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Don't VoteOver time we published several articles describing our point of view about voting (we are against it, if you really want to know) including Dont Be A Spoilsport Dont Vote, To Vote Or Not To Vote Is The Question and Every Vote Discounts. This last one was done in a more or less formal and formalized format that you would expect to find in typical voting advocacy brochures, websites or speeches. Now is the turn to explain this same point of view but from a practical perspective, and this perspective is quite simple.

NOBODY LISTENS

The whole premise of modern democratic systems is that in order to get elected politicians need to listen to the people. This need is practical (to make promises and hence gather votes to get elected and so implement those promises) as well as philosophical in nature (Social Contracts and all that jazz). Because of this, democratic systems are "good". But even if this would be true…

The problem is that there is a total and complete disconnection between what people say to politicians and how they act once elected. We are not aware of a single person, anywhere on the planet who is 100% satisfied with all the formal acts of any representative. As a matter of fact 60% of people distrust the government (see In Government We Distrust). But it gets worse. As politicians must represent opposing points of view simultaneously, this makes it impossible to implement both at the same time. In summary:

  • Politicians do not implement what they promised
  • There is no way for politicians to implement what all people want

The net effect is equivalent to politicians not listening. Whether they listen or not this fact has no medium to long term impact in our lives. Our lives are determined by politicians' actions which do not originate nor depend upon their listening capabilities or will. In a word, they are deaf.

NOBODY HELPS

As politicians do not listen to us and implement whatever they want, they end up not helping. By definition their needs are not our needs. Their priorities are not our priorities and even when by some sort of miraculous coincidence they do help, there are always side effects that nullify that help. Worse. The side effects are so severe that end up making the whole situation even worse. Take for example the unholy trinity (tax, borrow and print). According to politicians this is necessary to achieve an "equitable society" through the "redistribution of wealth". In other words, give poor people what they need.

The problem is that since the 60's or so  all major economic catastrophes can be linked directly to these policies. These policies prevented wealth creation at a world-wide scale all the while building and triggering far worse economic debacles which, as you can guess, affected poor people the most! The amount of real wealth that was destroyed by this process is between 0.4 and 1.4% real GDP per year over at least 25 years at the minimum (see Dont Worry Be Happy).

But don't you worry because this tiny problem will be solved any time now. For sure. You can trust us. Really, really soon now.

The reality is that no politician helps even assuming (and this requires a gigantic leap of the imagination) they are doing so out of good will.

NOBODY LISTENS NOBODY HELPS

But if nobody listens and nobody helps, what's the point of voting at all? What's the point of having people controlling and directing our lives? It most certainly is not for our own benefit and it most certainly is not for the "benefit of society" (whatever it may mean). And so, the logic conclusion is that if nobody listens and nobody helps, we should vote nobody! Remove the middle man out of the transaction since this person happens to be a con artist anyways!

It is true that in some countries some services do provide some help to some people. We will go as far as to say that in a few selected countries, some government services actually help a majority of people. A classic example of this is socialized medicine. However (and there is always a however), the side effect of this socialization is that over many decades the cost of health care has skyrocketed so much that for any intent and purpose it is now inaccessible to the average person. It is a self-fulfilling prophecy. The more governments socialize the higher the costs and therefore the higher the need for socialization (see for example Socialism - The Most Addictive Drug). The bottom line is that there is no free lunch. If you want free, somebody will have to pay for it plus incidentals plus side effects.

CONCLUSION

Realistically speaking we only have two options. We either vote and continue with this bankrupt system or we don't. If we vote we are acknowledging that we want our lives to be controlled by other people without our knowledge or consent. The key question then becomes: at which point there is enough control? How do we define the point at which certain decisions taken by other people no longer represent "the best for us"? And how would we recognize such a point? The answer is that we can’t. There is no such point. Every end point is arbitrary, subjective, permanently changeable and personal. As If that would not be enough, every person is different.

It is for this reason that voting is not the answer. To vote is to perpetuate the myth that we cannot decide for ourselves what's best for us. Only "they" can, and based on their track record alone, we can say with certainty that they are pretty lousy at it.

Vote, don't vote. It's your choice. But if you don't, what's the worst that can happen? No, seriously.

Note: please see the Glossary if you are unfamiliar with certain words.

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