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By John Longenecker
November 13, 2007

Voter registration is one of the most noble of endeavors in this country � a value we�ve even brought to Iraq as part of its liberation. What about our liberation? Is it still safe and intact, or forgotten and in danger of predators after the last several decades?

Truly, in a nation of self-rule, failure to vote is failure to rule. Some citizens say that we simply stay in touch with our officials and supervise them. Some citizens say that if you don�t vote, you can�t complain, but it�s much deeper than that: if you don�t vote, you do not elect what to do. Someone else does.

When American citizens vote, we are not electing people, it is to elect POLICY. In governing this country, policy endures long after the official is retired or unseated. It is one of the immortalities of governance here. Policy lives on. If you don�t elect what to do � policy � someone else will, and in that vacuum, Nature abhors political indolence. Someone will fill it with agendas that are fully prepared, polished and ready to be policed, just waiting in the wings to be summoned, not as Leadership, but of personal Angst.

2008 demands of Americans three things: analysis, commitment and voting. It demands involvement.

Electing someone is to elect what to do about what, and analysis, commitment and the Vote are purely the authority and right of the electorate in national direction. In self-rule.

1. The Candidate Surprise. . . .or Disappointment. When individuals run for office, they can view the number of registered voters, and one of the most stunning, most disappointing findings of many who run was this in recent years: for all their complaining and suggestions, it was found that a very high percentage of their supporters (85% in some cases) were not even registered to vote. This is not especially new, but tragically disappointing, nevertheless. Make that consistently disappointing. It became consistent when it was discovered that these supporters, these volunteers and donors did not register before the election. Year after year. They did not vote for the candidate they were complaining to, suggesting to, donating to. They did not register to vote.

This has a tremendous impact on mainstream values and national direction as desired by the mainstream, since most conservative questions are actually mainstream questions and even more across the political spectrum. There are simplymanyissues which are purely non-partisan, and which policies are adverse to the nation today.

The left in America does a superb job of enrolling voters. They get out and they get out the vote. Hell, the left even raises the Dead to vote.

The most common response to the question is, "I don�t want to be on a list." This reflects a degree of suspicion, which does not bode well for the United States. The idea is not to try and dissuade that suspicion, but to recognize it as a red flag.

The Left in America tries to dissuade it; mainstream wants it answered. Mainstream America would love to be free from suspecting its officials. Now is the time to play a role in this endeavor. It�s time to stop thinking about lists and time to stand up and be counted.

2. Mad Balmers: Some people come to office not to serve, but to rule. Control is a feature of the anxiety wrought by personal demons. Daniel Webster said, "There are men of all ages who mean to govern well, but they mean to govern. They promise to be good masters, but they mean to be masters."

Men of all ages doesn�t mean how old they are � it meant that they could be found in any time, any era, in any administration. For them, control is a big personal perk of office, a balm for an anxiety of inner injustice, and the puzzling weirdness of their policies is an expression of soothing balm they seek in entirely the wrong place: Power. To correct old injustices in the political arena is itself a distortion of reality, because so-called social justice will not soothe their anxiety. It hasn�t so far.

This drive explains why so many such policies fail: they are based not on a reality, but on a distortion of reality � a defense mechanism erected to mask an original trauma, the perceived personal threat and anxiety our patriotic icons bring out in them. Marriage irks them. Liberty irks them. Guns irk them. Talkradio irks them.

In general, Independence irks them. The idea that they are not needed cuts off their path to social engineering they believe is the secret to balming their anxiety.

...if they could just change things, their anger would disappear.

Symbols Americans cherish are irksome to them, and the political arena will never resolve that anxiety as well as the working through process of counseling can.

How do we know this? We don�t need to know this or to prove this: all constituents need do is suspect; constituents are not required to show data, furnish exhibits or any other so-called proof; all we need do is suspect and distrust, and this is our right. Under self-rule, we don�t need to explain anything to anybody. For a very long time, tolerant Americans have suspected that the Left must be out of touch with reality. In a defense mechanism � a device to distort reality for personal safety � they are out of touch. Officials seeking a soothing balm for their impairment of anger and self-interest are the Mad Balmers.

3. What we are electing is Dependency when citizens fail to register and fail to vote. Americans can become a terrible, disgraceful no-show sometimes, and the Vote is a venue where citizens spite themselves (and the rest of us) by protesting the selection by sitting out the election. The vacuum becomes filled.

We�re going to get the governance we deserve, and we�ve earned a better rapport than we have today. We�ve not claimed it when we�ve not voted. The Vote is a claim of our rights in self-rule.

America is not a place, it is an idea. It is a legacy. When we understand and believe that Liberty is a she, we also come to understand that some are not a fit escort for her.

The registration to vote and the Vote is a vote for Independence. This means a lot less official largesse, breaking away from dependency on officials so the next generation can be freer from that temptation.

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And a temptation it is.

Independence is a wonderful concept, but it has a price: you have to stop depending so much on others. And this can lift government burdens, also a worthwhile endeavor. No need to explain how this benefits the country.

Dependency � coerced dependency or otherwise � the Vote can impeach it.

� 2007 - John Longenecker - All Rights Reserved

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John Longenecker was one of the first Paramedics in Los Angeles EMS. Today, he a father of three, author, columnist, talk show guest and founder of the Good For The Country Foundation, a 501(c)(3) patriotic think tank examining policy adverse to the public interest.


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America is not a place, it is an idea. It is a legacy. When we understand and believe that Liberty is a she, we also come to understand that some are not a fit escort for her.