a thoughtful web.
Share good ideas and conversation.   Login or Take a Tour!
comment by demiurrrge

I mean yeah supporting the ones you agree with through money or volunteering is a good start. But say some candidate you have an issue with that you feel pretty strongly about wins the democrat primary. Like a guy who promised last time around he'd pass legislation to regulate pollution by businesses more strictly and then when he took office he voted yes on a tax break for those same businesses after being lobbied by them pretty hard. Are folks supposed to ignore corruption from their own party and vote straight-ticket anyway even though re-electing this guy is tacitly telling him that his corruption isn't a dealbreaker for you?

kleinbl00  ·  515 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I think the thing most "voters" forget is that they're selecting executive positions and/or figureheads for a constellation of lobbyists and special interests and that all stakeholders in the process have to deal with an ever-changing assortment of needs, wants, opinions and proficiencies.

Here's my local guy. Walked up on my lawn, nervous as hell, and asked for my vote. I asked him why I should vote for him over the incumbent and he gave me a pretty nice off-the-cuff summary of his positions. I shook his hand and told him he had my vote.

Most of the vocal mutherfuckers in my district? lost their shit over the fact that he "took money from the building industry". As in $700 from "NORTHWEST WASHINGTON BUILDING & CONSTRUCTION TRADES COUNCIL". Out of $80k. Which pretty much illustrates that people are mostly there to be pissed off at someone and end up fishing around for an ex post facto reason.

Nobody is ever going to be perfect. Ever. At the end of the day, it does you no good to demand perfection where "better" is still good.

demiurrrge  ·  515 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I'm not saying demanding perfection is a reasonable position to hold and I don't generally expect my politicians to be flawless paragons of incorruptibility.

I'm saying that when a politician you support DOES screw up in too big of a way for you to feel comfortable to continue supporting them, the "Well he's still better that Jim Whats-His-Face over there with WRONG LETTER next to his name" line that your fellow party voters will try to feed you is a harmful way of thinking. Straight-ticket voting makes it easier for members of both parties to both engage in corruption and go unpunished when they do, because they know at the end of the day that the people voting for them care more about what side of the fence they're on than what they've actually done.

kleinbl00  ·  515 days ago  ·  link  ·  

You can support independents at the local level. You can support independents at the primary level. But ours is a winner-take-all representative democracy unfettered by limits on access or influence and there are only two letters in the alphabet.

demiurrrge  ·  515 days ago  ·  link  ·  

So if I understand you correctly, basically my recourse as a person who generally supports a party but is unhappy with a particular candidate running for said party, is to support my token favorite until as far as the primary, at which point if I don't bite the bullet and vote for my last-choice candidate in the general I become "part of the problem".

This kind of thinking is exactly why I don't consider myself a democrat despite supporting the party's positions on most topics. I don't like the idea of being told I owe anyone a vote. Either I support a candidate on merit or I don't. And I'm not willing to cast a vote for someone I've chosen not to support for ethical reasons. If not voting for a corrupt democrat makes me a party traitor, I'd just as soon not be a party member at all.

kleinbl00  ·  515 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Five comments deep your response to thoughtful discourse, game theory and the realities of representative democracy in the United States is putting words in my mouth, insisting you were right all along, and defending your god-given right to take your ball and go home.

Why go through the exercise if you were simply looking for an excuse to express your dudgeon in the first place?

demiurrrge  ·  515 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I've asked more than once what my recourse is as a voter for one party when a party candidate I strongly disapprove of is running. You have yet to offer me a response that seems to say more than "Suck it up, buttercup". Which I don't find particularly satisfying of an answer and is pretty much the attitude I was trying to call attention to as problematic in the first place.

kleinbl00  ·  515 days ago  ·  link  ·  

That's unfair, unrepresentative of this discussion and unnecessarily antagonistic. You said you "didn't agree with" the "lesser of two evils line." I didn't engage you on that: there's a big difference between "I don't agree with" and "I want to be convinced of." You clearly don't want to be convinced of anything.

You asked what you could do about it. I've given you several responses of nuance and diversity. Never once have I said "suck it up, buttercup" so putting it in quotes is factually incorrect (and rhetorically weak).

That you don't find my answer "satisfying" and that somehow this is about my "attitude" indicates how little interest you had in any sort of discussion as to why there's far more reason to vote against your personal preferences than you care to admit.

But by all means, keep not voting. It is, after all, your constitutional right.

demiurrrge  ·  515 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I DO vote per the first half of the first sentence of my first comment in this chain, "As an under-30 who votes..." I just don't agree that voting straight party is always the best move. And you must have missed the part right before the quote you quoted where I wrote SEEMS TO SAY. As in, you might not literally be saying that but that's how the tone of what you did write comes off to me.

Bold of you to talk about unnecessarily antagonistic when you seem to like talking down to people an awful lot.

kleinbl00  ·  515 days ago  ·  link  ·  

It was the ad-hominem that got you blocked.

demiurrrge  ·  515 days ago  ·  link  ·  
This comment has been deleted.