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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

A national third party -- on the internet?

Here's a very, very interesting concept. Wouldn't it be great it actually became viable?

Comments (30)

Instead, if it becomes viable, it could very well pull centrist votes away from Obama and present you with President Rick Perry; 2-3 years later, everyone's angry at them for screwing with the election and they're no longer viable. (See every other third party attempt in the last 95 years)

They should start with Congress, where the real problem is.

I feel sorry for anybody with a good heart who's tied in with either party. Talk about a sinking feeling knowing you've spent your life promoting something that has put America into a death spiral.

Then, that terrible day comes along where you look in the mirror and realize, "I'm just an establishment party hack, but, oh well, it's a gig."

That must be a sad day.

I read Blue Oregon recently for the first time in quite a while. If you put your ear by the monitor you can actually hear them struggling. If they all showed up in the looney bin wearing tiger costumes, I would not be surprised.

And the Republicans? Who are they kidding with that pile of B.S.?

So I guess our choice is to try something new or just proceed directly to the revolution.

One thing that will be funny is when they trot out the old line about how we have to reelect the Dems because the GOP would be so much worse.

We're at 6 wars now, and counting. Are we supposed to hope for 7 wars? Is that the change we can believe in? Oh, and how are we going to pay for the next war? Are we going to drop IOUs on the enemy?

Sign up or hit the streets?

Yeah, a New York Times columnist(Friedman) is a "centrist." Right. No left. Hopefully, such third party would steal from Dem party votes. Help take the place of Ralph Nader.

As for the internet and governance, I should think more governance could be done by citizens voting on key issues rather than continued age old reliance on elected representatives. There's no reason why folks shouldn't be allowed to vote on issues like streetcar, light rail, urban renewal, and climate change type issues. You could structure the voting to preserve the concept of Republic versus pure Democracy.

The times they are a changin, more, maybe far more, than they were when Dylan wrote that. The entire political apparatus online is an intriguing prospect, but consider we're only one mass coronal eruption away from calamity. Politics is small potatoes when you think about everything else that's now electronically and online dependent, finance & banking, etc.

As for preserving the republic over pure democracy, I think it was Aristotle who predicted that republics would devolve into democracies, and democracies into anarchy. If that's relevant nowadays or to this discussion.

One thing that will be funny is when they trot out the old line about how we have to reelect the Dems because the GOP would be so much worse.

Bill, why isn't that a valid concept? I guess I've always figured that I won't ever find MY ideal candidate. I also fundamentally believe that America is a conservative country, so my lefty politics will always be an uphill battle. I think I'm less disappointed than you in Obama because I never thought he was the great left hope. I assumed he would do. . . well, exactly what he is doing. The most important thing is protecting us from the right-wing zealots who literally want to destroy the country in order to save it.

As for a third party, I would absolutely welcome this effort. Third parties have usually been on the left or right, which is why they can be counterproductive (by actually resulting in a hard-left voter helping to elect a right-wing president, or vice versa). A centrist third party could be different, but depends on the quality of the candidates. The two-party duopoly is an anachronism in this age of information.

"One thing that will be funny is when they trot out the old line about how we have to reelect the Dems because the GOP would be so much worse."

Yeah Rob Cornillus was worse than Wu?

Only in the BlueOregon delusion.

Oregon is chuck full of the Sam Adams, Rex Burkholder etc electeds who are worse than any dart throw at a phone books.

Thge idea that all the Rs in that book would be worse is BlueOregon stupid.

The lesser of two evils is still a thieving, ax wielding, mind-altered, cold-blooded serial rapist.

But at least he/she is our thieving, ax wielding, mind-altered, cold-blooded serial rapist...

Yesterday I left the Republican party. I'm not a member of any party now and I'm happier. I still care very much about this city, state and country but I don't know what's next. Americans Elect is slick, easy and sounds so perfect. But I'm not signing pledges and probably won't in the future. Meanwhile I keep looking for answers and writing (to Earl B. yesterday on the so called Fair Credit Reporting act.)

Way to go, Don. Independent is the only way to go.

The Tea Party was briefly trying to be its own party, but was quickly co-opted. In the beginning, it even had some centrists and Dems on board who were mad about the bank bailouts. Now it's just another name for the conservative rump of the GOP.

The tea party was never co-opted at all.

That's the left wing smearing and the means to play politics as usual.

Of course the majority of tea party movement is Republican. They are far more supportive of limited, controlled and effective government.
But anyone fiscally conservative should have no beef with Tea Party thinking.

Just look right here and recognize that all of the criticism of local government shenannigans is uniformly tea party.

Democrat party operatives can't allow that distinction so they gin up a caricature of tea party folks they can more easily then smear.

Representation based on geography needs to yield to representation based on ideology, at least on a federal level. Gerrymandering has destroyed any fairness in representation for minority views.

It's a valid concept used every cycle. I just want to see how they do it after 2008.

I attended 3 Obama campaign speeches and filmed 2 of them. I even edited some of it down so I've seen the clips over and over. My take wasn't to see President Obama as the Messiah, etc...I just thought, "He better be great or we are screwed." He's more of the same and we are screwed.

I hoped we were getting the professor of the Constitution - not someone who's continued the Bush/Cheney war crimes.

I hoped America would self-correct and punish the individuals that caused the massive fraud on Wall Street. President Obama might as well have given them Medals of Freedom.

I just want to hear how they do it - how they present this record. I've heard some progressives describe it as "worse than Bush." Certainly, the war in Libya represented a worsening of the problem of authoritarian rule.

Here's another example: The secret deal sell-out to Big Pharma prior to the healthcare debate that was supposed to be open on C-Span.

I want to hear about that kind of thing.

I want to hear Will.I.Am's next version of "Yes, We Can." I think it'll be funny. Not "ha, ha" funny - more "tragic" funny.

What Ben said.

I signed up last night at around 1 AM, after a busy day at work followed by several hours of whirly-gigging in the dance hall.

They start with a bunch of questions. Some of them appear to be an IQ test. eg: what is the best way to curb illegal immigration? choice of answer was...I kid you not..."provide paths to citizenship". WTF? Then, when you answered the question, they would let you know how your answer compared to the answers of other "Americans" (Americans answering this poll, or at large, based on other data? Not spelled out). I found myself in the depressing tiny minority on way too many issues. And got to see that something like 40% of whoever the hell the sitemasters refer to as "other Americans", indeed, think that providing a path to citizenship is a great way to curb illegal immigration. And that something like 78% think immigration is good, period. (Uh, qualifier, large numbers of immigrants who want to overthrow the government, make women permanent second-class citizens, and live on welfare under Sharia law, like they endure in Britain, is, uh, maybe not so good for the country, dontcha think? well, evidently that 78% doesn't have any discriminatory sensibility and those people TERRIFY me.)

This morning I bemoaned my findings to the hubby, conveying the sensation of cold fingers holding my heart, that this might be an avenue for leftists to control the agenda in this country...He says "yeah, well if 'other Americans' are the people answering those questions on the site, well, they'll wind up dividing the Democratic party, and the country will elect a Republican. Maybe not a bad thing, at this point."

Roger that.

I would start with Congress AND the Presidency. Both of these branches have made and enacted laws that are unconstitutional.

And it is allowed because the press has been complacent in their job.

A co-worker friend of mine turned me onto this site yesterday. And I in turn shared with some friends. Of that group none of us really believe either of the major parties represent our interests.

I've only stayed registered as a D to vote in primaries. The Rs social agenda makes me sick to my stomach and certainly does not represent my best interests.

As to Gaye, you sound like a reactionary of old. Keep those damned Irish, Italians, Poles, or whatever out of here. They will destroy the country, doncha know? It never seems to happen. It's the entrenched old money and Wall Street schemers that's wrecking the country.

While I'd like to see H1B Visas abolished permanently, I would encourage those who want to be Americans to come here. Even if the first generation is well less than American (and I am thinking of one of my great-grandmothers), the ensuing generations will be assimilated.

Ben you keep drinking that kool-aid that you drink. It's so trippy. The Rs and Ds are both only about big corporations and rich folks. And someday maybe your eyes will open. The whole reason for this new party is to really keep government out of our lives.

Fiscal responsibility combined no right wing religious nuts trying to destroy separation of church and state and the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness is really not too much to ask. Neither the Ds nor the Rs get fiscal responsibility. And the Rs think the government should be regulating personal issues when in fact the founders would be rolling in their graves.

That should have read..

Fiscal responsibility combined with no right wing religious nuts trying to destroy separation of church and state and the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness is really not too much to ask.

Friedman no doubt breathlessly follow developments so he can write on the "Third Political Party, Updated and Expanded," to be followed by the "Third Political Party, Version 3.0." Reality is this is nothing more than a push poll gimmick.

Actually, Lucs Advo, I'm totally in favor of LEGAL immigration, as long as the immigrants don't dress their wives in shrouds, marry their infant girls to their first cousins, and kill their gay children. Only so much polarization of worldview encouraged in the immigrant stream; who has the resources to to deal with violent radical religious fundamentalist groups? Britain and Germany spend a huge amount of energy keeping those groups under surveillance, who needs them in the first place. Let all the eligible fundies emigrate to Saudi Arabia! They'll have fun there!

But it's all good. If this is the new reactionary, I'm all for the new reactionary.

The Tea Party was very much co-opted. That's why it is now a wholly-owned susidiary of the Republican Party.

But as you say, after the smoke cleared it barely represents anything new at all. Just another name for "really conservative".

I hoped we were getting the professor of the Constitution - not someone who's continued the Bush/Cheney war crimes.

I hoped as well, Bill, but wouldn't have bet money on it. I worked in the federal government for about 5 years, in a position where I could watch some of the inner workings of two different Administrations (of two different parties). The lesson I came away with is that it is very difficult for a president to change the direction of the country. He can shade it one way or the other, and with sustained effort over two terms he can actually change direction (e.g., Reagan), but once in motion the government machine churns on relentlessly. It's not a conspiracy where things are controlled by higher-ups. It's just inertia. There are so many people doing so many things that one change has an infinite ripple effect through everything else, which gives an infinite number of people the ability to slow/stop any changes.

I'm aware of that part of it - that government is like steering an oil tanker. And I have become much more aware of the role of bankers and the big corporations in manipulating the course of a nation.

Still, there are times when the President decides. One example is Libya. Now, you could argue that he had no choice - that the real powers of the world ordered him to do it. Maybe so. But I don't get how that was Constitutional. I certainly don't want an authoritarian president attacking any country he or she wants based on their mood that day. I think it's dangerous, but that's where Bush steered the tanker with his Doctrine of Preemptive Strikes.

My point is that I don't see any real attempt to steer the oil tanker in a different direction. I wanted to return to the direction that America was going before all that. I thought it worked very well for over 200 years. You know... before Bush and Cheney created havoc for 8 years. But we're not doing that. If anything, those disastrous policies have been solidified and expanded upon - not counteracted. I think we're turning into a warrior nation run by global bankers and we're going to pay a horrible price. We already have.

I didn't expect that from this President. I would say Candidate Obama and President Obama are essentially 2 different people.

Oh, in case you want to suggest that he changed his mind once he got into office and saw things more realistically, remember: He ditched his financial team right after being elected and brought in the usual Wall Street suspects to run things. Almost like a deliberate deception.

It was interesting today to read that the White House has been secretly in contact with the banks - telling them there will be no default.
My question is, "Who was telling who?"
And if that should be "whom" I'm sorry. That's the oil tanker of language swinging in a new direction.

Snards, what you fail to see is that the Tea Party is just about as critical of Republicans as it is of Democrats. Don't be blindly swallowing the agitprop from Daily Kos, DU, etc.

Tom Friedman is unreadable. He is a noxious gas cloud of cliches.

Gaye part of your last post read "Only so much polarization of worldview encouraged in the immigrant stream; who has the resources to to deal with violent radical religious fundamentalist groups?" So does that mean you'd not only keep out radical Moslems but also radical Christians (they do murder people over things they disagree with) and radical Jews too? Or is it just Moslems that you take exception to? Trying to understand you.

And by the way, would you prevent people like Ahmet Ertugun and the parents of Kemal Amin Kasem because one was born in Turkey and the others were born in Palestine?

How would you construct your purity test to decide who is allowed in and who is not?

And I think the US would have been a less rich place without Ahmet's Atlantic Records and without Casey / Shaggy Kasem.

LucsAdvo, it's a trial to have to explain all this when you should understand it all by now.

Look, we all agree all fundies are crazy and undesirable. Period.

The particular and unique problem with the Islamic fundie thing is Saudi Arabia. They have a lot of money. They promulgate their toxic proto-fascist version of Islam, (Wahhabism/Salafism) all over the world; open and fund mosques and madrassahs, and OPERATE CHARITIES which funnel money to the sucide bomber industry.

This is all the same stuff as what fundie Christians have, right? Wrong. No uber-powerful, uber-rich, uber-corrupt fascist state is more or less openly propping up the Christian and Jewish fundies, so yes, they are much, much less dangerous. The greatest danger lies in all the socially accepted, large, constructed, supported platform that these particular crazies have access to.

I went to Hippo the other day and bought an enormous stained glass church light fixture. I am going to make a light-up entryway table out of it, with a wooden top with little star-of-david cutouts.
When I press the foot-operated switch when I come in from a long day at work,
the light will cast a mixture of cool little "thou shalt not kill" star-of- David reflections, and "do unto others as you would have done unto thyself" colored crucifix-shaped reflections, on my ceiling. I will make a mental note when I see it: "Forgive us, we know not what we do." With this, who knows, maybe I can declare myself the prophet of a new, minimalist religion, that has no dogma except for those three concepts. An all new and revised trinity.

Oh, and how would I construct a purity test? Very simple. Immigrants have to show up with the whole family to apply. If wife is dressed in shroud and three-year-old girls in hijabs, US official says sorry, we have the alternate form for you, emigration application to Saudi Arabia.

Second step after passing first test. There is a newly minted human rights organization in Britain. US official says, we would like you, prospective immigrants, to join, as part of your purity test. The organization is called "Muslims for Israel." Oh, not possible, you say? Well, we have this application for emigration to Saudi Arabia over here...

Seems like Gaye Harris is only commenter who assessed the dumb screening questions asked by Americans Elect. She's 110% correct; they're is the whole idea. How Friedman could give this much ink to it is a mystery. A so-called third party on state ballots would likely give us something to remember, like Ralph Nader's heroism.

Starting at the state level was suggested, and it's a powerful idea. One important and obvious catalyst would be proportional representation, as practiced in numerous republics. Both major parties would sooner kill their children than accept it, which only shows how valuable it might be as a new route to political change.


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Kathryn Lance - Pandora's Genes
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Jack London - The House of Pride, and Other Tales of Hawaii
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Niccolò Machiavelli - The Prince
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Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Sharon Creech - Walk Two Moons
Keith Richards - Life
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Justin Halpern - S#*t My Dad Says
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Phil Stanford - The Peyton-Allan Files
Jesse Katz - The Opposite Field
Evelyn Waugh - Brideshead Revisited
J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
David Sedaris - Holidays on Ice
Donald Miller - A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith
C.S. Lewis - The Magician's Nephew
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Ivan Doig - Bucking the Sun
Penda Diakité - I Lost My Tooth in Africa
Grace Lin - The Year of the Rat
Oscar Hijuelos - Mr. Ives' Christmas
Madeline L'Engle - A Wrinkle in Time
Steven Hart - The Last Three Miles
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day
Karen Armstrong - The Spiral Staircase
Charles Larson - The Portland Murders
Adrian Wojnarowski - The Miracle of St. Anthony
William H. Colby - Long Goodbye
Steven D. Stark - Meet the Beatles
Phil Stanford - Portland Confidential
Rick Moody - Garden State
Jonathan Schwartz - All in Good Time
David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Anthony Holden - Big Deal
Robert J. Spitzer - The Spirit of Leadership
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Road Work

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