All my voting life, I have been very dissatisfied with the American process presidential elections. The electoral college is not only obsolete and ineffective, but the electors are not required to vote according to the will of the people, and occasionally they don't. The electoral college has it's defenders (or apologists), but the bottom line is that it was designed to oppose democratic elections and replace the results with election by a select elite. I don't know them and I don't trust them.
It is common knowledge that Gore won the popular vote in 2000 by approximately half a million votes. As far as democracy is concerned, he was elected president in 2000. In my opinion, that means Bush was not elected president, and if he wasn't president in 2000, he could not be "re-elected" in 2004, so he has been a phony pretender to the office for his entire administration. Imagine how much better off the world would be if the voter's actual votes had been respected, and the president had been elected by the citizens.
All this defines me as a tin-foil-hat-wearing-far-left-radical-conspiracy-theorist-blah-blah-etc in the eyes of the right, and even in the eyes of the mainstream, most of whom do not seem to give a monkey's buttcheek whether their most valuable right as citizens is just a cheap facade. They are so placated by the propaganda that is foisted upon them from cradle to grave, so that most of what they think they know is actually lies, that they just don't care. In our consumerist/celebrityist culture, they are more concerned with having stuff and being entertained that by the things that really matter (yes, I am inclined to be done with relative values: I say there are things that matter more than bigscreen TVs and SUVs and Britney Spears).
In 2004, I thought that the horror of the 2000 election fiasco would shock voters to demand changes to the electoral process: Direct elections with verifiable results. Is that so much to ask from the nation that defines itself as the world leader in democracy and technology? But, no change happened, and I am beginning to believe won't anytime soon. Those of us who question the status quo are laughed at and derided.
Meanwhile, in the primaries, by the time they come to my state (CA), half the choices have decided to quit and deprive us of the choice to vote for them. So a handful of states (swayed by corporate-controlled media selectivity) who are lucky enough to have earlier primaries get to choose who the rest of us are offered to vote for in the primaries... we don't even get to vote for our choice among the declared candidates! That is taken away from us even at this early stage! Do you want to vote for Edwards, or Kucinich? Tough luck, California, South Carolina or the pop media or whoever makes the call says that we are not allowed to have the same choices they had.
Some democracy. It's totally unfair and rigged from day one. I am completey disillusioned (again). My vote means nothing, and never has. And don't get me started about electronic election fraud and the inevitable republican victory it portends (unless the republicans are following their pattern of ruining the country and then leaving office for a term or two so a democrat can repair the damage and take the blame, thus paving the way for the next eight year plutocratic orgy).
I am back to where I was before 2004: part of a radical minority who will never be represented in American government; who must select candidates and positions based on other people's values; who is completly aware that he has no representation and no voice that matters; who's smartest option seems to be to simply try to make a life in a nation built of lies and deceit and treachery; where sharing democracy with the world means bringing death from the skies and the stormtrooopers who facilitate that carnage are regarded as heroes even by those who claim to oppose the never-ending war and invasion and occupation to lay seige to other countries' resources; where all power is transfered to the Halliban plutocracy and the christian-fundamentalist theocracy; where waging war for oil is more important that education and healthcare and the president is applauded for saying so.
Yeah, I'll vote. I'll participate in this broken corrupt system to save myself from having to listen to others tell me that if I don't vote, I have no right to complain. That's the rub that Americans always present us dissenters with, isn't it? Either vote for something against which you are morally and philisohically opposed, or else your fundamental right to freedom of speech doesn't exist. I'm not allowed to express my opinion unless I march in lockstep with the machinery of the corporate machine that is America.
Yeah, I'll vote. May the best tool win.
bonus vid :)