Posted by: patenttranslator | November 6, 2012

Do you think that voting matters?


  1. Every time I hear voting does not matter, I think of 2000 and wonder where would we be today if the count of 537 votes in FL did not put Bush in the White House. Climate change regulation? Wall Street regulation? Financial collapse? Who knows? Chances are the corporations wouldn’t have gained the upper hand…
    Let’s vote. The system may not be perfect, but there is a clear difference between the 2 candidates.


  2. I remember this from studying passive and active infinitive forms in Latin:

    Cato mirari se aiebat quod non ridere haruspex haruspicem cum videret.

    (Cato said I wonder how one haruspex can keep from laughing when he sees another haruspex.)

    For those who forgot their Latin, haruspices [this is the correct plural form in Latin] were wise priests in ancient Rome who could divine the future from entrails of animals. What Cato meant was that the whole thing was obviously a huge and funny hoax perpetrated on gullible masses.

    Patent Translator said: I often wonder how a Democrat can keep from laughing when he sees a Republican.


  3. The election is over. Will things be going better?

    “In reality, the Republican Party didn’t lose the election because of Sandy, or Christie, or a mural. It lost because 71 percent of Latinos, 93 percent of black people, 73 percent of Asian Americans, and 55 percent of women voted against it. The party did not embrace policies that appeal to these demographic groups—and lost. And that’s the GOP’s fault.” (Six Absurd Republican Excuses for Mitt Romney’s Defeat:

    Cato was right. Haruspices don’t laugh each other. Both need the gullible masses. But one day before the election, Seth Godin wrote an interesting blog post: Why vote? The marketing dynamics of apathy (

    6 persons for 54.55%, the sampling base is somehow too low, but it confirms my suspicion. You know that almost everything will remain the same, but the masses need a haruspex to divine the future from entrails of animals.


  4. I did not know that you are so interested in American politics.

    Talking about haruspices …. I was just watching on C-span the proceedings of the Congress of the Communist Party of China when I read your comment.

    At first I thought it sounded very different from what they say during the Democratic or Republican Party Conventions….. but then I realized that if you replaced the word “socialism” with the word “democracy” and massaged the translation a little, you could easily use it with some minor editing for speeches during Democratic and Republican Conventions here, since the words “socialism” is at this point just as meaningless in China as the word “democracy” is meaningless here, and the rest of the speeches is mostly about divining the future from entrails of animals.


  5. You got it. “Socialism” is just as meaningless in China as “democracy” in the USA.

    However, the procedure of “appointing” a chief haruspex goes usually without involving or engaging the masses. During the 18th Congress of the CCP, all the windows of buses are screwed and taped to prevent them from being opened. Some Chinese are unhappy about this. Ai Weiwei documented it in his “How to Scientifically Remove a Shiny Screw with Chinese Characteristics from a Moving Vehicle in Eighteen Turns” (Youtube /watch?v=NfjKftja0-8).

    There is a comment reading, “…The Chinese regime referred their political ideology as ‘socialism with Chinese characteristics’, so essentially anything can be related to Chinese characteristics. Another word, ‘scientifically’, stems from ‘the viewpoint of scientific development’, which is a heritage invented for current president Hu. Regarding shiny, a precise translation is ‘splendid’, is to describe anything done in the past by the communist party, even the screws and tape you see on the bus.”

    Unlike the American style of the rituals every 4 years, the involvement and engagement of the masses in China is performed continuously after the appointment of the chief haruspex in China. Remember Dr. Goebbels’ “Das Volk muss bei Laune gehalten werden” and you will understand which style is more effective.


  6. Most of my neighbors are Republicans, they go to church every Sunday, and they think that the country is going to hell in handbasket because Obama is a socialist. Other than that, they are nice people, I just have to remember never to discuss politics with them.

    They had about a dozen Romney signs before the election in front of their houses along with signs “Pray For America”. There was only one lonesome Obama sign in front of the house of a black guy. The other black guy who lives here is a big time Republican, he had a Romney sign on his lawn. When Romney himself came here during the campaign to give a speech a few hundred yards from our house at the Tidewater Community College, people parked their cars here and walked there. That’s how close my house is to the beating heart of the Republican party.

    After the election, all the Romney signs disappeared. The Obama sign is still there, except that the guy moved it to a more prominent position.

    The “Pray For America” signs are also still there.

    I have to laugh every time I walk my dog Lucy in our neighborhood.

    Although only 11 people participated so far in my unscientific poll, which is much lower than usual, you can see that about half of them thought that voting does matter, and a half of them thought that it is a joke, which corresponds to the situation on the ground here because about 50 percent of people who can vote no longer even bother to show up.


  7. I wanted to vote for the option, “My vote has had virtually no impact on any American political election in which I have participated, but I vote anyways because it makes me feel good,” but that wasn’t an option and my response was too long for the “Other” option.

    But I guess that you could use that logic to justify almost anything.


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