I’ve noticed more and more that people who are becoming involved in this election process culminating this day, November 4th of 2008, are of the mind that our presidential candidate really drives where everything goes in this country. He/she bears the reigns of this superpower we call our United States of America.

I feel that people fail to notice that our government was multi-faceted in its conception for a reason. We have an executive branch to lead the military forces and oversee government organizations and committees as needed. We have a legislative branch to contrive and enact bills and laws to the needs and desires of this nation as a whole. Lastly, we have a judicial branch to serve to uphold or scrutinize the legislation produced by the legislative branch and approved by the executive branch. Each branch was given powers so that no one bore exclusive or indomitable power over the others, the traditional “checks and balances” we learned so long ago.

I bring this up because people appear to feel so strongly about some issue(s) that they are “forced” to vote for one presidential candidate, although that candidate may personally disagree with said person’s other less important values. I wholeheartedly disagree that this should be the thought and mentality about all this!

We need an executive leader to steer this country in the right direction, yes. At the same time, we need a strong voice in the representative branch of legislation in order to enact the laws and policies we want to see in place, despite what the executive branch may want. Congress does bear the ability to overturn a Presidential veto if he/she does not approve of the legislation. However, this will never happen if people don’t take the time to speak up to their Congressional representatives.

Make your voices known. Don’t compromise on most of your values for the greater good of a single value. The means by which the public can involve themselves in the greater good of this nation is multiple-fold. Don’t settle on one candidate simply because he/she bears a personal stigma such as race, age or religion. Don’t vote solely based on a pro-life/pro-abortion or to who gives you the bigger tax cut. If you’re taking the easy way out, thinking the President will be the end-all be-all of the direction of this government, then perhaps you should reconsider why you are voting.

If you’re not willing to explore all avenues for shaping this nation by your involvement, then what are you really accomplishing by participating in one active branch and not the others? Please, do not make this a half-assed endeavor (to put it bluntly).

Vote responsibly after deliberation on all the issues that matter to you. Make your opinion known to your representation in the legislative bodies so they know just how you wish to see this nation develop. Be aware of legislation that is being passed, especially if it directly influences those issues that matter most to you, and question it if needed!

I hope many of you that see this are voting today. I hope that among those that are, many are willing to flex their muscles of civic duty and participate to as much of an extent as they are able.

I really cannot wait until election week is over with. The asinine things that are happening all because of this election (or more accurately drawn out) have me just dreading this last week or two.

Is this a sign of things to come in future elections? If so, I’m not sure how long or to what degree of these shenanigans I will be able to withstand!

Bogus Robocall Tells Floridians They Can Vote By Phone:

“Another unknown group is distributing flyers (see the flyer after the jump) with official-looking letterhead around the area of Hampton Roads, Virgina that erroneously inform recipients that because of the crowds at the polls, the Virginia State Board of Elections is scheduling Republicans to vote on November 4th, and Democrats on the 5th.

(Via Wired.)

That shit don’t get much better than that…

Passing along some important information. Make your voice heard if you don’t approve of this folks! Especially after McCain’s disappointments Wednesday at CBS. I don’t think he’s in much of a hurry to go anywhere that important.

Image copied from DemandTheDebate2008 website to prevent secondary server burden

And so on that note, many people including myself are upset to see that none of the independent party candidates are going to be present at these debates. Looking into this a little bit, I saw what the requirements were for participation in these debates (my own bolding below):

Pursuant to the criteria, which were publicly announced on November 19, 2007, those candidates qualify for debate participation who (1) are constitutionally eligible to hold the office of President of the United States; (2) have achieved ballot access in a sufficient number of states to win a theoretical Electoral College majority in the general election; and (3) have demonstrated a level of support of at least 15 percent of the national electorate, as determined by five selected national public opinion polling organizations, using the average of those organizations’ most recent publicly-reported results.

The Board of Directors of the CPD convened today to apply the criteria with the assistance of the Editor-In-Chief of the Gallup Polling Organization, Dr. Frank Newport. Of the declared candidates, Senators Barack Obama and John McCain were found to have satisfied all three criteria Accordingly, Senator Obama and his running mate, Senator Joe Biden, and Senator John McCain and his running mate, Governor Sarah Palin, qualify to participate in the September 26 presidential debate and the Oct. 2 vice-presidential debate, respectively. No other candidates satisfied the criteria for inclusion in the September 26 and Oct. 2 debates.

Fifteen percent of the national electorate seems like a rather high number considering the partisan spreads in the elections. I personally feel this number should be lower (say perhaps 7-10% range) so that way these debates can be broached with more thinking outside of partisan alignments. Granted, that’s the way the debates should already be, but I feel that with the way this election campaigning has gone so far, the questions will be answered in order to polarize their respective parties as best they can (at least for the Republicans at a minimum) and not really be a genuine reflection upon the candidate’s true thoughts and feelings on the issue.

Next election, I’m going to try to make a mental note to see if there is any way the public can influence these requirements set forth by the Commission on Presidential Debates.