Isn’t it great that Americans sent to government schools grow up to be so burned out about government that many of them turn their backs on voting? The belief that people can be programmed to believe anything is untrue. They might not be able to unravel all the corruption swirling around them but they surely know it’s there. They’re hungry for a better deal but don’t see one in the offering, so they don’t vote.
We read that Hillary Clinton won the popular vote in 2016 by almost three million votes. But how “popular” was that vote, really? She did not win a majority of the votes cast (48%), and as a percentage of the total US population, that figure shrinks to 20.30%. Roughly 4 out of 5 people living in this country did not cast a vote for Hillary; Trump did even worse at 19.41%.
Nevertheless, there was a clear-cut winner, an overwhelming winner, in the 2016 presidential election. The “winner” received 471 electoral votes and won all but eight states and D.C. Who won this landslide? According to brilliantmaps.com,“did not vote” smashed all challengers:
Mainstream commentators bemoan this finding, describing US voter turnout as “abysmal” compared to other countries in the “developed world.” The nonvoter is depicted as too lazy to deal with the hassle of casting a vote. But when the choice is either Tweedledum or Tweedledee, both of which have their eyes on voters' wallets, why should they head for the polls?
It is not a matter of finding better candidates. The current system forbids better candidates, as it did with Ron Paul.
The heart of the government is a legal monopoly on coercion. When this monopoly is magnified by the seeming omnipotence of the US military and its vast intelligence apparatus, and has the power to drain the productive resources of its citizens by whatever trillions it claims to need, whether to bail out the big boys or drop bombs on some hapless Third World backwater that nevertheless poses a threat to our “freedom,” you have a monster that cannot be tamed by casting ballots.
At least, not in the usual sense.
What if. . .
What if those 100 million nonvoters decided to vote? And what if they could vote to end the State? To shut it down completely, permanently? No more coercive monopoly as the legal basis of our society.
Why end the FED or repeal the income tax when you can end the institution that created those monsters and countless others? Why not end evil at its root? End coercion, end the State.
The State, of course, will never allow such a choice to become a subject of serious discussion, let alone something to vote on. But suppose for a moment it did. Can you picture the legions of federal employees, from the president on down, packing their desks and heading home to find a job in the volunteer economy? And while you’re dreaming, picture the voluntary economy coming together to solve problems that were wrongly considered the exclusive domain of the State.
But that could happen, as incredible as it may seem.
Our traditional elections are government operations. We need an election not tainted by the government.
Thinking outside the box requires voting outside the voting booth. We need a separate election, one in which those who wish to express their contempt for the State can do so without taking to the streets.
What if — on Election Day — people who wish to end the State could cast a vote by checking a box on a website? The technical problems of implementing a fair system are solvable.
And what if “end the State” won by a landslide compared to the winner of the State’s election?
The status quo would remain the status quo after the election. Bombs would continue to drop, soldiers and innocents alike would continue to die, money would continue to flow from those who earned it to those who did not, the FED would monitor everything with its hand on the printing press, and the media would overflow with analysis and policy prescriptions. Those who see voting in government elections as patriotic would continue to do so, and winners and losers would emerge, as always.
But there would be a difference. A voice would be heard. That voice would say stop the nonsense and let people create their own government the way they create commercial enterprises. We don’t need a coercive element in a civilized society. It’s the rot that’s destroying us.
The voice would be ignored, but it will have spoken. And that’s a start.
George Ford Smith is the author of eight books, including The Flight of the Barbarous Relic, Eyes of Fire: Thomas Paine and the American Revolution, and The Fall of Tyranny, the Rise of Liberty. He is also a filmmaker whose latest work is a five-minute documentary about the Christmas Truce of 1914, A Christmas to Remember.