Saturday, October 01, 2016

Voting - Part I

The election is 40 days away, a nice Biblical number.  I wanted to give people time to process two counterintuitive ideas.

1.  Numerically, practically, your vote will not matter.  (I think you should vote anyway.)
2.  We have all, even the best of us, chosen our sides for bad reasons.

Those are quite different from what we are usually told, so I am aware that I have a high bar to reach to convince anyone of these two points.  Nonetheless, I think I can do that, and will make the attempt later this week.  I will try not to be tedious.

In the meantime, let the other political matters drop for a bit and run these two over in your head.


james said...

I live in Dane County. For local city officials, my vote doesn't matter too much: sometimes as much as .1%. For Dane county races, I might as well not be here. You can still find Bernie lawn signs. State-wide, most things are decided by the Milwaukee/Madison combo (not always--Walker beat the recall election handily), and my vote isn't going to sway much.
I can get out and try to persuade folks, but that's still somewhat limited--I don't think I'm going to change any minds. Tiny perturbation.

But suppose I succeeded, and got helped somebody sensible get elected.

More and more control goes to DC, where legislators do less than we think they can. Title IX had nothing to do with "transsexuals," but I gather some unilateral redefinition means it does now. Does anybody want to go on record opposing Title IX? Thought not.

From the linked article: ' Lynn says that "there was not a single scene set in the House of Commons because government does not take place in the House of Commons. Some politics and much theatre takes place there. Government happens in private. As in all public performances, the real work is done in rehearsal, behind closed doors. Then the public and the House are shown what the government wishes them to see." '

Of course they bicker and screw up behind the scenes as much as they do in front of it, so I vote anyway, in hopes that somebody sensible can help bail when the opportunity comes.

By "sensible" I mean somebody who understands that programs have limits and side effects. Possibly more politicians do than are willing to admit it. It is only one part of wisdom, but I don't want to ask for the moon.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

Thanks for that link. It arrived at the perfect moment for another discussion.

Unknown said...

Whereas many Alt-Right / Light people think they're voting for Trump because he is one of them, this video shows how wrong they are. I am not even sure Trump knows why he's voting for Trump!

Perhaps this can make us better voters.

Christopher B said...

I'm interested to see where you go with both of these.

I can see a case for #1 but I'm not sure about your qualifiers. You could certainly obtain the same result as an election by selecting a victor by some random means that didn't involve voting. Selecting one person at random in the voting population to make the choice, for instance.

I'm always a little skeptical when people start qualifying the reasons behind choices as 'good' and 'bad'. I think I know where you might be coming from though.

Texan99 said...

My vote in Texas is generally drowned in a sea of red. Politicians and their teams notice things like percentages, though, and turnover always is important. I never hesitate to cast my ballot on any grounds related to feeling impotent as a single voice.

Texan99 said...

I meant to say that "turnout" is important.