Eight Million People Said Nothing

AT FIRST IT WAS A LETDOWN THAT THE TURNOUT FOR THIRD/ALTERNATIVE PARTIES WAS NOT MORE DRAMATIC IN THE 2012 US PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION, UNTIL SOME NUMBERS WERE CRUNCHED MORE THOROUGHLY.

John Lett (About) (Readings)

RESULTS AND NUMBERS

As I was expecting, bar extraordinary circumstances, Obama won the 2012 election in the US, as you may recall from the last article, “Tuesday Nightmare” (which did not refer to anyone winning or losing but the intensity of the situation). In terms of electoral votes, he won more decisively than I was expecting, though in terms of the shortfall compared to 2008, he won by fewer votes than I expected (I was thinking 269 to 284 electoral votes, 50.2% of the popular vote, and five million fewer votes than 2008. The result as of now is 332 electoral votes, 50.6% of the votes, and six million fewer votes than last time, according to Google’s US General Election results). I was also “wrong” on Obama losing Florida, Colorado, and New Hampshire, as well as the possibility of losing Virginia (that final piece was my own “expecting the worst” imagination, I think, though I see both candidates as from a similar ilk).

Last I saw from wikipedia results from 2008 and 2012 is that in 2008 131.4 million people voted overall and 123.7 million voted this time. More than 6 million fewer people voted for Obama this time, and 0.8 million fewer people voted for Romney than McCain. The Green Party gained 200,000 votes, and the Libertarians gained 650,000 votes, with all third parties combined, as of November 12, 2012, went from 1.947 million votes in 2008 to 1.962 million in 2012 (all data from wikipedia 2008 and 2012).

MEANING

I suspect that the majority of people who turned out in 2008 but who did not turn out this time were mostly Obama voters who were displeased with how things have gone in the US, but who did not want to vote against Obama or abandon the platform entirely. As you may recall, the tarot reading for the 2012 election stated “3” for Jill Stein and “2” for Gary Johnson. Jill Stein and the Green Party attained 0.35% of the votes, and Gary Johnson just under 1% with 1.2 million. I think the 2 in this case meant the duplicity and separation from the mainline Republican Party for those who stepped over to the Libertarians.

The Green results  are not remarkable, given that Ralph Nader secured a greater number of votes (2.8 million in 2000, or 2.74%; 463,000 in 2004, or 0.38%; and 738,000 in 2008, the latter two as an independent, or 0.56%). I suspect that people are still reeling from 2000 when he was considered the spoiler that led to the election of George W. Bush, and people may still project that on to Jill Stein.

Many people iterated to me that they considered Rocky Anderson the best candidate, but I knew of no one who voted for him, and he placed behind Roseanne Barr with less than 40,000 votes overall. As I stated in my article, he is the suppressed candidate and he will rise again in 2016.

Let’s try to get our third parties in local politics! I am not sure if I will be in the US in the coming four years in order to achieve this, but please notify me of your local efforts to do so and I will do my best to promote knowledge of these activities to contacts in your area.

In sum, I take the results of this election to be very telling of where we are now. As I stated before, people were going to play it safe with this US election, which involved either voting for the same person as before or choosing not to vote. The extent to which people did not vote was surprising, but it indicates that people are relatively loyal and do not want to abandon security.

WHAT’S NEXT?

Remember the suit of Swords appearing upside down. This means reactionary, conflict, and in the context of questions for 2013, austerity. A small recovery will happen, but there is not a return to form (1980s through 2001 type of economy).

I suspect Susan Rice is a decoy for the secretary of state candidacy. The Obama administration probably threw her out there so that the Republican Congress would focus all of their animosity on someone who is not intended for the role, while John Kerry advances.

The Israel upheaval this week is disconcerting, but according to the cards, I don’t see a major, global scale conflict in the short-term, though the stage is being set for a later conflict. The best thing that you can do now, particularly if you are in Israel, is under-react and seem somewhat disinterested, in spite of the dangers.

I am not making any public predictions or observations on Europe at this time, in part for reasons mentioned before (“Market Sensitive Predictions“).

For those who were wishing for a more radical change, remember that gradual changes are more stable, less violent, and open more doors, but they are occasionally invisible and not noted until much later. The bug has been planted and people will feel more secure in spite of their limited resources at the moment, a trend that has been quietly bubbling for years now.

Though I voted for a third party, which I felt was in line with my vision of the future of the US and the world, 2012’s election is the only one in my recollection (1996, 2000, 2004, 2008) that yielded a sense in me that life will be better in four years than on Election Day.

For a look at which predictions were made (and occasionally lost!), check out the previous article, “Tuesday Nightmare: 2012 Election” from Sunday, November 4th.

John Lett (About) (Readings)

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2 Responses to Eight Million People Said Nothing

  1. Interesting! I’ve voted Nader more than once in the past. I usually vote Green here in France and voted for Stein in the US, absentee. One out of every five voters in the US in the early ’90s voted “alternative” and Ross Perot got a huge number of votes.

    • Thanks for stopping by, and people should really see your previous comment. Navigating the French bureaucracy and working for big consultancies certainly has given you insight regarding expanding into the marketplace in France.

      People are doing more on the ground, but in terms of a commitment on paper (everyone I know turned down the electronic voting and opted for paper ballots, though many of them did so just because the line was shorter), people did not come through this time. 1.6% voted for third parties. With the eight million who voted in 2008 but not now, that would have been enough to get at least one of the parties 5% of the needed votes.

      The media keeps insisting that young people turned out more than ever, but that does not look right to me.

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