Thursday, October 27, 2016

vote early ... or not

When I was a kid, there was no TV. At the end of the school day, I liked to come home, turn on the radio and listen to soap operas -- continuing sagas of one kind or another. I loved stories and the soaps told stories that even a second-grader like me could understand. There was, however, a fly in the ointment: The shows kept splicing in advertising. Ads would disrupt the flow of the stories I wanted to hear and one day, I hit on a second-grader's solution: I would do as the ad invited, ship off my 25 cents (a whole week's allowance) for flower seeds and THEN, of course, the ads would stop interrupting MY shows. There would no longer be the need for ads since I had bought my fair share.

Needless to say, my logic was flawed: The flower seeds arrived, I spread them without care in the back yard ... and the ads kept on coming.

This morning, I am considering how I might splice in an early-voting possibility at City Hall. I'd like to get it out of the way because I suspect the presidential election day, Nov. 8, is likely to produce a crowd at the polling place. But flickering to the side of my fears is the notion that if I vote early, the drum-beat of mindless politics will somehow end; I will have paid my dues and the news media that has proved itself a lickspittle to the electoral posturings of Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump will shut ... the ... fuck ... up!

Yes, I'd like to vote early: My choices feel stark: Vote against Trump, a sociopath nitwit who has tapped into a legitimate strain of voter discontent but has yet to lay out a single policy; vote for Clinton and 15 more years of politically-useful war in Afghanistan. It's not a delightful scenario, but if voting early will ease the sense of mild depression, a smog of sick air afoot in the land ... what the heck ... I'll do it.

And of course my voting will do precisely zero to affect the underlying story that goes on and on and on and on ... the one that neither candidate speaks about ... the country both claim to want to lead ... the country whose wars sap the national piggy bank and cast a nation into third-world status.

Luckily, more or less, there is the question on the ballot that asks whether Massachusetts should raise the cap on the charter schools in the state. Charter schools take money from public schools and create specialized and innovate schools outside the purview of school committees and the like. I favor innovation in schools ... all schools. Pulling an end run around the public school system fires up my desire to vote against it.

Against ... there is a lot of "against" in the air these days.

Me too.

Nonetheless, hope springs eternal, I suppose. In Inner Mongolia, responsibility for some 200 fatally-poisoned swans was laid at the doorstep of unnamed "poachers." Nevertheless...
Tian Yangyang, from environmental organisation Let Birds Fly, told the Sixth Tone website that many poached swans end up in restaurants in China, some of which offer "swan feasts" on their menus.
Despite the fact that many poached animals are killed with poison, "most people believe eating wild animals is healthy," he said.
A swan feast ....

Eat your poison, dear.


  1. “An election is a moral horror, as bad as a battle except for the blood; a mud bath for every soul concerned in it.” » George Bernard Shaw

  2. “Hell, I never vote for anybody, I always vote against.” » W. C. Fields

    “Democracy is being allowed to vote for the candidate you dislike least.” » Robert Byrne

    “If voting changed anything, they’d make it illegal.” » Emma Goldman

    “As people do better, they start voting like Republicans – unless they have too much education and vote Democratic, which proves there can be too much of a good thing.” » Karl Rove

    “If the gods had intended for people to vote, they would have given us candidates.” » Howard Zinn

    “Majority rule only works if you’re also considering individual rights. Because you can’t have five wolves and one sheep voting on what to have for supper.” » Larry Flynt

  3. Am allowed to take precepts from an Nepalese Indian Gautama Buddha who is also not a registered voter like me I'm with the Bodhi.

    Refrain from killing.
    Refrain from robbing.
    Refrain from illicit sex.
    Refrain from unwise speech.
    Refrain from intoxicants.