Why Neither Candidate Should Get Our Vote.

Posted on November 6, 2012 by

Alasdair MacIntyre is a Rev. John A. O’Brien Senior Research
Professor of Philosophy at the University of Notre Dame. I first came across his work in this book while writing my Master’s Thesis at Washington State University.

Below is a quoted segment of this piece. In it, MacIntyre argues that we should not cast a vote for either candidate. Quite the take. Though I agree with his take on the presidency I still think people should vote for particular issues on the ballot as those votes will matter in their respective states.

“When offered a choice between two politically intolerable alternatives, it is important to choose neither. And when that choice is presented in rival arguments and debates that exclude from public consideration any other set of possibilities, it becomes a duty to withdraw from those arguments and debates, so as to resist the imposition of this false choice by those who have arrogated to themselves the power of framing the alternatives. 

These are propositions which in the abstract may seem to invite easy agreement. But, when they find application to the coming presidential election, they are likely to be rejected out of hand. For it has become an ingrained piece of received wisdom that voting is one mark of a good citizen, not voting a sign of irresponsibility. But the only vote worth casting in November is a vote that no one will be able to cast, a vote against a system that presents one with a choice between Bush’s conservatism and Kerry’s liberalism, those two partners in ideological debate, both of whom need the other as a target”.