So I voted yesterday.
The only real difference in attitudes this time, as far as I can see, is that people of my age seem to be a lot more self-righteous if they've voted, using social networking sites to keep tabs on who has and hasn't voted and abusing friends who didn't vote. So basically voting is the new status symbol or something, which is as stupid an attitude as any I've heard of.
People think that not voting means you don't care about the country, you don't care about democracy or you just didn't try hard enough. I think that's largely nonsense.
I don't happen to care much about the country myself; I voted because, whether I care or not, the result sort of impacts my life, although statistically my specific contribution is unlikely to make any difference. Unless the good guys, whoever they may be, lose by one vote or something, and I believe that's the sort of situation coalitions exist to avoid.
I think democracy is an interesting, if flawed, idea, but it certainly needs to be one part of a viable political system. It doesn't guarantee a fair, egalitarian environment, since it can co-exist more or less comfortably with monarchy, fascism, nazism, communism and, if India is anything to go by, a crawling chaos that can only betoken the complete supremacy of dreaded Nyarlathotep. I can't think of anything better, so I'm content to go along with it.
As for not trying hard enough, the fact is that our civil service machinery still has a great deal of inefficiency built into it; things have improved considerably, but it's still a task to run an event that involves around a billion people, and records are bound to get lost and names mixed up - it isn't necessarily the fault of the voter if it happens
Look, elections aren't the new cool lifestyle statement. They're something you have to think about for yourself to decide to vote for, or whether to vote at all. There are several completely reasonable reasons not to vote which are consistent with patriotism, democratic ideals and so forth. Some people might say that is worse to participate in, and abet a corrupt or dysfunctional system. I veer towards that view a lot of the time, but I vote anyway. I've got the time to spare and it's nice to go for a stroll that early in the morning.