Tuesday, November 07, 2006

A Personal Post

I generally don't make personal posts. Feel free to skip this one.

I have been told five times in twenty hours to vote.

Voting doesn't do anything. It makes you feel nice. It makes you happy. "I'm guiding my nation!"

I want the ocean to be yellow, therefore I should pee in it?

Voting is an emotional release. It has no actual mathematical merit, and the logic that convinces most people is not logic at all. It's an emotional appeal. In this case, an emotional appeal to vote for one freakjob or another, universally twisted by "public service" into horrifying monsters with painted smiles.

So, no, I'm not freaking voting. That's right, I will not change the outcome of the election.

Of course, me not voting has nothing to do with me not changing the outcome of the election.


Patrick said...

You're mostly right, hence the :P suffixing my imperative. However, referendums have a much better mathematical matrix, though its probably skewed by the dense wording of the things. Still, I think in regards to referendum votes I made a specific difference that has statistical meaning.

Craig Perko said...

I'm glad voting makes you happy. It makes me UNhappy.

Darius Kazemi said...

Gee, I'm glad you're not coming to the Postmortem tonight because I'd definitely do my best to drag you into a huge political argument.

One person voting has no measurable impact on elections. However, it's in my political interest to get the people who don't normally vote to vote. Non-voters consist of youth, immigrants, and other disenfranchised folks who are likely to vote the same way that I do.

My individual vote doesn't have a huge effect on the election, but the effort I put into getting other people to vote (not for a particular person, just TO VOTE) amplifies the effect multiple times.

You might say that I could rationally sit back and get other people to vote and not do a damned thing myself, but that's hypocrisy, which is something I try to avoid in my quest for being a better person.

Furthermore, in the Freakonomics post you pointed to, there was an example involving a tree and flowers, the point of the article being that the father in the story is being stupid. I happen to believe that, in general, Categorical Imperative is a pretty good rule to live by and I hope my daughters don't go around plucking flowers off of plants.

Craig Perko said...

Sure, there's something to be said for organizing large groups of people to vote. Unfortunately, to have any notable effect, it would have to be thousands of people.

Patrick said...

Regardless of partisanship, for us the real tragedy on Tuesday was the re-election of Joe "I don't like the guns but the guns like me" Lieberman, who supports the war in Iraq but not the war in your Xbox 360.

I really hope the political clout of Hillary combined with his experience heckling the industry aren't enough to get that Family Protection act passed. I say this not because I believe in free speech and the need for an artistic medium to mature unconstrained, but because I HATE FAMILIES.

Anonymous said...

"Unfortunately, to have any notable effect, it would have to be thousands of people."

They're called "political parties."

Craig Perko said...

Anon: The math works out such that the only people who matter are the ones that drive people to vote. THEIR OWN VOTE doesn't matter, just their driving other votes.

Also, people who raise hundreds of votes are merely raising the chance of swaying the election from "You're more likely to win big on powerball" to "you're going to get hit by lightning on a clear day."

Really, it's the people that drive the people that drive hundreds of voters that matter. And by the time you get that high up, you're starting to become... a politician.