[extropy-chat] electing ideas [was Re:Fahrenheit 911-objectivereview?]
mlorrey at yahoo.com
Sun Aug 15 04:20:21 UTC 2004
--- Brett Paatsch <bpaatsch at bigpond.net.au> wrote:
> Now (if my understanding of what you are suggesting is correct
> and you can each vote directly for the person who will be president
> not just the party then what you are saying might be put like this)
> Let's say the Libertarian presidential candidate gets 5%
> The candidate from party A gets 48%
> The candidate from party B gets 47%
> Your saying Party A and Party B would see AFTER the Party A's
> candidate becomes president for 4 years (and does whatever the
> hell he likes with libertarian issues for four years) that there was
> a 5% wedge that might have been attracted somehow to make a
> difference and that they should consider that next time - aren't
If neither major party gets a majority of the popular vote (as happened
in the 1992 election, when Clinton won with, I think, 39% or so), it
tells the major parties that they are ignoring large parts of the
electorate that they need to kiss up to, and it also tells them that
the winner did not receive a mandate for his agenda.
However, the popular vote doesn't elect the president, the electoral
vote does, sort of like the parliament elects the PM, except the
electors are generally obligated to vote the way the people in their
district voted. Some states don't make this mandatory. However, this
does mean that, as in 2000, it is possible for a candidate to lose the
popular vote nationwide but win enough electoral districts to win the
If, say, the Libertarian Party wins enough votes in some districts to
win a few electoral votes, and the two other parties are neck and neck
in winning the rest of the electoral votes, then we could have a
situation where nobody wins a majority of the electoral college. When
that happens, then the dickering happens, and the two major parties
will woo the smallest party with deals on agenda items, maybe some
cabinet or judgeship appointments, in order to get those electoral
votes for their candidate.
Now, Spike's logic is wrong. If you were going to vote democrat but
can't stand Kerry, it is a bad idea to vote for Buchanan or Banarik,
because it only builds the strength of those parties demands for change
from the Republicans. It won't change anything about the democrats.
Just look at the 2000 election. By Spike's logic, the DNC should be
even more Green than it was, but it isn't. Kerry instead is Bush-lite
with a little liberal on top: Kerry advocating "compassionate war" in
Iraq (WHAT is THAT?). Dems blame the Greens and have backed away from
Instead, if you want the GOP to back away from luddite policies, you
should back a radical luddite like Buchanan to nader Bush. If you want
to nader Bush with the war, play up Bush's connections to Grover
Norquist and via him the radical Islamic set, and promote a rabid
Chairman, Free Town Land Development
"Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom.
It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves."
-William Pitt (1759-1806)
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