Mitt Romney is not the only choice on the ballot this fall
With the conservative sphere beginning to finally coalesce around Mitt Romney, like a soap opera that has just gone on way too long, the conservatives are now going into full defense mode of the Mitt and his hairdo. He may not be the best choice, but as far as they’re concerned, he’s the only choice.
Which leads to idiotic tweets like this:
If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem. That means if you’re not for Mitt Romney, you’re for Barack Obama.
— Kevin Eder (@keder) May 7, 2012
At this point, not voting for Romney is like being in a plane w/ no working engines but not jumping bc you don’t trust parachutes. cc @keder
— Will Antonin (@Will_Antonin) May 12, 2012
Or maybe even this:
Hardcore libertarians should vote for Romney because he’ll at least give you something and Obama would take everything @kesgardner
— Adam D Seidel (@AdamDSeidel) May 13, 2012
No doubt these tweets are emerging because of fear that disgruntled Republicans may vote for Ron Paul or, heaven forbid, Gary Johnson of the Libertarian Party, instead for the GOP’s presumptive nominee.
It has constantly been the refrain of both major parties that you shouldn’t vote third party because, well, “the other guy will win, and he’s really bad (compared to our guy who is just a little bad),” or “your vote will just be wasted.”
Let me tell you something: in a democracy such as ours, your vote is never wasted. Well, let me walk that back: you waste your vote if and only if you vote for someone who you don’t agree with.
That means “strategic voting” is wasting votes. That means any sort of consideration based on “spoiled vote syndrome” wastes your vote. As long as you vote true to your convictions, your vote is not wasted. Yes, it sounds like idealism. That’s because, in part, it is. But it is also how democracies are intended to work. Once people start “strategically voting,” we end up with the morass we have today.
Second, look at what all that “strategic voting” has done for us, in all the years were libertarians have held their noses and voted for conservatives. Reagan was good compared to all the others, but H.W. Bush was reheated meatloaf, and his son Dubya was a disaster, both for civil liberties and the economy. You can complain all you want about Obama—and I know I do every day—but it was George W. Bush who laid the groundwork for Obama’s terrible presidency. If Bush (and Congressional Republicans between 2000-2006) had not been so profligant in their spending, so callous of the Constitution, and so corrupt in their dealings with the market, it’s very likely that not only would the 2007-2012 recession not have been created, but Obama’s administration would be much, much more subdued and spending nowhere near as much money. Face it, Republicans: you brought this on yourselves.
So let’s look at these tweets. First, what would Romney give us? Second, would Romney be the parachute that would save us from certain death? And third, how can one equate opposition to Mitt Romney as support for Barack Obama if Romney isn’t part of the solution?
I ask all these questions because, from where I’m standing, Mitt Romney is no different from Barack Obama.
- He takes credit for the Big Auto bailouts…which was an Obama policy, and is just more crony capitalism;
- His has stocked his foreign policy advisory team with Bush administration neocon retreads…who’s views on foreign policy are oddly similar to Obama’s practices;
- He has shown no real passion for actually cutting government spending…so his administration will be just as expensive as the Obamessiah’s is;
- He supports more stimulus…just like Obama;
- He has not demonstrated, at any point, that he would actually fight for civil liberties (as evidenced by Michael Chertoff, former DHS secretary and the man behind the TSA scanners, being on his adivsory team)…so his administration will be just as un-American as Obama’s;
- He created the freaking prototype for Obamacare in Massachusetts…so you can’t say that he would do anything for consumer freedom or healthcare reform.
And so on and so forth.
When you consider that Romney would basically be a repeat of Barack Obama (who himself is essentially George W. Bush’s third term), then opposition to Romney would be by definition opposition to Obama. Maybe the reason we’re not trusting the parachute is because it has a really big hole in it. And the only thing I see Romney giving us is more of the same: Obamanomics.
For these reasons and more, not supporting Romney doesn’t mean you’re supporting Obama. They’re the same guy, just in different jerseys and in different packaging. At best, you have some slight differences on social issues (though Brian notes that Obama is being disingenous on his end), but at the core they’re just crony capitalists of the same breed.
A vote for X is a vote for X, not Y, you morons. Get it straight.