Why do people vote?
Voter turnout has been decreasing over the past decades (a little more than half of eligible voters voted in the most recent Presidential election), and one reasonable explanation is from the first chapter in Friedman: rational ignorance. The basic idea is the following: Voting is costly in terms of time. It takes time to actually go out and vote, and it takes even more time if you plan on actually finding out about the candidates. Then combine that with the fact that the probability that your vote will influence the outcome of an election is essentially zero. In fact, according to an article from the guys who wrote Freakonomics,
Of the more than 16,000 Congressional elections...only one election in the past 100 years - a 1910 race in Buffalo - was decided by a single vote.So as opposed to asking why people are not voting, the better question becomes: why do people vote?
(by no means am I saying that people should not vote, I am just asking what I think is an interesting question that could help reaffirm the choice to vote anyway)