Get to it.

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48 Responses to Get to it.

  1. Kristen says:

    I agree! I’ve been getting flak from my family and friends for my choice in vote, even after I explained my reasoning. The way I see it, I don’t particularly like either candidate this year, but I chose one. In my opinion, if you complain about the way the country is being run, but never voted, then you should be quiet until you’ve had your say in choosing how the country is run. Your vote is your voice, and if you didn’t let it be known on Nov 4th, you can wait until the next election to do so.

  2. Grant says:

    I get kinda tired of everyone telling me my vote matters. I live in New York State, which Obama is going to win by like 20 points. I’m not gonna wait in line at some elementary school just to microscopically change that margin. I’m a busy man.

  3. troy says:

    Grant — While it saddens me that the president is not elected via popular vote, I do not believe that you are such a busy man that you could not get an absentee ballot or vote early.

    Jessica — I am newbie to your site, but like what I see. thanx for the pleasant web experience.

  4. In my opinion, if you complain about the way the country is being run, but never voted, then you should be quiet until you’ve had your say in choosing how the country is run.

    So, okay. If the choices on offer are two ways of running the country both of which I really do not want, what would you consider an appropriate choice of action?

  5. Scott says:

    Grant, you not too busy to post your thoughts/position on a blog…why to play the victim! Looks like you’ve exercised your right to keep your mouth shut for the next 4 years.

  6. brad says:

    Complaining in itself is doing something. Choosing not to vote can be a political action. I don’t buy the “if you don’t vote you can’t complain” line, but I do agree with Jessica here. Sitting around doesn’t do anything but preserve the status quo.

  7. Elisha says:

    Grant — There’s more on the ballot than just the Presidential election…

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  9. Frank says:

    You have to vote. No if’s, ands or buts abbout it. We can complain all we want, this is the one chance to be heard!!

    It’s too important not to get off the couch and go to the voting booth.

  10. Paper tiger says:

    I understand that every single vote doesn’t make a difference in the long run, but the thing is that that huge margin that Obama is going to win by in New York? It’s made up of single votes; if you don’t do your part, you’re not part of the change and if everyone behaved the same way, things would turn out poorly. Not voting is selfish. End of story. If you are undecided or don’t like either of the candidates, I do encourage you to surf around both websites and choose the lesser of two evils. If it were really up to you, then I’m sure you can decide who would be less harmful to the state.
    Personally, I have NO idea how someone can be conflicted, but everyone has their own priorities and beliefs, so… *shrug*

  11. Dewayne says:

    There are six parties with enough ballot access to be able to have an electoral college majority. If you don’t like either of the big two, stop grousing and get involved.

  12. BradOFarrell says:

    “Choosing not to vote can be a political action.”

    No it’s not. It’s like getting back at the teacher by not doing your homework. If you don’t vote, you are being RULED.

    Even if you don’t like either candidate, vote for the one you dislike the least; the losing party will re-evaluate their platform and try to win your vote next election.

    Voting isn’t about you.

  13. BradOFarrell says:

    (Follow-up preemptive rebuttal to counter argument)

    Not voting doesn’t hurt or help either party. All not voting does is help whichever party has the more die-hard followers who WILL vote every election (right now, that’s the GOP). The fewer people who vote, the more power the crazies have. If everyone votes, the outcome is a better cross section of America. Again–it’s not about you.

  14. jennifer says:

    I agree that voting for 1 of the 2 big party candidates doesn’t do much for you if you don’t already support them. You can still vote, though, there are other candidates on the ballot and you can always write someone in.
    However, voting is still about the least you can do to change your government. What about doing something outside of voting? It can be very effective to call/write your representatives and get others to do so as well. Volunteer at organizations that support the issues you want to change.
    Voting is only a small part of the picture!

  15. JAB says:

    “If you don’t vote, you are being RULED.”

    Yeah, but as a Czarist i say that’s the way to go. =P

  16. tornadogrrrl says:

    So, okay. If the choices on offer are two ways of running the country both of which I really do not want, what would you consider an appropriate choice of action?

    Vote for the lesser evil in the large races, and get informed and involved in the local politics in your state and county. Surprisingly few people have the ability to influence who becomes a judge, county commissioner, director of transportation services etc. and those people make decisions that directly affect your life and that of your community.

    Grant: It can be hard to see how your vote matters in big national elections, but it is surprisingly common for local elections to be very close in numbers. It is pathetic how many people think being involved is checking one box on a form that is covered in dozens of races and issues. People all over the world are still fighting with their lives to be able to participate in fairly run elections, and you think you are too busy. That is disgusting.

  17. yefet says:

    i agree with brad o’farrell. in other countries voting is compulsory, and due to that law, fewer people who are extremely far from the center (majority) have an influence. because some people think voting is optional we see the far right have a substantial say in our society, while we also see hyper-partisanship in elections like this one. please vote.

    and to the voter in new york: margin matters. the more of a margin a candidate wins by allows the president, congressperson, senator, et cetera a mandate for change and reform. it gives him or her more support in his or her decisions. so again, please vote.

  18. Geek says:

    Did everyone forget that there are third party candidates? If you don’t like “either” candidate, vote for someone else.

    Grant: As someone else already mentioned the presidential race isn’t the only thing to vote for in NY tomorrow. There’s judges, the state representatives, the state assembly, and a proposition on how a veteran’s disabilities are taken into consideration on civil service exams.

  19. Jacob Raccuia says:

    Although I am not even old enough to vote yet; I’m going to go on a tangent slightly and give my two cent’s regarding the electoral college. Ever since I learned that the EC gives all of the states possible votes to whichever candidate wins the popular vote of the state, I thought it was the most silly, inaccurate way of representing the people.
    As it was seen in the 2000 elections, for example, it doesn’t work.
    If 75% of the population votes for Republican, then 75% of all EC votes should go to the Repubs, not all 100%.

    Word.
    ..
    Anyways, not voting because you feel your vote won’t make a difference is completely not true. Every vote makes a difference, even if it’s a small one.

    I’m a vegan and people say to me, “I don’t kill the meat, if I don’t eat it someone else would”. It’s very hard for me to explain to them how wrong they are.

  20. Dewayne says:

    Jacob:
    Nebraska and Maine split their electoral votes by congressional district, using “a tiered system where a single elector is chosen within each Congressional district and two electors are chosen by statewide popular vote.” ~ Wikipedia (I know, I know…)

  21. blah says:

    @alistair cast a vote for empty.

  22. (x, why?) says:

    Grant,

    As a fellow New Yorker, allow me to remind you that the state senate is up for grabs. The Democrats only have to flip one more seat to take over all of Albany.

    Is that worth your time voting?

  23. Randy says:

    >>The fewer people who vote, the more power the crazies have.

    Amen. And while it might be entirely appropriate… All it takes for evil to succeed if a few good men to do nothing.

    Please Vote. I may not like your choice of candidate, but I applaud your decision to participate.

  24. NSK says:

    The odds of your vote being the one that decides the election – in your state or even across the country – are indeed slim. Depending on state, the odds range from a few million to 1 all the way to billions to 1.

    BUT, the odds of your vote being the one that decides the election – if you don’t vote – are infinity to 1!!!!

    You don’t win the lottery if you don’t play!

  25. Evan says:

    I’d rather be voting for a revolution.

  26. Alex says:

    “If you don’t vote, you are being RULED.”

    You are being ruled anyway. The rich white elite passes the rest of us two puppets, and we choose whichever makes us giggle the most. Then they go back to manipulating us for profit.

    “In my opinion, if you complain about the way the country is being run, but never voted, then you should be quiet until you’ve had your say in choosing how the country is run.”

    In my opinion, if you complain about the way the country is being run, but you DID vote, then you should be quiet. You’ve consented to democracy. You’ve acknowledged that the majority shall rule. Only those who don’t vote can stand against the system without hypocrisy.

  27. Thomas says:

    This makes me glad that I’ve come up with many more complicated and interesting ways to waste my live.

    My vote, on the other hand is wasted because I live in a red state.

  28. Greg London says:

    > Did everyone forget that there are
    > third party candidates? If you don’t
    > like “either” candidate, vote for
    > someone else.

    Oh gawd. The US presidential elections operate on “majority vote wins”. You have to vote for one of the two most-likely-to-win candidates to have any possible effect on the outcome. Voting third party is pure power fantasy for those feeling disenfranchised.

    You’re not sticking it to the system. You’re not forcing the two party system to move to embrace your party. You’re being annoying to people who actually did the mature thing and voted for one of the two-most-likely-to-win candidates, even if neither candidate was their ideal candidate.

    There should be two rules for US presidential elections: (1) If you don’t vote, you can’t complain. (2) If you vote third party, you can’t brag about it as if you struck a blow against an unfair system. All you did was throw your vote away, so shut up.

  29. Melanie says:

    “The death of democracy is not likely to be an assassination from ambush. It will be a slow extinction from apathy, indifference, and undernourishment.”
    ~ Robert M. Hutchins

  30. Eric B. says:

    Alex: Thank you. That was intelligible as opposed to this naive belief that a system in which people vote every four (or at best one or two) years is going to “change” anything or is anything close to a democracy.

    Greg London: Perhaps we should elect more candidates who support measures like Instant Runoff Voting (wiki/IRV). I think it’s one of the few shots in the darkest hell that a) third parties could become legitimate contenders for votes and b) this republic could begin to approach democracy.

    All: In short, this country might be too big for one centralized government, regardless of the system of voting. Centralized bureaucracies seem ill-equipped to deal with our rapidly changing world and challenges faced by market economies that will be going increasingly hay-wire over the course of our lives.

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  32. Andrew says:

    I voted by absentee ballot in Texas, which is a virtually guaranteed Republican win. The only other option I have is to register to vote in California, where I am currently a student; and California is a virtually guaranteed Democratic win.

    But that’s not going to keep me from voting. Those of us who don’t live in the “swing states” still have other elections that we can influence. There are elections for Congress; there are elections for state offices; and there are elections for local offices. Many of those races will be close. In 2004, I was well aware that there was nothing I could do to influence the presidential election, but chose instead to focus on the fact that I helped unseat an incumbent state legislator by just 41 votes out of tens of thousands of ballots cast. One of the local candidates I voted for was defeated by just TWO votes.

    How often we forget that our Constitution delegates much of the real power to state and local government! If you really can’t be bothered to vote for either Obama or McCain, then let me ask you: what do you think of your city’s mayor?

  33. some guy says:

    4 years of social fascism starting today, hooorrraaaayyy!!!!!!

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  35. Jeff says:

    I think the one thing both parties can agree on is that making people scared s#itless of the other party is a good way to get people to vote for you. In reality, the country is going to be fine with either of these presedential candidates. The drama injected into all this by right and left wing crazies is now beyond ridiculous. I voted this morning because I care about the things that really impact me, like who is running my kid’s schools, and who is running our city council. I will feel the effects of those decisions far more than anything McBama does.

  36. Greg London says:

    > this country might be too big for one
    > centralized government, regardless of
    > the system of voting. Centralized
    > bureaucracies seem ill-equipped to deal
    > with our rapidly changing world

    Ya mean like the way southern states were so quick to change to an integrated world after the Civil War? Oh, wait, it took the Federal Government to bring them up to speed.

    > and challenges faced by market economies
    > that will be going increasingly hay-wire
    > over the course of our lives.

    I believe this is an encrypted form of:
    “It’s too complicated for federal
    regulation” which, coincidentally, ends
    up with zero regulation. Hm, no thanks.
    I’d prefer the Fannie Mae’s and the Enron’s
    of the world to be regulated.

  37. Geek says:

    Wow, Greg London, you’re a bit of a dick, aren’t you?

    I was merely pointing out that you aren’t forced to vote for one of two presidential candidates if you want to have a say in the senate seats, state propositions, etc. I didn’t assign any moral values or implications to the decision. You did that. I’m guessing your panties have been in a bunch since around 2000.

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  40. Big Scott says:

    Gee, Greg London, if voting for a third party is just throwing away our vote and being annoying to you… then perhaps it is time for you to move to some quiet place where the leaders are chosen by a complex method of rock, paper, scissors.

    I am not going to address how much in error you are in your thoughts… but I am going to politely suggest that you investigate the way things work a bit further. Pay close attention to tally requirements for matching funding and time.

  41. Jacob Raccuia says:

    I didn’t read every post, but I would like to respond to Greg London as well . .

    Voting third party is not wasting your vote. Some states had over 5% of all votes towards an independent person. How is that a wasted vote? Obviously, a difference was made. Those 5% votes could have made the difference between Obama winning or Mccain winning in that state.

    There is no such thing as a wasted vote.

  42. Greg London says:

    if voting for a third party is just throwing away our vote and being annoying to you

    Vote third party if you want, that doesn’t annoy me. Its the people who vote third party and then brag about it as if it were anything other than throwing their vote away. In a “majority vote wins” election, voting for anyone other than one of the two-most-likely-to-win candidates is throwing your vote away.

    perhaps it is time for you to move to some quiet place where the leaders are chosen by a complex method of rock, paper, scissors

    Condercet voting would be great. Rock, paper, scissors, not so much. And with Obama in, the next few years are looking a lot brighter.

    Some states had over 5% of all votes towards an independent person. How is that a wasted vote? Obviously, a difference was made. Those 5% votes could have made the difference between Obama winning or Mccain winning in that state.

    They made a difference because there was a potential to make a difference in the actual outcome if they had voted for one of the two main candidates instead of third party???

    (boggle)

    Yeah, I’m thinking that we have no idea who they preferred between Obama and McCain. Assuming we had condercet voting, one of their eventual choices would have been Obama or McCain, and at that point, their vote would have affected the outcome.

    But we don’t have condercet, so they made no difference in the outcome.

    They could have STAYED HOME AND NOT VOTED, and THE ELECTION RESULTS WOULD HAVE BEEN EXACTLY THE SAME.

    Anyone who says that is “making a difference” is drinking the feel good koolaid.

  43. Dick says:

    first off the constitution does not start of with “If you vote the following apply to you.”
    Vote or not vote you have a first amendment right. Secondly voting is not the only way to be heard. Money helps too.
    Not to mention the black’s and women’s suffrage movements. Explain to me how these people got the right to vote if their voices and opinions cannot be heard until they are shown through the ballet.
    Not to mention every time a vote isn’t counted (hello florida), or as long as it is undermined by the electoral college, or when your local government has a judge overturn a voted for and passed proposition The Vote is undermined.
    By not voting you are taking a political stance (assuming you aren’t just being indifferent to the thing all together).
    You can be actively showing that you do not support the system of voting we have today by not participating in it. If you do not like a single candidate you can show that by not voting. Barrack’s victory would be underscored greatly if only 3% of America voted. But with an almost ten point lead, a near two to one electoral college and the largest voter turnout as of yet, he (as Jackson once did) could call his election a mandate.
    You can’t do that with 2% of the nations support.

  44. Ryan says:

    I didn’t vote.
    Why?
    Because silence can speak just as loud as words.
    If the entire country would realize how badly we’re being screwed (and disenfranchised, simultaneously), and everyone refused to vote until there was somebody on the ballot (with a chance of winning) that was WORTH VOTING FOR, then maybe we might get something resembling a democracy running in America again.
    But until then, America, expect to get screwed all the time, every time. Because you’re doing nothing but fanning the flames every time you ‘vote’.

    And regarding the electoral system; people don’t realize that GWB stole the 2000 election from Gore. He only succeeded by suing Gore because there are no laws that provide for a uniform, systematic recount system.
    Now then; are there any such laws now, after that incident?
    No.
    Why?
    Because people forget. And the politicians count on the short memory span of the masses to continue doing what they do best – pimping out democracy and pocketing the cash.

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  46. Ralf Lippold says:

    Hi,

    Great drawing:-) I just miss the balancing loop, because this won’t get down under “0″, does it?

    Cheers,

    Ralf
    http://www.twitter.com/ralf_l

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