today is the day. today is that day, according to the first primary election in argentina’s history, that the current president christina fernandez kirchner will be re-elected for another four years in office. i guess we’ll find out later tonight. i know it will be the only thing on the news for the next week or so. although politics is normally a completely taboo topic amongst friends and family here in argentina, lately i’ve heard more and more about the presidential race and dirty politics of this country. the dirt includes: parties driving people to the ballots and then paying them $25 to vote for said party, gifting computers to 17 year olds who would be 18 at the time of elections, going into poor slums and giving members of the villas miserias (as they are referred to here) one shoe, promising to bring the other half of the pair once elections are over. i’m not a history buff and couldn’t properly explain to you some vital information that would help you understand a little more the significance of this election and the meaning of argentine politics as a whole, so take a look at emily’s blog, a friend of mine from the program who does a really great job explaining the mess that is this nation’s political system.
despite all of the dirty politics, insane campaign propaganda, required cut off of said propaganda as of yesterday morning, and the cut off of liquor sales as of 6pm last night (a complete wrapping off with caution tape of the liquore aisle in the grocery store to assure that there is ABSOLUTELY no drinking and voting. ha) i think the thing that is really getting to me is the obligatory vote. yes, i think that voting is an incredibly important part of our civic duty as citizens of a country and believe that everyone, if able, should take part in a country’s elections. i’m just having a hard time grasping how argentina, a country of about 42 million people is capable of organizing and maintaining a non-electronic election (as far as i’m aware) when the sunday afternoon rush of 50 people at the grocery store is too much for them to handle.