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Why I Did Not Vote On November 6, 2012

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Why I Did Not Vote On November 6, 2012

By Ed Ciaccio

November 17, 2012

"It is what you do that makes you who you are."

- Barbara Kingsolver, Animal dreams

"Empire abroad entails tyranny at home."

- Hannah Arendt

Now that the elections are history, for those who may be interested, the following is an explanation of why I did not vote. I had originally intended to post this essay before the elections, but then I realized I had no right to even attempt to influence others in how they should vote. It is up to each citizen to be well-informed and decide what she or he will do on Election Day. My decision is solely my own.

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Superstorm Sandy only further confirmed my decision not to post before the election by knocking out the cable connection to the Internet, but not our electricity, so I could still use my computer to write, revise, and edit, but not to get online.

So, what follows are my reasons for not voting, well-considered long before Election Day. If they enable the reader to at least understand my decision not to vote anymore, regardless of whether or not the reader agrees, this essay will have succeeded.

Romney's Choice and Obama's Record

Once Mitt Romney chose Paul Ryan as his running mate, many liberals opined that the choice for voters could not be more clear: with his choice, Romney did not merely certify his extreme, right-wing,Tea Party credentials, but further distanced himself from Barack Obama, the (by comparison) "liberal", supposedly-safety net-supporting candidate.

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We already know Romney's record as governor of Massachusetts, a relatively liberal state where Romney had to pretend to be a moderate Republican, complete with "Romneycare", the model for "Obamacare". We also know Romney will say anything to get elected (as did Obama in both 2008 and 2012).

We also know Paul Ryan's record in Congress as the author of one of the cruelest budget proposals in recent memory, unless you love the top 1% and want to do everything you can to increase their already-obscene wealth.

But now, after the three televised "debates" (actually over-hyped joint press conferences), during which neither the existential threat of catastrophic climate change nor increasing U.S. poverty and inequality were ever mentioned, especially the third debate on foreign policy, in which Romney essentially agreed with Obama's violent, imperialistic foreign policy (the foreign policy of every President), and after more than three-and-a-half years of Obama's presidency, we have an extensive record of Obama's actions, not merely his fine-sounding rhetoric, by which to judge him.

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Ed Ciaccio is a retired teacher who is active in the justice and peace community on Long Island, NY, and a writer whose work is featured at Dandelion Salad and has also been posted on Buzzflash and Information Clearing House as well as OpEdNews.

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Voting to maintain an evil system is a form of com... by Ed Ciaccio on Sunday, Nov 25, 2012 at 11:12:37 AM
Thank you for this article. It should be mandator... by Gail Harrison on Monday, Nov 26, 2012 at 12:48:05 AM
brilliant! don't vote.... by sbaker on Sunday, Nov 25, 2012 at 12:58:25 PM
A very lengthy & prescient article that really exp... by Rico D. on Sunday, Nov 25, 2012 at 8:29:49 PM
The entirety of what we call a "voting process" is... by Rico D. on Tuesday, Nov 27, 2012 at 12:21:03 AM by Arend Rietkerk on Sunday, Nov 25, 2012 at 8:43:29 PM
I mean, all-in-all, this is a spot-on piece.  ... by Taylor on Sunday, Nov 25, 2012 at 9:12:12 PM
Impressive for the range of analysis and discussio... by Samuel Scharff on Sunday, Nov 25, 2012 at 11:49:14 PM
Ciaccio did explain why he did not vote Green or a... by Richard Pietrasz on Monday, Nov 26, 2012 at 2:16:25 AM
Yes, Ciaccio appears to be laboring under some psy... by Gregory Kilcup on Monday, Nov 26, 2012 at 6:00:11 AM
On January 2, 2013, Barack Obama will once again s... by Walter F. Wouk on Monday, Nov 26, 2012 at 9:10:27 AM
Excellent point, Mr. Wouk.... by Taylor on Monday, Nov 26, 2012 at 3:41:05 PM
I voted against Obama.  And I did not vote fo... by Samson on Monday, Nov 26, 2012 at 4:31:24 PM
Me too. I voted Green Party.... by Walter F. Wouk on Tuesday, Nov 27, 2012 at 5:14:46 PM
"Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God w... by Samson on Monday, Nov 26, 2012 at 3:22:15 PM
But what if you don't like any of the candidates? ... by Taylor on Monday, Nov 26, 2012 at 3:44:36 PM
There were other candidates besides Romney and Oba... by Samson on Monday, Nov 26, 2012 at 4:29:17 PM
If we want change, we have to build an electoral ... by Samson on Monday, Nov 26, 2012 at 4:29:35 PM
ARE YOU SURE, and who are you to say something lik... by Tony Orlando on Friday, Nov 30, 2012 at 1:43:37 PM