Politics, Bah!

God says I’m on my own this week. Election 2010 is over, here in the states, and apparently after such an election I’m just not fit company. Even for someone with the infinite patience of God.

So fine. Let’s talk about United States Politics. If I can sum up my impression of the electorate this year, the prevailing attitude seems to have been: The Republicans dug us into a great big pit; the Democrats weren’t able to both stop the digging and build us a ladder that we could use to climb out of that pit before the election; so even though the Republicans promise to go back to digging, we’re going to put them back in office to show those Democrats how unhappy we are.

See the thing is, I don’t even like the Democrats. But I have to root for them because I loathe the Republicans. And therein lies my biggest complaint about the American political system. We’ve got this “first past the post” system that pretty much guarantees we’ll only have two political parties with any significant power at any time. It sucks. Not every issue aligns on the so-called left-right spectrum, and not every person has the same opinions on all issues as what is declared the “left” position or the “right” position. But we’re supposed to vote as if they are and we do.

The “first past the post” system is why we’re often told that voting for a third party is throwing away our vote and I’m not going to tell you anything different. Say you were mad as hell and not wanting to take it anymore. You could look around to see what you could do. You could vote for the other major party but say you found them to be so much more against your cherished beliefs than your chosen party that you couldn’t in all conscience help them with your vote, you would then come to the conclusion that you would need to vote for a third party (or fourth or fifth) in order to send a message.

I applaud your desire.

Unfortunately I’m here to tell you just what message that vote sends, it’s “I’m not happy with what either major party is doing, but I’m powerless to do anything about it.” It sucks, but that’s what they hear, that’s the message they get.

Maybe when God is talking to me again he’ll have something to say that lessens the pain, but I doubt it. After thirty some years of voting every two years, I’ve gotten used to it. I think I’ve begun to vote with a limp though.

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