Money and Politics

We all know that big money and politics are inevitably intertwined, whether we're talking about pork (not the meat) or Jack Abramoff. Still, we can try to do something about it. I may sound a bit idealistic here, but all I'm saying is that the lesser of two evils is better than, well, the alternative. There are propositions to vote on, and crooked politicians to throw out...can't you feel your power? Aren't you licking your chops in anticipation of giving that incompetent official the ax?

Election season also means it's time for us regular folks to earn a little money. I'm talking about being a poll worker or supervisor. For college students, retirees, and stay at home spouses, it's an opportunity to make anywhere between $100-300, depending on where you are and what you're responsible for doing. A couple of weeks ago I was listening to "All Things Considered" on NPR, and there was a story about how one state (Maryland, I think?) was having a shortage of poll workers. The state was willing to pay a little extra and provide workshops to train the workers.

Notice that I didn't say make a quick buck, since it's by no means quick. Nor did I say it's an easy job, though the individual tasks do not appear to be all that complicated. The money you get is money earned. Being a poll worker can be a thankless job, and it involves very long hours (think 6 a.m. to 9 p.m., for those in L.A. County). Still, it's a very important job, and if you have nothing else to do on November 7, why not do your patriotic duty and get some moral and pecuniary satisfaction out of it?

As far as I know, traing sessions are still going on in L.A. County, and with complicated new technology like touch-screen voting, they need people who can understand what's going on and help others get it. Most places are still looking for people to work the polls, so if you've been thinking about it or just learned about it, there's still time.

As my professor was urging us today to go vote, I'm doing the same here. L.A. County residents, you can now apply for an absentee ballot online. The deadline is October 31. Sign up, and you should get it in the mail within 2 days. For everyone else, just Google it.

I'm gonna take advantage of the slew of election-related speaker events on campus to get educated...and get some free lunch while I'm at it (hehe).

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