Days of Change

Day 726 – 2 | October 31, 2010

Irresponsible Pumpkins


Is it irresponsible to choose not to vote?

I am one of those people who votes. I even vote in off-year elections. I will sometimes skip odd-numbered years or local races, but I’m consistent on the national election years. Yes, I do think I’m better than the people who don’t vote and definitely better than the ones who commit voter fraud. Sometimes I do have to rely on party, because the candidates are less than ideal. I sometimes feel hostage to the idiots who vote on a candidate’s physical and personality traits, along with those who just sit home on election day. Maybe I shouldn’t.

By the math, staying home has half the impact it would if you voted for the other guy. In a wave election like this, some Democrats have been caught up, but still don’t want to vote Republican. So, you can vote for the “good enough” Democrat, essentially going back into the fold You can vote Republican and put in your ideological opponent or you can abstain. Voting for a third-party or a write-in is a vote and it adds chaos to the system, which I like. I’m not sure what not voting does.

Mostly, not voting has an impact of the data mining that follows all modern elections. When 2010 is over, Democrats will have to look at their terrible turnout numbers and decide how they want to react. My guess is that they consider it a marketing issue and screw up again.

Republicans tend to rely on enthusiasm since their numbers are historically lower than Democrats. This year, it is not the case. For their part, Democrats try to bring in more and more special interests to shore up their numbers, then bribe them with concerts and free rides to vote. I sometimes wonder how informed voters who do vote really are.

Would we be better off if voting were mandatory, like those socialist democracies liberals love? I think it would only lead to less informed voting. Given that alternative, maybe there is something to the American right to not vote at all.


Posted in Uncategorized


  1. “I’m not sure what not voting does.”

    1. Boy, it shows them.

    2. It cuts off your nose to spite your face.

    A drunken pumpkin is not a pretty sight.

    Happy Halloween, 15, with trick or treat postponed till Tues.

    Comment by Mary — October 31, 2010 @ 7:10 pm

  2. Certainly the tricks will be there. I’m looking for the treats to start at about 8pm.

    Comment by 1539days — October 31, 2010 @ 7:19 pm

  3. I just love people that moan and complain about politicians and then when you ask who they voted for they reply “Oh I didn’t vote.” To which I usually reply STFU or word to that effect.

    I’ve only missed two elections, both due to unforeseen, serious family medical issues. I will admit that sometimes I’m a more informed voter than other times, but I try to be an informed voter.

    Comment by Somebody — October 31, 2010 @ 9:19 pm

  4. How about, “don’t blame me, I didn’t vote for either of them” as an excuse?

    Comment by 1539days — October 31, 2010 @ 9:38 pm

  5. Well, here’s a Public Choice economist’s take on why it’s reasonable not to vote:

    He makes some interesting arguments here. I don’t fully agree, but they are well thought out.

    I also don’t hold with the “You didn’t vote, so STFU” crowd either. Get off the high horse, buddy. You’re no better than the guy who didn’t vote, or more worthy of anything. Depending on the election and the candidates available, that person who didn’t vote may have done a better community service than you, who did.

    Comment by Alexei — November 1, 2010 @ 10:42 am

  6. People like the 2008 anti-McCain Repubs who don’t vote get the gov’t they deserve. Unfortunately, the rest of us don’t deserve it.

    Been mising you. Hope all is/are well.

    Comment by Mary — November 1, 2010 @ 1:21 pm

  7. Alexei,

    The article was amusing, but also reeked of superiority. It kind of reminds me of the premise of the movie Idiocracy. Smart, successful people wait years to get together and sometimes have only 1-2 children, if any at all. By contrast, the lower end of the socioeconomic ladder has more children and earlier. Taken to its logical conclusion, people as a whole are getting dumber.

    The electorate is not the problem, the variability is. If candidates knew that their ads and rallies did nothing to influence the vote, they might have to try substance. This election may be more ideological (meaning idea-driven) than any in generations. I’d like to be in on that.

    Comment by 1539days — November 1, 2010 @ 9:26 pm

  8. Lotsa pumpkin left to cook. And it’s not that stuff the last pumpkin spewed…

    Comment by thetownecrier — November 2, 2010 @ 12:20 am

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