The purpose of this post is to help you answer the question “who should I vote for”.  There is always an election coming up.  My thesis is vote according to your ideals, rather than how a  political candidate can help you personally.

If you think this is a post of minor importance think again.  My hope is not to sway you to vote for the donkey and the elephant, but to vote on your own moral conscious.

I am fortunate to be an American living a good part of my life in Europe. I am slightly distant from the day to day political scene in the States.  However, this has given me the perspective of not caring about the issues or campaign slogans as much as the ideals of the individual.

Why you should not vote for candidates that can help you

Voting for someone that can help you life personally seems like the most logical thing to do, right? Perhaps you are going to retire and one person in the election could extend benefits to the retired. Certainly nothing wrong with this right?  You might also argue that people acting on their own enlightened self interest will create a better society (even one of my favorites Adam Smith believed this) correct?


When it comes to voting here is why you should not cast you ballot in your own self interest:

  • Politics is a cognitive illusion, like the lottery.  It gives people false hope that someday, someone will knock on your door and change your life situation. – This will not happen.
  • Only you can change your situation in life in the long term.  A politician might extend your benefits in a nominal way, but will not make your dreams come true.  If you think any politician will help you, than you are already moving away from your dreams. This is because that electorate is defusing responsibility.  That is the responsibility to change your life is up. No one will bring change to your life except you.

Who should I vote for?

If you can not vote based on self interest, than the acid test, of who to vote for in any election is the moral standing of the individual running.  I have voted republican, democrat and libertarian. I always made my choice in any election based on the moral stance or the ideal of the candidate running for election. I hope you do also.

How should I vote?

How should you vote? Be a value based voter, whether they are traditional or new wave.

The determinate criterion for what is moral is, what is congruent with your personal beliefs. Voting is one easy way to put your ideals into action. My point is be a voter who acts on morals than a base desire to better their own personal life.

Types of belief in the political process

  • Economic – The basic question here is – should the government reallocate wealth and to what extent (this includes health care)?  What is your view on wealth and money. What is money?
  • Environment – Is the environment a public good to be used or protected and how do we draw the line?
  • Life – Is life sacred and an unique or is life an existential cosmic joke?
  • Education- Whose has the primary responsibility to teach children about life, parents or the municipalities?
  • Foreign policy- Peace and love or Imperialism?
  • Defense – What is the optimal strategy for defense, light and high tech or tanks and battleships?
  • Liberty – what is more important personal liberty or the greater good.

Besides the above issues there is there anything else to vote on?  If you think I have missed a question above let me know.  Here is my own little poll. Let me know if you there you should vote on your ideals or based on what a politician can do for you?  What do you think most people vote on?