How did you vote?
I’ve been asking friends and acquaintances around the lunch table at work if they would like to volunteer their thoughts and positions on the elections that just happened. The reactions were pretty typical for my state. I wasn’t really asking with the intent of writing this blog post, but there was one conversation I had with a friend that did strike my interest. I asked them how they felt about the election and they said flat out that they went right down voting for a certain third party. I get a little cautious about how much I will write about actual interactions I have with people I know, mostly because I don’t obtain permission from them to do so, and I don’t want to compromise their privacy to their opinions. So I’m not going to really go into what third party they voted for. But lets just say it is a third party I am familiar with because I often consume media that self identifies with this third party, at least in name.
So When I heard that he voted for that third party I asked him if he partook in any of the media around that party. I don’t know if in this particular case I was just not clear enough about describing the media to which I referred, but he replied that he didn’t take part in any of that brand of media. Then he indicated that he’s always voted for one third party or another and that it has just taken him a while to come around to realize that he was really just a natural member of the party which he voted for this year.
I hate to get into a “no true scotsman” argument, but I’m about to skid dangerously close to one in this post. You see, I am lazy when it comes to politics, I’ll openly admit that I hardly ever vote, and that is mostly because I rarely ever take the time to really look into the policies of the current candidates. I find it is usually a huge waste of my time because I’m end up generally appalled by what I find when I go looking into any candidate’s positions, and therefore I never find a candidate I want to vote for, just candidates who I half agree with (at best) and ultimately don’t want to vote for. Therefore, rather than voting ignorantly for stuff or candidates I’m not sure will actually benefit me and may actually harm a lot of other people inadvertently.
So when I see anyone voting the party line, and then openly admit that they aren’t all that informed on the issues, that they aren’t even all that involved in the politics of the party who they are “Unquestioningly devoted to”, or that they made their decision based on only one pet issue that they think is important now “And this party generally supports my position on that pet issue”… Well, to put it bluntly, It drives me nuts enough to write a blog post on it.
This is where the no true scotsman stuff comes in, I don’t think you deserve to have the right to be taken seriously when you say you are a member of the “Insert Party Here” and vote the party line. You may as well admit you are ignorant and can’t think for yourself. Its like my own laziness only worse, because these people are actually taking action with your ignorance, and their get out of judgement free card for their laziness is “I trust my party.”
You trust a thing you hardly understand, and hasn’t proven to reliably help you in your life.
Well, I guess it can’t be helped. Republicans have just taken both houses of congress, mostly on merit of the fact that people are generally pissed with the current government, and they don’t see any viable third option, therefore they simply vote against the incumbents where they can. And in another two years I wouldn’t be surprised if a Republican president gets voted in, then there will be two years of the Republicans stumbling along trying to push through a whole lot of stuff that the public will hate so much that two years from that the democrats will take both houses in congress again in order to stop the Republican Governmental Rampage. Follow the pattern adnauseum or till America gets economically devastated by other world powers or we finally get our act together and offer a viable third party and radically restructure our governmental, economic, and social structures.
The pessimist in me predicts that we won’t get our act together till shit hits the fan and America is on the visible verge of utter collapse, and we are forced to come face to face with the things that actually matter in this world.