Note: I suppose we still have it easy in England. Here in Deal, I just shuffle into the polling station and tell one of the clerks who I am. He draws a line through my name on the electoral register and gives me a ballot. No formalities. The only pig is lounging outside, only there in the unlikely event that the party tellers start arguing over who gets first look at the polling cards. You might almost think that voting didn’t matter any more in England. It doesn’t of course – but this manner of holding elections dates back to a time when voting did count for something.
As for postal votes, you just write in – for yourself and all your wives and other women, alive or dead or still unborn, in many parts of the country – and the papers come back within five days. SIG
My Trip to the County Courthouse, by Kevin A. Carson
I just finished negotiating the bureaucracy at the Washington County Arkansas courthouse in order to get my mom an absentee ballot.
Both yesterday (when I picked up the application) and today (when I picked up the actual ballot), I had difficulty parking because of all the political campaign workers (including some of the politicians themselves) standing around with signs and obstructing the drive-thru area. I actually had to circle around and pass up empty spaces because the people holding signs didn’t give me room enough to maneuver and pull into the spaces at the proper angle.
On the plus side, one of the people holding a sign was mayor Lioneld Jordan. It’s not every day you get to glare at a mayor and refuse to shake his hand.
Inside, I had the joy of going through Security Theater with a metal detector staffed by County Sheriff’s Department deputies, taking off my belt and handing over my phone, keys and wallet. First of all, nobody in Al Qaeda is going to bother blowing up some chickenshit county courthouse in Arkansas. And second, if they did they’d be smart enough to find a way around that perfunctory bullshit.
Mayor Jordan and his campaign staff had apparently been taking in my (pro-gun, pro-drug, anti-police, anti-publik skool, anti-Walmart, pro-anarchist and pro-Wobbly) bumper stickers while I was in the building, because I was spared any attempted gladhanding on the way out.
Aside from that, my only inconvenience was finding parking at the brew pub (thanks to some wonderful folks playing the game of “make the neighboring parking space unusable as possible while technically keeping within the lines”). And now I’m working on my first IPA, getting ready to write some columns, and trying to rinse the memory of my “public servants” out of my mind.