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» The Ornery American Forum » General Comments » Two parties, human entropy and politics

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Author Topic: Two parties, human entropy and politics
Thrasymachus
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I can't help but agonize over the two party political system. I know, its wonderful we get to vote and influence the governmental process, but are two parties really all we need to represent the views of 300 million people?

The worst part of it to me is that having only two parties makes it far two easy for corruption and greed to be a major part of our political system. If a lobbyist or a corporation wants to make sure that their interests are looked after in the next election, all they have to do is make a donation to both political parties and there it is. They own the politicians on both sides of the aisle.

Okay, maybe i'm being overly simplistic about it. I mean, honestly, all politicians can't be that easily swayed by the promises of wealth and power, can they? I mean, these people are running for positions of public service (authority) they could only possibly have the best interests of the people at heart when they run for office in the first place, right?

Actually, I'm not really THAT naive, although I do miss the days when I was. Obviously, these guys are running for office for exactly the reason of getting power. I can't remember the last time I heard a national level politician:

1) Campaign on the value of their own beliefs and plans for government rather than the failings of their opponents views.

2) Had a debate that was more than a series of twenty second soundbites regarding hotbutton issues where the questions weren't all preapproved by BOTH candidates ahead of time.

3) Made a decision on the fly about how they felt about a newly developing issue that actually SOUNDED like a decision as opposed to the daily breakfast special at Denny's (waffles).

How long are we going to keep putting up with these unprincipled pricks running things? Oh, that's right, until we convince the populace at large that their apathy towards government is really detrimental and make it illegal for people who won't take the time to research candidates to enter the polls.

I'll be honest. I didn't vote last week. I couldn't stomach it on the national level and I couldn't stomach it on the local level. When did "the lesser of two evils" become the best gauge who to vote for. With 300 million people in this country, there are more than two different voices to be represented. I don't want a viable third party, I want a viable 30th party.

I think its time to break up the monopoly the republicrats hold on this country. Maybe '08 ought to be the year of the independant candidates for real, as opposed o this year when the republicans spent their campaign money on claims of their independence.

I can't wait until the day when the elephants and the asses between them can't garner 50% of the vote. That will be a good election.

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Eric
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I've had problems with the two-party system for some time. For all their vilification of each other, they're remarkably the same. They both have the common goal of keeping independents/3rd parties out of the running, and politicians often make their party selection based on which party will more likely get them elected within their home district.

On the other hand, when multiple parties have equal weight, you tend to see coalition governments, in which nothing of value gets done, as opposed to little of value getting done, as is presently the case.

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Carlotta
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Wait a minute. You didn't vote? Yet you would make it illegal for people who didn't research candidates to enter the polls? It sounds like you just gave your vote away to someone less informed than you are.
If you're not willing to choose the lesser of two evils, at least vote for the third party of your choice. If enough people did that, the percentage would be great enough to scare the other parties into trying to win your vote back.

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Rallan
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Well duh Carlotta. Obviously people who don't bother participating in the democratic process are the ones most entitled to make sweeping statements about what's wrong with it and who should be allowed to vote [Big Grin]
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kenmeer livermaile
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Two parties are better than one. Other democracies, like those in Europe with many parties forming coalitions via run-off voting, have their strengths -- and their weakness.

Also, as Carlotta and rallan pointed out, the REAL two-party system in America is that formed by the 50% of eligible voters who do vote, and the other 50% who don't.

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pickled shuttlecock
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quote:
Originally posted by Thrasymachus:
3) Made a decision on the fly about how they felt about a newly developing issue that actually SOUNDED like a decision as opposed to the daily breakfast special at Denny's (waffles).

Personally, being the principled guy that I am, I would most likely say "I don't know" or "I haven't considered that yet" when someone asked me about something I hadn't considered yet. It seems to me that's the most honest response.
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kenmeer livermaile
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"I can't wait until the day when the elephants and the asses between them can't garner 50% of the vote. That will be a good election."

Or maybe one like those in Germany in the early 30s.

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The Drake
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Oh yeah! I could fill a few pages with a vilification of the two party system. People need to stop voting like it is a horse race, and to avoid voting if they don't think their candidate can win. Vote for someone that best represents you.

And keep an eye out for the Concord Party in 2008.

Register yourself as a write-in candidate, and then vote for yourself if all else fails.

[ November 14, 2006, 01:44 AM: Message edited by: The Drake ]

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Thrasymachus
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I don't know how many of you have seen what's been going on with politics in North Catolina over the last year, but its been thoroughly disgusting. We've had enough corruption scandals on both sides of the aisle that there really was no way to justify giving my vote to either of the two bigs at state, local, or federal levels. The county commissioner was indicted for embezzlement, half of the state government has been implicated in a lottery scandal and then there's the jack abrhamoff thing. Having taken my time to educate myself on the issues, I could have voted on the school bonds and other issues, but I really honestly could not get behind ANY of the candidates based on either the ongoing investigations into the (un)ethical behaviours, or the stances they take on issues that I consider to be crucial.

That's my big problem. There really wasn't a candidate in most of the races I COULD vote for and look at myself in the mirror. Between all the mudslinging in the commercials and the graft in the offices, I'd be tempted to make september of every election year open season on politicians.

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Carlotta
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Are you saying that you had absolutely no preference between the candidates? Only if this is the case can I possibly understand your refusal to vote. Otherwise it's all-too Pontius Pilate of me - I wash my hands of it, it's not MY decision, although you didn't lift a finger to stop it.
And if you had no preference, does it follow that your vote, cast by you, had no purpose? If so I can understand your decision to give it away.

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Carlotta
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sorry, haven't figured out how to edit comments yet. Follow up: sorry to be so hard on you Thrasymachus, but the part about looking yourself in the mirror... if there was a lesser of two evils candidate, aren't you just preferring your own high self-opinion to real good actions?
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kenmeer livermaile
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If one compares the scumbags of our teo-party system with the scumbags of say, the mid-20th century Communist bloc, one's mirror approves. Much of the time, we vote simply to maintain the right to vote and have at least SOME control over our governance rather than not have the right to vote, or have our right to vote limited to THE party, and thereby have virtually no control over our governance.

By all means, explore and promote third party alternatives. But be glad SOMEbody wins the election withut massive appeal to reform, because 50% of the Great Reformers out there all want to wear tiny moustaches and invade Poland.

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Thrasymachus
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When your choices boil down to "do I vote for the guy that got caught" and "do I vote for the guy who caught him but didn't actually punish him, and in fact opffered him a position on the committee to revise the ethics committee" and "the guy who has absolutely none of the same values as I do that I can determine, but hasn't been a politician for long enough to get caught doing anything" I feel a little disenfranchised.
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kenmeer livermaile
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'Don't let the secret police hear you say that.'

See?

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