The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Vote early but not often

I am voting today. We have early voting here in Paradise. It starts on the second Saturday before election day. I have come to enjoy this since where I go to vote early is closer than where I would have to go on election day.  If you have early voting available to you, I urge you to take advantage of it. You'll be glad you did. It rarely means a line and, even when there is one, it is usually quite short. Most early voting can be done on weekends which is helpful for those of you who work (that's 23 million less than 4 years ago).

It does not matter which party you are registered with, you can vote for the candidate of the other party and it will count. You do not have to tell your neighbors, your friends, or even your spouse, who you voted for. Therefore, you do not have deal with any peer pressure. No one will know who you voted for. I felt I needed to emphasize that.

I had a co-worker a number of years ago, a nice guy named Roger, who was quite conservative in his personal beliefs and life. He is African-American. He told me he is a registered Democrat. I asked him why he didn't register as a Republican because his positions closely resembled that party's. He said his friends and family would never let him forget it, that they would harass him and treat him as an outcast.

I just asked "How would they know?"

Who you vote for is your business and you do not have to tell anyone how you voted, what party you registered with (poll workers excepted), and so you can vote your conscience rather than your party.

This country is about to teeter on the edge of disaster. Your vote may be the one that keeps it from tipping into the abyss or pushes it over.

One last thing: I know a number of you do not trust the Foxnews channel. However, I urge you to watch that channel either today at 1 PM or Sunday at 3 PM or 10 PM for special reports regarding the attack on the Consulate in Benghazi. There has been new information that you are not reading in the mainstream press or hearing/seeing on the mainstream media TV. If you choose not to watch because you do not trust Foxnews, you are simply denying yourself information. If it is not true, you should be able to research it and find that out.


Inspector Clouseau said...

Nice post Douglas.

Here locally, the lines are rather long. Folks are definitely getting out to vote early. Additionally, in our state of North Carolina, we have already passed (at this point) the total number of people who voted early in 2008.

I have a somewhat different view of the cacopheny of media outlets out there now. First of all there are perhaps hundreds, maybe thousands, out there. How does one objectively pick the one which is telling the "truth?"

Second, the ones that Baby Boomers grew up trusting are driven by different factors than they were in the 1950s and 1960s, and appear in different forms. (I doubt that many know that The Daily Beast is Newsweeks' virtual mag, for example.)

Third, many are ideologically driven, and present their slant or spin on the facts.

Fourth, I watched the story of Watergate and Woodward and Bernstein the other night on TCM. I was reminded of the manner in which newsrooms operated in the past, and their effort to arrive at the truth. Professional journalism is very different today.

Fifth, we as a people are very different today than times past. We are far more cynical, expect far more perfection in governance, and want government to advance our individual interests. We're less united as a people.

Sixth, I think that there is a danger connected with "true transparency" in the governance of our country, just as there is a danger in "secrecy" where corruption can flourish. Quite frankly, I am concerned that America has reached a point where the public is demanding transparency and immediate access in the national security arena, and second-guessing our leaders (no matter which party) without having all of the information, which will hamper our efforts to deal with nations who do not have the same scruples and principles as we.

Seven, the media and information technology permits such rapid dissemination of information that people react emotionally based on tidbits of information, whereas leaders are required to assess, reflect, confirm, gather more information, and think about the ramifications in ways which the general public does not.

Eighth, the discussion about most things political in this country operates on an assumption that there is a profile of a monolithic citizen with certain values. But a recent 22 yr old immigrant from Bosnia, my 91 yr old Depression born Father from the South, my 28 yr old girlfriend from Singapore, a 65 yr old homeless Vietnam vet who I see downtown, and some newlyweds in their 30s with a baby on the way, can't possibly have the same core values, expectations, motivations, priorities, etc.

I think that we have reached the logical end of the Great Melting Pot where "freedom" is the dominant feature of society.

Where does all of us lead us and what does it have to do with voting? (a) I don't know how anyone can trust any new sources objectively. People trust the outlets which they think they can trust, which usually is in line with their political or philosophical leanings. There's nothing objective about that at all, and it means that "truth" is in the eye, ear, and mind of the beholder; and (b) It's time for us to have a Constitutional Convention and totally revamp our Constitution, and /or divide the country in parts to allow constituents to pick the newly-formed sub-country that reflects their values.

The bickering, as takes places in most marriages, is about to kill us. We have become too complex, diverse, and selfish a people to live together for very much longer. There are so few things which unite us anymore.

So, I agree with you that people should vote now. No question about that. However, the same people need to get motivated and start the process toward a Constitutional Convention. I think that it is the only way to save the country.

P.S. I was joking about my girlfriend. I think that I just generated an outline for a blog post.

Douglas said...

Let me preface with I don't think you generated an outline but perhaps an entire post. Now, let me address some of your points:

1. One shouldn't pick or choose any particular media outlet as the purveyor of truth. That limits your information.

2. That's because people are not skeptical enough, in my opinion.

3. Most, if not all, are driven by ideological leanings. It is difficult, maybe impossible, to be free of bias.

4. You watched a glorified version of the truth as determined by the director, the screenwriters, and the principals (of one side). Nixon's people had another.

5. I think we are less cynical today than we were in the last quarter of the 18th century. Consequently, we are more trustful of government and more willing to cede it power. And many are resigned to its growth and power.

6. I think promises of transparency should be kept... or not made in the first place.

7. People always react emotionally first. Most politicians use that to their advantage whenever possible.

8. I disagree completely. There used to be a cultural "norm." Flawed and unfair, as it once was, it existed; a common bond, you might say. Now, we are encouraged to align with groups and see ourselves not as individuals but as multiple groups of like goals or cultures.

I hope we have not reached a logical end where freedom is being redefined and the meaning of "Great Melting Pot" is lost.

Let me say this about early voting: It is a viable option for most of us. It is not a viable option for the person who wants to make sure he has all the available information upon which to base his vote.

I am opposed to a Constitutional Convention and see it as a great danger.

T.C. said...

About Roger.

Why should he give a shit? Have balls Roger!

I couldn't care less what my family or neighbors think. That's the point of FREEDOM, no?

Douglas said...

Yes, T.C., I agree. That is the point.