Tuesday, March 6, 2007

I Grant Thee Three Parties or More

Looking at the history of US from the perspective of the two party system, we see a continuous cycle of what would now be termed partisanship starting in the early days of the Union with the federalist v. anti-federalist debate. If only Aaron Burr could return to reiterate his point to the Hamiltons of today.

Just like in the days following the Battle Between Brothers, we see the ideas of polarization and profiteering not only alive but seemingly the proverbial petrol fueling the proliferation additional military conflict.

Both due to the polarity inherent in the two party system as well as the frequently played tactic of divide the populace on pet issues (from flag burning to fag weddings) to keep people from coming together on things that matter: such as enforcing anti-trust laws such as in the case of the ever centralized political propaganda machine (read: media).

So the question I pose is, why don't we have a functional multi-party system like our friends to the north in Canadia and so many other "civilized" nations do?


Funding seems to be the first likely requirement to democracizing our dualocracy. In a land where the government has only the resources entrusted to it via its population, we've seen little in the way of election finance reform let alone something as outlandish as election spending caps, however these are clear logical first steps to reigning in the Dogs of War on Everything not deemed expressly patriotic. This would also likely put the lobbying and campaign contribution systems out to pasture.

Imagine dems, repubs, libertarians, greenies, and other parties not only appearing on the ballot but also receiving equal time and exposure.

Got the picture? That's exactly why the two parties in power have worked hard (if not always together) passing the majority and the buck.

After VP Gore thankfully built the internet (perhaps as an arpnet consultant?), lil ole Vermont's former governor Dean is often credited with finding a way to use it to channel grass roots action. Do y'all see momentum via the Digital Age improving not only the number but the quality of candidates we're presented with? Or do you have other ideas for how to make lasting change starting with the paper trails?

1 comment:

Brain said...

Nice to see you here. I thought this was just the kind of post I could count on you to produce.

I'm a raging Dem, but I'd love to even have a realistic choice (Dems vs Green) for placing my votes each time. But the two parties are so entrenched, that if you participate, you at times support folks who don't represent all of your interests.

I think the internet will revolutionize such activity, because it's so cheap to throw your ideas online and literally get the message out to the entire world. But you hit on something bigger---until serious money starts flowing to other parties (a 3rd party would most certainly come from the middle of the spectrum (the people I actually despise most, since they stand for nothing, haha)---we'll have the duopoly we're stuck with now.