OT - Gas to hit 4.00 - Vote for Ron Paul - dropping out?

Levi Pearson levi at cold.org
Thu Jun 19 10:18:23 MDT 2008


"Joshua Lutes" <huzzak at gmail.com> writes:
> I always figured that you voted for the person you most agreed with
> regardless of whether or not he was viable.  Because one vote will make a
> difference in only the rarest of occasions (and then in only a very limited
> geographic region) a vote is more a marker of agreement than anything else.
> It means that you like the ideas espoused by this man or this party.  If the
> third party gets enough votes their attracting ideas are stolen by the other
> parties so that they can maintain their dominance.  Voting for something I
> disagree with seems like a stupid way to influence the government, since
> even if it succeeds I'm not going to get what I want.
>
> Anyway, the two parties are indistinguishable in practice, so it doesn't
> even matter which of the two win.  Better to use your vote to indicate your
> opinion since it really isn't good for anything else.

This is a reasonable viewpoint, and I've voted this way in the past.
However, if you have a strong opinion on which of the two viable
candidates you'd prefer, and the race looks relatively even, you're
better off voting for that one than the third party you'd really like.
I'd like for things to be different, so you can express both support
for a third party *and* your preference between the viable candidates,
but our voting system just doesn't work that way.

This isn't so much the case with Ron Paul, though, because he wasn't
running under a third party platform.  He was running as a Republican,
and he lost at the party primary level.  If he was running as a third
party, I might actually consider voting for him, especially if I knew
he had no chance of being elected.  I don't *want* him to be elected.
But in Utah, the Republican candidate will be elected, so I might as
well throw my vote in towards political diversity, for whatever little
good it will do.

                --Levi



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