Wednesday, June 07, 2006

6+6+06...Heed The Omen

"Bad officials are elected by good citizens who don't vote."

-George Nathan

I bet when you saw the title of this entry you thought I was going to write about the remake of the 1976, Richard Donner horror classic, "The Omen." Well, no, I was actually talking about the California primary. I went yesterday afternoon, (Tuesday) to my polling place, which looked more like a ghost town, then a place to make my social voice heard. And it had been that way all day. According to a recent Field poll, only one-in-four Californians or about 5 million, were planning to go to the polls, which makes it the worst turn-out since 1946.

As I mentioned in a previous entry, the campaign between the two top democrats seeking to challenge Gov. Schwarzenegger, Steve Westly and Phil Angelides, became more then a little heated. Lots of mud to be slung any way you looked at it, which apparently turned a lot of folks off to the whole prospect of taking time out of their day to vote. As disgusted as I felt myself getting over the dirty politics, it only strengthened my intentions to make it to the polls today. I saw one or two "Man on the Street" interviews throughout the day, and here is a small sampling of what folks told the reporters who asked them if they would be voting today...

"All the mud slinging put me off."

"The issues don't really affect me."

"I was put off to the political process back in 2004."

"I didn't have time."

"I don't care who runs against Schwarzenegger, I will figure it all out in November."

Sigh. I hear over and over about how we have our young women and men in Iraq to fight for our freedom, and democracy, yet only 5 million Californians could be bothered to get out and vote? Yes, the primary decided state issues, such as senatorial candidates, and propositions, but it all matters or none of it does. It doesn't matter what party you are affiliated with, we shouldn't be picking and choosing what freedoms we embrace. If we do, we risk losing all freedom. We already have less privacy then ever before, so I guess we all need to decide what we are willing to give up next, due to complacency and indifference. I will admit, it felt strange to cast my vote on 6-6-06, but on the other hand, I think given the projected low voter turn out, I am glad I decided to "Heed The Omen."

"Alameda County"
Berkeley, California
June 6, 2006

Update: Phil Angelides has been declared the winner in the primary, so tell me, will Arnold Schwarzenegger be re-elected in November or will Phil Angelides be voted in as the next governor of California? Tell me what you think.


Globetrotter said...

Phil Angelides. Hmmmm.... Interesting name in light of the fact that he won on the devil's day! COuld be a good OMEN!

All puns aside, it's sad that the democratic party seems incapable of putting anyone forward on the ticket to incite any excitement, or get people to really want to vote. People are apathetic, yes. But the politicians we're asked to select from are simply nothing to write home about, either.

Looking at the 12 current Democrat presidential possibility candidates for 2008 makes me want to weep. Hillary simply can't win, in my opinion. Too many people detest her, including me. So who's left to swing the left?

Very depressing...

DesLily said...

most wind up voting for the lesser of 2 evils because there's really no one running that they have confidence in.... it's all big money anymore.

Laura said...

the biggest frustration in my county was some polling places weren't ready when the polls opened. several in Lodi and Stockton didn't even have the voting machines delivered by 7am. In my town a number of polling places did not have enough staff and it was reported that quite a few left without voting.

It was an interesting primary to say the least. I must admit I was not thrilled with my choices. Hint to Phil:, et al, the mud-slinging really put me off to you and your opponent. Frankly I wish I could have selected neither since so much energy and $$$$$$ was wasted on pointing fingers at one another. Issues guys, strictly issues regardless of your opponent slinging mud. It would push me to give up and not vote but ever the optimist I imagine someone someday will actually 100% stick to issues. It could happen.

Charley said...

One of the things that I lament much about America's predisposition with 'democracy' as opposed to our actual form of government, a republic, is the loss of the caucus.

As populism sweeps across the political landscape we have replaced the caucus with the primary and the referendum. I long for the 'old days', that I never even experienced, when parties went behind closed doors, hammered out thier platform on every issue and emerged with a candidate.

Every bit of political campaigning was done for the final election and there were no questions on where someone stood, unless they ignored an issue in their platform.

The primary has resulted in wasted energy, politicians more concerned with polls than principles and an american public so disinterested in its constant bickery and innane idiocy that they'd rather vote for American idol than their leaders.

Blechh. I can't stand democracy for dummies.


sunflowerkat119 said...

I think the mudslinging is the demise of the process. It a pathetic shame that the candidates have to resort to emphasizing their competetors weaknesses rather than their own strengths. I always vote...but I think overall, people are sick of choosing between "the lesser of two evils". Wouldn't it be something to have a candidate you had real faith in???