BAN #57: V O T E

October 29, 2018 Issue #57

Subscribers should vote. Non-subscribers should vote. VOTE.


Politics

As Dave Barry said, “Poli” = many and “tics” = blood-sucking parasites

I want change in my government.

I want intelligent, compassionate, reasonable discussion of how we minimize gun violence in this country. I want the CDC to be able to investigate gun violence. I don’t want to hear any more “thoughts and prayers”. I don’t want to hear “Too soon” when the lapse between mass shootings is measured in days. Or hours.

I want to have Congress investigating the rampant fraud and scandals plaguing Trump’s Cabinet.

I want to see Donald Trump’s tax returns. If he’s compromised by foreign governments — and there’s plenty of evidence to suggest he is — we need to know.

I want Congress to investigate accusations of sexual harassment and abuse in all three branches of government.

I want House and Senate Committees to be invested in actually doing what the Committees are supposed to do.

I want people who head federal departments not be intent on destroying what those departments are designed to protect.

I want women’s rights to be a priority.

I want investigations into widespread voter fraud… and by that I mean voter suppression going on in more than a handful of states.

I want every human in this country, citizen or not, to be accorded human rights. I want people who are trying to get into this country legally (in many cases escaping horrors we ourselves have created or enflamed) taken care of humanely and fairly.

I want politicians who are not racist, xenophobic, anti-Semitic, lying misogynists.

I also want science to take its rightful place as a guide to what is real and what isn’t. I want politicians who will understand we need to phase out fossil fuels, who invest in solar power, give credits and tax breaks and other incentives to use green energy, who understand we desperately need a carbon tax, and see that doing all this will actually save us vast amounts of money — and save the damn planet — in the long (or even medium) run.

I want an EPA that will protect the environment, an Education Department that helps students, an Energy Department that doesn’t bend over backwards for fossil fuel interests, a Department of Homeland Security that will actually secure the Homeland (instead of play-acting a fantasy).

I want my government to represent the people.

Obviously, I want a lot of things, way more than I listed here. I bet you do, too.

Seems impossible, doesn’t it? We’re so far under there’s no way back to surface, right?

Nope. Getting back is entirely possible.

Vote.

Yup. Vote. Tuesday, November 6.

[Correction: I made a mistake in the next part, describing the site Ballot Ready but linking it to TurboVote. I’ve corrected it and I apologize for any confusion.]

It’s actually pretty easy. A friend of mine showed me a GREAT website called TurboVote that can help. Also check out VOTE.org, which has a ton of useful info.

I also found one called Ballot Ready that lists out your local issues if you enter your address. The descriptions are simple and a fantastic place to start. I read up on all the issues and referenda and people running locally, which gave me enough information to dig deeper where I needed to.

If you’ve never done it before, the process of voting itself may seem daunting. But it’s not that bad! If you don’t believe me, maybe you’ll believe the cheerful face of Demi Adejuyigbe:

My stand on most big issues should be pretty obvious to anyone who’s read my stuff or follows me on social media. But I’ve been thinking about it, and I have decided to make a pledge about this, something public and easy, something anyone and everyone can understand:

I pledge that I will not vote for anyone in the GOP running for office.

See? That’s pretty straightforward.

If you’re in the GOP, you get no vote from me.

Why? Because, for the reasons listed above, and so many more, the GOP cannot be trusted with the reins of our government for any longer.

The core issue here is actually pretty simple: The party with more seats in the House and/or Senate gets to pick who is on the Committees. And those people run your life. Energy, justice, commerce, foreign relations, veteran affairs… these affect all of us, deeply and in real life. We cannot let the GOP continue to be in charge of those committees.

And even if there were a moderate running under the Republican banner — and I have yet to see one — if they win, that seat counts toward the GOP total, one closer to running the committees.

So dump ‘em on November 6. Vote.

You may not love your Democratic politician, but I can absolutely guarantee that this person will be a better choice than their GOP counterpart, if only for this reason. Jim Wright, aka Stonekettle, wrote a fantastic article on this: Hunting the Unicorn — to Extinction. In it, he makes the case that waiting for the perfect candidate, or voting third party in a tight race, is letting a Republican win. And if they retain enough seats, things will get worse.

A lot worse. Once Trump knows he has breathing room from Congress, he’ll really let go. And the GOP has outright said they’re coming for Medicare and Social Security. They steal that all from you, and give the money to their funders. That’s no conspiracy theory. We saw it happen when they passed their atrocious tax bill, where parts were written literally at the last minute by lobbyists.

So. Vote.

You still have a week. November 6 is eight days away. Do the research; it takes less than an hour. Make sure you are still registered, too.

Then vote. If you encounter a problem at the poll, call the election protection hotline: 866-OUR-VOTE. Keep that number handy (and be careful voting straight party-line ticket; there have been issues in Texas with that. Double check your ballot as you vote if you’re using a machine!).

Vote.

Got it? Vote. November 6. Tuesday.

In a week we have a chance to quite literally save the future.

Vote.


Et alia

You can email me at thebadastronomer@gmail.com (though replies can take a while), and all my social media outlets are gathered together at about.me. Also, if you don’t already, please subscribe to this newsletter! And feel free to tell a friend or nine, too. Thanks! And vote.