TBD on Ning


Today I read an editoral written by Thomas Friedman. It was titled "This country Needs a Tea Party of the Radical Center".

It was in the Houston Chronicle. Friedman is a columnist for "The New York Times".

In this column he discusses how our current form of government has been taken over by the extremists on both sides of the political spectrum. He thinks that our political system of only two major parties has allowed that, and that it is only going to get worse. The extreme fringe of each party seem to be the powers that control who gets elected. That has evolved into a system where nothing can be accomplished. The vast majority of americans fall somewhere between the liberal and conservative extremes. So it would seem that our government should be composed of people who were representitive of that group. That is no longer true.

The same type of polorazation has accured here on tbd.

Not that I'm comparing tbd to a system of government; I'm addressing tbd as a large group of individuals with a wide range of political ideas. There are two Groups on tbd that I think represent the two extrems of political thought. On the right is the "We the People" Group. On the Left is the "Liberal Thinkers" with the "No Flamers" logo. Even though members of these two groups sometimes participate in inflamitory discussions in their opposite group, agreement on any subject is yet to occur.

Friedman points out one simple indication that our political system is "Broken". The fact that a Republican will be voted out of office for doing the right thing.(raising taxes when needed) Democrats will be voted out of office for doing the right thing.(cutting services when needed)

Friedman thinks that a key cause of our current political divide is the current method that most states use to establish the shape and size of voting districts. I agree.

California recently took took away the power to design congressional districts from the State Legislature and put it in the hands of an independent, politically neutral, Citizens Redistricting Commission. If this works we should see more candidates that appeal to the center.

Another thing that would produce more centerest candidates is "alternative voting".

Under our current voting system, most of us feel that if we were to vote for a third party or independent candidate, we will be actually throwing our vote away and thereby helping elect the person that we most want to not be elected.

Alternative voting allows you to rank your choices. If the person that you rank as number one does not win, your vote goes to your number two. This means that if you rank the republican #1 and the independent #2 your vote does not help the democrat to beat the republican.

"Nothing has held back the growth of independent, centrist candidates more", said Larry Diamond, a Stanford University democracy expert, "than the fear that if you vote for one of them you will be wasting your vote".

Alternative voting can overcome that.

So, let's have a Tea Party of the radical center.

I am not sure what the correct answer to the current political log jam is, but I think that most Americans are not satisfied with the current system.

Views: 23

Tags: Politics, care, deficits, elections, government, health, jobs.


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Comment by CWO3ROBBIE on March 26, 2010 at 6:35pm
Pru, How bout Mayor of Cut and Shoot?
Comment by P.A. on March 26, 2010 at 9:43am
Pru I think you would make a great president
Comment by larry kremis on March 25, 2010 at 3:02pm
I like that idea pickle. You would need to be nominated without appearing to be seeking office. And then when nominated, you express shock and surprise: "you mean lil' ol' me? lol. Seriously though, I really like it.

As a second thought to my last comment to Robbie regarding the party system. With my idea the party system would soon dissolve with contributions being deemed illegal.
Comment by P.A. on March 25, 2010 at 12:19pm
Just a thought and it is not original to me. I believe this was George Washington's idea. Anybody who seeks an office is automatically disqualified from consideration. That was the original intent of the Electoral College. Then political parties came along and corrupted the system.
Comment by larry kremis on March 25, 2010 at 9:37am
Sure, there would still be a party system. There would still be certain criteria regarding candidates. Those who meet the criteria would simply register their candidacy at the board of elections. I think I see your point, having too many to choose from isn't good either. Many bugs to iron out.
Comment by CWO3ROBBIE on March 25, 2010 at 8:01am
Larry, How do we determine who is running? I would assume that there would still be some kind of party system. If not how do you determine who gets the exposure?
Comment by larry kremis on March 25, 2010 at 7:32am
Misdirection. There sure is a lot of that going on in politics. lol

Another advantage to my election and campaign ideas. This is for the "straight ticket" voters. Since they already know who they're voting for, they wouldn't have to watch the debates, they could watch their recordings of Jerry Springer reruns.
Comment by larry kremis on March 25, 2010 at 6:07am
Kathy and Daz, it certainly makes me suspicious that the dissension is calculated and contrived.

Robbie, I believe outlawing campaigning all together is the answer. This way, corporations could take all the money they were going to contribute to a political puppet, and reinvest it back into their company and maybe create more jobs, what they do with the extra money may be another story. It would also level the playing field, this would add thousands of qualified leaders to the pool, qualified candidates who don't have the gift of bullshit or the time to seek campaign contributions. Government funded debates for all qualified candidates is all that's needed for voters to make an informed decision. Debates not to take place until a few months prior to election day, allowing incumbents to stay on the job and off the campaign trail. I see only one drawback to this idea, the drawback being that it will never happen. Congress would need to write the bill and pass it. LMAO
Comment by Dazzling Zoomer Gal Diana on March 25, 2010 at 2:46am
A terrific post Robbie and thank you for the URL , and great comments Larry. I can not agree more about the extremists on both sides, who seem bent on destroying any hope of civil negotiations and compromises. I've mentioned this before, and that is that extreme internal dissension seems almost calculated to create an impotent state of affairs.

The health bill is not that difficult a read. It just takes time. There are many good summaries now too - ABC news site has an interactive interface that allows you to (lightly) assess your own situation.
Comment by CWO3ROBBIE on March 24, 2010 at 8:19pm
Larry, I agree with you on most of our points. I'll have to think about the political advertising. My current opinion is that there should be a better set of rules governing political advertising and that each candidate should have public financing for their campaign. Once again, I'm not sure how that would work. So maybe outlawing it is the answer.



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