go anywhere near far enough. When someone starts talking about going back to sixteenth-amendment rates, I'll listen.
10/29/08 14:54 (UTC) - Re: ...
Another interesting topic, and one I don't have time to discuss fully, is how the term "socialist" became a kiss of death in American politics.

I saw a recent clip where an interviewer asked Biden if Obama wanted to impose "swedish-style socialism" on the United States.  Biden of course said no, while I watched and thought "holy crap, I wish he would!"

Sweden: a really fucking nice place to live.
10/29/08 15:42 (UTC) - Re: ...
Another interesting topic, and one I don't have time to discuss fully, is how the term "socialist" became a kiss of death in American politics.

...while being systematically implemented in American government since 1932. Ah, the double-standards one can inflict on a relatively uninformed populace.

(Conspiracy theory of the moment: Joe McCarthy, honest zealot or plant? heh.)

Sweden: a really fucking nice place to live.

They've come up with some bloody awesome musical acts, and make great alcohol (which I know from my acquaintanceship with some of those musical acts). Other than that, I know shockingly little about Sweden. Feel free to extrapolate when you come up with more time. (I totally understand about lack of same, believe me.)
10/29/08 11:41 (UTC) - ...
American politics is overly focused on image and the shallow levels of personality (i.e., the "who would you want to have a beer with" vote), and not focused enough on the levels of personality that actually influence a person's ability to be a leader.  The questions of character matter, and I think that's what the post you linked to is really trying to get at.  However you may feel about a candidate's policy positions, if they lack the character and ethics to pursue those positions wisely, safely, and honestly, then they're a bad choice.

A person who supports McCain's positions (which I do not) but believes as I do that he is dishonest, unwise, and unethical would possibly be better served by voting for Obama and attempting to rein his administration in through their legislative votes and citizen lobbying efforts.

Another good example is Ralph Nader -- I absolutely agree with just about every policy position he holds, but have realised in the last several years (particularly during the 2004 electoral campaign) that he is not a person I can trust to lead effectively or appropriately.
10/29/08 12:41 (UTC)
Another good example is Ralph Nader -- I absolutely agree with just about every policy position he holds, but have realised in the last several years (particularly during the 2004 electoral campaign) that he is not a person I can trust to lead effectively or appropriately.

I'd be extremely interested in hearing the reasoning from someone who used to subscribe to the doctrine. (I wholly subscribe to the sentiment, but then I always did.)
10/29/08 15:01 (UTC) - ...
As noted above in another comment, I don't have time to give a thorough response, but it became clear to me that at some point (where that point occurred is open to debate) his goal became "must be president" rather than "must be president to make the changes I advocate a real possibility."  He became (or perhaps was revealed to be) nasty, cynical, and ethically questionable.  One particularly crazy example was when Michael Moore endorsed Kerry in 2004 (instead of renewing his 2000 endorsement of Nader) -- Nader's official response was a press release which could effectively be paraphrased as "Michael Moore has chosen to turn his back on his beliefs.  Also, he could really stand to lose some weight.  Have you seen him lately?  What a fatty."

I still don't blame him for the Bush presidency, though.
10/29/08 15:38 (UTC) - Re: ...
Sketchy it may be, but still extremely illuminating. And once again, yeah, I'm totally on board-- I just wonder if that hasn't always been the case with Nader. After all, his whole career is based on, shall we say, not the most stringent research. (There are '64 Corvairs on the road to this day...)

I still don't blame him for the Bush presidency, though.

[snicker]

I live in Ohio. I know exactly who to blame for the Bush presidency. And I'm still stunned that not only is he not in jail, but that he almost managed to capture a Senate seat in '06.

(For the record: Ken Blackwell, whose middle name should be changed to "disenfranchisement".)
10/30/08 12:17 (UTC) - thanks
most interesting discussion - not sure if you've met thru other ljs or not, but i'm not surprised this got you two talking (too bad there weren't more participants though - i was hoping for more debate and to be able to comment more - alas, work got in the way and i'm just now getting to read this as i'm heading offline for the day and to sleep)
11/3/08 14:16 (UTC) - Re: thanks
You're quite welcome (and no, we don't know one another, unless I was drunk. But that was a long time ago. heh). It's always nice when political discourse actually remains at the level of discourse-- and rather surprising, as well.