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Old 05-22-2009, 10:17 AM   #16
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Great topic and great posts by all. Someone mentioned the 50 + 1 threshold for winning elections. That's why we have only two major parties in the US. There's no benefit for coming in third, fourth or fifth. There's just a winner and a loser. It's best for all involved to pool their resources and join the Pubs or Dems. Those two parties are simply coalitions of different interests (or minor parties).

The original poster is right, most Americans vote based on party ID. The D or R by a candidate's name allows them to make a split-second judgment and decision. In order to change this system, the average person would have to dedicate the time and energy to learn the nuances of every political issue, as well as study the candidates themselves. They'd have to become experts in a sense, and if they did, we wouldn't need representative government.
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Old 05-22-2009, 07:01 PM   #17
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or maybe having third parties that were actually revelant and not only having 2 parties that are pretty much the same and having candidates that are selected for our consumption.
yea, I think a more realistic idea is more parties...but still, I think the third parties will get replaced and beaten down in favor of the general Liberal/ and conservative sides. Also, adding more "parties" will still keep the whole "party allegiance" and "group think" mentality that seems to be a problem...but yea, being realistic...I would love to see more parties being active.
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Old 05-23-2009, 11:50 AM   #18
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I'm starting to see a little less identification with either party. I retain my membership in the democratic party in order to vote in the primaries (as I tend to agree with the stated values of that party more so than the other) and I usually vote democrat on a national scale. But locally, I take a different outlook. I live in the county where the "kids for cash" judges were--the judges who sentenced kids to the juvenile centers for payback--and in the course of that investigation, a lot of other suspected corruptions have come out--school boards selling teacher jobs, bribery for contracts, phantom jobs. This area is a strangle-hold Democrat area. Although I have absolutely no reason to believe the Republicans would be any less corrupt with the same power (and don't), I do believe in a checks and balances, I will be voting Republican for some of the positions just so this stranglehold can be broken and there wasn't the sense of entitlement there is now.

I haven't seen any third party that has impressed me particularly, but I would be open to one that did.
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Old 05-25-2009, 11:20 AM   #19
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here's an idea i just thought of while daydreaming at work:

what if the republican party has been deliberatly sabotaged by the neo-conservatives, that seem to have infiltrated the party in the last few years, to weaken the party to the point of irrelevance so that we only have one party. the traditional republicans that favored smaller government, less foreign policy, etc etc have all but vanished from the party.

think about it, has there really been any MAJOR differences in the 2 parties in the last few years as far as size of government and foreign policy?

maybe i should get back to work.
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Old 05-25-2009, 11:47 AM   #20
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Do you guys think it would be better if instead of having a party system (like Democrat and Republican), we just had NO parties, and it was just independent thinking and free flow of ideas without labels?
Having no parties would be better in my opinion but it won't happen. We as human beings are prone to create or join groups. We join together when advantageous and as a result "parties" will always arise in some form.
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Old 05-26-2009, 07:21 PM   #21
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I think the Libertarian Party is a real alternative for U.S. voters.

Despite being on every state ballot, the Libertarian candidates are never allowed to be in the debates. Only Ross Perot pulled this off with his $$$.

I have voted Libertarian since the early 90s.

Oh! The times I have been told I wasted my vote,
but I have not waste my conscience.
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Old 05-26-2009, 07:50 PM   #22
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I agree with bigjohn.
The two major parties are really just one with two sides to it. I doubt I live long enough to see any other party have a realistic shot at the prize.

The Big Boys are just too entrenched.
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Old 05-27-2009, 01:35 AM   #23
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The one thing I can agree for certain with Ralph Nader on, is his constant diatribe against the "Two Party Corporate Dictatorship".

Like others, I don't have a problem with having political parties, I have a problem with the stronghold that the two corporate parties have over any alternatives.

It's a gigantic circular argument of logic I won't get much into. A monster that feeds and defends itself against all outside influences, sometimes aggressively, sometimes passively.

Basically it has to start with the people from the ground up.
And even then, there is a strand of argument against it...like I said, a circular argument of continual bullshit. How do the two current Independent Senators get anything done? They caucus with the Democrats, so just how Independent are they?

I think the best idea is to force the two parties to dissolve into four. Anti-trust? I dont know, I'm no legal expert by any means.

Even Nader's arguments have flaws in them. I am cyncical about an Independent/3rd party President's ability to get anything substantial in the way of true reform to the system done. Why? Because the Dems and Reps would be the ones legislating the reform itself.
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Old 05-27-2009, 07:05 PM   #24
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That's our good old system of checks and balances.
It's a wonder anything gets done.
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