Voting 2008...

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Re: Voting 2008...

Postby Panzerkit » August 20th, 2020, 3:28 pm

I'll vote. For who I dunno, but I'll vote for someone

Neither candidate fills me with any particular sense of confidence . . . . . Honestly it mostly feels like both major parties are fully united in the desire to steam right for the iceberg but quibble over deck chair arrangement
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Re: Voting 2008...

Postby Graybeard » August 22nd, 2020, 12:12 pm

Imp-Chan wrote:I have been saying for ages that if we want change, we have to start by owning the local elections. Most politicians are built, they don't spring up fully formed and ready to run for the US Congress very often.

Funny you should mention this. Some years back, a guy from our church, who was completely NOT "fully formed and ready to run for the US Congress," somehow managed to win a seat in Congress. To this day I am not sure how. I am sure, however, that he was a LOUSY congresscritter, ineffective, equipped with prehistoric views on any number of policy questions, naive in the ways of Washington, and (fortunately) incapable of ever playing a leadership role among the sharks he was swimming with. And then he lost a re-election and went back to being a normal, even constructive, guy in the community. I saw him at McDonalds(!) not long ago having a Big Mac, and having fun, with his grandkids. This isn't exactly "deep state" behavior.

You're correct that "owning the local elections" is one of the antidotes to guys like that. On the other hand, it carries with it a risk of producing guys like that. It isn't sufficient that local elections start producing people whose positions match one's own. It's also important that those people know how to, you know, govern.

Imp-Chan wrote:Everyone organizing local protests should be putting at least as much energy into putting forward good candidates in local elections, and facilitating all those protesters in actually voting and campaigning locally.

I agree wholeheartedly with this. My point is that some careful thought needs to go into "putting forward good candidates," along with the realization that what one thinks of as a "good candidate" may not be exactly the skill set that really makes a candidate good.
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Re: Voting 2008...

Postby Forrest » August 22nd, 2020, 10:55 pm

Graybeard wrote:It isn't sufficient that local elections start producing people whose positions match one's own. It's also important that those people know how to, you know, govern.

This is a major reason I have no interest in politics, though I'm heavily into political philosophy. I love quietly figuring out what the best policy positions are with reasonable people of a variety of different points of view. I hate, hate, hate doing self-promotion and generally trying to make people do things by any means other than explaining why it's the best thing to do, which usually isn't effective. I would hate to actually have to be a politician, even though of course I would agree with all my own policies, because I would feel way out of my element doing the political stuff that politicians have to do for a living, and constantly stressing out about how I'm fucking up the execution of it royally.
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Re: Voting 2008...

Postby Imp-Chan » August 23rd, 2020, 2:57 pm

I could probably be a fairly effective politician, actually, as that's within the wheelhouse for my personality type... But I, too, would absolutely hate it. I prefer to avoid leadership roles whenever possible, but I nonetheless fall into them whenever nobody else will step up. But to be a politician requires more willingness to compromise on what's important than I want to have to live with.
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Re: Voting 2008...

Postby Forrest » August 25th, 2020, 2:35 am

I'm fine with leading when I'm thrust into it, or when nobody else will do the damn job and someone just has to so I do and everyone else can either deal with that or fucking do it better themselves if they think they can.

The problem with politics is that everybody else thinks they can do it better, and some of them are masters at manipulating everyone else into thinking so too, and I can't stomach trying to convince everybody to get behind me if they don't just want to already (or at least, don't care at all, like above).
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Re: Voting 2008...

Postby Graybeard » August 25th, 2020, 6:50 pm

Forrest wrote:The problem with politics is that everybody else thinks they can do it better, and some of them are masters at manipulating everyone else into thinking so too, and I can't stomach trying to convince everybody to get behind me if they don't just want to already (or at least, don't care at all, like above).

Well, realistically, some of them can do it better. There are skills required for politics, as for everything else, and like everything involving skills (which is to say, everything), it's a breeding ground for the Dunning-Kruger effect. Only a very small percentage of people, in all likelihood, actually have the skills to excel at politics at the national level. A larger percentage realize that they don't, and either don't venture into politics at all or give up on it after a lower-level test. (The guy from my church that I've mentioned finally figured it out, after a period of being a very subpar Representative.) A vastly larger percentage think they have the skills, per the D-K effect, but would rather find some excuse for the ones that make it than admit that they couldn't really do the same.

At least that's the way top-level politics in the US has historically worked. In the present occupant of the White House, we may have an exception. Or maybe not. I can make no sense out of the process that saddled us with this guy.

Postscript: Has anyone here read "The Death of Expertise"? I believe it relevant to this discussion, and this election.
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Re: Voting 2008...

Postby Imp-Chan » August 31st, 2020, 1:18 am

I am apparently going to get my ballot in late September. I can at least attempt to exercise my right to vote.

That said... I am still experiencing some deep reservations about the prospect of voting for Biden. I do not believe he is fit for the job, and if I vote him in anyways I will hate myself for it, and for setting the country up to continue its slide right with no real consequences for anyone or checks on the runaway congress. I really do believe that our government has run its course and cannot be reformed without substantial rebellion, because congress has no motivation to represent our interests and we do not have the power to compel them. A general strike MIGHT be sufficient as a non-violent means, but I don't think people will be able to execute one.

However, I also don't think the world can survive a second Trump term, and I mean that in a very literal sense. I suspect that a landslide win for Biden is the only way to prevent that, and even then it might not be sufficient. It seems we are indeed primed for a revolution, and shots have already been fired. I can only hope that the damage is less severe and less widespread if Biden is elected.

But even with a Biden win, Trump still has until January 20 to wreak havoc. And he will. And it will be UGLY, and vicious, and cruel.
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