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Index » Radio Paradise/General » General Discussion » Political Myths
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miamizsun

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Posted: Jan 3, 2018 - 2:53pm


one of pinker's comments



miamizsun

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Posted: Dec 9, 2017 - 6:13am


sirdroseph
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Posted: Jun 30, 2017 - 4:33am

 bugleboy624 wrote:
Since Election Day is tomorrow, I thought it would be good to give this thread a bump for all who intend to vote. Consider the third-party option because it's the only way we'll get any true change to occur.

 



Well done, you got woke at least 2 years before me!
miamizsun

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Posted: Jun 30, 2017 - 4:25am


justin_thyme
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Posted: Nov 3, 2008 - 1:01pm

 bugleboy624 wrote:
Since Election Day is tomorrow, I thought it would be good to give this thread a bump for all who intend to vote. Consider the third-party option because it's the only way we'll get any true change to occur.

 
IMO, casting a ballot for a third-party candidate in a national or statewide election is equivalent to throwing away your vote.  I believe that if you disagree with the agendas/policies of both the democratic and the republican candidate, vote for the one you dislike the least.  Remember what happened in 2000 (Nader supporters placed GWB in office) and in 1992 (votes for Perot took away enough votes from Bush 41 to allow Clinton's victory).

(Not that I'm not glad Clinton won that one . . . . {#Clap})

bugleboy624
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Posted: Nov 3, 2008 - 12:40pm

Since Election Day is tomorrow, I thought it would be good to give this thread a bump for all who intend to vote. Consider the third-party option because it's the only way we'll get any true change to occur.
Southern_Boy
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Posted: Oct 30, 2008 - 8:15am

 bugleboy624 wrote:
 

Myths and Lies of the Two-Party System
by Ken Goldstein

"Some men change their party for the sake of their principles; others their principles for the sake of their party."
- Winston Churchill

 



 
Here, here!!!

bugleboy624
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Posted: Oct 30, 2008 - 8:05am

 

Myths and Lies of the Two-Party System
by Ken Goldstein

"Some men change their party for the sake of their principles; others their principles for the sake of their party."
- Winston Churchill


If you have ever suggested to somebody that you might be voting for a "third party" candidate, you have probably experienced the rolling of eyes, and some rude comment meant to impugn your intelligence.
Most of us allow ourselves to be bullied into choosing "the lesser of two evils" - the Democrat or the Republican. The truth is, most of the arguments against third parties are based on popular myths or outright lies.

A few of the major myths and lies of the two party system are:

Myth One: The Wasted Vote

Myth Two: The Chances of Winning

Myth Three: It's The American Way

Myth Four: A Vote for X is a Vote for Y

Myth Five: Voters are Apathetic

This article takes a look at these popular reasons people will give you for sticking with the two major parties, and explains why their logic is flawed. Following the discussion of the myths are a few suggestions on what you can do to combat them.
My purpose here is not to promote any one "third" party. It is not an argument for going Green, or Libertarian, or Reform, or whatever. It is meant to call into question your loyalty to the major parties, and how well they represent your views.

Myth One: The Wasted Vote

The first thing most people will tell you when you say you're voting for a "third" party candidate is that you are "wasting your vote."

This myth is related to each of the others, and is usually followed closely by one of the other myths by way of explanation. "You're wasting your vote because... (fill in the blank with one of the other myths)."

But how can voting for the candidate you most closely identify with be a wasted vote? Isn't compromising your beliefs on important issues really the wasted vote? Isn't settling for second best or the lesser of two evils really the wasted vote?

The point of having a representative democracy is for each citizen to be able to affect the future of their community. Elections are the main mechanism for "we the people" to tell our representatives how we feel.

It is vitally important that when we make that statement, it is accurate. Sending the wrong message by compromising your vote lessens your ability to influence the direction of public policy.

Again, I ask you, which is the wasted vote - A vote for a major party candidate you despise because you despise the other guy a little bit more - or - A vote for a candidate who says what you'd say if you were running for office?

Read further about the other myths, and why they're wrong. Then tell your well-meaning friends that they're wasting their vote!

Myth Two: The Chances of Winning

"But he'll never win!" How many times have each of us heard this self-fulfilling prophecy?

First of all, it's not entirely true. Third party candidates have won many offices at the local and state levels - it's only a matter of time before Congress becomes more representative.

Second, we're talking about an election, not a horse race. Who I would choose to lead my community or my country is rarely who I would bet on to win the election.

We are a competitive society, and we all want to be associated with a winner. But do we want to help pick that winner, or do we want the media and pollsters picking that winner for us?

If we are to have leaders who truly represent us, we have to be willing to stand up for what we believe in, and not be afraid to make some unpopular statements.

This myth not only serves to reinforce the other myths surrounding "third" party candidates, but also to stigmatize those who would vote for them by associating them with "losers."

When I go to Las Vegas, tell me the odds of my choice winning. When I go to the polling place, all I'm interested in is finding a candidate with whom I share core beliefs - popular or not.

Myth Three: It's The American Way

Some people object to "third" parties because it's simply not what they're used to. It seems foreign to them, even un-American. They act as if the Democratic and Republican parties were written into the Constitution. Obviously, this is just plain wrong.

The two-party system developed because our elections require a candidate to receive 50% + 1 vote to win an election. If more than two candidates run, and the most popular candidate only gets 49% of the vote, there's usually a run-off election. Because of this, it's in the best interest of the two major parties to limit the competition. That does not mean that it's in the best interest of the people.

There is no evidence that the founders of our nation intended the development of only two strong parties, or even organized political parties at all. In George Washington's farewell speech, after serving two terms as our first president, he actually warned against the formation of parties and factions. (Washington is usually listed in history books as a Federalist, a group with whom he was aligned, but at the time it was not an organized political party as we think of it today.)

Many, if not most, of our allies around the world use some sort of proportional representation, or preference voting, that allows for the development of multiple viable parties.

Even without changes the nature of our elections, we are not stuck with the two major parties that we have now. Remember, the Federalists were the first major party, and are now long gone, as are the Whigs, and the original Democratic-Republicans.

When Abraham Lincoln was elected in 1860 as the first Republican president, the "Grand Old Party" was still brand new; their first presidential campaign being the 1856 campaign of John Fremont.

When parties outlive their relevancy, it is up to the people to create new alliances, and new parties to take their place. We may have been stuck with the Democrats and Republicans for most of this century, but changes in dominant parties have happened before, and will probably happen again.

Myth Four: A Vote for X is a Vote for Y

Many of us who have voted for "third" party candidates have been unfairly blamed for electing the candidate we would least like to see in office.

The logic goes like this: "If you vote Green, you're taking votes away from the Democrat, and helping the Republican win. If you vote Libertarian, you're taking votes away from the Republican and helping the Democrat."

If you assume that my "third" party vote is taking away from the Democrats or Republicans, you're assuming that those two parties somehow have a right to my vote. They do not.

My "third" party vote does not come from either major party, it comes from me. If it takes away from any statistic, it's the number of potential voters who've given up on elections because they never feel represented.

This is part of the whole "lesser of two evils" syndrome from which America suffers. It is closely related the myth of apathy, and is used to discourage people from voicing their true opinions.

Anything that discourages citizens from voicing their opinions, or voting their conscience, is a threat to free speech, and a threat to democracy.

More parties mean that a wider variety of viewpoints is represented in an election. With more viewpoints represented we'll increase the number of potential voters who actually show up to vote. A vote for a "third" party candidate is not a vote for "the wrong" major party candidate. It is what it is: A vote for a "third" party candidate.

Myth Five: Voters are Apathetic

Often, when I talk to people about how "third" parties can help enliven our democracy, people tell me that the bigger problem is voter apathy. What really gets to me about this is that they fail to realize that we're talking about the same issue.

The idea that Americans simply don't care about politics, or who their representatives are, is ridiculous. Of course they care - the problem is that they're fed up with the politics and representatives given to them by the two major parties.

Unfortunately, the major parties, the media, and the average person who simply repeats what they hear in the media without thinking about it, are all telling these disaffected voters that "third" parties are not an option. So, they give up. Not out of apathy, but out of exasperation.

Most political analysts in America today will agree that our low voter turn-out is a national disgrace, and a threat to the survival of our democracy. Unfortunately, most of those same analysts are also brainwashed into talking you out of voting for a "third" party candidate.

Look at the number of people who do not vote in any election, and compare it to the number of votes received by the winner. Think what might have happened if a "third" party candidate had been taken seriously by the media and the general public.

When we stop allowing the myths and lies of the two-party system to influence our voting habits, the Republicrats will have more serious competition. When election campaigns have to start talking about real issues that affect real people, you'll see those "apathetic" voters coming out of the woodwork to vote for "third" party candidates.

"Just Say No To The Two-Party System!"

Now that you are familiar with the myths and lies of the two-party system, what are you going to do about it? There are dozens of things that you can do to combat the propaganda, and to promote a more inclusive and viable democracy.

Here are a few easy things that you can start doing today:
Change your voter registration.
When the Republicrats start losing numbers, people will stand up and take notice. Register your discontent.

Vote Third Party.
Hit the politicians where it counts - at the ballot box.

Write letters.
Fight the myths where they are most prominent - in the press. When you see an article that propagates one of the myths, write a letter to the editor explaining why you disagree.

Tell a Friend.
Don't be afraid to tell your friends that you've changed your voter registration, and why. Send them all e-mails right now telling them to check out this article.

There is no reason to be a discouraged or apathetic voter. The future is in your hands. There is every reason to get active, and to be proud of where you stand. The next step is easy: simply repeat after me, "Just say 'no' to the two-party system!"

 

 

http://www.the13thstory.com/krg/words/myths.html