By Jack Balkwill
December 22nd, 2015
Americans understand the elections are rigged. In the last national election, in 2014, just 36.4 percent of the voting-eligible population cast ballots.
Of the 320 million Americans, about 80 million are under age to vote. of the remaining 240 million about 100 million do not participate in the elections.
There are a great many reasons to be discouraged. The American government does not represent the American people. One may look at any number of polls showing what the American people want, and what they get, often the direct opposite.
For example, citizens want the wealthy to participate in paying taxes at a higher level. Currently the tax rate of the wealthy is far below that of the working class. If anything, taxes continue to be lowered for the wealthy, and services continue to be lowered for the average citizen.
Citizens want the wars ended. The wars increase to the benefit of the wealthy, who do not fight in them and take risks — that is for the peasants — but take massive profits from them.
Citizens want universal health care. Citizens get corporate controlled denial of health care, maximizing corporate profits and making the wealthy wealthier.
The Democrats and Republicans are on their knees begging for campaign contributions from transnational investors and transnational corporations that don’t give a damn about the nation or its people, beyond access to the treasury and lawmaking.
Corporate media allow only Democrats and Republicans to be seen and heard, shutting out any candidate who represents the public interest.
So a large number of progressive-minded people are now advocating for not voting, to teach those in power a lesson. I can’t fathom what that lesson might be, or how those in power would not be pleased from this. Already, a minority of the population vote in most of our elections, one of the lowest voter turnouts in the world.
Already corporate media spin this to say (I have heard this all my long life) “American voters are satisfied, because they didn’t come to the voting booths.” If only one in a million voters showed up they would say this. It’s their job to convince the masses that we have a republic (even though in a true republic the government represents the people).
Not voting is exactly what those in power want, if citizens don’t vote for their bribed “two party system” candidates.
Rulers who don’t care about workers dying in unsafe workplaces, about the environment being trashed, about thousands dying from a lack of health care, or dozens of other serious problems entirely ignored by subservient government and subservient corporate media don’t really care about how many people vote.
Instead of helping the plutocrats and oligarchs with this people should organize to vote for third parties which represent their interests. It is idiotic to vote for someone like Hillary Clinton to keep Republicans from winning. People say “If I vote for a Green, we can’t win.” Well, if you vote for Hillary, you can’t win. What in hell would you be winning?—the right to have lower wages, a trashed environment and war?
For decades I have heard people say they will vote for a sellout Democrat to avoid a Republican, and the working class have continued in a downward spiral. Wages have dropped since 1973 for workers, under Democrats and Republicans.
There are good people like Jill Stein running for office against slings and arrows, and they deserve to be supported. If not now, when? I am tired of saying “I told you so,” and watch Democrats get into the White House, kneel, and kiss plutocrat butt, just as eagerly and sycophantically as Republicans.
Jack Balkwill is an activist in Virginia. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org Read other articles by Jack.