Making the Perfect the Enemy of the Best We Can Get in Presidential Politics 2012

I would love Green Party candidate Jill Stein to be President since I agree with almost all her proposed policies and programs. I would also like myself to be President because I like all my proposed policies and programs. Here’s the problem. Jill Stein and I have an equal chance of being elected President. That chance, of course, would be zero.

So why would anyone engage in the futile act of voting for Jill Stein, or no less usefully, writing in their own name for President? Five reasons are usually offered.

First, of course, is the well-worn cliché that there is no difference between Romney and Obama; therefore there’s no reason to vote for either one of them. That is just patently false. Here are just a few obvious differences:

• Obama would keep Obamacare, and Romney would repeal it. Romney’s win would mean that tens of millions of low wage workers who would otherwise have health insurance would not get it. Their only health care provider would be the emergency room. Many of them would die of diseases diagnosed too late for them to get the medical care that would save them.

• Romney would voucherize Medicare, making it unaffordable for millions of seniors. He would also do everything in his power to privatize, i.e., destroy, social security;

• Romney would raise taxes on working people, cut them for the rich;

• Romney would appoint judges intent on repealing Roe v. Wade, and eliminating affirmative action;

• Romney would attack the ability of unions to exist;

• Romney budgets, if they follow the lead of his running mate and other House Republican leaders, would decimate food stamps, education funding, and federal aid to cities of all sorts;

• Romney would make the EPA into something as fierce as a big slice of pumpkin pie.

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