Vote, Rinse, Repeat.

Today’s post is actually a partial re-posting of Congressman Loomis Beechly’s glorious 2012 Election Day address, which catapulted him into the slightly brighter spotlight of extremely localized acclaim.

I’m repeating it because Congressman Beechly often repeats himself, except when he’s saying something so completely off the wall and unexpected you have to wonder about his sanity.

The address is historic primarily because it drew an all-time Trail Baboon high water mark of 141 comments – mostly the result of Baboons using the response section to hang out and do “live blog” commentary with each other about the returns as they came in.

Here’s how it looked:

Screen Shot 2014-11-02 at 9.50.26 AM

I try not to tell you what to do, but if you think reviving that plan is an appealing idea, act like a free American and follow your heart.

Here’s the Congressman’s post: 

Greetings, Valued Constituents and Miscellaneous Voters,

My apologies for this message directed at a mass audience on what is a day of personal choice. I want to urge you … YOU, specifically … to go to the polls and vote your conscience today, even if you don’t have much of a conscience to begin with.

We must all make the best of whatever meager resources we’re given.

But whatever you do, don’t do nothing! Those who have tossed away their franchise in an expression of political ennui are the most heartbreaking and miserable of creatures. Why? They have squandered their most valuable possession, and will have no right to complain for the next two years.

Think about that. Two years without complaining? I don’t know anyone who can live that way!

And don’t be like Hamlet, who was an undecided voter right up to the end because he couldn’t concentrate on anything for more than two seconds.

Don’t believe me? Who could forget his famous Polling Place soliloquy?

To vote, or not to vote. I’m still an equestrian!
The weather is colder than a frozen scupper
that wheels barrows of contagious portions
and gendarmes against a tree of bubbles.
And through composting, befriends them.
or by proposing, spend them: a guy, asleep
No more; and not a peep, of our lost weekend!
The smart fakes, and the cow’s unnatural socks.
They flash that hairdo! ‘Tis a constipation
without to be wished. a guy’d die to sleep,
and sleep, purchase a Dream; Sigh. There’s the tub!

I wish I understood Shakespeare. That was mostly gibberish to me, pretty much in the same way politics is nonsense to a lot of ordinary people. But not understanding what is going on doesn’t keep me from seeing a Shakespeare play every now and then. So go out and vote, even if it leaves you feeling like poor Hamlet – like you need to climb into the tub and wash it off at the end.

Sincerely,
Your Congressmen
Loomis Beechly.

That’s pretty much how I remember Beechly’s address from two years ago, but edited, enhanced, and with the highlights polished up a bit – much in the same way candidates refine a stump speech to get a response from their loyalists.

It’s a technique that works great for most politicians right up to the moment the speech becomes stale and tired and the exhausted candidates get bored. At which point we place half of them in office to continue on the same cycle for several years.

What does Election Day mean to you?

38 thoughts on “Vote, Rinse, Repeat.”

  1. Today it means utter dread. l can’t even bribe my older grand kids to vote with money. l’ll never understand how half of the country’s voters can choose right wing candidates or how the dire threat of losing the Senate probably won’t bring out enough sane people to prevent this.

    On the other hand, maybe there will be a miracle?

    Like

  2. I’d like to think election day means tomorrow the phone will be quieter and my email inbox devoid of hyperbolic hits for $5, but I suspect in fact this will just be the kickoff for 2016. sigh.

    More philosophically, I have lately been doing some math and realizing my maternal grandmother was, by law, barred from voting as a young adult and mother of 3. Her eldest daughter (one of my sainted aunts) was allowed to vote when she turned 21 in only the third presidential women were allowed to participate in. That this change occurred during the lives of women still living boggles the mind.

    Today, all I have to do is walk in and give my name (or show some sort of picture id and proof that I live in the precinct, or failing that, have a registered neighbor swear I am eligible) and I have the RIGHT to vote.

    I do not have to pass a test, pay a tax or own property.

    The airwaves may be crammed full of skewed information bought by entities intending to convince me to vote in their best interests rather than my own, but in the end, it is entirely up to me if I listen to them or not.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Just fact checked myself and I had the year for the 19th ammendment wrong, so my grandmother was able to vote shortly after becoming a mother and my sainted aunt voted in the 5th presidential election that included women.

      On the other hand, The Voting Rights Act is younger than most Baboons, and contrary to what Bubby may think, that’s not really old, especially for a fundamental right.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. My maternal grandmother was born before the 19th amendment was ratified, but it had passed shortly before she would have been old enough to vote. It was a right she exercised with relish.

        Liked by 2 people

    2. I also hope for phone silence and a less-clogged mailbox. Saturday and Sunday were pretty bad since all the political calls now seem to come from personal/cell phones and my caller ID doesn’t warn me about who is calling.

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  3. The abuse the big money is showing us right now is part of the process too. I am confident that as the GOP showed how far over the edge they had gone eight years ago and made voting for the other guys the only logical choice, the ability of our checks and balances to fix the broken system will win out and stop this wasteful disgraceful negative promotion of vision as it drowns out any sound of hope for the future. The vote is a hope that the future will be better and head off in a direction of improved intentions to make life better for all involved. The vote means acknowledging that while not everyone thinks the name we all have the interests of our children and the future at heart and hope to leave the world a better place than we found it. Democracy is the worst form of government in the world except for all the others.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Makes me queasy that money not only from outside Minneapolis but also outside of Minnesota has poured in for our school board race. School board. Michael Bloomberg does not live here, he does not have a child in the Mpls school system. I do. Take your stinky money & go home Mr Bloomberg.

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  4. Rise and Shine Baboons!

    I am a lonely little Liberal Petunia in a Republican Onion patch–at least within the confines of my mother’s family. Long, long ago I learned to shut my ears and my mouth and just vote the way I want to.

    The meaning I give to voting day is this, “SHUT UP AND VOTE!”

    There is an old family story about my grandparents voting in 1932, the first election in which FDR was running. My late and beloved Aunt Ruth remembered Grandma and Grandpa arguing as they came back into the house from voting, and Grandma was saying, “Well Vernon, SOMETHING has to change here.” She had committed the heresy of voting for the Democrat, FDR. Her father was a Democrat who used to bait my Grandpa and his brother into arguing politics late into the night, then watch them get entertainingly upset.

    My first election was 1972: Nixon vs. McGovern. My Republican Uncle Jim, the town history teacher, took me to vote. He attempted to influence my vote every minute of the way and while I was in the voting booth. I believe this kind of harrassment must be illegal, but there we were. I voted for McGovern. Uncle Jim voted for Nixon. He thought my 18 year-old political judgement was flawd.

    We all know how that turned out.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Voting to me is always the triumph of hope over realism. I know that contemporary politics is hopelessly gridlocked and that nothing is going to change until forced by crisis (and based on the lack of change after the last economic meltdown, maybe not even then). I also know I’m not going to be able to truly vote my ideals, that I have to choose the lesser evil between the two main parties, both of which are captive to big money, corporate command, and the cultural myths of our time. And yet, I still vote, hoping against hope that I can add a miniscule fraction of weight to swing things in a different direction.

    Liked by 6 people

  6. It’s always a sad reminder that electoral emphasis is the reverse of what it should be. The greatest focus should be on the local elections, the least focus should be on the national elections.

    Chris in O-town

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The hottest local election here is for Blue Earth County attorney. His last name is Birkholz. I voted against him so I no longer have to explain that we are not related. My last name seems to make people think we are all one family, as if any two people with the last name have to be at least first cousins. It is not that rare.

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      1. At least it’s only in Blue Earth County, Clyde. My last name is Carter. When Jimmy was President, I was asked on a weekly basis if we were related. And it’s harder to explain in the written word but every single person who every asked me said it with a southern drawl “Y’ll related to Jimmy?”

        After the first year I started to just answer “yes, but we don’t like to talk about that side of the family”. That derailed most folks.

        Liked by 2 people

  7. I remember the 1960 election as the first time I was politically aware. My mom was voting for Kennedy and my dad for Nixon, and they talked about not voting since they’d just “cancel each other out”, but they did vote anyway, and that’s been my model – even if you can’t know what influence you will have, you must make your mark. It’s in the same arena as “I’m talking and I can’t shut up.”

    Today we will walk to the polling place 4 blocks away and make our mark – early so we can miss the crowds, if such a thing should happen.

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  8. My first election was the year Reagan was re-elected. For several elections the only major candidate I voted for who won was Martin Sabo. Still, hope sprang eternal and eventually there were presidents and senators in office that I had voted for. The sweetest vote I have cast this far, though, was my no vote on the (anti) marriage amendment. Clearing the path for marriage equality truly brought me to tears.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Morning all. One of the things that rubbed off on me from my dad was his duty to his civil rights. He was very involved in several political campaigns and always voted. I have voted in every single election since I turned 18. I think of it as my free pass to complain my heart out about the government. As I traveled for my job, I have been to many places where people do not have full say in who governs them and this has cemented by desire to make sure I take part in the political process.

    So I am happy to announce that I was able to drag the Teenager out of bed this morning and down to our polling place at 7:30 a.m. She refuses to wear a red “I Voted” sticker, but I felt so proud watching her sign in and then then watching as she stuck her ballot into the box!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Me too
      I was plannig on getting out at 7 but ended up waiting until 730 to go with wife and son the the poll and sending daughter and other son nudges, one of these took for sure the other I’ll not bet on my other one

      Like

  10. Election Day means lots of forms to fill out, neighbors to visit with, and dinner from the folks at Loaves & Fishes. I registered 66 voters today, sustained by a generous dollop of tater tot hot dish. Turnout was not bad, but nothing like 2012, to be sure.

    This Election Day also seems somewhat lacking in suspense compared to two years ago.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I fully expect that all ‘blue’ states will have their statehoods rescinded as being ‘traitorous’ and then the ‘trials’ such as this will begin:

    Liked by 2 people

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