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sillylittleme On October - 28 - 2014

voting-booth

As many of you know I reside in Massachusetts. This election cycle we have the opportunity to elect the first woman governor in our state’s history. I will not be voting for Martha Coakley. She is not governor material, IMHO. I have met her and while she smiles obsequiously, you can see the calculation in her eyes. She reminds me of Hillary Clinton to the extent that she is clearly intelligent, cares about the issues, yet fails to connect to the citizenry.

I have decided instead to vote for the independent, Evan Falchuk.  His platform more closely aligns with what Democrats used to represent.

http://www.falchuk2014.org

I feel that the best way to rid ourselves of Citizens’ United is to not vote for their candidates.  And don’t think for a moment that the Ds aren’t taking advantage of the loopholes that crap piece of legislation and the ultimate snake vote by the not so Supreme Court upheld.

First, I need to apologize for all of the times I encouraged people to vote for Ds regardless of whether they were true progressives.  Second, I realize that not everyone can have the luxury of throwing away their vote; there is little difference between the D and R candidates running.

I will be quite interested to read your opinions and welcome any feedback.

27 Responses so far.

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  1. funksands says:

    SLM, thanks for posting this, I completely understand your position and arguments. Your vote is your vote. You may cast it as you wish, that is one of the very few things that we have control over in our democratic oligarchy.

    A few thoughts:

    1) IMO, the higher up the food chain you go, the more you have to practice “comparative” politics. Here’s what I mean by that: If I lived in Louisiana for example I would be faced with turd sandwich choice for US Senate. Mary Landrieu by no means resembles anything that I think a Democrat should. I would find it difficult to vote for her if there was a better third option. But I would vote for her, because comparatively she is the better option than her opponent.

    I consider Obama a moderate. I felt that comparatively he was more liberal than HRC, so that’s why I voted for him in the primary.

    That type of pragmatism on a federal level is unfortunately necessary in most cases. Keeping rabid right-wing nut jobs out of the Senate, the House, the Presidency and the Supreme Court will involve voting for some Democratic candidates that are flawed.

    2) The further down the food chain you go, the less necessity there is for “comparative” politics. The more local the race, the more “objective” I think voters can be. In the last few elections I have voted straight ticket Democratic on a national level and Democratic, Green, Independent and Socialist on a local and state level. The smaller the race, the more comfortable I felt voting this way.

    3) The amount of luck, labor, money, organization and sheer numbers it is going to take to get a significant chunk of our federally-elected positions into the hands of Progressives is staggering. Focusing our attention on national and even state-wide races to change the complexion of our nation is going to be too difficult. Top-down won’t work.

    Instead, we need to recommit our time, energy, and attention to local races. Start finding, training, influencing the national leaders of tomorrow in school board races, mayorships, county commissioner positions. In 20 years we’ll have a roster of progressive candidates that will be taking over national and state positions. It’s hard to be that patient, but the wing-nuts did it exactly this way in the 70’s and now they control the national narrative.

    Would I be happy to vote for Martha Coakley? No. Would I do it in order to keep some semblance of rationality in the governor’s mansion? Probably, but I certainly don’t fault you for voting your mind. But don’t apologize for asking people to vote for national democratic candidates even if they aren’t progressive. It’s that type of comparative voting that will keep the GOPKlan out of complete power while our bench comes up through the system.

    • sillylittleme says:

      Thanks Funk for your perspective.

    • monicaangela says:

      Excellent rationale funksands, I love your reasoning here and agree with your ideology. We really do need to distinguish between candidates in local elections and vote to try to put the less damaging candidate into office in national elections. At this point, I don’t believe voting for a republican or throwing your vote away in a national election is wise, but I do realize everyone has the right to do so if they wish.

      We need not only continue to, as you say, vote for the person that will do the least harm, but as soon as that person is in office we need to be looking for someone we feel would fit the job better to replace that person when he/she comes up for reelection. We need to begin to try to find qualified candidates who are willing to run, help support them as they are being groomed for what they will face when they confront the twisted MSM, and then get their message to the voters through donations, volunteering, etc., so that when election time comes those who would be better for our government can be elected to office.

      Great comment funksands, thank you for expressing your opinion. As Nirek says, your comment is spot on. :)

    • Nirek says:

      Spot on Funk!

  2. Nirek says:

    SLM, even though I think you are wrong in voting against a Dem. , I understand how you feel and support you for voting your conscience. Please don’t think I think badly of you. Quite the contrary, I like that you are voting! Wish that people would vote because apathy is the worst enemy of democracy.

    • sillylittleme says:

      I wish I lived in VT so I could vote for Bernie. But voting for Elizabeth Warren felt great. The fact that the state refuses to have the same progressive bent, is why I am voting for the true progressive. Not one that is tied to the banks -- Coakley or the MIC (Medical Industrial Complex) -- Baker.

      • CAdawn says:

        Hi, slm. It’s been a long time since I’ve been on this site. Always great posts.
        Regarding yours about “throwing away your vote. Sometimes we really do have to vote our conscience. It would feel wrong if we didn’t. I don’t know much about Coakley, but I do know somethings about republicans. If you do vote for an independent it will be a lost vote.
        Please remember the power of the veto that a governor has. Many of the things you wish the democrats/Coakley would do in MA would certainly not be done by a republican. An R would likely not do anything you wish either.
        I once changed my registration to independent from democrat because the democrats in CA had me so angry. I still get angry, but all in all, not angry enough to vote GOP. No matter how you vote, good luck to you and your state.

  3. RSGmusic says:

    HI sillylittleme, well this is a surprise. It is your vote but there all a lot of things to consider for a governor? Governors have veto power like a president. Controls disaster relief etc etc. Think about this and look up what veto power they have in your state. Also THE GOP’S social issues are extremely bad. Well i am not in your state. Women’s right are lousy viewed by a GOP governor.

    Does the independent have a chance??? IF not you may want to reconsider.

    Relating to music: your have a band or and orchestra. IN a band you have the leader group but all must be satisfied they are creating the music in a creative way together. Say the leader is like the GOP party and squashes the others creativity. The band will break up slowly and all the others go there own way.

    AN Orchestra. Is a very large group of musicians all having individual talents. You have sections, strings , percussion , brass, horns, woodwinds and flutes. You must use all these sections to create the interpretation of a know authors work. It can be very beautiful and unique but it does has to come together and the conductor does that. Imagine the conductor AKA governor is like the GOP party. The sections will not all work for this type of leader and you get a so so orchestra.

    SO slm to eliminate a bad parties power like the GOP you have to lessen their power any way you can to take them out. If the GOP is taken out 75 % of the problem is solved.

    After looking at all the above weigh your decision . Can you LIVE with a GOP governor.

    • sillylittleme says:

      Have to agree with Nirek. Excellent analogy. In MA, you have to be pro-choice for women. The populace won’t stand for less. So that issue is moot. As to disaster relief, ever since the blizzard of ’78 (called by only one forecaster who really got it right) we have been well prepared for any weather related disaster. As to a medical disaster (epidemic), we have the Harvard Medical Schools and several of the best teaching hospitals in the country.

      The real issue is taxes or rather a lack of a progressive taxation system; a middle class still in fiscal strife and a once tops-in-the-country public education system being infiltrated by for-profit schools.

    • Nirek says:

      Excellent post, my friend. You are getting good at this analogy stuff, Ghost.

      • RSGmusic says:

        Thanks Nirek

        Yea music is a lot like politics even more if you are a famous group.

        Creativity is a liberal think most of the time. The worst thing you can do in a band or orchestra is limit the talent of your players.

        IN my songs/ instrumentals i leave a lot of room so the others i invite can make there talents come thru. I really only tell them the key and little else. so the segment is more or less theirs. Also i may add to that section and we decide how to make them work together. Sometimes we just do not use my added part. Also they get to place where in the stereo pan to put there tracks, so you get two ideas on the separate side of the headphones.

        long life my Friend

  4. monicaangela says:

    Hello SLM,

    Throwing away your vote? I don’t think so, I believe you are expressing your wishes. that is what voting is all about. If more people thought like you we might be able to get past this dog and pony trick show we call the D’s and the R’s. Your vote is your voice, your voice is your opinion, and no matter what that opinion is, it is your manner in which you as a citizen can be heard. Good for you! Why vote for a candidate you do not agree with? I feel the same as you, if I feel the third party candidate best represents my interest I vote for him/her. I realize with our two party system this is somehow considered throwing away your vote, but again, I vote to express my opinion, not to support a particular party or interest group.

    Because interest groups and parties significantly overlap in what they do, they have an inverse relationship in their power. Generally speaking, the stronger interest groups are, the weaker political parties are. In modern American politics, interest group power has significantly weakened the power that political parties have. Candidates get far more campaign money from interest groups than from political parties. Officials need a lot of information to make policy, and they get far more from interest groups than from party organizations.

    Interest groups are also closely attached to and interwoven with parties. Interest groups have so infiltrated political parties that parties can be seen as a shifting coalition of interest groups that attempt, with significant success, to capture control of the party, at least in key policy areas of concern to the groups. Citizens United has put this concept on steroids, and so as you say, who or what are we really voting for if we just vote party label and not for the person that will best represent our interest. Are we truly throwing our vote away when we express our opinion? I don’t think so. Good for you, I believe more people should feel as you do.

    And, if Martha Coakleys’ political ideas aren’t good enough to beat Scott Brown, I’m left wondering why it is she is continuing to run. If the people of the state of MA did not accept her for their U.S. Senator, why would they accept her for something even more intimate, more close to home, and a job that would definitely allow her to make day to day decisions for the state in which they live, something that might effect them even more than a U.S. Senator from the state might?

    • sillylittleme says:

      Thanks MA for putting it in perspective. I have no idea how she won the primary, she didn’t deserve to (nor did she get my vote).

      • monicaangela says:

        Political Machinery? That all too convincing either or approach to politics we have? I believe people today vote more to be against one candidate or another than they do for the candidate they are trying to put into office. We somehow have learned to accept whatever candidate the party puts forward without questioning whether a different person might be better for the job. Then there is establishment…establishment candidates can generally raise the money necessary to run for office while the guy who would be better for the job can not and therefore can’t afford to be heard or even considered… I believe that’s how she won and that is how most politicians win primaries and elections these days, MHOOC.

  5. fjb says:

    Yes, there are some similarities between the dems and cons but at this time we need to unseat the cons and throwing away your vote to ‘demonstrate’ is foolish.
    If you had a large enough base to make your vote count then your dissatisfaction might make sense. What you are doing is bringing a knife to a gunfight.

    Vote DEM and weed out those that do not fit the bill.
    Yup, democracy is a lot of work.

  6. EXFANOFARIANA says:

    At this stage, throwing away your vote and others alike who might agree with your viewpoints,send a clear message you are ready to give up Senate seats to our nemesis. I particularly dislike M.C YET, will never give the cons the satisfaction of granting them a majority.Hell will break lose….IMHO

  7. empi says:

    It is not good idea to “throw a vote away” ever. Voting for the other guy out of protest can have dire consequences. Remember how many lefties voted for Ralph Nader as a protest and see where that got us. Martha Coakley is not the greatest candidate in terms of visuals but her record seems to be pretty darn good. I would hope you would reconsider

    • Nirek says:

      Empi, I agree with you. We have to hold on to as many seat in State and Federal government as possible.
      My Senator is an independent but he has won every election for the House or Senate. He is loved here in Vermont and many out of staters love him too. Bernie stands tall for the middle class and poor.

  8. Nirek says:

    SLM, If there is a chance that an independent can win and he/she has progressive tendencies, I’m okay with that. I vote for Bernie after all. But, if it will cost us a seat for the Democrats, I would discourage you voting that way. We sure don’t need any more republicans!

  9. Greta42 says:

    Hi silly little me,

    I also live in Massachusetts and will be voting next Tuesday.
    While I think Martha Coakley has an intensity while campaigning, I do believe in her issues and they are in the progressive camp:

    Universal Pre-school
    Lower college costs and availability to more students
    Universal health care
    Improving education K thru 12, not making more cuts to its funding
    Equal pay for equal work
    Women making their own reproductive choices, no government interference
    Sued banks for mortgage fraud
    Promotes need for infrastructure rebuilding and modernization

    There are more things to add, but you get my idea. Another component to this election is how much money the Kochs have poured into the state to promote Baker and Tisei. If Baker was truly not much different than the Democrat, why would they need to do that?

    While I’d like to see drastic changes in our political parties, or the formation of a new party aligned with the people, not Wall Street, the Banks and the MIC, it needs to happen from the bottom up, grass roots.
    Mr. Falchuk seems like an OK guy but a bit whiney. If Baker wins, get ready for more of Mitt Romney.

    I’ll be so glad when this election is over -- the ads are everywhere.

    • sillylittleme says:

      Greta, I just want to point out that while she got money for the state from the banks, relatively little went to actual victims (I am one). I actually got a check so small, it wouldn’t have covered much more than a past due utility bill. Where did all that money go? To attorneys to represent people who were by and large summarily dismissed by the judicial branch. Evictions are still on-going. So tell me, what was resolved?

    • Nirek says:

      Greta, lets keep the Mitt like folks out of politics! Martha Coakley seems to be a progressive from what you say. My concern is a Republican winning and us losing another seat in government.

      Have to agree, the ads do seem to be ubiquitous. The one I see too often is Brown dissing New Hampshire Senator Jean Shaheen tying her to Obama, which I think is a good thing. He is a carpetbagger and teabagger as well.

      Like you I will be voting Tue.
      Regards


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