Contrary to what you might think, I am not a Democrat. Don't call me a Republican, unless you really want to evoke the wrath of Hannabelle. Independent? Not when it comes to politics. Green Party? Libertarian? I like anything with "liberty" in it's roots, but I'm wise enough to know that if you bet on a one-legged dog at the racetrack, odds of you winning are mighty slim. Before Nexus (B.N.), I liked to label myself a "Free-Thinker". But I've changed. Thinking is no longer free in our country, unless you keep your thoughts to yourself. Voice them and you may expect a lawsuit. And trust me, lawyers aren't free. Now, A.N. (After Nexus), I consider myself a "Rationalist", or a "Realist". I've always voted for Democrats because they represent my personal ideology better than the Republicans. And somebody once told me that we live in a democracy where we vote for leaders to represent We The People. HAHAHAHAHA! Yeah. Right. They weren't from Nexusville.
The one label which does apply to me is "Voter". George Carlin used to say that he didn't vote, therefore he couldn't take the blame for the outcome. I always took the stance that if you don't vote, you can't complain about the outcome. (And as you know, Hannabelle has a talent for complaining.) I can take credit for the Clinton years. The last eight years are other people's fault. I voted, but lost. Actually, with Bush we all lost.
So yes, I am a Voter. But, I have to admit that I haven't done my job well in the past. I've never had a problem making up my mind about candidates running for top offices. I've paid attention. I know who I want for my president. But, after you get done with the meat and potatoEs, there is a long list of names at the end of the ballot. Names you never heard of. People running for justices and judges. Unknowns running for jobs at the bottom of the food chain. And those Unopposed guys. This is where I've failed. I always checked the box for the single, unopposed candidates. But that was B.N.
This election, I voted early. With the Internet, I researched the candidates and chose my judges wisely. (I might end up in front of them!) Those unopposed? I left the ballot blank. Those nebulous candidates I couldn't find information about? I left the ballot blank. If they wanted my vote, they should have provided me with a reason. For school board I did NOT vote for the son of the councilman who thought that his OPINION that 94 sex offenders in MY neighborhood shouldn't bother me because it didn't bother him OVERRULED my opinion that yes, they bother me. I guess that's why he changed the ordinances to remove any obstacles - i.e. me. The pine nut doesn't fall far from the tree...
Because of what happened to me - being denied a vote in a situation which would personally most affect my life, having my own Constitutional rights blown right out of the book of city ordinances, and being unable to have a say in my own fate - I've changed. I am now a Realist. I am acutely aware of the importance of elections. I'm sick of greedy corporatists who put their own interests before those of the American people. I want sane, rational, smart, qualified people to run the country. Don't you? And if you are lucky enough to have voting privilege, you would be dumb not to vote. Right?
Not so fast. Perhaps you shouldn't vote. For starters, since this election is the first one in the New Age of After Nexus - (N.A. of A.N.), I really paid attention. I mean REALLY paid attention. I got informed. I sifted through the propaganda and hoopla. After diligently educating myself, the choice was ever so clear - Barack Obama and Joe Biden. No question. Al Franken for U.S. Senate. Jim Oberstar for U.S. Representative. Gail Kulick-Jackson for State Representative. Easy decisions. I didn't choose to vote for them because they all happen to be Democrats. They are just the best choice. Period.
Some of my neighbors (yes, the same ones on whose behalf I tried so hard to fight Nexus and the Onamia council) are loyal, die-hard Republicans. Remember, I told you about the Sondra Erickson and McCain/Palin signs in their yards. One of these neighbors told me that he didn't read the newspaper, not even the local Mille Lacs Messenger. He didn't even read the Mille Lacs News or the Bradbury Buzzz during the Nexus Invasion! Wow! Talk about head in the sand. He also disclosed that he doesn't follow the television news - like CNN or MSNBC, or even (gag) Fox. His family likes to watch "American Idol", he said. Naturally, being uninformed, he would choose to vote for Palin/McCain.
(Many similarly ignorant supporters - like my neighbor - voted for George Bush TWICE!!!) But Sondra Erickson? She is partly responsible for sticking the sex offenders next to day care, elderly widows, children and vulnerable adults! I can see not biting the hand that feeds you. But she didn't lift a finger to "feed" us. Just excuses and denials of culpability. Why vote for a politician who supported the removal of your own Constitutional rights? There's that Nexusville "Epidemic of Stupid" again.
Now, I'm not saying that if you don't agree with my politics that you shouldn't vote. But if you are uninformed, stop everything you're doing and get informed now! Before its too late. Pay attention. It IS important. Don't just go with the flow and vote for McCain/Palin because you are a joiner, a social-climber, a fitter-inner, a Joe-Six-Pack or Joe-The-Plumber wannabe, like Sarah Palin's new outfit, or are a loyal member of the Bamboozlement Party. Don't believe the negative emails and robo-calls. Check it out. Educate yourself. Chances are that if you can dig through all of the crap being flung at you, you'll discover that what's "trickling down" on you isn't wealth.... To be blunt, we've all been pissed on for the past 8 years.
And do you really want somebody like YOURSELF determining the fate of the country? I don't. Uh... Foot in mouth.... I mean, I don't want the average person in high office. I want the best and the brightest, the one who I might not want to have a beer or shoot moose with. I want someone so competent that I might not HAVE to pay so much attention and can relax and enjoy my life, knowing that the country is in good hands. I want the best choice. And the best choice this election is clear.
Vote smart, or don't vote at all. Pay attention. It's too important not to.