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Merry Christmas everyone!

I find it almost impossible to do work without a little bit of background noise these days, and one of my favourite forms is to replay a series I have already watched (no need to engage in the plotline, but something nonetheless pleasant to hear). In anticipation of the coming winter, I’ve been playing Game of Thrones a lot.  During one of the many requisite swordfights each episode, my mother, unable to ignore the clanging coming from my monitor (I’m supposed to be doing work at this point), remarks, “What is THAT?? Sounds like a lot of people dying.”

Hehe, if only she knew.

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Then, it didn’t seem like such a farfetched idea that my mother would be into Game of Thrones.  She does love period pieces!  It may be a tad darker than anything else I’ve suggested, but what the hell?

“Mom, it’s Game of Thrones, you would probably like it.  It’s the most expensive tv show ever made.  Every episode is like a movie”

“What’s it about?”

“Oh, you know, warring families each claim their right to rule the throne, their fall from grace, duty, marrying for obligation or love, blah blah blah.  And magic and weird demons and stuff.  It’s like 三国演义**”.

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And then it dawned on me. George RR Martin’s most relevant epic literary reference came from 14th century China in the form of a book about three family’s struggle for the throne (and the mythical supernatural stuff).  The Romance of the Three Kingdoms is pretty much the most widely known classics in East Asia and rival Shakespeare in the number of modern film and tv interpretations.  This is Illiad grade shit we are talking about.  Why was he citing inspiration from lameness like Lord of the Dance Flies Rings?

Obviously because George RR Martin has never heard of such books.  Why would he?  He’s American.

The first thing you learn as a biology student is that cells don’t explode because of semipermeable membranes.  Sometimes, the skin around cells allows things to travel freely, like water.  Sometimes (oh God, I hope I get this right), ions like potassium are only allowed to pass freely through in one direction.  The other direction is a barrier, they become part of the cell, or they have to be rounded up and forced out.  There is an unequal movement of stuff in both directions.  

Knowledge between the East and the West has long been the semi-permeable membrane of knowledge transfer.  My mother grew up knowing about the works of Dickens and Shakespeare, much like most children who grew up in the non-West.  Her favourite book as a teenager was Jane Eyre.  However, few people in the West know about the great works and knowledge that were never permitted to transfer in the other direction, including myself; if you asked me to name ten books written by dead, non-Western authors, I’d be in trouble.

I can’t help but wonder if this has contributed to beliefs in the literary/intellectual uniqueness of the West.  After all, if Western schools influence reading lists, then they are inherently legitimizing some forms knowledge  and illegitimizing other forms.  I had a very great social studies teacher in high school, who aware of this, made a conscious effort to avoid American/European authors and historians for the entire year.  Not one mention of Austen or Dickens or Fitzgerald or Steinbeck, can you imagine??  Had I gone through my entire education with lesser teachers, I might have come out believing that no other society had produced anything valuable, interesting, or of great importance.  I might end up believing that those who don’t live in the West are not worthy of all of the qualities that literature lends its characters: license to have unique identities, dreams, feelings, and flaws.

In the absence of knowledge about the East from Eastern voices, we have often gotten our knowledge of the East through a Western interpretation.  One of the great parts of auditing the Space and Race class this year was being asked such astoundingly simple questions as; when knowledge is produced, who was it produced for?  Who produced it?  Who is it true to?

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These become one-dimensional interpretations created to serve some fantasy, and sometimes really reflect our own ignorance.  For example, The Snake Charmer, criticized for the fact that it would never happen (naked child + hookah + charming a python – you don’t charm pythons, and that happened in India, not the Middle East, inside a mosque? credits to Dr. Sanyal for pointing out everything).  It isn’t the last time someone has failed to distinguish between India and the Middle East.

I think the big takeaway I’m trying to get at here is that the stuff we know, we only know because someone decided it was important.  In the process, these people also decide what isn’t important for us to know.  When it comes to what we know about the East, a lot of the pride and joy, is lost because those in control of what is and isn’t knowledge decided that it was easier, and maybe lazier, to replace real stories and real knowledge with second-hand recounts or with nothing at all.  We just need to be aware of what we think we know and where it is coming from.  Information and knowledge and truth are often decided by whoever can be heard, and we forget that not everyone gets a fair share of the microphone.

** Rebecca copied that in from Wikipedia.  Bad Rebecca!**

I’ve been doing a lot of reflection lately on the role that sports plays in life, a lot of this due to my own recent attempts at finding a procrastination method for exams.  The UK Open is coming up, you say? So are my essay deadlines?  Well, how convenient:

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In my opinion, this year has really been a disappointing one for the sports world.  There are a few positive notes; the NBA sees its first, openly gay, non-retired player in Jason Collins.  But then, there’s so many epic fails. Ronda Rousey’s debut in the UFC was met with one of three reactions:

1) Sure, why not?

1) She’s hot, so why not?

2) There’s a troubling undercurrent of aggression and defensiveness over women headlining a card.  Critics on facebook are complaining that the women’s fights will be all hair pulling and scratching (those aren’t even legal techniques) or that they aren’t skilled fighters (they are), or that they are skilled but not well rounded (potentially not so far, but was Royce Gracie well rounded in the first men’s UFC event? Give the ladies division a decade to develop and then come back to me if you don’t find them amazingly technical).

MMA fans apparently want MMA to both simultaneously be taken seriously as a legitimate sport but also be exclusively practiced by large toothless redneck men.  And this argument over women’s participation? While the NBA has a player come out of the closet?  Are we in the fifties again?  Is this the church of England?  How did we move so far backwards socially?    I’m embarrassed.

Sporting culture has become the last great bastion in the public sphere which sees such open expressions of people being intolerant or generally acting like ignoramuses (ignorami?).  What is it specifically about sports that brings out this side of its fans, or is it the fans that are themselves a special breed?

The title is a reference to the guide, Mostly Harmless Econometrics, which is a staple for those without a math backbone.  Apologies for the really obscure references.  

My Terrible Procrastination

I’m approximately 8 weeks behind schedule on my public economics dissertation.  How is that possible, when we are less than 8 weeks into the Term?  It is, when you understand that the more I read, the less I think I understand about this topic.

Harmless Economics

Economics has rightfully earned a reputation for being abstract to the point of obscurity.  Theoretical physics and mathematics also practice this same level of abstraction, but unlike economics, those fields also don’t arrogantly claim that their usefulness lies in their applicability to real life.  It is this combination of both asserting relevance and simultaneously reducing complexity of real applications that leads to some dangerous assumptions about how the world should work.  For example, my research thus far;

The Many Facets of Carbon Emissions

Global climate change is an economic puzzle in that it involves a lot of different elements, that relate back to concepts of fairness and unfairness.

1) Historical Grudges

Given the amount of manmade emissions that have collectively been produced to date, it is arguably the currently rich countries that have benefited the most from this.  Carbon emissions are a by-product of industrialization, and industrialization is associated with the economic development of most of the West. Thus, climate change treaties are saddled with the burden of how to distribute future obligations based on historical responsibility.

2) Privately Produced, Publicly Suffered.  

Carbon emissions are an externality; because they are a by-product of industrialization, the benefits are economically accrued to a small group contained within national borders.  As an atmospheric gas, carbon emissions are free to move anywhere they want, and the resulting impacts of global warming will be experienced all over the world.

3) Different Costs, Different Benefits

They can be felt all over the world, but to different magnitudes.  It is arguably the poorest countries that suffer the most and have the most to lose from climate change.  The list of factors that will determine how much they suffer includes things such as dependence on agriculture, how hot it is currently, whether or not the country has the ability and technology to adapt (or buy air conditioning).

Many solutions have all been proposed but essentially they boil down to making actions that lead to pollution costlier.  How costly they will be for each country depends on a number of factors, but one of these is a relatively abstract dimension of economics called welfare weighting.  Below a commonly used and seldom understood example:

Negishi Weights: 

One general strategy for calculating how people should ration their consumption of goods and services is to look at the overall welfare they can generate from consuming these goods.  For economists, this problem looks like this: 

 

Max:

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Subject to: 

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You can find the in-depth explanations here.  The first line is the welfare you want to maximise.  The second line relates both the costs (from pollution) and benefits from consumable goods.  Given that producing more goods today gives you more pollution which will affect everyone’s welfare negatively later in life, the resulting solution should give you an allocation of consumption that produces the maximum amount of welfare, globally, over a long period of time, by considering the benefits from goods and the global costs.  The only “problem” with this was that, when the calculations were completed, regardless of wealth, would be given equal consideration in terms of welfare, produced results that emphasized large sacrifices being made by developed countries for the sake of protecting developing countries from environmental damages.

The result was ” the problem of climate change would be drowned by the vastly larger problem of underdevelopment“.

How to rectify this? Economists developed a system of Negishi weights, which would weight more heavily the impact of reducing consumption on countries that had a higher initial level of consumption (ie, more wealthy countries). This prevented large sacrifices of welfare in the developing world, and the solution would maintain a large portion of initial global inequality; all balance was restored to the universe.

In the process of “solving the problem of underdevelopment,” the implications of ignoring initial inequality were masked, to a large extent by undervaluing the welfare of the poorest regions of the world.  That is essentially what Negishi weighting does, and the implications of it are lost because they are difficult to locate in the models (if you are curious, it is the w in the first equation).  

Good Models, Bad Models

The process of using economic modelling solves a host of problems that would otherwise be unsolvable, such as how to allocate responsibility of sacrifices for climate change prevention.  However, its conclusions are often far reaching and affect many people, and the models makes far reaching assumptions about morality that often aren’t justified by mathematical reasoning.  These assumptions are carried all the way through the calculations, produce a solution, which is then packaged, presented, and sold to policy-makers with the real power to use these conclusions.  The lack of technical knowledge of those using these economic tools then prevents them from acknowledging the validity (or lack thereof) of any of those initial moral assumptions.  They lie embedded in formulas, secret and misunderstood by most of the people who will use them. They also remain safe from any criticisms people may have about their implications.

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As was suggested in the study on Negishi weights, the models themselves aren’t faulty and there is nothing wrong with making assumptions in order to reach conclusions.  However, the communication of these assumptions is necessary if economics is going to able to safely assert its applicability to the greater world. Rather than having a cluster of people at the level of academics, and another cluster of people working in policy, there should be more individuals somewhere in the middle.  For all the complaining that my colleagues do about having to read books like “Mostly Harmless Econometrics,” we are the necessary missing link in the puzzle.

Today, one of my medical school friends admitted to me that because of the workload, he’s been in and out of colds 12-15 times in the last year.  That’s quite inhuman.  If the common cold and it’s post-cold state of phlegminess lasts roughly 10 days per occurrence, that’s  over a third of the year being subjected to headaches, joint-aches, bizarre body-induced temperature changes, and all sorts of wonderful pains in vicinity of the head.  I had one particularly bad year in undergraduate where I was sick at the beginning of every calendar month, and I have had some sort an irrational obsession with eating oranges ever since.

Personally, Canada’s system has been great to me; I’ve been in and out of emergency rooms without a hitch, and while the wait times have sometimes been in the range of hours, I have never really needed immediately treatment, so I can’t really judge their efficacy.  Some people are arguing that our healthcare system is in need of some reworking in order to bring in elements of privatisation, while some people think not enough money has been invested in a public system to enable its success.  I’m starting to think it may have something to do with this:

New York City Hospitals to Tie Doctors Performance Pay to Quality Measures

If we are just now, starting to pay doctors, for the kinds of things we want to see from them, then what the hell were we paying them for before?

Our fundamental problem is that we don’t live in a society where we fully understand what we want from our healthcare system.   The quintessential North American system looks something like this:

1) ignore a problem

2) ignore it

3) ignore it

4) it becomes a big problem, go to a hospital, ask to be pumped full of drugs, get discharged

We live in a culture full of last-minute treatments, and these often involve lots of strong, expensive drugs.  There’s no culture of “health ideals” or ways for us to maintain our ideal health; our media is always telling us about malnourished celebrities, or overweight talk show disasters, or a new crop of shows in the Oprah timeslot which are all about exploiting people’s lack of familiarity with health by highlighting all the worst possible diseases one can get.  Our problems will likely continue if we have no benchmark upon which to assess our day-to-day state of health.

It is impossible to ask our public health system to deliver on a set of ideals if we cannot define them first.  Until then, it’s potential role is largely ignored, while preventative measures are glossed over, and individuals carry on with their lives and run themselves down to the point where the only solution is a drastic overhaul.  Public health’s role is only to intervene with the permission of those who are already broken down.

Our society’s relationship with public health and healthcare is similar to my understanding of wines; I like having it as an option, but I don’t really understand, and therefore I don’t really appreciate, what an ideal glass of it would do for me.

I started this post several weeks ago, before the end of term and deadlines took over.  Before the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary and gun reform became a big topic.  

The Murder of Jordan Davis

The trial of Michael Dunn in the murder of 17 year old Jordan Davis, began at the end of 2012.  If you are new to the trial (like me), apparently, if you are at a gas station, and a group of teenagers blasting music is a bit loud for your liking, and then you shoot the car full of teenagers several times (who are unarmed, by the way) and then flee without telling the police, then this is an act of self-defense.  I think this is ridiculous.   Michael Dunn claims that he saw a shotgun, and thought the teens threatened his life.  It doesn’t explain why he would flee the scene and why he hid from the police.  I will be interested to see how the trial goes.

The Wild Wild Florida

Very un-technically, the Castle doctrine in the United States are the collection of laws that allow for the use of deadly force in the act of self defense against intruders on one’s property (protect your castle).   In some cases, this can itself be overreaching.  However, Stand Your Ground laws will do you one better and allow for the use of deadly force  outside of one’s home, and in the case of Mr. Dunn, it is being allowed anywhere.  Florida has famously found itself at the centre of a mess of “self-defense” related murders in recent months with its own Stand Your Ground law.  Getting to the point of ridiculous, a man was shot because he complained he was waiting too long for his pizza.

An Essay on Bargaining

I think the laws are inherently dangerous, and here’s why.  In its own twisted way, the interaction between a shooter and the victim is a negotiation or a bargain.  Each side communicates a commitment to an action, and then either follows through on that action, or doesn’t.  In other kinds of acts of bargaining, such as union-management negotiations, each side would communicate their demands, the actions they would commit to should those demands be met or not met, and sometimes, a signal that gives this commitment credibility.  In this case, union leaders could encourage members to fire them if they do not emerge from negotiations with the desired objectives.  This seems crazy, but what it does is sent a signal to management that the union’s demands are “binding and final”; leaders can’t leave with anything less without being fired.  It is less about career suicide and more about enforcing the credibility of a threat to stick to the original demands.

Another idea in bargaining theory is the idea of the “last clear chance”.  Sometimes in negotiations, it is advantageous to give the other party the “last chance” to change their minds.  Think about the simple game of chicken.  If somehow there was a perfect way to show that you are committed to driving straight no matter what, then you are placing the obligation to retreat (in order to avoid mutual destruction) on the shoulders of the other person.  The person who supposedly has the last say actually has none of the power, knowing they must bow to the credibility and commitment of their opponents.

Stand Your Ground laws affect both communication of credibility and the “last clear chance” principle.  First of all, it makes gun threats more credible since one can reasonably commit to shooting someone without having to worry about repercussions, like criminal charges (if it is in the name of self defense).  Additionally, Standing Your Ground means that the other party now has the “last clear chance” onus to retreat.  The responsibility of retreating is no longer on the individual making the threat of violent force.

The Problem?

This would all be great because it communicates to trespassers (Castle Doctrine) or random strangers (Stand Your Ground) that you have a gun, you are going to use it, they need to concede or face certain death.  In theory, it would mean the other party retreats faster and without protest in order to avoid getting shot, and this would make the world a safer happier place without all those trespassers and random strangers getting all up in your face at gas stations with their loud music.

The only problem in practice is that the act itself is not a clear cut act of bargaining on both sides.  In Jordan Davis’ murder, the teenagers were not aware that they were in the middle of a self-defense bargain.  They thought they were just arguing over the volume of their music with a grumpy stranger.  In the case of Yoshiro Hattori, he just happened to ring the doorbell of the wrong house.  And in the case of the Little Caesars pizza shooting, I’m sure the victim had no idea that the argument had escalated to a place where guns were necessary.  The problem in the Stand Your Ground laws is that they apply perfect rules of bargaining to imperfect situations where one side feels like it is absolved of all responsibility of diffusing a potentially fatal situation, and the other side is completely oblivious to the situation.

There are many other problems with Stand Your Ground laws.  For example, when does it no longer become a negotiation, and the party with the gun has actually no intent of withholding force?  What about it being used as a defense against pre-meditated murder?

What about the criticisms that the law is applied unevenly across racial groups?  It feels almost too easy to go there.  It is really difficult to get the numbers but this is a good start.

PBS: Stand Your Ground Laws

The laws are a great example of what happens when theory and practice don’t mix well.   Kind of like how hot-tempered gun owners and just about anyone else don’t mix either.

Some extra stuff to think about: 

Are Stand Your Ground defenses racist?

The death of Trayvon Martin

Shark Finches

Darwin was a man who stirred up a lot of shit.

His ideas were not that crazy; after visiting the Galapagos Islands Darwin observed that finches had different beak features on each of the the tiny island pockets.  He concluded that they must have come from some larger population of finches that migrated to the islands, but as time passed, groups of finches would learn to eat the specific foods on each island from small insects, to large rock-like nuts, and thus grew to be more and more different from their neighbours.

The process that I outlined (very unscientifically and in very general terms, of course) is called speciation, and is the idea that time, distance, and some geographical factors can lead to the creation of sub-populations, and that over time, with isolation, these groups will eventually branch off completely and become unique species within their own right.  The test?  If chance and geographic factors are removed, and the groups are somehow merged together onto the same island, they are prevented from mingling together and producing offspring that are not infertile.  Mules are a good example of that time that donkeys and horses were not the same species.

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Cultural Speciation

Cultures can speciate too.  I’ve become acutely aware of how race is categorized in the recent US Presidential elections, with Asians kind of being lumped together as a voting bloc (we only make up 3% collectively, so maybe this is to our advantage influence-wise).  But I think in our need to represent ourselves in solidarity we are forgetting that there is a cultural speciation that is happening all over North America.  Asian-Canadians are an entirely different culture from both Canadians and Asians and sometimes this is leading to a bit of tension.

A few days ago there was this article in a Vancouver e-paper about the shark fin soup ban.  I’ve included the link but the restaurant owner says the following:

“His culture is totally Canadian, and he has no feeling for shark fin,” Chung reiterated to the Straight. “Canadian-born Chinese are based on Canadian culture….They’re called bananas for a good reason. There’s nothing wrong with that; it’s not to be degrading. It just describes it well.”

From the rest of the article I can tell you that Chung does imply that there’s something wrong with being a banana. And who can forget  the CVC incident a few years ago when an Asian student society with a stronger “Canadian” cultural component found itself in the middle of hot water over some promotional campaign videos that mocked more “Asian” culturally dominated (wow, awkward wording) groups.

The reason for the tension is a level of cultural speciation.  I feel like while there is a continuum, a large clump of younger Asian Canadians immigrated to North America at least one generation ago and settled in areas where there was little cultural critical mass (*ahem*, Saskatchewan).  We grew up with friends who were not Asian, in classrooms that had little exposure to Asians before, and were generally treated like we were not Asian.  We were the “first movers.”  In the last fifteen years, there’s been an influx of Asian communities, places where Asians could read street signs their own languages, buy their own food, and generally forget that they were in Canada.  We aren’t separated by a geographical barrier, but we are separated by a temporal one that resulted in our being exposed to essentially two different cultural environments.

The result is two cultures that look the same but don’t really have much in common.  The worst part is that we aren’t recognized as two different groups by outsiders and are often lumped into the same category.

 

Where did the love go?

I’ve felt like there is a growing animosity between the two groups in general.  When I was younger I used to be embarrassed to be Chinese in thanks to a lot of externally inflicted self-internalized racism from grade 7 summer camp.  But the most animosity that I felt was not towards other groups, but towards other Asians. I used to take every “embarrassing” thing that a “more Asian” stranger did as a personal attack on my (self-evaluated) level of coolness.  My mother tells me that a lot of my “more Asian” peers tend to resent me and young people like myself for “choosing” to speak English, hang out with groups that are less homogenous and generally looking down upon newer immigrants.  We are kind of like the equivalent of “cultural traitors” and if the article is any indication, this is a thinly veiled sentiment across the board.  I don’t know how this happened, but we were raised in two different times and came out of the process hating each other.  The whole shark fin soup ban is kind of like a litmus test in terms of indicating which side of the “Asian spectrum” one will fall on.

How do we fix this?  We accept reality.  We do this by dropping our obstinant adherence to the belief that we have the same cultural obligations.   I think we need to recognize that the worlds that we faced when we grew up were not the same, we were not given identical cultural choices.  Our speciation took place not in spite of or due to our efforts, but just because of the circumstances surrounding the racial make-up of Canada at each point in time.

We need to accept that the speciation happened regardless of choice because we need it to blamelessly understand that culturally, Asians have diverged, and that because it was a circumstance and not a deliberate choice, “FOB’s” are not at fault for refusing to integrate into a “whiter” cultural norm.  On the other side, “Banana’s” are not at fault for “betraying their culture.”  Our peers were dealt evolutionary cards that we may or may not understand.

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In spite of this, Mr. Chang is wrong about shark extinction.

Why vote?

I found that really cute.

It’s my first time studying political science and now I wonder where it’s been for the last 24 years.  LSE might do it differently than other schools because it’s got quite an economics bent to it, but that’s what makes it really cool.  I’m working on a project right now about strategic voting and finding out all sorts of theories to explain things I kind of already had an intuition about.

Canada is the poster child for strategic voting.  After the right merged, we are left with a political spectrum with too many parties vying for the vote of a fairly liberal country, allowing a conservative minority to sneak away steady victories.

If you look at the political spectrum, you can see that Stephen Harper falls far to the right of where the country actually lies, and that well more than half of Canada is unhappy about it.

It is postulated that the median voter, the guy in the middle of a population, will be the tiebreak in any election (half the nation will be more liberal, half will be more conservative,) and his opinion will be the one that decides who wins and who loses.  When the party representing the country is so far to the right of our median, we have to wonder how we ended up with a country that is so unrepresentative of ourselves.

Strategic voting has become increasingly an issue of study in Canada because of how unsatisfied the voting process has left most Canadians; when I looked up strategic voting in general, all I could find was examples where Canadian ridings would try to vote in a coordinated fashion to defeat conservative candidates, share votes, trade votes, discuss their votes, etc.   It seems like no matter how the left has coordinated efforts, our attempts to unseat Harper has only been like struggling in quicksand; the more we try to escape the more deeply entrenched we are in his vision of Canada.

It is just the way the rules are designed that has led us to this.  But a bigger question to ask is this: in a system in which you know you are going to be dissatisfied with the result, why vote at all?

There are some academic papers that question the cost of voting; and it is a hugely costly exercise.  But the fact that even in elections, such as strategic-voting/dissatisfaction poster child Canada’s, there are rewards.  If they don’t come from winning your ideal choice of policy, then people must derive some kind of benefit beyond the results of voting.  Maybe the act itself is an act of love and devotion.  I think these benefits, not the likelihood of “your guy” winning, needs to drive a desire to vote nowadays.  Especially now with a growing sense of pervasive cynicism about the ability of candidates to commit to their promises.  We need to be motivated to continue, out of love and devotion, if the results themselves are not enough to get us to the polls on Tuesday morning.

I was flipping through facebook and found an old note I posted when I was 20, voting in my first federal election.  I was a bit idealistic back then, but I think I still harbour the same sentiments.

“Maybe it’s just me, but ever since I tracked the 2000 US presidential election as a seventh grader in California, I’ve been really looking forward to voting. Probably because I’m from China and therefore my parents are entirely apathetic about the democratic process (not a surprise). More likely because I naively believed my high school civics teacher, Mr. Serjeantson, when he said that it was a responsibility and a right. After all, I’m the first generation to take this seriously. Just think about all those who *fought* for this. Cool!

And that’s why I’m upset. I’ve heard more “I’m too busy”‘s with regards to this election than I have for any given invite to a birthday party or conference. Apathy in our age group is the highest it has ever been despite the huge investments made to get young people out to the polls. If you have enough time to get wasted with your friends and go out on a Saturday night, you clearly have enough time to get online and find out who shares your values in your riding. “I’m too busy” is bullshit. No one is ever too busy to take a right and a responsibility for granted.

I am a strong believer that people will make time for what they personally consider important (which is why I never sleep, haha!). So the next time you decide not to vote, just remember, it is not because you are too busy. It says you just plain don’t care. 

I personally don’t care who you vote for, but I care about the fact that you don’t care enough to vote. If you are too busy to vote, then are you too busy to know what you believe in? Are you too busy to care about your future and the future of those around you? What do you stand for? If you don’t know, how do you really know who you are?”

I think I don’t make any sense.  Maybe I’m too tired from studying this.  I think what I’m trying to say is, if you love something enough, you will do it without asking what’s in it for you.  And you hope.

 

 

(Obama 2012)