Saturday, September 15, 2012

Thinking Outside the Ballot Box? Cindy Sheehan's Soapbox Sept 16, 2012

Sunday, Sept 16
Cindy Sheehan's Soapbox

This week, Cindy Sheehan's Soapbox presents a
National Conference call/debate/dialogue
with one of the leading proponents of the
Boycott strategy: Terri Lee.
We had a lively discussion and I hope you can listen to the recording of the interview/debate/dialogue.



  1. I am voting the PSL ticket only for representation of a TRUE socialist party...I have a friend in NY running for senator on the Green ticket and as there are no socialist candidates in that race I will cast my vote for her...these are the ONLY reasons I am even going into a voting booth...

    1. Hello "Anonymous"!
      What I see many 'on the left' doing this election is swirling around the various candidate choices on the Left. However, we all know - and the candidates themselves know -- that no 'third party' choice can ever win the office of POTUS. It's a losing proposition.

      A fellow boycotter has suggested this electoral strategy: that all Third Party Prez candidates cease from running and support the BOYCOTT while continuing the build locally and grow/advance the alternative party.

      He feels that it's a bit humiliating to vote 'for the guaranteed loser' every time.

      As for myself, I have decided to Boycott the Presidential Election because I feel it it the strongest collective action we can take on the left that rejects the ENTIRE system of electoral restriction. Since it's 'the system' itself which is 'the problem' -- I choose to reject the systen in it's entirety.


    2. Teri, these third party presidential candidates will create ballot lines in many states with only 1% to 5% of the vote. That allows local candidates to run an win. In the mean time Jill Stein and Gary Johnson vie to get 5% nationally to get millions of $ in public funds for the candidate and party in the next election cycle.

      Not voting is EXACTLY what the Fascists want you to do. The goal of negative campaign advertising is to drive down turnout. You'd hand them the ultimate victory.

    3. Hello Green Genes!

      My concern is not what the fascists want me to do or not do.

      Voting is FOR THEM. Boycotting is for US.

      Electon Boycotting is a popular political tool utilized all around the world.

      Here, take a look:


      "Palestinians should refuse to participate in elections while public freedoms are suppressed, former minister and detainee Wasfi Qabha said Tuesday."

      IN EGYPT

      "Some activists boycotted the election, calling it illegitimate or claiming that the ruling Supreme Council of Armed Forces (Scaf) would rig it in favour of Mr Shafiq."


      "One off-limit subject is the call for an election boycott. RWB says: "Those who mention the boycott, such as opposition groups on social networks, are immediately sanctioned."

      IN ASIA

      "The Democratic United Party pushed ahead with its second primary vote in the southeastern city of Ulsan on Sunday despite the boycott of the election by three of the four contenders."


      "The Islamic Action Front political party in Jordan has denied that it has pledged to review its position on an election boycott."


      "Namibia: NDP Threatens to Boycott Sibbinda Election"

      IN LIBYA

      "Libyan Tabu tribe threatens election boycott."


      "Morocco: Stop Harassing Election Boycott Advocates"

      And now in the US, too!


      Should you look at those links, you will see that Election Boycotts are utilized globally when the public acknowledges that their elections are sham elections-- which appears to be the case all around the globe.


      Do not stay attached to the contraption which the Ruling Elite has devised to serve their own purposes.


    4. GreenGenes,

      It's so terribly unimportant, in my opnion, to try to 'outsmart' the nefarious 'them' and think about 'what they want' (or don't want). That matters not at all.

      I think of it like this instead. They created this device --- the entire electoral process and all it entails AND the Electoral College -- for one thing and one thing alone: to serve their monied interests. To protect and expand their wealth.

      The 'election' is a sham through and through because ULTIMATELY the institutional structures of capitalism will remained unchanged when either a D or an R sits in the Oval Office in January. The institutional structures of capitalism will NOT alter whether it is Obama or Romney. All know this.

      It is very much akin to what we see here in this video, below. Have a look:

      At both the DNC and the RNC Theatrical Convention performances they held a public 'vote'. A party leader would go up to the podium and ask the audience to say 'YAY' if they agreed or 'NAY' if they opposed. Whichev
      roar was 'louder' should have indicated the choice of the voters. However -- guess what? The TELEPROMPER for each has pre-written the OUTCOME of the YAY or NAY vote before the audience responded. Watch this very public act of deceit for yourself:


      This video makes it terribly clear that he public (the voter) is there for one purpose only ---to serve need of the Ruling Elitee to deliver the 'outcome' they chose.

      We are mere props in the theatrical performance.

      Empire knows that either an Obama Administration or a Romney Administration will serve their needs. Everyone 'on the left' who is busy backing this one or that one -- it's utterly meaningless, because the System has assurned that they don't have even the slightest chance of getting within miles of the Oval Office -- so spin all you want. It's like it permits small, meaningless choices to busy ourselves with that has not bearing whatsoever -- but gives you, the voter 'something to do'.

      Having said all that I have concluded that the wisest collective stance we can take is to Boycott the 2012 Presidential Election -- colletively, with noise, with actions, with public acts of defiance and resistance.

      This is a very common political maneuver around the globe, by the way.

      Join us

  2. I do not understand people who say they want change, but refuse to vote, or vote for a candidate who has no chance of winning. If this campaign is designed to turn votes away from Obama "in protest" I have to wonder - who is behind it? Because it may as well be Republicans for all the good it will do progressives. Regardless, those who throw their votes away will get to see how they like things with Mitt in the Oval Office. And, if these voters - or non-voters - do not see a difference between Obama and Romney, then, IMHO they are simply not paying attention.

    1. Hello! I assure that Republicans are not 'behind it'. In fact, no one is 'behind it' or 'hidden' we are all out and about and in plain view :)

      And this is not a strategy to be 'against' Obama -- this is an approach which rejects the system itself.

      It is an act of resistance. A protest. It is an act of defiance which declares: We will not be part of this fraudulent, corrupt, money-soaked, rigged, immoral system of Electoral Restraint/Oppression/Restriction.

    2. I heard the same argument as yours Anon, earlier today only they were sure that the Boycott of the election would give the race to Obama. Both sides are afraid of the other candidate winning. What they should be afraid of is another 4 years of what's been going on for the last 12. They only 2 things Obama
      did differently than Bush was the Health care Bill and though it may help those that can afford health care who it helps most is the 1 or 2 top insurance companies who will be administering this. The other thing he did different was to pronounce Nuclear correctly.

  3. What I don't get, is that if people are so adamantly assured that his/her position it the correct one, is the moral one and can denounce others for their positions, then why can't he/she post his/her name? What are people afraid of?

  4. Boycotting the election gives the candidates the impression that you don't care what they do. Voting for someone other than the 2 parties shows them that you DO care and that you don't like either one of them. Casting your vote for the lesser-evil doesn't change anything either because you give them the impression that you approve of what they're doing, giving them the green light to continue. Vote for the person you feel will best represent YOU . . . . not the corporations. They don't listen to us anyway. i.e. 90% of the people want the wars ended . . . . they don't listen . . . they just continue or start more wars.

    1. we addressed your very issue during the show--I hope YOU listened to it.

    2. My desire is that our government be structured more along the lines of soviets. That means we all have a hand in determining the outcomes of our political economy. Things become more transparent. Most of our relations with our fellow human beings are through two very impersonal channels: voting and money. These channels are opaque and hide much more than they reveal. We think about voting and money, but we really don't know what they are are how they impact our fellow human beings.

    3. Yes, Cindy we did. Diane Dowd if you have not already done so, kindly listen to the Conference Call. Additionally, I invite you to visit the official site of the Call to Boycott the Presidential Election:

  5. If more people actually grew a spine and stood up for themselves and actually boycotted this fraudulent "election", these so called "leaders" would have no choice but to take immediate notice. You people that go out and waste your time voting for "the lesser of two evils" absolutely disgust me. YOU'RE THE ONES WHO ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE SHITSTORM WE'RE LIVING IN NOW. The whole lesser of two evils thing is a total crock of shit. And if you're not a complete idiot, or a brain dead sheep, then you should damn well know that. Evil is evil. There is no 'less than'.

    Does it make you sleep better at night, thinking you did your part for the 'democracy' by voting for one of two frauds?? All you're doing is giving these clowns some form of legitimacy. All you're doing is continuing with the warmongering, the profiteering, the raping of the middle class, and the destruction of the constitution.

    So if it makes you feel so great, come November, by all means, go out and waste your time 'voting' for some clown who is owned by every large corporation in this country. Go out and vote for the clown that doesn't give a sweet fat rats ass about you, or myself. Go out and vote so the war machine keeps marching on. I hope you can live with yourself, knowing you've kept the Fascism going strong in this country. And make no mistake. This IS a Fascist country now.

  6. Egypt's voter turnout around 40% was a loud statement:

    Low voter turnout showed Egyptians' mixed emotions

    "Some activists boycotted the election, calling it illegitimate or claiming that the ruling Supreme Council of Armed Forces (Scaf) would rig it in favour of Mr Shafiq."

  7. Re-elect Obama and deny Boss Rove that last piece he needs to complete the corporate coup. You want change? Then don't begin with the presidential election. This is suicide. For heaven's sake, do any of these third party voters have a plan after voting for the person that has zero-chance of winning? It's madness: and meanwhile you'll be sentencing countless Americans to destitution, misery and death. But go ahead..."vote your conscience." It's like shooting everyone you love before turning the gun on yourself. I'm so disgusted by this short-term thinking. By all means, support third party candidates on the state level, in the courts, locally and for Congress, but use your head. No third party candidate will have a prayer against the one-party corporate state we will become if Romney is elected. And I guess then, I will have all you folks of "good conscience" to thank. There's a reason why Boss Rove is back on top. His strategy works: vertical and horizontal assaults on every position of power from the bottom up....and patience to see it through. God help the feckless.

  8. The election boycott is a protest against an electoral system that cannot guarantee an accurate vote count, that institutionally excludes opposition parties from the media and its narrowly framed "debates", and that is driven by corporate contributions that undermine the integrity of the appointed candidates and the system itself. It is also the only way to demonstrate our lack of consent to the institutionalization of the gutting of the Bill of Rights and the unconstitutional expansion of executive branch authority under a President who promised the precise oppposite. As the ACLU wrote in a 2010 report enitled Establishing a New Normal, before the kill lists, domestic drones, the NDAA, ad nauseam: “[O]n a range of issues including accountability for torture, detention of terrorism suspects, and use of lethal force against civilians, there is a very real danger that the Obama administration will enshrine permanently within the law policies and practices that were widely considered extreme and unlawful during the Bush administration.” I would not vote for the granting of these powers to any president, as I would implicitly be doing by voting in this presidential election.

  9. The reason that alternative parties can not win is because we have been handed a stacked deck. The American political system gives an illusion of democracy but election laws, money and corporate media illustrate that representative government for all of serious convictions does not exist. Politicans using sophiticated computers gerrymander the districts so that over 90% of them are one party districts. Less than 10% of the districts are competitive. Those with money looks at a district and determines who will win. They give money to the Democrats in one district and then give money to the Republicans in another district. The media looks at who is getting the money and reason that candidate A is getting money so that candidate is serious and therefore deserve coverage. The candidates who receive little or no money are considered frevious and therefore receive little or no coverage. The system is legally rigged. Unfortunately, the media paints those who do not vote as either lazy or apathetic. That is why I will cast my vote for an alternative party.

  10. The Left compoletely screwed up this election. It should have been spending the last four years working on the largest third party dent we can put into the two-party corporate shell game. Instead--despite all the concrfete experience with Obama--many are trying to rationalize voting for him yet again, while a lot of these petty-minded lilliputian sectlets are parsing the insurgent vote even further in order to build their own little treehouses. Pathetic. Other than not voting for Obama (or his paler, less personable twin), I am still undecided and, for the first time in my life, may well sit out the election. I've never been more disgusted.

  11. A boycott will never be witnessed. It will just be counted in with the half of the country that doesn't vote anyway. If people feel strongly about some position, or against some candidate, they should do something on election day to demonstrate in support of their position. Or, the day after the election day, because all the problems we have today will still be here in November 8. Particularly the wars and unemployment. It would be much more effective to focus on specific demands and issues than to just stay home and watch TV, like a "virtual" demonstration.


Please limit your comments to the content of the posts---not your self-perceived, self-righteous, personal opinions of the authors/activists who post at this blog. Personal attacks, or threats of violence will not be posted....moderator.