A do-over

As a strategy for social and political change, voting is obsolete.

The last two presidential elections were apparently stolen. George W. Bush didn’t actually get the most popular votes in 2000 or 2004. The Republican Party cheated every way they could think of. They prevented hundreds of thousands of people from voting, they threw away votes or just didn’t count them. If nothing else worked, they changed the numbers.

But soldiers don’t care. There are U.S. troops in Iraq because goons do whatever they’re told. That’s how you know they’re goons. It doesn’t matter what the voting process was like that elected the man who wants them in Iraq. They don’t care about voting irregularities or touch screens or hanging chads or Diebold. They don’t care about lying or cheating or much of anything but their patriotic duty. They follow orders, more or less, no matter what the orders are.

Since voting is all most of us exercise in the way of influence, and voting is obsolete (see, I think it’s time for a fresh start, namely a constitutional convention), let’s take a do-over.

Let’s rethink the whole thing, from Congress to states’ rights to term limits to taxation. A lot of people seem to know how goofy the Electoral College is; let’s not tweak it. Let’s dump it.

We could even try democracy and eliminate the middleman. With electronic communication what it is, I see no need for Congress as an institution at all. Let’s dissolve it and send the dips back where they came from. Then all laws can be referendums, and we’ll vote on them electronically or by mail. Representatives can live in their districts. Senators and representatives. Nobody represents me anyway, and maybe not you either, if you’ve read this far.

The United States Constitution seems to mean less and less all the time anyway, so I think we should take it from scratch, throw the baby out with the bathwater and make a new baby. Anything goes. Anything. Let’s vote to define what voting means.

I’ve heard it said that a constitutional convention could be disastrous for some people. Of course it could, because things would change. Actually, I suppose it’s bound to be bad for some people, who in some way would be worse off than they are now. Everything that happens is bad for some.

Other people might be way better off—women, for instance, who are the majority gender. It could be goddess time again. Are you ready for that?

As much as anything, though, it’d be a chance to try something new. Whatever we come up with would be progress, wouldn’t it? And progress is a good thing, isn’t it?

Let’s decide everything all over again—who’s a person, who’s a citizen, what rights they have, what privileges, what protections; let’s redefine government, right after we justify its existence. I’m game. Are you?