Some voters are knowledgeable and thoughtful in their choices. Others are indifferent and just follow the flock, as they always have. Some are legitimately frightened by political rhetoric. Others are ignorant of events, lies and consequences, and are unwilling or unable to seek truth, preferring to vote their prejudices. Some voters are unbalanced and just listen to the little voices. Others are always going to vote for people and issues that personally benefit them, no matter how unfair or damaging to others. That’s a lot for knowledge and thought to overcome.
A recent study I’ve heard about found that one major reason people often vote against their own best interests is that they are afraid that those just behind them may catch up. They don’t seem to be able to just focus on their own situation. I remember telling employees, in the department I headed, to never try to find out other’s salaries because it would always make them unhappy. An emotionally healthy person always thinks better of themselves, and less of others, than is justified.
There are those, like Dag Hammarskjöld, the second Secretary-General of the United Nations, who believe they have no value unless they are serving others. If you don’t believe this, read his book, “Markings.” This unselfishness may be good for the rest of us, but it is unhealthy for that individual. Unfortunately for the rest of us, it is this minority of people who are the most thoughtful when voting. They always consider the other guy. It would be nice if more of the voters, who concentrate on keeping the one behind them down, had a bit of this benevolent attitude.