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Unlike most people I know, I have the utmost respect for the principled non-voter. The so called “right” to vote that most lovers of democracy cherish is not a mandate. Yet that is exactly what the “you HAVE to vote” crowd makes it out to be. Every single one of us also has a right to NOT vote. I have stated many times before in discussions with various friends and acquaintances that if there is not a candidate on the ticket for whom I would TRULY like to vote, then I will abstain from voting. I do not believe this shows apathy, as one of my friends has claimed. It shows dissatisfaction with the candidates. And as far as write in votes go, does anyone really believe write in votes would be accurately tallied, if they would be counted at all? For all of those lovers of the democratic process, I have a few questions for you. Have you forgotten Florida in 2000 already? Have you forgotten Ohio in 2004. Have you forgotten all of the troubles with those voting machines?

Ironically, most of the people I talk to who are so adamant about voting in every election are Democrats.  This comes, of course, after two of “their” guys lost their attempts to become president in the past eight years largely because of the corruption involved in the counting of votes. And yet the liberals remain stalwart supporters of the system. It’s mind boggling!

For more reasons why non-voters should not be castigated by the “vote or shut up” people, here is an archive chock full of articles on this subject at LewRockwell.com

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2 Comments

  1. As a citizen it is your duty to give a care about who is representing you. I don’t care whether someone votes Republican, Democratic, Libertarian, Martian or whatever. The point is it is part of what makes America great is the fact that our people have the right to say where they want some of the important issues of our country to go. When roughly 35% of the adults in the country actually vote that is not healthy for Democracy. This is one of the main reasons we see such divide and partisan politics since only a minority of people actually pay attention to the elections.

    IN regards to your “the system is messed up” argument we should fight that as well in the courts and in the government but we cannot abandon the only system we have because of some unfortunate mistakes. The car still runs, it just has a flat tire.

  2. Thanks endithinks for your comment. What you’re saying is pretty much what some of my friends have said. I guess I’m just much more cynical than most people. But here’s the problem. If only 35% of eligible voters are taking part in the process, why is that? Even if it IS because they are lazy and apathetic, the question that really needs to be addressed is WHY are they so lazy and apathetic. I believe it is because most people have become disillusioned with the entire system. They see that no matter how many elections pass, things only get worse. So here’s one solution: Mandatory voting. You either vote or you’re sent to prison. But then the whole concept of free and democratic elections goes out the window. Furthermore democracy guarantees only one thing: mob rule. What if everyone got together and democratically elected a tyrant?
    This country was founded as a Constitutional Republic, not a social democracy.
    Furthermore, I DO care about who is representing me. And with the exception of Ron Paul, I really don’t like ANY of them.
    All I am saying with this post is that people are free to NOT take part in the electoral process if they so choose. That’s also part of what makes America great. We have the freedom to say “I don’t like any of these bums, so I’m not going to vote for any of them.”

    So what should we do if we don’t vote. We should listen to Ron Paul, Murray Rothbard, Ludwig von Mises, and all of the Austrian economists. We should read their articles and listen to their speeches. And learn from them. I realize not everyone will follow this course of action. But that’s MY plan, anyway.


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