Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Why 50 million people are not voting today


There is a fair argument that voting simply does not matter. That argument is not that both candidates are the same. I am not going with Ralph Nader's or Ron Paul's flawed reasoning. The major candidates have do have very different visions for the country.

Obama focuses on the Insurance role of government and therefore wants to make investments with taxpayer dollars. Romney focuses on the Security role of government and therefore wants to cut spending on everything else, which will allow tax cuts to happen. That is a very large difference in opinion. It is going to determine the shape of our nation tomorrow.

Rather, that argument is that there is a general consensus in America about the fundamental way the nation should be run.  We should be a democratic capitalist nation; we should build a strong middle class; and yes, we should abide by the general framework of our Constitution. We all just have slightly different interpretations of what all of that means and how it should be implemented.

No matter who wins tomorrow, your life will go on. You will wake up and go to work. You will live in the same residence. You will go about your day like normal. You will have your basic freedoms of speech, religion, and guns guaranteed. It will not have an immediate impact on your life if the top tax rate, which will never apply to you, is 35 percent or 20 percent. It will not have an immediate impact on your life if you have the right to own an AK-47 or not. It will not have an immediate impact on your life if you can only have an abortion up to 20 weeks instead of 23. Over time these things may come to matter, but not tomorrow. Your life will be pretty much the same tomorrow as it was yesterday, no matter who wins.

50 million people are not voting in this election because, frankly, the impacts of doing so are vague, uncertain, far off, and indirect. Tomorrow is hard to imagine, if today is tough enough as is. That's okay. That's Democracy.

Nonetheless if you have time to read this, then you have time to vote. It does matter. Go vote. Your future self will thank you for it.

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