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Post 20

Wednesday, September 8, 2004 - 4:15pmSanction this postReply
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"Eli: That’s not what I’m saying. The point there was that if you’ve recognized Kerry as the greater “evil” it would be a grave injustice to indirectly allow him to win. If you view Bush and Kerry as equally evil/incompetent/theocratic/whatever, then it doesn’t matter who you vote for."


my response still stands. just because there are some (minute) differences in the main party candidates' degrees of evil, doesn't mean it's unjust to vote for someone you think is good.

and, as i said, the reason third party candidates don't get enough votes to win is because people think that third party candidates don't get enough votes to win, and so vote for some evil person, who stands a better chance.

i say the injustice is not in voting for a third party candidate, and thus giving the election to kerry (by not voting for bush). i say the injustice is in fools who vote for evil men, and continue the vicious cycle.

vote where your principals lie, not where you think the damned support is.



Post 21

Wednesday, September 8, 2004 - 4:38pmSanction this postReply
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Bill Perry sent us

"There is a limit to the notion of voting for the lesser of two evils"
(Ayn Rand)
YES!!!!!
I did not know about this quote from Rand before.
Thankyou Bill.
Once you compromise your principles the only way to go is down.
Cass

,




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Post 22

Wednesday, September 8, 2004 - 6:14pmSanction this postReply
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Frankly, I'm astonished.  Quit worrying about which talking head will occupy 1600 Pennsylvania.  You think  switching (or not switching) politicians will enhance our freedom, enlarge our wallets, make our women and babies fat, and oh, by the way, slaughter terrorists wherever they may lurk?  Politicians don't change things.  Ideas do.  Without a cultural shift in "our" favor--meaning in order for people to vote for a libertarian they must believe in libertarianism--voting is, as Joe Rowlands has said, not very important.  It's your official and documented sanction of one candidate or another, but it's significance is tiny. 

And as Glenn has pointed out, one must realize the realities of our electoral system: more than a few Americans are needed to elect a candidate.  Until more than 50 percent or so of the electorate decides to cast for a libertarian--the only type of candidate that could affect true and positive change in America--you are going to have one (mealy-mouthed Democrats) or the other (mealy-mouthed Republicans).  And that type of turn-out for a libertarian candidate won't happen without "cultural shift".  Stop putting the cart before the horse.  The politicians will solve our problems?  No, no.  The right type of politician usually comes from, and gets elected by, the right type of culture, in "a democracy such as ours".  Voting for one or the other, and thinking it will make a damn bit of difference if there hasn't been at least a modicum of cultural shift, is evasion.  That's right.  The big "E".

I won't vote.  And I'll still bitch.  Voting doesn't mean they won't turn their guns on you.  It might mean they save you till last, but it doesn't spare you any horrors that a non-voter might experience.  "Don't come crying to me when they drag you out of your home, dirty non-voter!"  Pffft...you think the type of government that drags people out of their homes will bother to check voter registration records?  I don't know what it is about Bush that inspires so many of us, but this whole "he can win the war on terrorism" argument is shaky at best.  Should a candidate have only one admirable attribute to get himself elected?  Every four years, should we have a referendum, decide what the Big Issue is, and elect the strongest candidate to deal with that Issue?  Or will the ideals of the future ever outweigh the expediencies of the present?  Hell, let's resurrect one of the many under-sized, well-spoken dictators from the depths of human history.  Napolean would punch global terrorism's ticket much quicker than Bush, I assure you.

Like Joe said (for different reasons,  I think) voting is not that important.  Having organizations like SOLO, Reason magazine, and yes, TOC and ARI, is important.  If Badnarik took office tomorrow, he'd either:
1) be forced to not to be libertarian at all, or
2) be impeached within the week,

because:

America is not ready for, nor does it want, a libertarian.  The Left doesn't want our free markets, and the Right doesn't want our "live and let live" ethos.  And I don't mean politicians on the Left, or politicians on the Right.  I mean plain old Americans;  they don't want a libertarian.  So come November 2nd, vote for who you like.  I'll be drunk.

Blehhh

Edit:  And, no, I don't consider the war against terrorists to be "an expediency".  I consider using that issue alone to determine who is capable of heading-up our government, an expediency. 

(Edited by Jeremy on 9/08, 6:30pm)




Post 23

Wednesday, September 8, 2004 - 7:01pmSanction this postReply
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Jerermy,

BRAVO!
 
(So, what are you drinking election night. Mind if I drop buy? I'm partial to bonded bourbon and ale.)

Regi




Post 24

Wednesday, September 8, 2004 - 8:57pmSanction this postReply
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Jeremy.
Yes and Yes again. You said it all, in one.
Unfortunately, I wont be drunk when Aus goes to the polls.  I'll be sleeping then working. THEN I'll get drunk1
Cass




Post 25

Wednesday, September 8, 2004 - 10:00pmSanction this postReply
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Glenn,

Jeremy's comments were superb - and his words lead into appropriate answers for your questions. Allow me to follow-up on his words:
----------------
Jeremy:
"You think  switching (or not switching) politicians will enhance our freedom, enlarge our wallets, make our women and babies fat, and oh, by the way, slaughter terrorists wherever they may lurk?  Politicians don't change things.  Ideas do.  Without a cultural shift in "our" favor--meaning in order for people to vote for a libertarian they must believe in libertarianism ... "

Ed:
And helping to lead the way by voting libertarian SHOULD (if only indirectly) AID in the growing recognition of the merits of libertarianism. Put your money where your mouth is, I say - if you want folks to take (your) philosophy seriously.

----------------
Jeremy:
"Stop putting the cart before the horse.  The politicians will solve our problems?  No, no.  The right type of politician usually comes from, and gets elected by, the right type of culture, in "a democracy such as ours".  Voting for one or the other, and thinking it will make a damn bit of difference if there hasn't been at least a modicum of cultural shift, is evasion."

Ed:
And there is no greater psycho-epistemological "turn-off" against someone's philosophy, than to witness them practicing evasion in everyday matters.

----------------
Jeremy:
"I don't know what it is about Bush that inspires so many of us, but this whole "he can win the war on terrorism" argument is shaky at best.  Should a candidate have only one admirable attribute to get himself elected?  Every four years, should we have a referendum, decide what the Big Issue is, and elect the strongest candidate to deal with that Issue?  Or will the ideals of the future ever outweigh the expediencies of the present?"

Ed:
These are great points (not just "good" points). There is, was, and perhaps always will be, one over-arching political issue: Statism vs. Individualism (or Welfare vs. Justice).

----------------
Jeremy:
"Like Joe said (for different reasons,  I think) voting is not that important.  Having organizations like SOLO, Reason magazine, and yes, TOC and ARI, is important."

Ed:
I would agree that SOLO is of utmost importance. However, I would amend the anti-vote tone and re-word the comparison of "organizations vs. votes" to:

Both have importance, though organizations are more important than votes.

----------------
Jeremy:
"America is not ready for, nor does it want, a libertarian.  The Left doesn't want our free markets, and the Right doesn't want our "live and let live" ethos.  And I don't mean politicians on the Left, or politicians on the Right.  I mean plain old Americans;  they don't want a libertarian."

Ed:
Fine Jeremy, but let me ask you something, you nihilo-realist:

What proportion of all Americans have been exposed to the finer points of libertarian thinking? Since you "know" what "they" want, then give me a ballpark guess-timate. Certainly you must have some idea about this proportion. Is it about 1%? I think even this is a generous estimate - as it corresponds to over 2 million folks.

$64,000 question: We're agreed on having organizations, but - in light of the paltry exposure noted above - is there one best way to vote? Is there a type of vote that will only serve to increase this exposure - if its count is larger than expected, and it makes a headline in a newspaper somewhere? What do you think?
----------------
Ed



Post 26

Wednesday, September 8, 2004 - 11:38pmSanction this postReply
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Sure, Ed.  I didn't say "don't vote you silly saps!! you'll rot for it!"  It's just to me, it seems like simple evasion if one truly believes whoever is in the White House will be able to do anything about these rat-bastard elements in "our" culture.

I said I won't vote.  It's not worth the gas money I'd burn on the trip to the polls, especially given that when I arrived I'd be presented with rather ridiculous choices.  The guy I'd want in office won't win--because this is a numbers game--and the guys who might win don't represent what I agree with.  With a gun to the head, and a choice betwixt the two realistic candidates, I'd vote for Bush, because his Administration is somewhat fierce, established and knows the ins and outs of right now.  But there's no gun to my head, so I won't waste my time. 

Go right ahead and vote for Badnarik.  If I'm the only libertarian that doesn't bother, you guys are in good shape for drawing some attention--from the media at least.  I'm only speaking for myself.  And I would hope that if some silent minority of freedom-lovers turns out in record numbers, they are taken seriously.  I'm only going to do so much for this government: pay my taxes and fees (the ones I can't avoid), try not to break any laws(that I agree with, though I'm a rather low-key guy, I think), and not denigrate the men and women who protect me (the actual, righteous part of the government; the people who wear uniforms and stop bad guys).  Acting like I care which empty suit wakes up in the White House each morning is beyond me at the moment.  When (or if, but I'm hopeful) America is in a better cultural standing in my own eyes, that will change.

I don't know how many people have been exposed to libertarianism, but I'll tell you this: seeing a name in the paper with .05% of the votes doesn't draw the masses.  It makes them laugh.  So, somewhat like you, I would say organizations have a better effect than .05% does, and twice on Sundays.  These things are going to be a long time coming, Ed.  I know you know that.  There are a couple thousand years worth of scraps left over from the faith-ridden, guilt-driven cultures and philosophies of the past.  There are many things to overcome (but not too many; never that), the least of which is Statism--which is just a result of those corrupt cultures and their philosophies.

Not sure if that nihilo-realist crap was a joke or not, but I want to point out that I'm not waiting for "society" to crumble, and I'm not saying "f**k the world".  I'm waiting for society to live up to its potential.  Organizations like SOLO help that along.  And, of course, so do other people that make lots of noise, in whatever way they so choose. : P


Edit: Regi, I've never had bourbon I don't think.  I like a healthy splash of rum in my Coke, though.

(Edited by Jeremy on 9/09, 12:01am)




Post 27

Thursday, September 9, 2004 - 4:52amSanction this postReply
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Glenn asked me:

 Rand also supported and campaigned for mainstream candidates.  I wonder what standard made "Reagan" evil and others not?
I hesitate to attempt to interpret her reasons and will only respond from what I gather from the essay.  There is far too much psychologizing about Rand.  I heartily recommend the essay, but I realize that not everyone has access to it since it is only in the bound volume of The Objectivist Forum or in collections of the issues that a few people still have.

She was upset that Reagan had no philosophy and was a pragmatist.  He had a folksy populist bend that she didn't like

quote; The reason of my distaste for Mr. Reagan in the role of president, is the philosophy he hasn't got.  I do not mean that I disagree with his philosophy; I mean that he hasn't any....
he seems to believe that the awful, populist, religionist hodgepodge of stale patriotism and folksy sentimentality which he utters is sufficient to set this country on fire and turn it back to its original principles.
.  She thought he would be better than Carter on domestic matters, his tone in foreign policy and liked his rhetoric about the Soviet Union.

What she really lambasted him for was his religious right support and his anti-abortion stance.  She criticizes him at great length for that.

Bill




Post 28

Monday, September 13, 2004 - 6:33amSanction this postReply
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Jeremy, I agree entirely with your sentiments about cultural change being the MOST important factor.  March on SOLO.  However, it is not a choice between voting and supporting organizations.  I strongly encourage you to vote, either for Bush or Badnarik.

The choice between a small third party that you largely support and a major party is not that clear-cut.  There is, like a good woman, something to be said about going either way.  Many voters DO see the Libertarian Party on the list, and question what exactly they stand for.  Purely advertising. 

Just got to weigh this benefit against the difference between the better mainstream party and the crap one.  Bush - John Kerry > Advertising of Libertarians then vote Bush.    Bush - John Kerry < Advertising of Libertarians then vote Badnarik.    
 Simple eh, and they’ll even let you vote drunk.





Post 29

Monday, September 13, 2004 - 4:32pmSanction this postReply
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Ha!  Voting drunk...sounds fun.

As I understand the process, David, it's a certain number of signatures that get a third party onto the ballot, not votes.  (How can you vote someone onto the ballot if they aren't on any ballots?  Except for that "write-in candidate" thing, however that works...)  So if someone comes around with a stationary pad and pen, I'll gladly sign my approval for the, as you said, advertising space.  Maybe that will have some prodding effects on voters. 

(Edited by Jeremy on 9/13, 4:34pm)




Post 30

Wednesday, September 15, 2004 - 1:51pmSanction this postReply
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I had a bad itch to vote for Bush - then you'd get what you deserve! :-]
But parasites always get what they deserve as Jeremy pointed out brilliantly, so why bother ... one change in my apolitical non-voting stance though (just to prove that I do listen to pro-voter's arguments):
If that government of your's comes after me with guns, taxes, laws, what-not, I'll not kick their asses - after all those poor twirps only do what you elected them to do! I'll get Jeremy's voter registration records and come after each and every asshole on that list who voted this system (no matter what's the party on top) into reality and make them swallow their vote! Call it Pro-Voter Reinforcement!
And when you finally finished choking on your wonderful electoral process, I'll open a bottle of dark red-beet juice to celebrate freedom ... kinda goes with the festive atmosphere of red wine without the hangover of an election ;-)
VSD
Vote for me and I promise to show you how foolish it was to vote in the first place!




Post 31

Sunday, September 19, 2004 - 1:54amSanction this postReply
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Hmmmm - Another survey with very biased wording in the question....I know it is only a joke - but still. If you REALLY wanted an answer.......




Post 32

Wednesday, September 22, 2004 - 1:30pmSanction this postReply
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Glen,

My apologies for taking this long to get back to you.

I consider a vote for Bush to be pragmatic because it is voting for the lesser of two evils, when a third & better candidate exists.

To vote for Bush when Badnarik is standing (assuming you consider Badnarik the better candidate) is to sanction the Bush administration, with its gross violations of the rights of American citizens, unnecessary military actions, and ever-growing Government and Government spending. It's saying "well, it'd be better to vote for Badnarik in the long run, but I'll vote for Bush in the short term to prevent Kerry getting in."

And you know what? That's why America *has* a two-party system indistinguishable platforms, and why Libertarianism in general has such a hard time garnering support - because people who ought to know better vote short-term, voting *against* a candidate like Kerry instead of *for* a candidate like Badnarik. Instead of getting out there and advocating people support, fund and vote for a Libertarian alternative, you play a short-term game and vote for the (marginally) lesser of two evils.

Of course, if you hold the opinion that Badnarik is a *worse* candidate than Bush, then a vote for Bush isn't pragmatic.





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