In most states, independents cannot vote in primaries. Where primary voting is restricted to registered members of the two dominant political parties, and election boards are almost entirely restricted to agents of these parties, third-party and independent candidates have no meaningful opportunity for ballot access. Yet, these established parties are privileged to use public property and voting machines for private primaries. This constitutes flagrant discrimination against the 40% of voters who identify themselves as independents.
It is outrageous and it must change.
Therefore, the people demand that no political party be privileged or favored:
on Boards of Election,
in debates (in public fora or on the public airwaves),
in the use of public resources,
or in any other way.
It seems remarkable that we even have to mention fair elections for Independents and Third Party Candidates, but we do. This is one of the most fundamental issues retarding our current political system. Once this is fixed, most people will hardly believe that the electoral system was rigged by a duopoly for so long.
de·moc·ra·cy [dih-mok-ruh-see] Show IPA
noun, plural de·moc·ra·cies.
government by the people; a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them or by their elected agents under a free electoral system.
a state having such a form of government: The United States and Canada are democracies.
a state of society characterized by formal equality of rights and privileges.
political or social equality; democratic spirit.
the common people of a community as distinguished from any privileged class; the common people with respect to their political power.
It should be apparent to all that based on the above definition, we no longer have a Democracy in the United States.
When was the last time Congress passed legislation based on the will of the majority?
When was the last time Congress passed legislation based on the interests and financial backing of special interests?
The corruption of Government is sourced in the greed of both those using money to accomplish their goals, and those accepting that money. It is so entrenched in our political process and politicians are so addicted to this process that reinstating a Democracy here will be almost impossible if we are to depend on these very same politicians to give up their addictions. It simple will not happen, and in fact get worse. The last several decades are testament to this fact.
The only solutions to reinstating Democracy in this country is either by another American Revolution or an almost total turn over in elected officials, from the community level all the way to the Presidency of the United States, including their staffs and aides. We need a complete and total disconnect to the way things are being done now in government.
For this later solution, in order to be successful, requires total voter participation of all parties. This cannot be achieved however when there are 17 States that have closed primaries, primaries where Independent and No Party Affiliated voters are disenfranchised from the primary vote. Because of that, the vast majority on nominees that make it a general election are, and have to be, Republican and Democrat, the same parties that support, perpetuate, and continue to ignore the will of the majority in favor of that of special interests.
With total Independents and NPA's exceeding both the total number of registered Republicans and registered Democrat voters, their disenfranchisement ensures, guarantees the two established Parties will dominate our governance, despite the fact that neither can muster a majority without Independent and NPA support. This is unacceptable. It is insane and it is anti democracy.
Again, the ONLY chance we have at reinstating our Democracy, at least without civil war, is to open primaries so the true majority of voters in this country determine who will run to represent them. This is how we can break the stranglehold the establish political minority on both sides of the isle hold over us. It is how a new third political party can be created and share equally in the governance of this nation, and it is how the old ways can be purged for the new.
The next step then is to demand open primaries in those States without them, allow Independents and NPA's to become the force they truly are which is 40% of total registered voters. That makes them a party larger then both Democrats and Republicans, with the potential to become the dominant political force in Government.
States with open, closed, and semi-open primaries
An Un-parable: a Non-Partisan Rant from a Frustrated House Candidate
Let those with ears listen!
In 2008 our financial markets collapsed. Wall Street’s paper prosperity was a lie: the result of shaky bets on shakier securities magnified in size by the unregulated derivativization of those bets and spread throughout the system by off-the-books short-term company-to-company financing and the death of the decades-old barriers between investment and commercial banking.
Volumes have been written; the ink spilled would fill a lake. If I could write a parable, if I could explain to the reader who in Washington and on Wall Street did what to whom, following the collapse, without using names, positions and party labels, the reader would agree that Washington’s response to the crisis was deeply inadequate at best and deeply troubling at worst: a glaring embarrassment to our entire system of government.
We live in tough times. No one has the time to deal in extended parables. No one has the time to read them.
But we also live in strange times: estranged times. America has drawn its battle-lines. There’s “us” and “them.” Without the parable’s indirection, the reader would soon hear from me that some of the ineptitude of the past half-decade was wrought by folks in her “us” column. That’d make me a “them,” and she’d stop hearing.
We only have the temperament to hear our own opinions parroted back to us. When we hear “them” bash “us,” we shut our ears. Partisanship has been worse. Hamilton’s friends imprisoned Jefferson’s friends for sedition. Burr shot Hamilton.
But these are strange times. In Hamilton’s day, the “uses” and the “thems” sounded different from one another on the stump, and the differences were reflected in action once they were elected. Our “uses” and “thems” sound different from one another on the stump too. But they’re indistinguishable once we elect them. Let those with ears listen!
Little has been done to prevent 2008 from happening again. No one has been held directly accountable. We, the people, the taxpayers, paid for the down-side, and we left the up-side to the people who caused the mess. For example, the biggest investment banks are all bigger than they were before the bailout, and the special rate at which they’re loaned money by other firms is lower than it was then. The lauded electoral-political “upheavals” of 2008 and 2010 amounted to deck-chair-arranging on a sinking Titanic: we left the same people in charge who watched us hit the iceberg. And the few “new” people elected in these “upheavals” all belong either to the us-caste or to the them-caste.
What makes the times tough explains why they’re strange: it’s the money, stupid. Following the money, we find the explanation for why what looks insane in Washington is sane. Every dollar spent by a company lobbying or fundraising in Washington yields between three and thirty in return. The companies get their returns by tax-payer funding of the down-sides of company risks, by getting no-bid contracts or by the enactment or extension of tax loopholes. If no one verbalizes the quid pro quo connection during the “transaction,” no law is broken.
It costs so much money to run a campaign and to get elected that the division between “us” and “them” in public keeps growing. A YES!-PAC can raise campaign cash, and a NO!-PAC can raise it too, but an I’m-not-so-sure-but-I’d-like-to-examine-the-issue-further-PAC doesn’t inspire writing campaign checks. The wacky extremes make profitable television; the reasoned center doesn’t.
The Congressional approval rating is at an all-time low. But we live in strange times. If the incumbents can keep “us” at the throats of “them” and away from their throats and the polling places, they have nothing to worry about. As long office-holding is conditioned on the system of legal bribery at which they’ve all become so adept, they’ve got nothing to fear.
They certainly have nothing to fear from an Independent Iraq War veteran spinning un-parables on a river in Tennessee. The strange and tough Washington world that Wall Street's money built can take it.
Jack Arnold is an Independent Candidate for the U.S. House
Independent voters need to understand that the two major parties have an event scheduled in September that we have gone through once before. Republicans in Congress made a deal last August to vote with Democrats in Congress to raise the debt ceiling this coming September. The timing of this event is a little odd, to say the least, considering what happened the last time Republicans did this.
Democrats are already crowing about what they say is going to happen. When Tea Party Republicans balk at raising the debt limit, say Democrats, the President will do what Bill Clinton did, proclaim he is shutting down the government because Republicans will not raise the debt limit, energizing his pro-union base just in time to get him re-elected to a second term the same way Clinton did.
Independent voters gain nothing from this except the privilege of being deeper in debt. When Republicans and Democrats divide up the borrowed money in Congress between programs designed to purchase votes for Democrats and military spending to stimulate the economy, the money will all go to strengthen the two-party monopoly on government. What independent voters should do is stop giving donations to party candidates and start sending it directly to
The Bureau of the Public Debt
P.O. Box 2188
Parkersburg, West Virginia
This would have a couple of good effects. First, the parties would be unable to stop the economic recovery that would result when the Chinese and other people who have purchased bonds from the United States treasury regain confidence in American currency. Second, it would prevent the shut down of the government the two parties have scheduled.
In case you do not believe the Republicans are complicit in this, consider that money donated in this manner has consistently been about three million dollars per year since Clinton was President. That means if Republicans were the only ones who contributed, they donated about five cents each per year. Obama raised 100 million for his campaign just in the month of March asking for $3.00 donations.
Independent voters need to start paying this debt. Republicans and Democrats are not going to do it. The biggest reason to do it is that if independent voters started making donations to pay the debt, they could tell Democrats and Republicans to stop stealing their money. They are going to have to pay these creditors in any event. This way they could at least talk about it.
Robert B. Winn
Yes, I agree with you that both major parties are in a discouraging fix this time around.
As a thinking Independent, I have found the candidate I would vote for if the Republicans could possibly woo him back into the fold. In reaction to part of the current partisan intransigence, Gary Johnson (http://www.garyjohnson2012.com/front) has fled his Republican party; actually he is so moderate that he was excommunicated by the right wing extremists. In order to be able to get on all 50 states' ballots, he has embraced the Libertarian Party (and vice versa).
For decades I have accepted the conventional wisdom that a third party could undermine, really hurt a functioning two-party system.
This time it is truly different; the two parties have both proven themselves unable to preserve people power as they have both become so enslaved to money. If thinking moderates could see the wisdom in Gary Johnson's common-sense agenda (below), we could strengthen our democracy immensely.
Surely the majority would agree with most, if not all, of
Gary Johnson's specified agenda:
- I want to end deficit spending and cut federal spending by 43%.
- I want to enact the Fair Tax to stimulate real economic growth and jobs.
- I want to end the manipulation of our money by the Federal Reserve.
- I support the Second Amendment and oppose gun control.
- I oppose expensive foreign wars in places like Libya and Afghanistan.
- I support a woman's right to choose.
- I support marriage equality for gay Americans as required by the Constitution.
- I support legalization of marijuana, which will save us billions and do no harm.
- I support returning strict adherence to Constitutional principles to our government.
Go to http://www.garyjohnson2012.com/front, and you will see clearly why I have so much hope for bringing power back to our voters this time.
Thanks for your help in making it reasonably different this time,
Stephen F. Uhl, Ph.D.
13401 Rancho Vistoso Blvd., #174
Oro Valley, AZ 85755
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