Wasted Votes?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by D_Percy_Prettywillie, Aug 15, 2011.

  1. D_Percy_Prettywillie

    D_Percy_Prettywillie Account Disabled

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    Being from Washington State, I get into a lot of debates in regard to Ron Paul, and they are almost always with people whom I otherwise find to be reasonable, grounded, intelligent (maybe even more so that the standard Washington resident- and that's saying something) people.

    The argument on their side usually boils down to "Even though Ron Paul doesn't personally believe in (fill in the blank), that's irrelevant. He just doesn't think the government should have anything to do with it." That covers most of the major political land mines that are en vogue this "season" from gay marriage to the legalization of drugs to... really you name it.

    That's all well and good, I usually say, and even though I think of Laissez faire as duck and cover rather than actually governing, I can get on board with the thought that the opposition has a valid observation even if I whole heartedly disagree with it (I think Governments job is to protect and ensure quality of life for all of its citizens... not throw its hands in the air and say either "Let the states deal with it" or majority rules.)

    Still, well and good but even if I did agree with Ron Paul (and let me be clear that I do not) I still wouldn't vote for him because the man has no chance of ever winning the Presidency. Not ever. It is never going to happen. I'm pretty sure even he himself is aware of this fact. But year after year, election cycle after election cycle, he runs and people vote for him. He's not the only pundit-blogger termed crank that does this either. Those other guys get people to vote for them as well.

    I've only been old enough to vote for the President twice. The first time the guy I voted for lost (Kerry) and the second time I got Obama. While engaging in a debate over Ron Paul, someone brought up something I found very... thought provoking. I consider their votes to be wasted based on the futility of voting for someone with absolutely zero chance of ever winning, especially given that his views on issues are out there and he's not really bringing attention to any of them by running year after year. I was in turn asked this;

    "Did you get what you voted for during President Obama's first term?" I had to respond honestly that, in fact, I had not. The question was then asked how my vote was any less wasted by voting for something I didn't, in the end, get? I couldn't answer that except to say that I voted for potential and the return on that investment (like most times anyone puts stock in potential outside of the NFL draft I guess) fell short.


    So how do you guys feel about that? Is voting for someone who has no chance of winning any better than voting for someone who in turn does very little of what they said they would do? Is a third party (and let's be honest, that's what Ron Paul will be) dark horse worthy of your vote if you actually believe in what the person allegedly stands for? Is it possible to waste a vote? Thoughts?






    JSZ
     
  2. atlclgurl

    atlclgurl Member

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    I can't say I agree with the idea that ANY vote is a wasted one. If you take this other person's position to the logical extreme, voting for anyone who's behavior is not guaranteed is a wasted vote.

    He or she is arguing that IF the person you vote for is elected but doesn't act completely and totally as advertised, then your vote is worthless. That's not how our system works.

    IMHO, a vote is essentially an act of faith, you vote for someone because you BELIEVE that this candidate will act as advertised. Or you don't vote for someone because you don't have any faith in their abilities, or you vote for someone who you have a bit more faith in their abilities than the other candidate. All of these votes are acts of faith.

    Now, if you insist on voting for someone like Ron Paul or Ralph Nader, you're not acting on faith, you're just using your vote as a means of protesting... because any intelligent person KNOWS that neither of them has a snowballs chance in hell of actually becoming President.

    I agree with you that these kinds of protest votes are a waste.
     
  3. B_VinylBoy

    B_VinylBoy New Member

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    I tend to agree with the OP in this case. Knowing how broken our electoral system is and knowing that it prevents anyone outside of the current two party system from having a real shot at winning the whole thing, there's no way I can see myself voting for someone outside of those ranks who essentially is eliminated from the contest statistically before it even starts. Until reforms are made within the electoral process to balance out the voices and make sure those with less are heard just as loudly amongst all of the ones behind the huge campaign dollars, voting third party for President makes absolutely no sense.

    I find that so many people turn to Ron Paul as some kind of vote against the establishment to "send a message" to the White House and to the Government that they're not happy with the choices that either the Democrats or Republicans come up with. In an instance like this, knowing that he has no real chance on winning these votes become the equivalent of voting "none of the above". So beyond some self-moral justification one receives for not voting Democrat or Republican, it really doesn't do anything to help the nation because it ensures that someone you don't like is going to be running things in the White House. Besides, the total votes for Ron Paul every year are so insignificant that any message these supporters want to send is essentially ignored by the rest.

    Regardless of how upset or frustrated we are with government, there is never a time where the Democratic and Republican candidate are exactly the same. We tend to equate the two to be just that through lines of rhetoric such as, "all politicians are corrupt and bought by big corporations." And we all know politicians lie too... even Ron Paul and any other potential third party candidate one can propose to be the answer to our nation's problems. But out of the two who do have a chance to win, one will have stances on issues that you'll be more in tune with than the other if you care to give each candidate an honest look at the details. In 2008, I wasn't completely satisfied with Obama for President. I've stated several times that I initially voted for Hillary Clinton at first. And I could have easily penned in her name, voted for Ron Paul or anyone else instead of choosing for Obama or McCain out of protest. But would that have changed anything that transpired over the last three years? Absolutely not.

    Therefore, I only choose between the two I know have a chance to win. Neither may not be perfect, but at least by choosing Obama I managed to get a president who is willing to negotiate, who knows how to articulate his thoughts (whenever he decides to talk about them), and has been able to sign into law key legislation that helps our nation move forward towards equality. This wouldn't have happened under McCain. And going by Ron Paul's stances on the issues, it doesn't appear that it would happen under his rule either. And in 2012, Ron Paul will not get my vote again especially since he's running for a nomination he will never be able to obtain. He can't convince enough Conservatives in this current political climate to support him beyond anything else besides not being the current man in the White House. All one has to do is see that out of the top three for the GOP nomination, two of them are parTEA people (Bachmann & Perry). Paul is not going to be able to topple that this year. Bachmann will eventually be laughed out of the race and when she does she'll support Perry since their stances on the issues are practically identical. That only leaves Romney left and most Conservatives hated him since day one.

    So sorry, Ron Paul supporters. I'm not wasting my vote in 2012. Obama may not be perfect, but given the ones who do have a shot in this I'd be a fool not to vote for him. And if you want to prevent a parTEA lunatic from getting into the White House, you may want to consider doing the same.
     
    #3 B_VinylBoy, Aug 16, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2011
  4. hypoc8

    hypoc8 Member

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    No wonder our country is so screwed up we elect people based on popularity instead of ability. I don't think anyone should feel that their vote was a waste, I may not agree with it but it is their choice to vote for who they think is most qualified for the job.
     
  5. atlclgurl

    atlclgurl Member

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    Ok, so they have no faith in the other two... why not stay home? IMHO, those are purely "protest" votes. Thus, there's nothing of faith in them.
     
  6. hypoc8

    hypoc8 Member

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    Why should they be required to stay at home? Do they not have the same right to vote as you do?

    As far as "protest votes" you said it best, it's your opinion.
     
  7. atlclgurl

    atlclgurl Member

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    I didn't said anyone HAD to stay home.

    Sorry if you're feeling some sensitivity around this, but like you said, its just my opinion.
     
  8. D_Davy_Downspout

    D_Davy_Downspout Account Disabled

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    Getting into the meet of you post, yes it's possible to waste a vote. If you vote for someone who won't support the policies you believe in, you've wasted a vote. Many liberals are wasting votes on Democrats, who have no interest in the same things they do, like creating jobs, cheap good healthcare for everyone, sensible taxation, good schools, etc.

    For the most part, the national-level Democratic party is slightly less worse than Conservatives. I mean you can say the Dems are slightly better on Gay rights and a few other issues, but they're really not reliable.

    If you're a libertarian(like Paul claims to be) and you vote GOP, you're wasting your vote as well. Nobody in national office is every going to dismantle the government and create your free market paradise, if it even were possible(it's not). Republicans don't even work at the social issues they claim to support, as they know that they'd get slaughtered if they ever did managed to overturn Roe v Wade or outlaw gayness or whatever.

    Vote for someone who actually supports what you want. If they're 3rd party, they won't actually win, that isn't really possible in our system...at least on the national level. What you do manage is to force the discussion in the direction you want to go.
     
  9. dazedandconfused

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    Protest votes? Polls have said, of all the candidates for the republican nomination, the most steadfast supporters are in the Paul camp. Speaking of that, all candidates who took part paid the ticket for people to go to the straw poll. Of all the people Paul paid the ticket for and/or bussed in, he received only 79 less than he brought in for the vote. Of the people Bachmann brought in? 1200. Paul is not electable? Rasmussen disagrees with you. Of all the republican candidates against Obama they polled, Paul was only trailing 41-37%.

    More people would support Paul if they understood where he stood and the MSM was not so biased against him (and by the way, Politico and CNN admitted to the media bias against Paul, before I get bombarded with the "there is no bias" mantra.")

    Paul is barely ever mentioned in the media, and when he is mentioned, he is usually severely misrepresented, as shown when Piers Morgan asked him about legalizing heroin tonight on CNN. So he is largely ignored and a large group of the electorate does not know who he is, but wait...

    http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2011/images/08/11/gop2012poll.pdf

    CNN polled republicans and Paul (14%) is third behind Romney (23%) and Perry (18%) but the multitude of other republicans are in this poll? If the people are voting for Paul in "protest," couldnt that be said of people supporting Cain, Huntsman, McCotter, etc... al? SO wouldnt they be more likely to support Paul when they drop out?

    And Zombie, you mention how Ron Paul supporters say "Even though Ron Paul doesn't personally believe in (fill in the blank), that's irrelevant. He just doesn't think the government should have anything to do with it." He does not PERSONALLY support gay marriage. But in the same breath, says the government has no business in marriage whatever you do is your business. Why did we start medicare? Did we have major problems with taking care of the old and poor before the Johnson administration? Did we have major problems with drugs before 1937?

    I support Paul. I think he is a long shot just because of lack of coverage and misrepresentation by the media. But his supporters are the most enthusiastic. We know what you get with Ron Paul. He has never dodged questions and his actions and words are in sync. W. Bush wanted a non-interventionist foreign policy, oops. Obama ran on bringing the troops home, oops, he won the nobel peace prize and ramped things up.

    All it will take is one major endorsement like it did for Obama...

    I am sorry for voting my convictions and I do not feel I am throwing my vote away. I voted for Bob Barr and I have not and will never feel like I threw my vote away. 2004 voting for Bush on the other hand...

    And finally, Mondale ran on and finally got the nomination in 1984 becuase he was the only one who could beat Reagan. Reagan probably still would have won with other candidates, but certainly they would have done better than Minnesota and DC.
     
    #9 dazedandconfused, Aug 16, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2011
  10. D_Percy_Prettywillie

    D_Percy_Prettywillie Account Disabled

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    I think you entirely missed the point of the post. Basically, boiled down, the question is whether or not voting for someone who has absolutely no chance of winning is a wasted vote or not. I think my 8th grade social studies teacher would be an amazing President but if I were to write him in... isn't that sort of... stupid? Voting third party, as was pointed out, seems like what has been termed a "Protest" vote since those candidates have about as much chance of winning the election as Fox News' Grace Kelly has of appearing on the Daily Show. Voting for you think is "most qualified," when said person isn't from one of the two parties that will win: a waste or not?



    That leads me to believe you're just looking for something to be mad about. Manufactured outrage is cute and all but if that's all you've got to bring the table, start a thread about how PBS is corrupting all our children into Satanism or some shit like that.

    Really? Are we now talking about how the federal government has no business telling me who I can marry or are we still talking about how government can tell a certain group of people who they can't marry? Are we talking about the federal government having no business telling anyone at any time what they can put in their bodies or are we still talking about how to "win" the war on drugs?

    Assuming that voting third party forces a national discussion in any direction, based on who the third party candidates have been for a while is an outright fantasy. Doing so hasn't sent anyone a message. If anything, all it has done is siphon votes away from the major parties to no real avail.

    The question, in spite of your personal opinions and espousing on the two alleged realities of the two major parties ("For the most part, the national-level Democratic party is slightly less worse than Conservatives." Really? I'd sooner light myself on fire and run screaming into the night before I'd vote for a self-declared conservative), is whether or not voting in this fashion is a wasted vote. Is voting that way more of a waste than voting for someone who isn't able or just doesn't follow through on the campaign promises they make?




    JSZ
     
    #10 D_Percy_Prettywillie, Aug 16, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2011
  11. D_Percy_Prettywillie

    D_Percy_Prettywillie Account Disabled

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    Polls from RonPaulforPresident.Org? How does a poll even measure steadfastness 15 months before the election? Because they were willing to vote for him in the past and don't need to see a rally or advertisement to know what it is they think he's said in the past? This kind of broad statement carries a somewhat dubious quality to it.

    This reminds me of my friend Mark every time one of his favorite shows gets cancelled. For months, he'll scour the internet, and no matter how unsubstantiated the source he'll glean some sort of irrational hope from it; "Oh my god! HollywoodInsider.net says that Levar Burton wants to make another TNG movie with JJ Abrams!" "MyPinkDreamz.com says that the Arrested Development movie is in preproduction!" "ThisSiteContainsNothingButBS.org says that there's gonna be a Law and Order continuation with Jack McCoy soon!" Everybody everywhere acknowledges the complete insignificance of the Iowa Straw Poll (save for people in Iowa.) Yet this is where you're turning for some glimmer of hope the man has a chance in hell...

    All the people who have won a Presidential election got a honeymoon from the Media. All the people who have lost a Presidential election had a media bias. That's...essentially what it boils down to... and honestly, sour grapes. The President has an entire channel dedicated to his defeat (that has been dedicated to it ever since he was nominated by the democrats) and he somehow managed to win- what does that say about these third party dark horses? Also... I'm afraid to ask but I'd be remiss if I didn't- when did Politico and CNN declare a bias against Ron Paul? Somehow, I doubt when you provide the link, it's going to be quite so cut and dry.


    An endorsement that is never coming. Not ever... when people commit political suicide they do it by means of a sex scandal or failed Mars Program or League of Nations- not by endorsing someone who has views that are as ingrained into people as Ron Pauls are. Accurate or not, he has an image as an extremist, an image he has shown no acumen at shaking. No one with the kind of name recognition he'd need to turn that around is ever going to endorse him. Ever.

    You seem like a rational person and if you're voting because that's what you believe in, I can respect and appreciate that. If, however, you're voting because of some fantasy notion that he really does have a shot? I can again appreciate that but I can't really respect it... the man isn't going to be President and digging for little bits of hope here and there won't make that idea any less delusional.



    JSZ
     
    #11 D_Percy_Prettywillie, Aug 16, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2011
  12. D_Davy_Downspout

    D_Davy_Downspout Account Disabled

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    Your voice will never be heard because you'll vote for whatever Democrat is there based on the Lesser of Two Evils method of voting, which only requires that one guy be slightly less worse than the other. That's not a recipe for progress, it's just a slightly slower decent into shit.

    The only way you'll ever force a party to go your way is if they actually think they're in danger of losing votes. Right now both parties have a base and they just chase the swings. The swing votes are largely "independents" who tend conservative but don't like to say they're GOP. The youth progressive vote is disillusioned and doesn't go out and vote, other than when they did once and elected Obama. He's soured them and they are back to apathy.


    I mistyped that. I meant to say that the national Democratic party is slightly less worse than the GOP.

    Democrats are already conservatives at the national level. Having a few token leftist policies does not make them leftist. It makes them not as far right as the far right.
     
  13. D_Percy_Prettywillie

    D_Percy_Prettywillie Account Disabled

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    "We have a center-right party and a crazy party. Over the last 30 years, the Democrats have moved to the right, and the Republicans have moved into a mental hospital."
    -Bill Maher-

    That's, essentially, how I feel about it. Obviously Barack Obama isn't the liberal I had hoped I was voting for in terms of actual legislation.

    Well, first of all, my voice gets heard all the time. I'm extremely politically active locally. Secondly, I'll vote democratic because a.) the only alternative is to vote republican wherein I think my vote will matter and b.) because not voting for a democrat or staying home on election day only helps put a Tea Party member in the Oval Office.

    Is that how it should be? No. Is the solution to it to vote for some goofball with no chance of actually winning? I personally don't think so. Get me an actual, honest-to-non God liberal to run third party that doesn't say things that can so easily be "misrepresented" as outright lunacy when put down in print, and I'll go campaign for the SOB right now. There is no such person on the national stage at the moment. So, yes, at the moment all that is required is that one jack ass be slightly less of a jack ass to get my vote and I'm with you that that isn't a recipe for progress. But that's what I've got to work with. I'm dealing in terms of realistic alternatives here and, by the way, voting for Ron Paul or threatening to? Doesn't scare them. At least it hasn't yet. [/quote]

    I actually think I misread it. "Slightly less worse" being a sentence structure to which I am... unaccustomed.


    Agreed. Find me a realistic alternative and that person will have my vote.



    JSZ
     
  14. FuzzyKen

    FuzzyKen New Member

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    The two big parties particularly the GOP tend to love alternate party candidates because it has worked for them more than it has worked against them. Divide and conquer!

    Protest votes have the sad legacy of electing the worst possible candidate because people refuse to look at the importance of what they are doing.

    The worst part of all of it is that in America since the end of World War II, Americans have consistently not had candidates that offer them truth, action, honesty, integrity and most of all communication in honest words.

    Every single Presidential Election after Dwight D. Eisenhower has been a case of voting for the lesser of evils. This is why negative campaigning has been so effective.

    When was the last time you heard a candidate run for office knowing what his/her job really was, and within the limitations of what they actually can do, tried to keep their word?

    Now the entire political process is quagmired in what some person does in the privacy of their bedroom, what they may have done in a bedroom in which they did not belong, what they did thirty years before in College, what they did or did not do when serving in the United States Military, and nobody cares to investigate the whole story.

    There is not even equality in poor judgment. Bill Clinton tries pot in College, big deal that is newsworthy. George W. Bush has a long standing history of alcohol abuse and multiple questionable things and we are told to "move on".

    I am stuck with the two party system in reality and I will continue to vote for the candidate I think will do the least harm, and, if the benevolence bulb should find electricity and light just once, just maybe we will get one good thing done that benefits the American people as the primary interest.
     
  15. AlteredEgo

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    When Ross Perot ran, he was the impossible dark horse. But he got so many votes that he was entitled to federal funding in the next election. If his supporters had stayed home rather than acting on their faith in him, that would not have happened.

    The thing that is the most broken in our political system is that it consists of only two parties. It did not start out that way. I can name five other parties on the ballot the first time the dems and republicans were also listed.

    Teddy Roosevelt was also an Independent/3rd party candidate, if I am not mistaken.
     
  16. D_Davy_Downspout

    D_Davy_Downspout Account Disabled

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    Obama isn't any kind of liberal, let alone one you could hope for. It seemed at one time he might be, but it should be obvious now that he's conservative.

    That's great. All politics begin locally, and thats where you can make the most difference in terms of getting good candidates.

    No, a tea party candidate is not getting into the oval office. This is the kind of thinking I was referring to. "I don't like this guy that much but at least he's not THAT GUY!". All you have to do is be slightly less awful than Bachmann/Tea Party Generic/Boogedy Man.

    No Tea Party person is getting anywhere near the white house without mainstream corporate support, just like every other presidential candidate. Obama will most likely win the 2012's, because the opposing field is really, really terrible.

    But you're going to vote Dem they know you'll vote Dem for the exact reasons you've given. Nobody in the Democratic party is going to work for your vote because you'll give it to them for free. You're not going to vote 3rd party. That's why people like Rahm felt it was okay to mock progressives.

    That's no the point. No third party is ever going to actually win on the national stage in the US. With FPTP voting, it's set up to specifically only allow the dichotomy we have now. Third parties are never a viable option for winning the presidency.

    The point is that you need to make your vote not a safe bet. If you "waste" it on a Green party candidate, maybe nothing happens. If enough people do, the Dems start to lose their base and they say "what the fuck" and figure out that maybe they shouldn't be the GOP-lite party that they've become, and decide to support some mildly OK policies moving leftward.

    But hey, as long as there's a Big Scary Person on the other side, and there will always be, people like you will vote D reliably.

    Literally anyone the Green party runs. But it doesn't matter, the politicians considered mainstream right now are lunatics by any standard but the USA's. Barack Obama's positions on most issues would have been considered extreme right wing during the Reagan years. Let that sink in for a moment. Shit, even Bush 2 was never able to talk about cutting SS, he just had a failed attempt to privatize it.

    It's called the Overton Window. There is a window of "acceptable discussion" that the media and politicians tend to set, and right now it's pushed so far to the right that people have forgot that the party that said "deficits don't matter" is now saying "no dudes they totally do!". It's so far to the right that the majority of the Democratic party is not willing to even discuss tax increases, just closing loopholes.

    Right, and the Democratic party will continue to shift rightward because you'll vote for the slightly smaller jackass.

    Of course not. Ron Paul voters are the same idiot libertarians who will vote for whoever the GOP candidate is when Ron Paul doesn't make it. They too are a safe vote.

    There is never going to be a realistic alternative to the two parties. Not until we get real voting reform. The system is designed to fuck over 3rd parties at every possibility. If you're thinking that someone who isn't a R or D is ever getting into the white house anytime soon, don't waste any time on it. That's not where I'm going with this.

    My point is to not make your vote one that will go D no matter what because team jersey politics. That is truly a wasted vote.

    If you're active locally, wonderful. Go and primary any blue dog or moderate in your area with an actual liberal.
     
  17. D_Percy_Prettywillie

    D_Percy_Prettywillie Account Disabled

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    I read this twice and from it I gleaned two things;

    1.) This is heavily laced with your own personal opinion yet presented as undeniable fact. I typically take exception to this kind of rhetoric but the fact is I agree slightly more than I disagree with most of it so I'm willing to let that slide.

    You yourself just said that Barack Obama was, at one point, the potential liberal left leaning progressives were looking for and so did I. I took the extra step of admitting (twice) that he isn't. You're looking with hindsight to disqualify a vote I made 3 years ago with logic I agree with today; he's not that man. The rest of it, however, (Obama: Super Conservative!) is just... your opinion.

    2.) You've gone on and on about how wrong it is to vote for a Democrat based on their being ever so slightly more tolerable than their counterparts to anyone with a functioning brain stem but in the same post admit that there's no chance for anyone but someone from one of the two major parties to win. "Vote Green" that way the Democrats start losing their base and hopefully amend their ways to reflect the actual values the progressives who keep voting for them have? Yeah, how's that been working out the last 20 years? The Democrats have moved further to the right from the center. You think abandoning them in favor of the Green party is going to fix that? Well... you don't because you go on to say that until real election reform happens, no one will ever occupy the White House that isn't a Republican or a Democrat.

    So how is continuing to vote for them so detrimental? The idea that threatening to vote for a third party will somehow make the DNC amend their platform is a peacenic pipe dream.

    So in summation to that line of dialogue I stand behind what I said originally; be they Tea Party crazy or just George W Bush crazy, the alternative to a democratic President (or Congress for that matter) strikes me as far worse. You've said only one of two parties have any chance of winning. It's a two man race at the end of it and, based on 8 years of President Bush and 3 years of Barack Obama (the only time I've been old enough to have had a head for anything relating to politics) I'm comfortable giving my vote to the less insane of the two.

    You haven't provided me a realistic alternative because you say their isn't one. If that's the case then "team jersey" voting seems like the best of the three options; Democratic, Republican, Abstention.



    JSZ
     
  18. dandelion

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    This problem is not unique to the US but the system of government in the US is probably making it worse. The US government is divided into three equal power centres, the president, the senate and the house. An advantage in any one can halt all government. It is a system designed to prevent anything happening unless there is concensus.

    the only consensus at present is broadly right of centre, and that is what you have got. The system works as designed.

    In the Uk there is only one centre of power, the house of commons. The monarch (president) never exercises her actually quite extensive powers except on the the advice of the prime minister. The house of Lords may delay legislation, but only for 1 year at most. Whoever gets a 1 vote majority amongst members of the house of commons gets to choose the prime minister (in effect, exercising the office of monarch/president). No rubbish about fillibusters. Yes, issues about getting the sick to crawl in to vote but in reality the result of an election is rarely as close as this. The last election was that rare exception where a small third party had enough support to have handed the election to either main party, though in reality the labour party was already internally split to such an extent that it could not have formed an effective government and the only stable majority was a lib-con coalition.

    Once elected, the UK government can do anything. Anything. No rubbish about constitutional courts. The one grace of this result is that the government is obliged to act. There is no one else to blame for what they do and what results it has (though that never stops politicians blaming results on everything except their own actions). But whichever of the two parties wins, they cannot claim it was the fault of the other house, or president, or supermajorities, blocking them. I think the US has a problem because it has drifted for decades without either sides official policies ever being tested. Others above have said this.

    Iam not saying I like the UK system. There was a recent attempt by the lib dems to introduce a transferrable vote system for elections, where if your candidate gets eliminated on a first count, then your vote gets transferred to your next choice in a list of candidates. This was defeated by a broad spread of political opposition and general voter apathy. Ultimately, the soundest reason for voting against the change was that the existing system greatly benefits both the two main parties, whichever one happens to be in power. So if you are a supporter of either one, why vote for a system which can only benefit others. So arguably, even when the question is put to the electorate in a referendum as it was, a change of voting system was doomed from the start.

    The US system was designed to give broad representation but still reflects the idea that the US is a collection of states whose views can be represented by one man. The only way to make a government truly representative is to have a system where parties get places according to their overall percentage of the vote. This allows in small parties, who maybe get 1% of the total nation wide vote. They can then demonstrate real success and build up their support, or fall into disrespect if it turns out their ideas are truly awful.

    So faced with this problem my general practice has been to not vote for either major party. I make occasional exceptions where one has a clear policy difference which I prefer, but otherwise mine is a vote against both of them, for whoever is running a poor third. Usually the lib dems. This matter is complicated, or maybe made easier, because in about 2/3 of UK constituencies the result at the next election is already known. The constituency will elect the candidate for the same one of the two main parties as last time, because it always does. Doesnt matter if he has four legs and drools. The UK still has a ruling class. It is no longer titled lords, but those who control the two political parties. Id guess some few thousand individuals including several political dynasties. These people will choose the next prime minister.
     
  19. snakembl14

    snakembl14 New Member

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    Ron Paul runs to change the conversation...look back at some of the 2008 debates. His message was the same as it is now, but in 2008 his message shocked the other candidates, now they are talking more and more like him.

    No vote is a wasted vote

    Alot can happen in the next few months that can completly change the republican primaries and obama's re-election chances. In 2008 everybody thought that Hillary was going to easily get the nomination, just like most people so far expect Romney to win.
     
  20. atlclgurl

    atlclgurl Member

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    Ross Perot was a crack pot. Just because a bunch of people decided they liked his crack pot ideas and he qualified for federal funding means nothing, except he could have gotten free money from us taxpayers if he had jumped on the bandwagon again.

    As for Teddy Roosevelt, he was a member of the Progressive party AFTER he had already been President, as a Republican.
     
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