“No taxation without representation!”
These words echo through time and reach the ears of students every year in the United States. They stir up feelings of rebellion and freedom, images of tyranny and oppression.
But enough of that picturesque crap.
I have never voted, nor do I have any strong desire to do so. I have many reasons, and all of them get the same reaction:
“NUOH MAH GOD YOU HAFTA VOTE! IT’S DA ‘MERCUN WAY!”
So just for fun lemme give some of my reasons, in no particular order, and you can react however you want.
1.) I’m lazy. Yea, maybe a weak reason, but standing in line early in the morning so I can fill in ScanTron sheets again does not appeal to me at all. Oh, I get a sticker for my efforts? Sweet! I can put it right next to all the other shit I don’t care about.
2.) My vote doesn’t matter. No, really, it doesn’t. It’s all math.
“But azelfrath, every vote counts!”
This is true. It does count, but it doesn’t matter. There is a difference. Counting means it adds to a total. Mattering means it makes a significant difference. If all 300,000,000+ people in the U.S. voted in the next election, then my single vote would be worth .0000000003% which is not going to be the deciding factor in any vote.
“But azelfrath, if nobody voted then the system would fall apart!”
This is true, but that is never going to happen. We have people in this country that practically get off on democracy. Voting for them is like a giant circle-jerk they wouldn’t miss for the world.
Even if only 10% of the eligible voters in this country cast a ballot (assuming a truly random population and all that other shit), it would statistically even out so that whoever would win with 100% of the people voting would win with 10%.
“But azelfrath, yours could be the opinion that changes everything!”
No. It’s not like I, Azelfrath McBlogger of azelfrath.wordpress.com am going to be the final decision-maker. Nobody is going to come to my doorstep with a camera crew and say “This is it, son. The fate of the country – nay! – that of the entire planet, rests solely in your hands.”
“But azelfrath, if you don’t vote then you can’t complain!”
The fuck I can’t. I can complain about the potholes in the roads even though I didn’t specifically vote to have them fixed. I can complain about the slow Internet speeds around here without picketing ComQuesT&T for days.
“But azelfrath, you don’t love America if you don’t vote!”
The fuck I don’t. There are things I love about this country and there are things I hate, but not voting has no bearing on that at all.
3.) Voting for a leader is like saying “I want things to change but I don’t wanna take any significant action to change them myself.” If you want the streets cleaned up, clean them up. If you want cleaner air, organize a guerrilla gardening crew. Voting = passive. Action = direct.
[[ Part 2, in which the Author gets to the fucking point ]]
Back to the quote: No taxation without representation.
What does this mean? Loosely, the Colonists did not think it was fair to be taxed by the British Parliament without also having a say in what went on. This makes sense: If someone is going to rob you of your hard-earned money, then you should get something in return.
I don’t think it’s a fair trade. ~23% of every paycheck I make goes right to the government. That’s almost one-fourth. That’s several nice dinners. That’s auto insurance. That’s a chunk of my vacation savings. That’s a lot.
And what do I get in return? I get to check some boxes and hope that my piece of paper changes something.
I say fuck that.
Let it be known on this day, March 7, 2012, that I, azelfrath of azelfrath.wordpress.com, will willingly and knowingly give up my right to vote in all local, state, and federal governmental elections, under the condition that I no longer am forced to pay local, state, or federal taxes. This includes income tax, sales tax, those gift taxes that nobody pays anyway, stamps on letters, and anything else of the sort.
I’m posting this with several intentions. One is just to rant because it’s hard to pay rent with a handicapped paycheck. Another is to get people thinking about what voting really means, and what it’s worth.
But perhaps most importantly, I am dead serious about this. If by some weird turn of events, Obama himself reads this post and is like “You know what? I’m down. No taxes for you, bro!” then not only would I be fairly shocked, but I would happily sign whatever needed to be signed so I could continue living my life much the same way I do now, except with my full paycheck.
No taxation without representation? I accept.
Your move, Obama.