How to effect election reform in America
October 4, 2007
by David Ashley

American politics is corrupt. Despite a majority of Americans being completely dissatisfied with the war in Iraq, there appears to be no viable Republican or Democrat who will actually pull our troops out and end this "war".

Bush is asking for hundreds of billions of dollars more money, and Congress is happily ponying up the dough. This war will end up costing well over a trillion dollars. With that kind of money to play with, we could have solved the fusion problem in any number of ways, and cheap, clean energy would be available. In fact one method would cost less than one billion dollars, or less than .1% of what the Iraq war will end up costing us. That's Dr. Bussard's EMC2 Fusion Development Corporation which really deserves to get a chance.

Or a few billion could be dropped into cheap solar cell production. Plus a few more billion could be spent on large high powered capacitors to act as energy storage for automobiles -- using capacitors there is no chemical change so they would never wear out. A billion here, a billion there, and new technology will magically appear and oil won't be needed anymore.

Instead, we go to war for oil. Now Bush wants to wage a second war against Iran. This one has nothing to do with oil, it's because the Republicans are on the run and they know it. There isn't a chance in hell of a Republican being elected in 2008. The only way they know of to operate is to get a war going, and once it's started, it'll be "Don't change horses in midstream" again. War with Iran would be a disaster, much worse than the war with Iraq.

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Whether or not Iran represents a threat to US interests, this administration isn't the one to deliver the message. They've lost all credibility in my book. I was a registered Republican for 20 years. Now I'm registered as decline to state. The Bush administration has been characterized by one philisophy -- "My way, or the highway." They completely ignore any sources of information that disagree with their agenda.

Are the Democrats any better? Not at all. In fact both of the major parties suffer from the same problem. They are financed by people and corporations with money. They can get a lot of money to run their campaigns. Campaigning requires lots of money, for TV ads, newspaper ads, magazine ads, airplane flights, etc. etc. The money doesn't come from the middle class, it comes from wealthy corporations and individuals. These people naturally expect something in return. So any candidate that accepts this money must convince the wealthy supporters that they will do right by the contributor.

If they "cheat" and do right by the public at the expense of the wealthy contributors, the contributors stop paying. But it requires money to stay in office. So the candidate, if he/she does't tow the line, will find themselves out of office. Most candidates seem to do whatever they can to stay in power. Certainly the Republican Party has lost touch with the American public and now their only focus is on doing whatever they have to to retain power. But it's too late. The public isn't buying into the war on terror anymore, or the demonization of Iran, or the disaster in Iraq. It's Game Over.

But as I said before, the Democrats aren't any better. They are funded by the same wealthy individuals and corporations. So they're pushing the same agenda. So if in frustration you refuse to vote for a Republican and instead vote for a Democrat, you'll end up frustrated in the end. You have your choice: arsenic or cyanide, take your pick.

The election history shows this pinging back and forth. The Republicans win, people are enraged by the situation after the term expires, and so in retaliation they vote Democrat. Then the same thing occurs again, and we're back to Republican. Back and forth, back and forth. People don't consider a third party candidate because they know there is no chance of such a candidate ever winning the presidency. Such a candidate could never raise enough money to compete with the main 2 parties. It's a foregone conclusion that third party candidates can't win the presidency of the US.

So in frustration the election becomes, "Guess the winner". People don't vote for the candidate they want most, because they can't win. Instead they vote for the candidate that they think has a chance of winning. Their vote has become meaningless. It doesn't matter whether a Democrat or a Republican gets in the office, but it's guaranteed one or the other will win. People realize this either consciously or unconsciously, and give up. They don't pay attention anymore to politics. Their vote doesn't matter. It's become a machine that they have no control over. Meanwhile life is complicated and there are other pressing concerns from day to day life. People just don't spare any time at all to the democratic process these days, and who can blame them? It's fruitless.

What occured to me, and is the main point of my writing this essay, is that since it's pointless voting anyway, why not from the word go decide to throw away my vote? What I decided was I would commit to never again voting for either a Democrat or Republican in any election. I would only choose among the third party candidates the one that most represents my personal views.

Making such a promise serves a number of different functions -- privided enough other people also make such a vow. It takes power away from the big corporations and wealthy individuals that finance the Republican and Democratic campaigns. The third party candidates have to struggle for funding, I'd imagine a greater part of their funds come from the middle class, people just like me who feel government exists only as a source of worry and problems in my life. By choosing not to vote for a Democrat or Republican, there is a greater chance a president will be elected that isn't in it for the power and prestige itself -- instead we'll get someone in there who is interested in doing what's right.

So to summarize my argument:

  • The current administration is hopelessly incompetent
  • The reason it's bad, and why a Democratic president would also be bad, is because they are interested only in making wealthy corporations and individuals happy, since they finance the campaigns
  • To counteract this tendency, we should all vow never to vote for either a Democrat or a Republican again
  • Then we'll get a president who can do right by the American people

    So, please join me in the vow never to vote for either of the two party candidates again. Invest your vote in the independent candidate that you think most represents your views.

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