Tuesday, November 07, 2006

In satura veritas

In satire there is truth. From The Huffington Post:

“So tomorrow is the big day. That’s when we go out and vote for a bunch of people who we think are going to suck less than the last people we voted for. But come on, let’s be honest -- even the new people we’re voting for are eventually going to suck just as much -- if they don’t already.”

These are the opening sentences of a very funny blog by Josh Jennings. Whilst the rest of the blog made me laugh a lot, it was clearly written as satire – in contrast to the opening lines, which, though tongue-in-cheek, are just the plain truth.

There are many reasons why I have not voted since the presidential election in 2004. One is that I believe that our elections are no longer free and fair (see my post of Sunday, 5 November below). Another is that it is one of the ways in which I can demonstrate my belief that our system of government is not legitimate, i.e. by not participating in it. A third is that I am not sure if absentee ballots are ever even counted. I know my vote for president is not counted in the state of California because the results are always decisive before postal votes are (or would be) tallied.

But my main reason for not voting can be expressed exactly how Josh Jennings put it. All politicians suck. Democrats might be better than Republicans and Libertarians might be better than both, but comparing politicians is like trying to rate whose shit smells less. You really just don’t want to be sniffing at any of it.

Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.
- Lord Acton’s dictum (1887)

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