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Vote, vote, vote

If you don't, you're only letting them win. Yes, there are good reasons to abstain, but abstaining from this election would be like abstaining from a vote where your job at your company would be decided. This is your future. Care.

Links for Seattleites/Washintonians:
* The Stranger Election Control Board Endorsements (good for a laugh even if you're not from the state, actually. At least, bits are.)
* Seattle Times Voter's Guide - will actually make up your ballot for you based on your street, zip, and city. Gives a side by side comparison of all the races and candidates available.
* 2008 Video Voter's Guide - Doesn't feature all the races, but has several of the more important ones.

And, of course, most candidates have their own websites these days, so if that's not enough, look them up. You'll find them. Even if they don't have their own websites, look at newspapers. Read what they've been saying.

In fact, wherever you live, read up on the candidates. Not just what they're saying, but what they've done in the past, and read between the lines about their plans for the future. Who do they have connections with? Who helped on their campaign?

And if this is your first year? Check and make sure that you have everything you need, and that you actually appear on the lists. And if not, find out why not. Don't let them take your vote from you. If you're a citizen, you have every right to vote, no matter what they say.

And if that won't convince you, listen to him:

ETA: Obviously, this is directed at those on my flist who live in the states or can otherwise vote in the Election on the 4th. Though everyone outside the states is more than welcome to laugh, goggle or otherwise smirk at us. :)


Oct. 23rd, 2008 09:37 pm (UTC)
God I love The Stranger!! And I so wish I'd had this before I sent off my King Co. ballot two weeks ago -- I voted for some of the bad Democrats. :(

Sorry about that...

Great vid!

Oct. 23rd, 2008 09:41 pm (UTC)
It's the best paper. Makes it easier to vote. I don't vote with them 100%, but it gives me a great starting spot, and they do some of the research for me. :D

I'm wavering on the Lt Gov race, myself...

It is, isn't it? I couldn't resist adding it.
Oct. 24th, 2008 01:01 am (UTC)
It is hard to imagine a Republican with those views... hasn't any party official pulled her aside and said told her that she's being unseemly?

I hated to see, tho, that Tim Eyman is still around. What a nutjob that guy is!

Oct. 24th, 2008 08:24 am (UTC)
Makes you wonder what the line is that you have to cross to be one or the other, or if you can be whoever you want, but it's just a label you're choosing...

Ugh. Eyman's an idiot and an arse. Have you heard what he wants to do if that bill gets passed?
Oct. 24th, 2008 10:36 am (UTC)
Jeez, I'm pretty sure I don't want to know, but now you have to tell me.
Oct. 24th, 2008 07:52 pm (UTC)
He says as soon as it's passed into law, he's going to lead a parade down one of the HOV lanes with a sign in his window reading "Use it. You paid for it."

Why doesn't he just pay someone to sit in his car if he wants to use it so effing badly? It'll save the rest of the state an Eff of a lot of money.
Oct. 23rd, 2008 09:41 pm (UTC)
In honor of this post, I created this new super cool non-partisan icon. I think it's really important, especially for first-time voters who are unsure of how it all works, to feel comfortable around political discussions. Everybody's vote counts, whichever party you support. I think that's what makes this country so great. Is there room for improvement? Sure, so work on it. Is there dishonesty out there? Sure, so don't partake in it, and speak out against it when you have the chance to. We have those freedoms in this country, so make sure to use them to their fullest!
Oct. 23rd, 2008 09:44 pm (UTC)
Great icon. Did you watch the vid? It'll speak directly to you. ;D
Oct. 23rd, 2008 09:53 pm (UTC)
That's awesome! No, I hadn't watched it the first time. I wish people could be more civil about politics. I mean, I told you once that I consider myself to be an agnostic when it comes to patriotism, right? But I have to admit to feeling insulted to being told by some people running for office, that I'm not a "true" American, that I'm somehow less worthy of the honors this country bestows upon its citizens just because of my level of education or where I live, what color my state is. Yes, I'm definitely a Democrat and I will be voting for Obama, actually I already did on my ballot...but I will not call somebody names or put somebody down if they vote for somebody else. It's just wrong.
Oct. 23rd, 2008 10:07 pm (UTC)
It is. :D

Yeah, I felt the same until 2000, when Shannon said that even though she wasn't always pleased to be a US citizen, she was damned if she was going to let those people chase her away. It's our country, too, and just because we don't think like they do doesn't make us "Anti-American."

And I know that I have some non-Democrats on my flist, so I tried to keep it (mostly) non-partisan. Though obviously the Stranger and the vid are pretty Liberal. ;)
Oct. 23rd, 2008 10:28 pm (UTC)
It's interesting, this is my 3rd presidential election, but it's the first one I've gotten super interested in. But, this is my father's very first presidential election. He's lived here since he was about 5 or 6 years old, but he didn't become a citizen until a few years ago. It's refreshing to hear his views on the election process. I showed him some links to stories about people who are actively trying to disenfranchise other voters, and he got really upset. He said it was beyond unethical or immoral, and that trying to take somebody's right like that actually crosses over into sin-territory. He says it's trying to steal something sacred from people. I never really thought about it that way, but then again, maybe I always took it for granted. It's easy to forget the time when women couldn't vote, or people of color couldn't vote, and the struggle they went through to give us this right. I think Shannon was right, we can't let people intimidate us or chase us away. It is our country too, I am a "real" American.
Oct. 23rd, 2008 10:40 pm (UTC)
Talking to K today, I was telling him about the attempts to take others' votes and "discount" them. His response was to point out that in Denmark, they don't have to "register" at all. If you're a citizen, you can vote. Unless that right has been taken from you. And I just kind of sat there for a moment, blinking. Because you know, probably the only reason we don't do it that way? To keep "unwanteds" (read non-whites and poor) from voting. The more complex you make it for them to vote, the less likely they'll try. And guess where the major attempts of disenfranchisement is happening this year? In the South and very conservative states, where suddenly for the first time all these black people have registered to vote.
Oct. 23rd, 2008 10:52 pm (UTC)
What I want to know is, when did we switch over from being a republic to a democracy? If we ran the country the way it was truly set up, none of us would be voting for president in this election. That's why we have representatives.
Oct. 24th, 2008 08:26 am (UTC)
Because we really want those creeps choosing everything for us. No thanks. :P

We were always both, to some degree, anyway.
Oct. 24th, 2008 12:52 am (UTC)
Apologies for butting in here ... but I just had to say that you're so right about the complexity of the voting system discouraging voters. There are so many ways to keep Americans from participating, from the registration system to holding the election on a weekday to the electoral college. As much as people go on about American democracy, they forget that the ones who set up the system really distrusted democracy and did not want to make it easy for the common man to be involved. Talk about elitists!

I became a Canadian citizen last year, and I've voted in two elections now (one provincial and one federal), so I've gotten to compare the two systems. It's so much easier to vote here! If you pay taxes, your name is entered on the electoral registrar unless you specifically check the box for it not to be. If you aren't on the list, don't worry! Show up at the polls on voting day and they'll get you all set up, as long as you have proof of where you live. You get your ballot and a pencil and you mark it -- no dimples or dangling chads or any of that new-fangled stuff to worry about. And advance polls for the municipal election were open from 9-9 for the two weeks preceding the election. Needless to say, more people vote -- although this last election had the lowest turnout ever, at just under 60% (which is still higher than US turnout since the 1960s).

So yes, I completely agree -- make it harder for people who might not be as aware of upcoming elections, make them vote on a weekday when they need to be at work, and then cook up whatever schemes you need to with Diebold. You'll never have to worry about pesky democracy again!
Oct. 24th, 2008 08:30 am (UTC)
It really blows my mind that we supposedly live in this "free country" and people still barely participate. Worse, that they let the people in control tell them how to vote and what to think.

I can't believe that the Republican party's got the working man *scared* of Socialism, when Socialism's meant to *help* them, and it's big business that it'll upset most. It's just shocking to me how hard they work to keep people believing that it's this big, huge evil, and yet they are constantly finding ways to not pay for worker's benefits or downsizing so they have to pay for less salaries...

But that's okay. It looks like it won't make a difference this time. I hope.
Oct. 24th, 2008 09:02 am (UTC)
I was watching CNN the other day and they do this "No Bias, No Bull" segment where they debunk both sides' accusations about the other side. They did something about the socialism talk, where they looked at our current political system and showed how we already have a few socialistic practices in place, that we are already part way there. I can't recall the specific ways, but it was interesting to hear it.
Oct. 24th, 2008 10:57 am (UTC)
Is a wiki for elections, specifically it gives good information on local measures, which can be hard to find.

Oct. 24th, 2008 07:53 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I'll add it to may list. :D
Oct. 24th, 2008 11:30 pm (UTC)
Nothing new to share, right now, but I did want you to see my new super cool icon I made tonight.
Oct. 25th, 2008 03:00 pm (UTC)
Very nice.
Oct. 25th, 2008 02:48 pm (UTC)
I need help! I'm going over my ballot and am looking at all those charter amendments. Has anybody from the King County area looked at these yet? I'm stumped on number seven specifically. I'm torn between my natural inclination to vote against anything Tim Eyman is for, and thinking that this amendment would be bad for people trying to collect votes for making new amendments. Tim Eyman is against this, so in my mind, I should be for it. But, I do see that increasing the amount of signatures required is going to automatically hinder a lot of normal people from trying to make a change where they think it needs to be made. Does anybody have any more insight into this one than what's already written in the voter's pamphlet?
Oct. 25th, 2008 02:59 pm (UTC)
I just went with what the Stranger suggested on that one...
Oct. 25th, 2008 03:09 pm (UTC)
All right, I checked it out too...You know I generally don't enjoy reading The Stranger, but I figured if they weren't freaked out about it, it couldn't be too bad.

You know what I don't get? Why are home owners expected to pay for pretty much anything that requires money? I mean, do we as people who live in apartments have to pay any of this stuff? Are we getting a free ride? Or does it show up in raised rents when the property owners of our buildings now have to pass off the burden to the tenants? It just seems like there must be a better way to earn this money than by making home owners pay it all.

Are you gonna get online sometime today?
Oct. 25th, 2008 04:35 pm (UTC)
Because we don't have a state income tax, so it has to come from somewhere else, and people would resist a 15% or more sales tax. But yes, it does get passed on to renters in a lot of ways.

Tonight. I have to get things written. I just finished one story, and I have three more I'd like to finish, but wont, but I have to get at least one more done this weekend. So this week is going to be a pre-test for Nano, I guess. See if I can do a thou a day.
Oct. 25th, 2008 04:39 pm (UTC)
My dad has been a supporter of a state income tax for as long as I can remember. He says we'd actually end up paying less in the long run if we had a state income tax rather than a sales tax.

Yay for getting one story done! Good luck on the rest. I'm actually sitting down with a pen in hand in front of my notebook attempting to write some stuff for my story. I'm getting that "this is too big for me" feeling again though, it's sort of debilitating. It sucks.
Oct. 25th, 2008 05:02 pm (UTC)
I'm at the "I don't have enough" point, myself. Even though I have a ton of characters, and a ton of sub-plots...
Oct. 25th, 2008 05:03 pm (UTC)
I don't even know what you're doing this year. Or I do and I totally forgot already, I seem to be doing that a lot...
Oct. 25th, 2008 05:13 pm (UTC)
Sultan!Harry and slave!Draco.
Oct. 25th, 2008 05:14 pm (UTC)
That's right! I remember now.
Oct. 25th, 2008 06:37 pm (UTC)
K. So if "Vote=care" then when I prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that the way the ballot is currently written makes it statistically impossible to accurately count the vote, do you care enough about your vote meaning something to join my protest of the ballot until it is corrected?

'Cause I now have about 4-5 evidences of my theory being correct. Including a US Government protocol that gives a few mathematical arguments I hadn't even thought of before, making it all the more likely that your current vote means very little. ;)

Yes, I will actually be writing this up (at some point) and sending it to fellow researchers to see if they can verify my theories, and then sending it to the "official" people who can actually fix the ballot.