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11/03/2008 Go Vote!

November 4th is it. It’s time to vote and make sure you participate. I’ve always been dismayed that the U.S., founded on the principle of democracy, has one of the lousiest participation rates in the world.  When we reach voting rates of 60% we’re astounded, yet Northern Europe reaches rates over 80% every three years.

It wasn’t always this way. In the late 1800’s we had rates that high. Of course, if you were lucky enough to live in a city, you got $20 and maybe a beer. So, maybe instead of TV advertising the political parties should go back to that model.

Starbucks has been running a campaign on TV and the Web that does reward you for your vote. Good for them! I hope they receive some benefit for this, as they deserve it. Today I did go in and buy a Starbucks instead of my usual Muddy Waters.


I still think that social media should play a larger role in getting people out to vote. Twitter and Facebook seem to me to be perfect instruments for a micro action like this, if you can call voting a micro action. Of course it would help if we had the day off.

So here’s my pitch: If you think voting takes too much time, tell your boss your comping the day or the afternoon to go vote. Face it; you’ve worked enough during the year to do your patriotic duty. If you get resistance, just keep talking about America and patriotism, and then go vote anyway. Start singing America the Beautiful or The Star Spangled Banner as you walk out. For the real rebels, start singing the Internationale.

You’ll feel great when you do!


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