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Tuesday, November 04, 2008

(Video) Talking points, hokum and hot air

As a reminder of the wonderful choice before Americans today, here's a compilation of some clips from the three Obama vs. McCain debates.

"Don't tell me words don't matter" says Barack Obama/Deval Patrick; I don't disagree, but as the blind bard wrote all those years ago “words empty as the wind are best left unsaid.”

My advice to freedom-loving neighbours to the south? Stay far away from the polls tomorrow–and if you must enter the booth, please don't vote for either of these fools.

(h/t KD)

Posted by Kalim Kassam on November 4, 2008 in U.S. politics | Permalink

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Comments

This is a joke I'm just not getting, right? "Stay far away from the polls"? Don't vote for either of these fools? Have you been following any of this?

Wow. Nice political commentary from this blog. I think that can safely conclude my readership of it.

Posted by: Daryl | 2008-11-04 5:23:35 AM


I assure you that I'm quite serious. I don't only say that because both Obama and McCain are particularly terrible candidates–as the American anarchist Emma Goldman once said "If voting changed anything, they'd make it illegal."

If you want to vote, I have no problem with that. Go ahead and ignore me. I just don't think that you'd be doing anyone (including yourself) any favours by "participating in the democratic system".

Posted by: Kalim Kassam | 2008-11-04 5:50:05 AM


As far as my second contention goes (i.e "if you must enter the booth, please don't vote for either of these fools") Since your vote won't have any impact on the outcome, and if you're concerned about sending a message to Washington that you do not want more government intervention into your life and your pocketbook, vote for Ron Paul or Bob Barr, heck Chuck Baldwin and even Ralph Nader opposed the billionaire bailout and wouldn't increase the national debt.

http://westernstandard.blogs.com/shotgun/2008/09/the-doctor-the.html

Posted by: Kalim Kassam | 2008-11-04 6:03:19 AM


One of Obama and McCain will be president tonight - it is clear to me which is the better candidate of these two. Espousing not voting because it won't affect the outcome and that participating in the democratic system won't do anyone any favours is sheer lunacy.

Do you honestly think the number of votes a 3rd party candidate receives will affect the agenda of the winner?

How can you think a vote won't matter? Actively telling people not to vote, especially when so many states are so close, is irresponsible at best. Depending on where you live, it may not matter, but there are a great many states where it matters a lot.

I'm absolutely shocked by this garbage. Do you know how many candidates are on a typical ballot today? Telling people not to go anywhere near the polling booth because you think both the presidential candidates are "fools" completely ignores every other level of gov't including elections in both houses. I'm assuming if you think both presidential candidates are fools, then you might also possibly have a real problem with Democratic supermajorities across the board. Have you given any thought to that?

It sounds like you oppose the bailout and increased national debt, as I do. From where I stand, filibuster proof majorities for the Dems in both houses and a Dem president would definitely mean the opposite of what you desire from gov't.

Posted by: Daryl | 2008-11-04 9:08:52 AM


"One of Obama and McCain will be president tonight - it is clear to me which is the better candidate of these two."

It's not clear to me. The only significant difference I can perceive is in temperment and rhetoric. At the minimum Obama will do whatever he can to drive the economy to the ground by implementing his welfare state and "stabilization" policies and John McCain will do whatever he can to maintain America's troop presence in 140 countries while continuing to bomb Pakistan and Syria and invading Iran. It's great to hear John McCain resort to libertarian arguments (Obama's for redistrution, a graduated income tax etc) when he get's desperate if only because it indicates that his internal polling says that's what American's want to hear, not because he's doing free-market ideas any favours by discrediting them with his brand of crony capitalism. It's sort of cute to hear John McCain attack Obama on grounds that equally apply to him. They are both redistributionist and they are both socialists.

"Do you honestly think the number of votes a 3rd party candidate receives will affect the agenda of the winner? "

No, I don't think your individual vote for a 3rd party will matter, that's why I advocate non-voting. It seems more plausible that a vote for Ralph Nader, Ron Paul, or the LP would send a message about the way you'd like the government be run then giving a vote of approval to either of the Demopublican statists.

"How can you think a vote won't matter? Actively telling people not to vote, especially when so many states are so close, is irresponsible at best. Depending on where you live, it may not matter, but there are a great many states where it matters a lot."

At best, your vote doesn't matter. At worst, your participation in the election creates the perception of 'consent of the governed' and legitimates the election of Barack Obama or John McCain who will both employ the government in unconscionable and criminal ways.

"Do you know how many candidates are on a typical ballot today? Telling people not to go anywhere near the polling booth because you think both the presidential candidates are "fools" completely ignores every other level of gov't including elections in both houses."

For the reasons given above, I don't think its a great idea to vote for president. Voting on ballot issues and local races is not as bad. Personally, I find the inconvenience and jumping through the government's hoops to vote distasteful, and avoid the experience. Especially if I had a great candidate to vote for like Republicans BJ Lawson or John Frary for US House, I might venture into the voting booth.

"I'm assuming if you think both presidential candidates are fools, then you might also possibly have a real problem with Democratic supermajorities across the board. Have you given any thought to that?"

That is a terrifying prospect. Whatever the circumstances, your vote will not deny the Dems a majority. That said, I do prefer divided government in general, but I have little hope for bipartisan McCain (yes the McCain of McCain-Feingold, McCain-Lieberman, and McCain-Kennedy among other bipartisan horrors).

"It sounds like you oppose the bailout and increased national debt, as I do. From where I stand, filibuster proof majorities for the Dems in both houses and a Dem president would definitely mean the opposite of what you desire from gov't."

Unfortunately, you're right–and that's what's likely to happen. A renewed mandate for the spendy-spendy GOP in the presidency will also result in the opposite of what I desire for gov't. Maybe if the GOP are cast out they may realize that it was 'big government conservatism' and 'neoconservatism' which led them astray, return to some small-government priciples, and provide some opposition to The Great One, but I'm not holding my breath.

I'll leave you with some very well put remarks by Lew Rockwell writing in The American Conservative, with which I entirely agree:

"The critical problem we face today is the same one all mankind has faced: the state, those monopolists who claim the right to break the laws that they make and enforce. How to restrain them is the critical problem of all sound political thinking. Making matters worse, this gang now has a monopoly on the money and the ability to print it, and they are abusing that power at our expense.

How does voting change the situation? Neither of the candidates for president wants to do anything about the problem. On the contrary, they want to make it worse. This is for a reason. The state owns the “democratic process” as surely as it owns the Departments of Labor and Defense and uses it in ways that benefit the state and no one else.

On the other hand, we do have the freedom not to vote. No one has yet drafted us into the voting booth. I suggest that we exercise this right not to participate. It is one of the few rights we have left. Nonparticipation sends a message that we no longer believe in the racket they have cooked up for us, and we want no part of it.

You might say that this is ineffective. But what effect does voting have? It gives them what they need most: a mandate. Nonparticipation helps deny that to them. It makes them, just on the margin, a bit more fearful that they are ruling us without our consent. This is all to the good. The government should fear the people. Not voting is a good beginning toward instilling that fear.

This year especially there is no lesser of two evils. There is socialism or fascism. The true American spirit should guide every voter to have no part of either."

http://www.amconmag.com/article/2008/nov/03/00013/

Posted by: Kalim Kassam | 2008-11-04 12:12:43 PM



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