Why would I want anyone but me to vote?

I do not support this “Go Vote!” nonsense.

I do not want my opinion diluted. If it were up to me I’d be the only one voting. Period. Can’t risk my even my wonderful wife and kids disagreeing with me, much less my neighbors and friends, much less the polloi.

Democracy is all about the **right **to vote. Practicality is all about the voluntary abdication of that right by others, rendering my personal opinion more significant. Which it is.

There is no greater good served by pooling ignorance.

Did you mean polling ignorance?

Wacko fringe candidate’s only chances of winning are when there are low voter turnouts.

Ideally no one but me would vote, but knowing that people that disagree with me tend to vote more religiously(no pun intended), I support getting more people to vote in general because my fellow democrats have a track record of being lazy.

Only you voting would be a dictatorship, with you the dictator. I don’t want you to be the dictator, and conversely you don’t want me to be the dictator. So we have the compromise, and share out political power among everyone. As someone (I think Winston Churchill) said, “Democracy is the worst form of govrnment, except for all the others.”

Well, let me see if I can answer this with some interesting points:

  1. Interest in participation in democracy is, by extent, interest in the continuance of democracy. If you were the only person voting, and 300,000,000 Americans didn’t care about the election, they would rapidly lose interest in whether or not elections took place at all. A citizenry disinterested in voting won’t care if democracy is taken away, which leads to inferior forms of governance.

  2. An active electorate is likely a more informed electorate. Someone who takes the time to vote is likelier to inform themselves on the issues than someone who does not. That’s not universally true - some people are just cheerleaders or idiots who always vote for one parts - but it’s probably generally true, and if greatest participation can be sustained over the long term, I believe you’ll end up with a more informed and active electorate, which means politicians will be held more acocuntable.


No it wouldn’t. Not as long as you’re not voting for yourself. And even then you can’t vote yourself into every position in all 3 branches of the government (can’t vote yourself into the judicial branch at all, which would stop you if you magically voted yourself into every position in the other 2.)

Dictators don’t occupy all the government positions. Do you think Stalin occupied all the elected positions in the Soviet Union? He didn’t have time to do all that work: he delegated it to people he could trust (and then, of course, had other people he could trust watching over the first lot). In fact, for most of his dictatorship, he did not hold government office: he ran the country as General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.

So, if your vote determines who fills every position, you’re a dictator.

Ah, if only I were King, how wonderful the world would be . . .


(By CP): There is no greater good served by pooling ignorance.


I think the answer to the OP is that if you know that some other people will vote, then it is in your best interest that people who feel similarly to you also vote so that your opinion can be expressed in the majority.

Filed in my brain under “cool shit I read about once” is a study that asked groups of people of various sizes questions that they should not have known the answers to (math equations using symbols that had no standard usage, questions about the number of isotopes to be found in uranium samples from a particular location, number of text messages sent by Paris Hilton last Tuesday, that sort of thing). However they did it, they tried to use sets of people who really did not know and would not be expected to know the answers to the questions. They had everybody guess anyway. As the pool of the ignorant got larger, the average of the answers got closer to being correct, even where every person in the pool claimed ignorance.

In the particular case of voting, it seems to me that the more people vote, the more the middle will blunt the extremes. YMMV on whether this is a good thing or not.

Are you under the impression that those of us who say “Go Vote!” do want our opinions diluted by contrary votes?

Of course we don’t. We just feel that the principle of supporting the right to vote for everybody is more important than our natural but selfish wish to be the only ones whose votes count.

ISTR that the turnout for the 1932 German election was a record. Just saying.

Yes. And Hitler lost.

No he didn’t. In the July elections, the Nazis got 37.8%. In the November elections, they got 33.1%. In both cases, they were the party with the largest percentage of votes, and got the most seats in the Reichstag.

He lost the presidency, though. I thought that was the election that was being referenced. If Hindenburg (who DID win the presidency) hadn’t made Hitler chancellor, a lot of nastiness could have been avoided.

Here’s the way I look at it:

Let’s say I am a god and the only things in the world are things that I invented. The world would be a very small, very empty, very unsurprising place. I’m somewhat creative but not creative enough, somewhat well-read but not well-read enough, somewhat clever but not clever enough. I don’t have all the answers. I don’t even know most of the questions. And, of course, I don’t know when I’m wrong until after I’m wrong.

Besides, who do you pawn responsibility off on if you made all the decisions?

Funny, I had this thought earlier today while reading a Wall St. Journal article about a dingbat couple in Ohio who were just agonizing up until the very last minute* about who to vote for in the Presidential race. Both were Democrats; the wife couldn’t make up her mind to vote for Obama because of Rev. Wright (she couldn’t comprehend how the candidate could have sat there and listened to someone being condescending (her words)). The husband was undecided until Warren Buffett endorsed Obama, then he gave his support too, saying “We need a businessman in the White House” (exactly how a Buffett endorsement makes Obama a businessman is one of those eternal mysteries that’ll never be solved).

Supposedly they both wound up voting for Obama, but as part of the great Moron Voter Pool, who knows which way they’ll jump in a future election.
*I’d bet anything these two will wind up on some future jury in a criminal case, taking three days to reach a verdict that halfway intelligent humans could’ve decided in in a couple of hours.

Eh, maybe, although I think a Hitler chancellorship was almost inevitable at that point. (Jan of '33). The Nazis had enough popularity that without Nazi government participation they could block most votes in the Reichstag, and I don’t think it was possible to establish a governing coalition without them…even an SDP/Center/BVP coalition would only manage to get 211 votes (out of the 293 needed). Given that there’s no way the Nationalists or the Communists would have participated in an SDP/Center coalition (and there’s no way the SDP or Center would have asked them). The only alternative would have been for Schleichter to stay Chancellor and rule by decree, and I don’t think people would have stood for that.