Election day's coming up. November 5th. If you haven't registered to vote, the deadline (in Cali at least) is October 21st. So hurry!
The main race in California this year is majorly depressing. Gray Davis vs Bill Simon. One's a whore, the other's a self-styled "Reagan Republican" allied with religious fringe groups like the Traditional Values Coalition and accused of massive fraud. I'm tempted to wash my hands of both of them and vote Green. But since it's gonna be a close election, that would be tantamount to handing the governorship to Simon.
Like I said, very depressing. I can't remember the last time I voted for a candidate I actually supported. Usually I end up voting for whichever one I despise least. But still, I don't buy the spurious and ill-conceived argument that "both parties are essentially the same." Would John "We Need an American STASI" Ashcroft have been appointed under Al Gore? Would a host of ultra-conservative judicial nominees be banging at the gates of our federal courts? Would funding for UN family planning services have been cut? Would stem-cell research have been stifled? Would we still have embarked upon a pig-headedly unilateral approach to international policy that has alienated almost every country in the world? Would we still be FUCKING FOURTH AND INCHES FROM WWIII?
Sorry. I just can't help but notice that we appear to be at the brink of war and nobody can really explain why. "Well because Saddam is a dangerous madman." Right, but North Korea and Pakistan (both dangerously unstable nuclear powers) don't need to be invaded. Or are they next? What is the real purpose of this war? In the past I have dismissed accusations of "wagging the dog" as unduly cynical. But given that Karl Rove is on the record as arguing that Republicans need to "focus on the war" in the upcoming elections, it's hard not to be cynical.
Anyway, the point of this post isn't to preach at length. Just wanted to remind you to register & vote. Boots Riley once disparaged voting as "the least amount of work you can do politically." I would say rather that voting is the second-least amount of work you can do politically, and there's a critical gulf between that and nothing.