Where does your vote really count?

Okay, first a disclaimer. Stephwithoutborders is being re-vamped. Don’t panic, it’s going to be alright. It’s just that at this moment I am not wandering, at least not in my physical body. I do, however, continue to wander quite a bit around the recesses of my mind and would like to share some of these other types of adventures with you. Hopefully we will maintain a lack of borders in the process, until I can get on a plane again and resume the more traditional wandering life.

Since we are nearing the time when all of us will go to the polls and cast votes for the people we try to believe in, (I mean it, all of us. I don’t care who you’re voting for…well, that’s not technically true, but I do allow that it is none of my business. I believe that it is of paramount importance that we all exercise this right. Don’t let down our ancestors who had to fight for it) it seems appropriate that I speak to you a bit from one of my favorite soapboxes. So please, imagine me standing on a soapbox, bullhorn in hand. I’m thinking jeans and pigtails, and so long as we’re imagining how about some cute country girl freckles too. Got it? Okay, thanks…here we go!

I think that more important than any vote cast on any ballot anywhere ever are the votes we cast every day. Every time I spend 50 cents or $100, I am not just making a purchase to satisfy my current desire. I am telling the whole line of people involved in getting the item I want into my possession that I vote for every step of that process. Now I’m not going to call out any names here or try to start a debate about good versus evil business’…unless you want me to…do you? I mean, I can, and I guess it could be entertaining…but no, at least for now that’s not what I’m trying to get across. What I really want to say while I’m up on this nice wooden soapbox (we made it wooden right?), is that I hope you think about all the ways you vote every day. If you want to buy something and you can pretty much figure out where it came from, I hope you ask yourself how you feel about that. Do you support the process? Did anyone suffer so that you could save a bit? Does that matter to you? (Please say yes.) Is it worth it to spend a little bit more to purchase an item that you believe in?

Now I know the money is tight argument. Somehow we all, always, think money is tight. I suspect it’s because most of us have never actually experienced money being tight. (Suggested cures: 1) learn about how people live in third world countries; 2) really think about what constitutes a NEED and what is truly just a want ) I don’t want to say that what is right for me is right for anyone else, mainly for the selfish reason that I don’t want anyone doing that to me. So I will just say that for me, I would rather go without than have something for less if I don’t support its origins or how it got to me. We do research before we go to the polls and cast votes for the people and issues that resonate with our core beliefs. Why not put the same effort into understanding what your wallet is voting for? It might surprise you to find out. With the depth of influence corporations have on our government policies, it just might be the more important vote.

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About stephwithoutborders

I decided to sell (almost) everything I own and buy a plane ticket to South America. This is all about why and how, and what happens next.
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4 Responses to Where does your vote really count?

  1. Barney says:

    Nicely said!… informed consumers are the backbone of a market economy… and market economies allowed to run well utilize and allocate resources very efficiently… this is a very effective way to drive long term change, in a way that is not tops down regulatory authoritarian and often with unintended consequences…

  2. flames says:

    hey Steph – James and Fleur here. Hope you will be returning to South America soon. We are in Brazil after a trip home to see family. Lovely people here and you meet so many locals in the hostels – although if i thought spanish was hard Portugese has me almost in tears. As you know you definitely think more about your purchases while on the road – is it going to the locals etc! Hope to see u again soon xx

    • Hey! Great to hear from you two! I hope to get back to S.A. soon, but need to work for a while and replenish :) Brazil would be wonderful, so glad you are enjoying. Let me know if you head to the NW US. Love to see you.

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