On a Hill Far Away, There’s an Old Ballot Box

“Your ship cannot double Cape Horn by its excellent plan of voting . . . . Ships, accordingly, do not use the ballot box at all; and they reject the phantasm species of captains . . . . Phantasm captains with unanimous voting: this is considered to be all the laws and all the prophets, at present.” 

Thomas Carlyle, Latter-Day Pamphlets (1850)

I was recently pleading beside the sickbed of commenter WinstonScrooge, who suffers from the sad but all too common mania for ballot boxes, voting, and “the sanctity of democratic elections.”  I did what I could to quiet the poor man’s raving, but a lunatic hates more than anything to hear he’s not right in the head.  The pink elephant that is stomping in the rank jungle of Winston’s delirium is a mob of howling infidels who, he says, despise the Word of the Ballot Box, and whose scoffing and jeering have angered his Democratic god.  Some, he stammered, are so far gone in unrighteousness that they say the Ballot Box is a myth invented by the men who count the votes.

WinstonScrooge says of any Child of Darkness who doubts or defies the Word of the Ballot Box.

“Because he hath despised the Word of the Ballot Box, and hath broken Its commandment, that soul shall utterly be cut off, censored, canceled and calumniated: his iniquity shall be upon him.”

Readers advanced in scripture knowledge will recognize certain curious, not to mention blasphemous, parallels with a passage in the book of Numbers.   In that passage the children of Israel, who were then sojourning in the Wilderness, discover some shivering wretch gathering sticks upon the Sabbath day.   So the Children of Democracy, among whom WinstonScrooge is numbered, find shivering wretches now confessing doubts as to the wisdom, nay even the veracity, of the 2020 election.  And turning to their Moses (whomever that may be), the Children of Democracy are told, much like the ancient Israelites, that the Ballot Box is a jealous god.

“The man shall be surely put to death: all the congregation shall stone him with stones without the camp.”

* * * * *

Opening this morning’s newspaper I found half a page of earnest Democratic evangelization.   Before reading it, I composed myself to reverence by singing the old hymn that has brought so many hearts to the Electoral Process. Sung to the tune of George Bennard’s Old Rugged Cross (1913).

“On a hill far away
Stood an old ballot box,
The emblem of suffrage I claim,
And I love that old box
Where dear votes have been cast,
Even thought casting votes is quite vain.

So I’ll cherish the old ballot box,
No mater how oft I’m let down;
I will cling to the old ballot box,
Until one day it makes me a clown.

* * * * *

The item in this morning’s newspaper propounds what may be the central mystery of the Democratic faith, which is that Democracy is best when everyone votes.  It requires a faith much larger than a mustard seed to believe this proposition, for to every depraved mind it seems clear that prospective voters who have not registered must be, on average, stupider, lazier and less well informed than registered voters.

Thus every effort to “get out the vote” must, deduces the mind sunk in depravity, degrade the quality of the vote.

This way of thinking is based on what True Democrats call the Marathon Myth.  This myth states that the men and women who sign up to run a marathon, and who not only sign up but also show up to run that marathon, are in some way more fit to run marathons than the men and women who instead spend their Saturday mornings in bed, at the bar, or atop a riding lawn-mower.

The first thing to do is, of course, to register voters, because it is much harder to cast a vote in the name of an unregistered voter than a registered voter, and that Ballot Box cries out to be stuffed.  So the item in my newspaper is full of ideas to automatically register voters whenever anyone over the age of 18 does anything they must be over the age of 18 to do.  For instance browse the racks in an adult bookstore, purchase a lottery ticket, have his body pierced or tattooed, drop out of high school, enjoy sodomy with an adult, and other things of like nature.  If people who do such things were automatically registered as voters, my newspaper explains, elections would be improved by their votes or the votes that were cast for them.

The column that really caught my eye began:

“Advocates say the average Texan can still make an impact on the state’s voter turnout.”

Being an average Texan, and wishing to have such an impact, I read this column with care.  First I found that any Texan of voting age can become a Deputy Registrar, and in this office can “distribute registration forms”  and “register other residents.”  This registration of “residents” interests me strangely, since Texas is chock full of “residents.”  A very large number of these “residents” do not, by narrow, hair-splitting, pettifogging, legalistic standards have a right to register to vote, much less to vote, but this problem is no doubt overcome when they are registered by a Deputy Registrar.

Any Texan of voting age can also become an “election worker,” and in that capacity “help voters with disabilities, language barriers or confusion for any reason to cast their ballot.”  This is just what I’m looking for, and it will be my special mission to act as surrogate voter for the halt, blind and confused (for “any reason,” not excluding intoxication and insanity).

Finally, some Election Zealot named LeBombard (which curiously translates as the bombardier, which is to say the fellow who drops the bombs on a shattered city in flames) says any Texan can boost voter turnout by striking up random conversations about elections.  LeBombard tells us,

“We’ve gotten away from this idea of talking to people about elections because people want to turn it into politics.”

I don’t know how old LeBombard is, but I cannot recall a time when people chatted about elections while eschewing the sordid note of politics.  In any case, no sane man encourages another man to vote until he is fairly certain he knows how that man will vote.  Voting after drumming up the vote among people who will vote against you is literally insane.  But I suppose democracy drives everyone craze.

“Rather than trying to push for a certain candidate, Texans can help each other find a strategy to vote.”

You may judge the intelligence of these prospective voters from the fact that the planning required to heave themselves from their couches and briefly wedge themselves in a voting booth seems to them equivalent to “strategy.”  I suppose the Normandy Invasion was child’s play in comparison.

13 thoughts on “On a Hill Far Away, There’s an Old Ballot Box

  1. LOL. Well done.

    No successful form of human organization practices universal, unweighted voting or measures its success by number of votes exercised.

  2. One recalls Rousseau: “As soon as public service ceases to be the chief business of the citizens, and they would rather serve with their money than with their persons, the State is not far from its fall.

    When it is necessary to march out to war, they pay troops and stay at home: when it is necessary to meet in council, they name deputies and stay at home. By reason of idleness and money, they end by having soldiers to enslave their country and representatives to sell it.

    As soon as public service ceases to be the chief business of the citizens, and they would rather serve with their money than with their persons, the State is not far from its fall. When it is necessary to march out to war, they pay troops and stay at home: when it is necessary to meet in council, they name deputies and stay at home. By reason of idleness and money, they end by having soldiers to enslave their country and representatives to sell it.”

    Rousseau was one of the few people, then or since, who had lived in a democracy. In his native Geneva, the heads of houses met in the market-place, like the peasants of Glarus under their trees, to manage their affairs, making and unmaking officials, conferring and revoking powers. Not a ballot box in sight; votes were taken by acclaim, or, if disputed, by filing past tellers in the presence of all.

  3. This made me stop to think. Suppose there were penalties designed to force everyone to vote. How much should monarchists and anti-democrats like myself decide to suffer rather than comply? Agree to pay a fine? Agree to lose our jobs? Agree to go to jail? For me, this is a moral issue, but not a matter of an absolute moral prohibition. Being told to vote is not like being told to renounce Jesus Christ (which I shouldn’t do regardless of the cost), but neither is it like being told to attend implicit bias training (which I find annoying but don’t feel that I’m morally compromising myself by doing). Do my fellow monarchists have thoughts on this?

    • You could probably submit a blank ballot, so I’m not sure your participation in mandatory voting would be much greater than mandatory attendance at DIE training. It would certainly be less degrading. My sense is that voting is more folly than sin. But to sit quietly through DIE training may well be complicity in blasphemy. Sometimes prudence demands silence, but acquiescing to lies being told is an implicit endorsement of those lies. If I sat twiddling my thumbs while a man told children that drinking pesticide would make them strong, I would be partly to blame for what happened to those children.

      • Yeah, I guess it depends on whether would be checking to make sure one actually picks one of the candidates on offer, which in turn depends on whether they’d be trying to crack down on laziness or on principled abstention from democracy. Since this is all hypothetical, there’s no way to answer.

        Do we sin by submitting to DIE training? I had always thought of myself as rather the one sinned against, but I suppose it doesn’t have to be only one or the other. The world might be a better place if more white Christian men were to refuse to participate on principle. The Left might fall back on its motte and bailey tactic (“we’re just teaching you to treat everyone the same!”), but maybe they wouldn’t even bother. When they were screaming against that law against vilifying entire races in school curricula, they didn’t even bother to deny that that’s what they were doing.

    • I haven’t given this much thought, but I don’t think my bar would be very high for complying: I’d be willing to pay some level of fine, but I wouldn’t lose my job or go to jail for refusing to vote.

      And is this kinda a trick question? If it were law, wouldn’t we authoritarians say we were obliged to obey?

      Another question on voting: when I think of my non-voting position, I always have national elections in mind. What about referendums? Does the same analysis apply? On the one hand, if you’re voting on something like abortion (as I guess might happen in Michigan), you’re voting on something that really shouldn’t be up for a vote in the first place, and so by voting it would seem that you’re endorsing the (classical) liberal idea that governance should simply reflect the will of the people. On the other, you’re voting on an isolated issue that (perhaps?) can be separated from all the other baggage one is implicitly endorsing by voting in national elections.

    • Voting is certainly no longer allowed to change the government.

      Also, by 2024, enough warm bodies will have crossed the Southern border to have a registration card stuck in their hand in unaccountable urban precincts and told to vote “(D)” because that’s where the dinero comes from.

      • Voting means nothing when the Deep State chugs on regardless. Carrying out it true dictates.

        If we don’t control appointments of said Bureaucrats like Stalin. We won’t have loyal servants.

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