Click amount to donate direct to CounterPunch
  • $25
  • $50
  • $100
  • $500
  • $other
  • use PayPal
Keep CounterPunch ad free. Support our annual fund drive today!

Voting for Death


America, you have become a nation of enablers and apologists for tyranny and mass murder. You condemn the Nazi and gulag guards of times past even as you celebrate your own mercenaries and torturers, even as you explain away, if not outright cheer, the unspeakable crimes committed by your sons and daughters. You don’t care who you kill, as long as your soldiers are paid, and your munitions, bomb and tank factories are humming.

Safely ensconced in academic luna parks, your leading intellectuals lean slightly right or left, but never enough to rock this blazing gunboat, lest they sour the cocktail parties or, god forbid, have their tenure revoked. Mouths stuffed with antipasti, they’re expert at sidestepping Israel’s prolific crimes, 9/11, Bin Laden’s faux death or the parasitic Federal Reserve, and as another joke election nears, they’re all gung ho about candidates who back illegal wars and banking frauds, since each is supposedly the lesser of two evils.

For the past five presidential elections, winning candidates have won 52.9%, 50.7%, 47.9%, 49.2% and 43% of the popular votes respectively, so there hasn’t been an overwhelming mandate for any of them, but with the runner ups from the other major party often close behind, and in 2000, actually ahead in the popular vote count, the two-party system has gotten a stranglehold on our public life and pocketbooks. As for our senators, only two are not Democrat or Republican. An American election, then, is basically a rigged referendum for this thoroughly corrupt and murderous system, and simply by voting, you will give it the green light to go on killing and looting. Every four years, we’re railroaded into sanctioning endless war and bottomless corruption. If disappointed, we’re then steered by our brainwashing and dumbing down media to a near clone of our current rapist.

The Good Old Party spooks the upper and middle classes by threatening, If you don’t vote for us, the Dems will take your hard-earned cash and give it to the freeloaders, crackheads and other miscellaneous losers, while the Democrats, in turn, scare the lower rungs by snarling, If you don’t vote for us, the Republicans will let your retired, diapered ass rot under a bridge, on a piece of cardboard, but lordy, lordy, lordy, it is already happening, but let us not sweat the details.

It is fitting that as our most important vote has become nearly meaningless, we’re offered myriad opportunities to vote for all sorts of irrelevant acts and personalities, from singing oafs to dancing buffoons, to steroid-charged sluggers. Americans have never voted so much for so little.

Each party paints the other as the greater evil, though both are equally whorish to a military banking complex that has wrought so much grief and destruction worldwide, including here. As they offshore your job, they may toss you a free cell phone or allow you to wed your same sex lover, but isn’t time, seriously, we demand that our money be spent responsibly, for our benefits? But no, we can only beg for small change, instead of real ones, and must vote, again, for proven liars and criminals, and hope, against all evidence, that they won’t impale us this time. So how does it feel to have so much evil, deceit and betrayal hardening through the entire length of your being? But what’s worst about this is that you yourself have allowed it to happen, have enabled it, if only symbolically, by voting for one of the two parties that are pro war and pro corruption. They will likely get 99% of your votes, in fact, so America will have endorsed overwhelmingly, again, an openly criminal agenda, and the world will again be aghast.

With his cartoon dynamite, Netanyahu’s recent UN speech brings to mind Powell and his phony chart before the Iraq invasion, but Bush at least tried to convince that a war was necessary, whereas Obama hasn’t even bother. Ignoring congress and the American public, he simply ordered a massive bombing campaign against Libya, which he mockingly dubbed a “kinetic military action,” unleashed lesser strikes against Somalia, Yemen and Pakistan, and sent terroristic proxies into Syria, all without significant protest from our dozing public or groveling intelligentsia.

Pumped with nonstop propaganda from our corporate media in this mad house of mirrors, we neither see nor care how others perceive us, for even as international protests mount, our flags burnt, our soldiers killed by supposed allies and poll after poll shows us among the most despised nations on earth, we still believe we’re loved and admired worldwide. Our politicians are only too glad to pander to this vanity. Romney, “We have a moral responsibility to keep America the strongest nation on earth, the hope of the earth, the shining city on the hill.” Obama, “Never bet against the United States. The United States has been, and will always be, the one indispensable nation in world affairs.” Only children believe in everlasting anything, but that’s how our daddy and mommy politicians talk to us these days.

So the world will again be aghast, as will posterity, unless we can prove that we’re not behind the winning criminal. Already, nearly half of Americans don’t cast ballots in any election, but we must make this abstention purposeful, as a clear sign of protest and not an act of apathy. The world must see that Americans aren’t all deranged and hypnotized as those who cheer and vote for one lying criminal after another. We’re better than this, so let’s prove it. Imagine thousands in public places, declaring, “NOT IN OUR NAME!” The sooner we can effect a divorce between us and our rogue government, the sooner we can get rid of it. If nothing else, to resist this electoral farce is to wash our hands, partially, at least, of the innocent blood being spilled. It is the only moral decision.

Linh Dinh is the author of two books of stories, five of poems, and a novel, Love Like Hate. He’s tracking our deteriorating socialscape through his frequently updated photo blog, State of the Union.

Linh Dinh is the author of two books of stories, five of poems, and a novel, Love Like Hate. He’s tracking our deteriorating socialscape through his frequently updated photo blog, State of the Union.

More articles by:

2016 Fund Drive
Smart. Fierce. Uncompromised. Support CounterPunch Now!

  • cp-store
  • donate paypal

CounterPunch Magazine


October 27, 2016
Paul Street
An Identity-Politicized Election and World Series Lakefront Liberals Can Love
Matthew Stevenson
Sex and the Presidential City
Jim Kavanagh
Tom Hayden’s Haunting
CJ Hopkins
The Pathologization of Dissent
Mike Merryman-Lotze
The Inherent Violence of Israel’s Gaza Blockade
Robert Fisk
Is Yemen Too Much for the World to Take?
Shamus Cooke
Stopping Hillary’s Coming War on Syria
Jan Oberg
Security Politics and the Closing of the Open Society
Ramzy Baroud
The War on UNESCO: Al-Aqsa Mosque is Palestinian and East Jerusalem is Illegally Occupied
Colin Todhunter
Lower Yields and Agropoisons: What is the Point of GM Mustard in India?
Norman Pollack
The Election: Does It Matter Who Wins?
Nyla Ali Khan
The Political and Cultural Richness of Kashmiriyat
Barbara Nimri Aziz
“It’s Only a Car!”
October 26, 2016
John W. Whitehead
A Deep State of Mind: America’s Shadow Government and Its Silent Coup
Eric Draitser
Dear Liberals: Trump is Right
Anthony Tarrant
On the Unbearable Lightness of Whiteness
Mark Weisbrot
The Most Dangerous Place in the World: US Pours in Money, as Blood Flows in Honduras
Chris Welzenbach
The Establishment and the Chattering Hack: a Response to Nicholas Lemann
Luke O'Brien
The Churchill Thing: Some Big Words About Trump and Some Other Chap
Sabia Rigby
In the “Jungle:” Report from the Refugee Camp in Calais, France
Linn Washington Jr.
Pot Decriminalization Yields $9-million in Savings for Philadelphia
Pepe Escobar
“America has lost” in the Philippines
Pauline Murphy
Political Feminism: the Legacy of Victoria Woodhull
Lizzie Maldonado
The Burdens of World War III
David Swanson
Slavery Was Abolished
Thomas Mountain
Preventing Cultural Genocide with the Mother Tongue Policy in Eritrea
Colin Todhunter
Agrochemicals And The Cesspool Of Corruption: Dr. Mason Writes To The US EPA
October 25, 2016
David Swanson
Halloween Is Coming, Vladimir Putin Isn’t
Hiroyuki Hamada
Fear Laundering: an Elaborate Psychological Diversion and Bid for Power
Priti Gulati Cox
President Obama: Before the Empire Falls, Free Leonard Peltier and Mumia Abu-Jamal
Kathy Deacon
Plus ça Change: Regime Change 1917-1920
Robin Goodman
Appetite for Destruction: America’s War Against Itself
Richard Moser
On Power, Privilege, and Passage: a Letter to My Nephew
Rev. William Alberts
The Epicenter of the Moral Universe is Our Common Humanity, Not Religion
Dan Bacher
Inspector General says Reclamation Wasted $32.2 Million on Klamath irrigators
David Mattson
A Recipe for Killing: the “Trust Us” Argument of State Grizzly Bear Managers
Derek Royden
The Tragedy in Yemen
Ralph Nader
Breaking Through Power: It’s Easier Than We Think
Norman Pollack
Centrist Fascism: Lurching Forward
Guillermo R. Gil
Cell to Cell Communication: On How to Become Governor of Puerto Rico
Mateo Pimentel
You, Me, and the Trolley Make Three
Cathy Breen
“Today Is One of the Heaviest Days of My Life”
October 24, 2016
John Steppling
The Unwoke: Sleepwalking into the Nightmare
Oscar Ortega
Clinton’s Troubling Silence on the Dakota Access Pipeline
Patrick Cockburn
Aleppo vs. Mosul: Media Biases