DATA: Reason magazine has a piece asking various people who they are voting for. Reason magazine basically has a libertarian slant, which is wrongheaded in my view, but I share a lot of my views on government and social liberties with them -- which is more than I can say for those good for nothing Republicans.
Anyway, my real interest here is Steven Pinker, whom I adore beyond measure. I've seen him speak here at the UW about The Blank Slate, and never have I been more impressed with someone's ability to communicate a point so clearly. This guy is one of the best minds out there today. Needless to say he's not voting for Bush.
2004 vote: Kerry. The reason is reason: Bush uses too little of it. In the war on terror, his administration stints on loose-nuke surveillance while confiscating nail clippers and issuing color-coded duct tape advisories. His restrictions on stem cell research are incoherent, his dismissal of possible climate change inexcusable.
2000 vote: Gore, with misgivings.
Most embarrassing vote: I left Canada shortly after turning 18 and became a U.S. citizen only recently, so I haven’t voted enough to be too embarrassed yet.
Favorite president: James Madison, for articulating the basis for democracy in terms of the nature of human nature.
Also of interest is John Rennie's comments. (He's the editor-in-chief of Scientific American.)
2004 vote: John Kerry. Anybody who has seen Scientific American’s editorials during the last few years knows we’re deeply unhappy with the de facto anti-scientism of the current administration. Science shouldn’t trump all else in setting policy, but it would be a nice change of pace for a White House to put science ahead of ideology again. Of course, I’m keeping my expectations low.
2000 vote: Remember that guy? The one that everybody said claimed to have invented the Internet, except he hadn’t said that at all? He seemed good.
Most embarrassing vote: Back in college in 1980, flushed with youthful sanctimony, I voted for John Anderson. The voting booth is a bad place to be an idealist. But at least when I threw my vote away on a third-party candidate, it was irrelevant.
Favorite president: John Quincy Adams showed that it was possible for the son of a president to rise to that same office in a highly disputed election without being remembered as a dangerous embarrassment.
Two things I love about his comments.
1) Anti-scientism! What a great word!
2) "The voting booth is a bad place to be an idealist."
3) "Favorite president: ..." Diss!
Wait, that was 3. Oh well...
Here are some other highlights:
* A surprisingly high number of Libertarians are voting for Kerry. It goes to show they share as much with Democrats (max social freedom) as they do with Republicans (max economic freedom).
* Penn Jillette (of Penn and Teller) removes all doubt and confirms that he is undecided/stupid.
* Some guy named Dave Kopel voted for Nader in 2000 and is voting for Bush in 2004. Insanity!