I've had it

This is a discussion on I've had it within the A Brief History of Cprogramming.com forums, part of the Community Boards category; NOTE: This is not a "let's bash America" thread. It's not a "You goddamn yanks are the cause of all ...

  1. #1
    Moderately Rabid Decrypt's Avatar
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    I've had it

    NOTE: This is not a "let's bash America" thread. It's not a "You goddamn yanks are the cause of all of the world's problems" thread. It's about the pros/cons of a two-party system, and my views on what could be a very powerful and appealing third party. If you want to whine about how America ruined your life and is the Great Satan, please do it in another thread.

    During the last few weeks, I've been bothered more and more by the lack of quaility candidates running for office. Today, at the polls, it made me sick. I looked over the ballot and realized that in the 5 or 6 real races (ones like the clerk of courts running unopposed don't count), I could only endorse one candidate, and even then only mildly. There were a few incumbents worth voting against, but in most of those cases, the guy running against him was just as bad; sometimes they're worse.

    If it wasn't for a constitutional amendment on the ballot, I may not have bothered voting at all - the mostly OK candidate is never going to be ousted from office anyway; I don't think I saw a single ad for his opponent - and Wisconsin TV is nothing but political ads running up to an election. The elections around here have been particularily nasty this time around. Most ads don't even tell you what "their guy" is for, just how awful the other guy is. I probably say this every election, but I think this has been the dirtiest election cycle I can remember.

    As I see it, there are two main themes to political issues: fiscal and social. I find that many people are fiscally conservative, yet socially liberal. These people, including myself, are forced to choose which of those two are more important in a given race. There are many parties that claim to fit this description, but two main problems inhibit their rise to power.

    First, minor political parties have a bad habit of infighting. Divisions over one issue can lead to the party splitting up or stalling as the party leaders fight for power. See the Reform Party for just how bad it can get.

    Second, they also tend to be a bit extreme. Take the libertarians, for example. Being fiscally responsible is one thing, abolishing all labor laws is quite another. Personal freedoms are great, but I think most people have a hard time voting for someone who's party endorses legalization of all controlled substances.

    What America needs is a viable third-party that is:
    a) Fiscally responsible (smaller, more efficient government)
    b) Socially liberal (smaller, less intrusive government, more personal freedoms)
    c) Mid-to-centrist on both a) and b)
    d) Not run by nut-jobs

    If a party like this got on it's feet, I think we'd see moderates from both sides run to it, and America would be better off with a third voice in the debate.* It would build momentum if the party members could work together in spite of minor differences, and put together a platform that those of us who are sick of choosing between the lesser of two evils can really get behind and get excited about. Political apathy is rampant; I believe part of that is caused by years and years of inept/corrupt candidates, many of whom are chosen by commitee.


    Would you like to see a similar party, or do you prefer the two parties we have now? How about a third party with a completely different platform?


    * Debate in the theoretical sense, most of them suck at it. Have you ever watched C-SPAN when they're filming Congress? Most of these people can hardly argue themselves out of a paper bag, yet we're paying them to debate potential laws and policies that will govern our lives.
    There is a difference between tedious and difficult.

  2. #2
    {Jaxom,Imriel,Liam}'s Dad Kennedy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Decrypt
    d) Not run by nut-jobs
    Webster: Politician (defn): nut-jobs/lawyers that cannot do anything else.

    I disagree with you, however, about not Governing our *freedoms*/morals. If no one steps up to the plate to try to guide us in the right direction, we possibly could end up with total anarchy. Most people, IMO, cannot govern themselves in a logical manner. Today, it seems, the moral fiber of the US has fallen to pieces. If we don't have rather strict policies/laws holding most people in line, then we will see more and more unethical behavior. I do not, however, think that 99.9999...% of our politicians are capable of guiding us when they themselves cannot even control their own behavior. Think about one former President who said "Yes, I smoked pot, but never inhaled". What type of example is that for the rest of the nation?

  3. #3
    Registered User divineleft's Avatar
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    It would be great, but the only reason there are two parties is because our government is a corporation, not a democracy. Technically, yes, it is a democracy, but it's one within a corporation. It's run by those who have money and they only pass on power to other elites.

    Our government will do nothing about it because they are in the loop. They like things the way they are. The only way to fix it is to spread the word among the people and try to bring awareness to how this country is becoming less of a democracy.

    edit:
    Quote Originally Posted by Kennedy
    Webster: Politician (defn): nut-jobs/lawyers that cannot do anything else.

    I disagree with you, however, about not Governing our *freedoms*/morals. If no one steps up to the plate to try to guide us in the right direction, we possibly could end up with total anarchy. Most people, IMO, cannot govern themselves in a logical manner. Today, it seems, the moral fiber of the US has fallen to pieces. If we don't have rather strict policies/laws holding most people in line, then we will see more and more unethical behavior. I do not, however, think that 99.9999...% of our politicians are capable of guiding us when they themselves cannot even control their own behavior. Think about one former President who said "Yes, I smoked pot, but never inhaled". What type of example is that for the rest of the nation?
    If it's not done now, then when? We're only digging a deeper hole.

    The "right direction" is totally subjective.
    Last edited by divineleft; 11-07-2006 at 01:23 PM.

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    If we don't have rather strict policies/laws holding most people in line, then we will see more and more unethical behavior
    Wow. Do you realize that the definition of what is morally 'right' and 'wrong' is often completely arbitrary? I'd really love to find out what your political standings are on things such as abortion, affirmative action, homosexual marriage, workers rights and labor laws, etc.

    Your remark about clinton smoking pot only works if you believe that smoking pot is wrong, not just illegal but morally wrong.
    I'm not immature, I'm refined in the opposite direction.

  5. #5
    and the hat of wrongness Salem's Avatar
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    Politics is the conjunction of two words
    poly - meaning many.
    ticks - meaning blood sucking parasites.



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  6. #6
    Moderately Rabid Decrypt's Avatar
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    Kennedy: I don't go so far as the Libertarians in that the government should have no say in the personal liberties of the populace. I do think that in many social issues, the government should stay out. What goes on inside the home (barring personal injury, etc.) is none of the government's (or your neighbor's) business.

    Take the constitutional amendment on the ballot in Wisconsin today:
    "Marriage. Shall section 13 of article XIII of the constitution be created to provide that only a marriage between one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in this state and that a legal status identical or substantially similar to that of marriage for unmarried individuals shall not be valid or recognized in this state?"
    Though it was hyped as the "gay marriage ban," it also affects substantially similar arrangments made by unmarried individuals - straight or otherwise. This may make it more difficult for couples who do not wish to be legally married, but would like the same treatment as far as asset allocation, pensions, etc go. If the amendment passes, and I think it will, people that are unmarried will be given, as far as the state is concerned, the same considerations as two strangers. Why the distinction? Two people committed to each other for life in their heads and hearts are committed in that way whether or not they told the state about it.

    That, in my mind, is the kind of thing that the government needs to stay out of. The deregulation of "personal liberties" can go too far, and some regulation is needed to maintain order. Where the line is, I don't know...

    Quote Originally Posted by divineleft
    The "right direction" is totally subjective.
    Absolutely.

    [edit]
    Quote Originally Posted by Bob
    if you believe that smoking pot is wrong, not just illegal but morally wrong
    Great point. I think the "line" is somewhere in that sentence.

    Salem: Poly-ticks, that's awesome. I can't wait to tell my dad that. [/edit]
    Last edited by Decrypt; 11-07-2006 at 01:45 PM.
    There is a difference between tedious and difficult.

  7. #7
    Reverse Engineer maxorator's Avatar
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    You could always say "They are doing it all wrong!", but could you do better?
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    Registered User divineleft's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maxorator
    You could always say "They are doing it all wrong!", but could you do better?
    Me? Better than them? Of course not. At least not alone. But, almost any group of intelligent people with a motive to better our country, rather than expand power as much as possible, could do it better.

  9. #9
    Reverse Engineer maxorator's Avatar
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    Where would you get intelligent people?

    Usually intelligent people don't want to mess with politics (there are some exceptions).
    "The Internet treats censorship as damage and routes around it." - John Gilmore

  10. #10
    {Jaxom,Imriel,Liam}'s Dad Kennedy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by divineleft
    The "right direction" is totally subjective.
    The "right direction" is clearly visible AFTER the fall of a nation. Rome, for example, didn't take the "right direction", however, general consensus of the day was that they were. Objectively speaking, history notes that any nation that begins to loose it's moral integrity will collapse. This is a biblical principle too, but maybe I should not say this. -- and yes, I, being from the south, have deep religious roots.

    As far as having the law to observe only marriages between 1 man and 1 woman, this will cut out a whole bunch of tax dodging. IF two people "want to spend the rest of their lives together" but don't want to get married. . . this is not logical. Why would a couple, whose intentions are to live their lives together, not marry? The typical excuse is "I don't want to marry becase I don't want to get a divorce". That is on the level of "I don't want to look for a job because I have a fear of rejection". Again -- NOT LOGICAL.

  11. #11
    Registered User divineleft's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kennedy
    The "right direction" is clearly visible AFTER the fall of a nation. Rome, for example, didn't take the "right direction", however, general consensus of the day was that they were. Objectively speaking, history notes that any nation that begins to loose it's moral integrity will collapse. This is a biblical principle too, but maybe I should not say this. -- and yes, I, being from the south, have deep religious roots.
    The right direction is obviously the one that will lead us away from complete deterioration. That's a given (unless you like anarchy). I'm talking about the direction of our country (the righter direction if you will), not the path that will lead us away from anarchy.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kennedy
    As far as having the law to observe only marriages between 1 man and 1 woman, this will cut out a whole bunch of tax dodging. IF two people "want to spend the rest of their lives together" but don't want to get married. . . this is not logical. Why would a couple, whose intentions are to live their lives together, not marry? The typical excuse is "I don't want to marry becase I don't want to get a divorce". That is on the level of "I don't want to look for a job because I have a fear of rejection". Again -- NOT LOGICAL.
    I'm not even going to address this.

  12. #12
    Registered User divineleft's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maxorator
    Where would you get intelligent people?
    What?

    Quote Originally Posted by maxorator
    Usually intelligent people don't want to mess with politics (there are some exceptions).
    So you're saying that every leader, government official, president, activist, prime minister, ect. was for the most part stupid? I'm not sure I understand this generalization.

  13. #13
    {Jaxom,Imriel,Liam}'s Dad Kennedy's Avatar
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    >I'd really love to find out what your political standings are on things such as abortion
    Against.

    >affirmative action
    Against.

    >homosexual marriage
    Against.

    >workers rights
    For.

    >labor laws
    For.

  14. #14
    Registered User divineleft's Avatar
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    I honestly couldn't care less. What do your views have to do with the political parties of the us?

  15. #15
    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    Two-party system have their advantages. I'm not shocked at the prospect. After all, even traditional multi-party Europe is moving to a two-party system. If not on the ballots, definitely on the polls.

    What shocks me is that we replaced one power for another. In a way, there's not much of a difference between a 13th century society and a 21st century one. We just replaced one power for another. Monarchy for democracy, and in the background really rulling the country, the economic power when before there was the church.

    Anyways, on the particular case of US, I don't think its in the best interest of either Democrats or Republicans to have a third party comfortably install themselves in their midst. Any third solution to their bipolar view of America has to be unviable, weak and not representative. Political parties are protective by nature and definition. No matter the usual "democratic" speech.

    Another problem is that even the most moderate (or cautious if you like) thinker of us are usually bipolar in our views of what is right or wrong. Everything in fact is usually presented in the form of Aye or Nay. Democracy has a very hard time dealing with "yes but", "no but", and third solutions. How many referendums about important and key matters pertaining to society do you see being presented to the population as something more than simply "For" and "Against".

    Isn't it possible to agree with some reservations? To not agree with something and yet see the merits of some points? Certainly! If anything, I think future, hopefully more advanced, societies will look at us with the same romantic smile we now reserve to primitive societies of the dark ages.

    Anyways, a third party doesn't fit in this world on two colors sponsored by Sony. And even if it somehow makes its way, it will too fail to come to terms with its ideology, adopting extremist positions here and there simply to find himself a nice comfy spot on the polls. After all it can't be too equal to any of the major parties. It will be consumed by them otherwise because it threatens to take a part of their votes.
    Last edited by Mario F.; 11-07-2006 at 02:49 PM.
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