Colin Agrees with John Kasich? Ricki C. Works the Polls? Our Bi-Annual Election Day Manifesto

Okay folks,  tomorrow is Election Day again (seriously) so it's time for my bi-annual Election Day manifesto. As a rule, we steer clear of politics here at Pencilstorm because: A) What do we know? and.....B) It cuts into valuable print space for debating who should be elected to the rock n roll hall of fame.

But in the interest of being a good citizen, I feel it is my duty as a Patriot to share a couple of thoughts for your consideration on this special day.

Remember, "Democracy" only works if everybody gets involved and shares their opinions and works towards a healthy compromise. I realize it's kind of a pain in the ass when somebody disagrees with you, but it's nothing personal. That's just how the founding fathers set up the system. Blame them, not me, or that asshole on Facebook who thinks taxes are too high or too low or whatever. The founding fathers wanted to give a voice to the people. That's why we got rid of that damn King in the first place. 

If you are one of those types that gets all huffy when you hear an opposing political viewpoint I would suggest your are a mentally weak American who has more in common with ISIS than your own government. So if you are overly sensitive, please spare me and stop reading now. (Making gagging noise putting fingers down my throat.)

Isn't this off to a nice start?

Or put another way for my rock n roll brothers and sisters: I may not agree with Ted Nugent's politics but I still crank up "Wango Tango" when it comes on the radio. So relax and enjoy the democratic process why don't you? A bunch of people fought and died for this privilege, so don't be a dick about it. 

Since there really isn't much of an election to speak of here in Ohio, I thought I would volunteer four topics on which I agree with Ohio Governor John Kasich. Please be mindful this is NOT some sort of endorsement so feel free to cast your vote however you please. It's nothing to me.

1) In July 2012 Kasich vetoed house bill 231 which would have allowed private interests to claim as much as FIVE MILLION gallons of water a day from Lake Erie without a permit. The bill passed the Ohio House with unanimous support from Republicans and literally nobody else on Earth including former Republican Guvs Taft and Voinovich.  His own party went crazy assuming he would just rubber stamp this gift to private business and were shocked by the veto. Want to read some really stupid quotes from some really stupid Ohio House members? Click here for a Dispatch article summing it all up.

2) Kasich bypasses his own Republican controlled legislation to expand Ohio's Medicaid program providing 300,000 Ohioans Health coverage they previously didn't have. Sure, some people don't like "Obamacare" but when somebody offers you 14 BILLION dollars, you take it. The fact that it is just morally the right thing to do makes it even sweeter. 

"Opposition to Medicaid expansion is either ideological or political and I don't think that holds water against real flesh and blood and real improvements in people's lives." - John Kasich

Click here to read Tea Party story: Gov. Kasich: Obamacare Repeal's 'Not Going to Happen even if we win the Senate'

3) Blasting the GOP for engaging in a war on the poor. "That if you are poor, somehow your are shiftless or lazy. The very people who complain should ask their grandparents if they worked at the W.P.A." and "What's more important when you get to Heaven? Did you keep government small or did you help the poor?" Click here for the full interview.

4) And just last week: Kasich: Fracking Tax is a 'complete rip off' for Ohioans. Kasich is pissed that private companies are making off with our natural resources and paying mere pennies for the privilege. Any Ohioan who opposes our Governor playing hardball trying to get a better return for the taxpayers of this state either works for the oil/gas lobby or is just a complete and total dumb ass. Click here for the full story from the Dispatch.

Certainly there are many topics John and myself don't see eye to eye, (women's rights for one) and I can't say I will be voting for him come this Tuesday but I respect that he is his own man and seems to have somewhat logical thinking behind many of his positions.

In full disclosure, I won't be voting for any candidate this election day. Not because Ed Fitzgerald can't take the time to renew a driver's license (I mean, come on, it is a pain in the ass) or I prefer some fringe lunatic candidate. No, I will not be voting because I will be out of town recording new songs with Watershed. Can't waste my time on something as trivial as politics when there are loud guitars to be recorded. 

Now get out and vote!  - Colin Gawel

Hey gang, Ricki C. here...

I just wanted to throw in my two cents, politics & elections-wise.  First off: I have been a poll-worker the last few elections over the last couple of years.  As a poll-worker, I would like to point out to Colin that he could have early-voted over at the Board of Elections on Morse Road.  But then I remembered that Colin grew up on the Mean Streets of Worthington, Ohio, and now resides in pastoral Upper Arlington - where they have good schools and where little birds dress many of the children in the morning before they attend those schools - so he may not have wanted to venture into the warlord-ruled, gang-infested no-man's-land that is Morse Road across from the old Northland Mall - i.e., my neighborhood. 

I actually became a poll-worker quite by accident, in that the Board of Elections called ME and asked me to join up.  I'm not sure it's common knowledge, but it is mandated by law that each polling station has to be manned by an equal number of Democrats and Republicans.  And it seems that the suburb adjacent to where I live in Columbus - which shall remain nameless for obvious reasons - could not muster enough Democrats to staff their polling place.  How many Dems were needed to fill out that roster, you might ask?  Four.  4.  In Roman numerals, IV.  (Cuatro, for our Hispanic brothers & sisters, although we really don't need Spanish in our polling-place, if you catch my drift.)  Right, the suburb in question could not find four Democrats within its borders to staff the polls.  Sad.  Scary.

I was going to detail some of my less-than-stellar moments as a poll worker here - one encounter with a tea-party voter stands out - but my lovely wife reminded me that I might want to KEEP working the polls, so let's just let those lie.  I do wanna say a couple of things: 1) If you don't go out and vote, do not complain to me about the quality of politicians you wind up with.  Right now the Koch brothers can finance a kajillion negative ads, but they still only get one vote apiece.  2) I find I have to disagree with Colin about Kasich.  The Governor can speechify all he wants about Medicaid and increasing the taxes on fracking, but as long as a gerrymandered Ohio is ruled by a Republican legislature, Kasich knows he won't have to deliver on any lip-service he pays to those causes.  He can appear moderate and, more importantly, Presidential without really doing anything substantive for the poor and middle class.  He can have his cake and eat it too.  Talk is cheap.  

Please understand me, I have nothing against John Kasich personally.  And I have no illusions that a completely inept Ed FitzGerald has any prayer of winning this election, but I still hope that everyone reading this goes out and votes the complete ballot and at least tries to participate in the process.  - Ricki C.