I vote by mail these days; it costs the state more money but is more convenient for me and it is less Russian-style shenanigable. Mail-in votes are more vulnerable to local-asshole shenanigans — just ask my Arizona-based nephew, who has been directly shenaniganized — but I’m pretty confident my vote will be counted.
Secure in that thought, I did my best to study the issues and make good choices. The propositions were the most important votes, at least in my mind — I’ll touch on the major political seats shortly. Two of the propositions came down to car vs. not-car. Easy peasy.
Locally, B and C asked us, collectively, whether we were willing to give up open space and embrace sprawl if a fraction of the housing created was dedicated to affordable housing for seniors. Affordable housing is a critical issue here; rent is fucking ridiculous. But a few token units in a luxury expansion that stretches city services is not the answer.
I voted to increase the state’s debt to help people move around without cars. Overall the state’s debt burden is down lately, due to prosperity — even as the federal government siphons money out of the state so Kansas can boast a balanced budget. State balanced budgets are a sham, propped up by the federal deficit and states like Texas and California.
On another prop there was one argument in the pro vs con section that said (more or less), “They might not use the money to make roads better! They might use it instead for public transport and bike lanes!” Yeah, bunky, whatever you’re opposing, I’m in favor of.
After the props there came a judge — you’ve heard of him — and I couldn’t kick him in the balls so I only did what I could to make sure his career was over. His defense said we shouldn’t let a single decision in a career that was not flagrantly biased be cause to eject a dedicated public servant, that it was a slippery slope to make the judiciary subject to the mob. (The actual argument was far less articulate.) But I’m with the mob on this one. Democracy is mob, and it’s at its best when things are ugly. The mob says rapists should not get off lightly. Let other judges take note.
Then there were the candidates. For only the second time in my life, I paid attention to party affiliation while voting. This is not a normal state for me. But until the Republicans purge themselves of Trump, and of the forces that allowed Trump to happen, none of their candidates at any level will get a vote from me. None. That’s just how it has to be.