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Saturday, June 26, 2004

Is anyone else as confounded about this election as I am?

First, reality check. I am not a full-time political analyst and don’t have enough hours in the day to slog through every nuance of a candidate’s platform. There is simply too much out there and too much of it is smokescreen. So, I do what most reasonable people do: Try to understand the basic issues and the issues that most concern me, figure each candidate’s supposed position on them, consider opinions of people I respect whose views are along the lines of my own, and take a look at what the people are saying who are my diametric opposite. Then I scratch my head.

I figure, we’re only picking a general manager, it should be simple: The war-monger, or the other guy. Much of the strength of an administration lies in the decision making and power of the various department heads. Bush has chosen a scary group of extremists for his. Kerry’s cohorts, assuming he is the guy officially tapped, who knows? It’s probably clear to most of you that I lean Libertarian, although I am officially on the books as No Party Affiliation. Yup, I’m one of those key Florida swing votes, and in my own defense, I punched a mean chad back in 2000. With the left fractured, Democrat, Independent, Green Party, Libertarian, there’s no point in casting a vote for my true choice candidate. The numbers game reduces me to casting a vote against a particular candidate; voting for the lesser of two evils. That is not my idea of a successful process. When and how did we get stuck with the two-party system? How do we put an end to it? Or, how do we fracture the Republican Party to even the playing field?

In the July issue of Vanity Fair, Christopher Hitchens has written a heartwarming column about the cracks beginning to appear among the Republicans, between neocons and traditional conservatives. This could prove to be an important development. Keep your fingers crossed.

Why don’t we adopt the idea of compulsory attendance at the polls, like Australia, fining people who don’t vote? Wouldn’t this encourage participation by those lower socio-economic groups who don’t generally turn out at the polling places, but traditionally favor the Democrats? Oh, I think I may have just answered my own question.

Jeb Bush is still refusing to revamp the electronic voting system put in place after the last debacle. The new system is not without its faults. No paper trail is available to vouch for accuracy in at least 11 Florida counties, leaving them unable to manually recount results in another expectedly close contest. Great. Gives all those conspiracy theorists something to obsess about.

Remember the Flori-duh headlines? Just wait.

Why are there fewer political blogs written by women? Maybe men who blog have more free time to analyze the intricacies of the political scene, while women who blog, who are no less concerned about politics, are just more closely involved with the day-to-day dealings of their families. You write what you know.

As a busy homeschooling, blogging mom, I must try to devote more time toward a deeper understanding of, and participation in politics. In the meantime, I’ll continue to devote my time to raising a batch of good little revolutionaries.

I’m Lynne D., and I approve this message.

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