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Thursday, November 02, 2006

Failure to Communicate: Don't Waste Time Voting in 2008

The Carolinian -- Last week The Carolinian ran a staff editorial explaining bonds in this year's election, so everyone could be a bit more informed before they vote. A couple weeks ago we ran one basically calling you stupid if you don't vote this year. All the editors pretty much agreed on that point. If you don't vote, you're dumb.

That said, in 2008, don't vote.

Of course by 2008 I'm referring specifically to the presidential election. The one where, if you live in North Carolina, your vote doesn't count. It's true. Not including the 1976 election, it's been more then 40 years since North Carolina allowed its electoral votes to be cast for a Democrat. I say not including 1976 because, honestly, who wasn't going to vote Democrat after Nixon resigned?

North Carolina, like the rest of the south, goes Republican. It doesn't make sense to vote. It doesn't make sense to participate in an electoral system that allows for a president to be elected even though a majority of voters actually voted against him. For no reason at all, it allows for the possibility of "faithless electors." Our government, in its infinite wisdom, still gathers people from voters' districts who promise to cast their electoral vote the way the district did. When they don't, they're called "faithless electors." But putting the negative term on the elector isn't really fair. It's more a result of the "idiotic constituency."

You don't vote for president. You vote for a person who you've never met or heard of, who simply promises to vote the way he or she is supposed to, and a majority of the time doesn't even face legal repercussions for not voting that way. Faithless electors are probably not something we should worry about. It's only happened a little over 150 times so far. Are we insane?

Full column

Almost every time I discuss this point with my fellow Poli. Sci. majors, I get exactly the same response. "The founding fathers designed it this way because..." or some other version of what is not at all their opinion on the matter, merely a civics lesson in how the electoral college works. Or, I should say in how it operates. It does not work.

It does not work because it disenfranchises voters based on something as stupid as what state they live in. The electoral college treats states as a political entity. I say state governments have absolutely no business in a national election. The 2000 election should still be fresh in our minds as an example of how just one state -- one state full of election mistakes and fraud -- can screw it up for everyone else in the country.

I have similar problems with the Senate and each state getting two senators, regardless of population. The same position and power is given to each senator, so a US citizen who happens to live in Wyoming voting for their senator gets a vote that counts more than 70 times as much as a US citizen who happens to live in California. Maybe it's just me and this wild idea I have that everyone's vote should count equally. If only there were a word for that system of government...

3 Comments:

Anonymous Luke Too said...

the word you're looking for is actually two: "mob rule."

11/03/2006 12:43:00 AM  
Blogger Luke McIntyre said...

Direct democracy would be mob rule. But since we're not talking about direct democracy as a system of government, we're talking about electing the head of one part of government, who is then checked by two other parts (one republican and one appointed), I fail to see where the mob rule part comes in.

Or if by "mob rule" you meant "one person one vote," then, by all means, mob rule.

11/03/2006 03:02:00 AM  
Anonymous luke too said...

oh! my bad.

So representative democracy?

11/03/2006 11:43:00 AM  

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