Flimsy Sanity: Why You Should Not Vote

Flimsy Sanity

In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule. - Friedrich Nietzsche

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Why You Should Not Vote

Democracy Versus Stability by Joel S. Hirschhorn

Rather than focus on finding new ways to reform the system, too many people cling to the faulty hope and optimism that they can fix things by voting. At first this seems reasonable. Just one problem: History shows that voting no longer works. And the primary reason is that the two-party system is a sham, a disgrace, and worse. Recently, MSNBC commentator Keith Olbermann was praised when he called the Bush presidency a criminal conspiracy. That missed the larger truth. The whole two-party political system is a criminal conspiracy hiding behind illusion-induced delusion.

Virtually everything that President Bush correctly gets condemnation for could have been prevented or negated by Democrats, if they had had courage, conviction, and commitment to maintaining the rule of law and obedience to the Constitution. Bush grabbed power from the feeble and corrupt hands of Democrats. Democrats have failed the vast majority of Americans. So why would sensible people think that giving Democrats more power is a good idea? They certainly have done little to merit respect for their recent congressional actions, or inaction when it comes to impeachment of Bush and Cheney.

One of the core reasons the two-party stranglehold on our political system persists is that whenever one party uses its power to an extreme degree it sets the conditions for the other party, its partner in the conspiracy, to take over. Then the other takes its turn in wielding excessive power. Rather than political reform achieved by shifting power from one party to the other, Americans get a different set of liars and crooks. When they belatedly realize their error they fall for the same old scam and put the other party back in power, and get a new set of liars and crooks. American government seems to be moved forward, except that its democracy continues to decline in spite of and because of elections.

Most Americans, at least those that vote, seem incapable of understanding that the Democrats and Republicans are two teams in the same league, serving the same cabal running the corporatist plutocracy. By keeping people focused on rooting for one team or the other, the behind-the-scenes rulers ensure their invisibility and power. Individual politicians on both teams can only rise to power by being loyal to their respective parties.

Mr Hirschhorn thinks a low turnout will discourage them. I just don't think they give a damn what the people think or want. I still think voting third party is a better approach - useless but more satisfying.


  • At 11:04 AM, Blogger Foxessa said…

    I agree. Not voting is NOT the solution. Building a 3rd party, a revolution against the corporatist-owned media's ownership of the elections, is the answer.

    That means we all have to get off our asses and stay off them.

    I wonder if even the firebrands among us (including myself here) know how to do that any longer, bemused by the computer screen as we are.

    Love, C.

  • At 12:01 PM, Blogger Graeme said…

    i think emma goldman said "if voting changed anything, they'd outlaw it." it would be nice if a large scale movement against the electoral college erupted. the key is for people like me to get off my ass, as Foxessa says

  • At 7:51 PM, Blogger Dan Mega said…

    When people realize that Democrats and Republicans are almost exactly the same sans a few ultimately meaningless issues, they will realize that there are politics outside of this pigeonhole we're currently in.

    That won't happen anytime soon.

  • At 7:30 AM, Anonymous JoelS. Hirschhorn said…

    We will never get competitive third parties until our corrupt political system is fixed; a big exception would be Mike Bloomber who can spend enough of his own money to do successful battle with the two-party duopoly.

  • At 1:10 PM, Blogger Foxessa said…

    But Mayor Mike's a corporatist through and through. What this could mean for the country as a whole is what has been going on here in NYC -- he is entirely on the side of Big Real Estate, etc.

    Follow the story of the death Monday at the illegally approved Trump hotel-condo only three blocks from where I live. This has been going on all over the city.

    Bloomberg loves things to be built, but only in certain areas. Mine is so over-developed it's impossible for anyone not a tourist or a business catering to them. The rest of can go to hell (and have our graves danced on by the rats -- he's not interested enough in infrastructure to deal with the conditions that come into place with overdevelopment).

    Love, C.

  • At 10:39 AM, Blogger Flimsy Sanity said…

    It is pretty hard for any third party (remember how even rich Ross Perot didn't get too far) to fight corporate media's influence. Howard Dean's ridicule for showing enthusiasm was vicious. Edwards is not playing their tune, so they either diminish him or ignore him, same with Kucinich who luckily (for the media) said he saw a UFO.

    The best we can hope for is the system to collapse (like a deep depression) and perhaps a more democratic system will become attractive to people who are too poor to afford TV's and might begin to think for themselves.

    According to this we are in for a bad one: The highest inflation rate in 17 years and the biggest housing crisis in a quarter of a century didn’t just happen. Major banks writing down billions of dollars practically every week is not normal. Wall Street going from boom to gloom almost overnight was not caused by somebody making a mistake.

    The political causes of this are deep and long standing. Writer Robert Kuttner calls this “the most serious downturn since the Great Depression.” He blames the rise of right-wing ideology, and “the domination of our politics by a financial elite, and the lack of a true opposition party.”

    You can’t fix that with pathetic stimulus packages and minor tinkering.

    This is a structural crisis that’s been spawned by decades of shifting our economy from making things to buying things, from production to consumption. It has spawned “financialization’ a well heeled credit and loan complex powered by legal and illegal shenanigans in an unregulated market-driven environment. Both parties have benefited from it and are complicit in its consequences. All of our biggest banks were part of the subprime/subcrime-led credit collapse which enriched so many before bringing so many down. This crisis is still unfolding, rippling, and infecting more sectors of the economy. It is a “contagion” that has yet to be contained.

  • At 10:41 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Food might just be the best investment you can make with the money Bush sends along.

  • At 9:57 AM, Anonymous R J Adams said…

    I agree with every word of Hirschhorn's. God knows, I've been writing about it long enough. The two parties in this country are not two 'teams', but one team divided into two parts, playing 'friendly' matches to entertain the pundits - American citizens - and calling them 'elections'. It's a one-party system under two names.

  • At 3:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    As the old Who song says, "Meet the new boss
    Same as the old boss"


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