Recommend
3 
 Thumb up
 Hide
15 Posts

BoardGameGeek» Forums » Everything Else » Religion, Sex, and Politics

Subject: AmericansElect.org rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Chris Funk
United States
Springfield
Ohio
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Anyone else have thoughts about www.americanselect.com?

I have been following this site pretty closely because I love the concept. I've thought for years that the entire two-party hold over the process has led to the most ineffective government in decades. I'm actually an I. I don't identify with either party, and to be honest, my beliefs should be mine and not those of everyone else that identifies themselves with a core set of beliefs.

To actually put in a stipulation that any candidate must have a running mate from a different party really did surprise me, but it's a good idea.

Yes, it could be called a dating site for poltics, but I woudl really like to see this take off. Who knows, maybe if this goes well, they will expand to the House and Senate seats and we'll really see some fireworks. That would also be something I would be 100% in favor of.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
MGK
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
FunkyBlue wrote:
Anyone else have thoughts about www.americanselect.com?


Yes. It's really silly and ignores the basic realities of American politics.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris Funk
United States
Springfield
Ohio
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
mightygodking wrote:
FunkyBlue wrote:
Anyone else have thoughts about www.americanselect.com?


Yes. It's really silly and ignores the basic realities of American politics.


And in that, I disagree. What we're doing now does that. Party versus party, core set of ideals versus core set of ideals. "You won, I don't like that so I'll make it difficult for you" drowns out "ok, let's try and see things eye to eye and make this work".

The way it is now is broken and has been. These last four years have really shown the problems in the current system, much like a black light in a peep show booth. You don't get progress with the current system. We get 5th grade playground fights where the Senate yells that trhe House took their ball and the House whines that the Senate made a funny face at them.

Going about things busniess as usual won't help. It won't fix anything and having a different and valid choice can start changing for the good. I could easily see this process being used in '14 for the midterms and expanding out to local and state elections to promote the independent candidates more and more.

I'm an independent. I see things from both sides that match my ideals, but neither reflect my beliefs in full by themselves. And neither should. And if anyone thinks that either party is the only party that believes everything that they do, then they need to start thinking for themselves and stop following what lopsided stories that their favorite media outlet prepares for them every day.

So, no, I think this doesn't ignore reality in politics. I think it's trying to correct the errant paths that our current reality has taken.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
MGK
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
FunkyBlue wrote:
And in that, I disagree. What we're doing now does that. Party versus party, core set of ideals versus core set of ideals. "You won, I don't like that so I'll make it difficult for you" drowns out "ok, let's try and see things eye to eye and make this work".


But that's the entire point: the American political system is consensus-based, but politics inherently trends towards lack of consensus. That's why we have political parties: we disagree on things.

The idea that a third party is going to fix these things is, bluntly, ridiculous. Ignoring the fact that most of the people calling for a centrist political party espouse positions that would be perfectly at home in the centrist or conservative wings of the Democratic party for the moment, how is a third party going to change these things? It is still, ultimately, a first-past-the-post system. First-past-the-post systems devolve to two parties (or two major parties and a couple of small, ineffective smaller parties) for a reason: the mathematics require that this happen.

Besides, you already have third parties and fourth parties and fifth parties in the American system. They are small and ineffective. All AmericansElect is promising you is a third party that might get funding from monied elites. If you think that's going to change things: no, it won't. Not even close. Do you seriously think that, once given power, Dreamy Third Party will show up and make change for the better if it's funded by the same money that already fuels the two major parties?

On top of that - let's assume that this stupid scenario actually happens and Dreamy Third Party gets a reasonable foothold in Congress. Or even a Presidency. What happens then? All you've done is replace two power centres in government with three. Instead of having to satisfy two parties' policy aims, you now have to satisfy three parties' policy aims. Your idea that Dreamy Third Party will mirror your ideal midpoint between Party A and Party B doesn't mean that you'll get a third party that does that. You probably won't. Most other people won't either, because most people dissatisfied with politics aren't dissatisfied exactly in the same way you are. You'll just get another party that doesn't quite match your ideals - like everybody else in the world.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris Funk
United States
Springfield
Ohio
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
The 3rd parties we have are small and ineffectiual because they have their own core set of ideals that only a small percentage of people think is their best choice. See Libertarian and Green parties.

This is different because it's not about hard stances on issues. It's about compromise. A candidate that wants to work to get both sides to cooperate. Each candidate will have thier own values and they will differ from each other in different ways.

Hell, even Rs and Ds are looking at this to make a run because even they feel their party doesn't hold their ideals any more. It only goes to show that the complete polar opposites of the political spectrum have far toomuch control and there is no moderate voice anymore.

So while you say a third party in power only contorts things more, I think it may be the only thing that might reign in the idiocy.

 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Dan Schaeffer
United States
Unspecified
Illinois
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
There is also the problem, discussed in other threads and here, that our first-past-the-post electoral system inevitably trends toward two parties in power.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris Funk
United States
Springfield
Ohio
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Golux13 wrote:
There is also the problem, discussed in other threads and here, that our first-past-the-post electoral system inevitably trends toward two parties in power.


That's the math. What they don't factor in is what's going on currently here, which is voter apathy. Most time, the dropout parties just stop voting. if you can garner enough support for a third party that appeals to that 60% of the voters not voting for the big two, then you have a viable candidate.

What the video shows is vanilla and numbers. We're not vanilla in the political climate right now.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
MGK
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
FunkyBlue wrote:
The 3rd parties we have are small and ineffectiual because they have their own core set of ideals that only a small percentage of people think is their best choice. See Libertarian and Green parties.


And a "centrist" party funded by monied elites won't have its own core set of ideals? Go look at Evan Bayh's or Michael Bloomberg's political positions: these will be the positions of the New Dreamy Party, since Bayh and Bloomberg are the people making all the noise about third parties these days.

Quote:
This is different because it's not about hard stances on issues. It's about compromise. A candidate that wants to work to get both sides to cooperate.


Yes, because once a candidate gets into office and becomes the target of lobbying, he will be focused on being a mediator between the other two parties rather than simply adopting the political positions he finds most expedient, declaring himself "the middle" and demanding that other sides come to him.

Relying on politics to provide you angels is foolish; relying on politics funded by monied interests to provide you angels is foolish times ten.

Quote:
Hell, even Rs and Ds are looking at this to make a run because even they feel their party doesn't hold their ideals any more. It only goes to show that the complete polar opposites of the political spectrum have far too much control and there is no moderate voice anymore.


This statement totally ignores the reality of the situation, which is that the Democratic party has centrists in it out the wazoo. You simply can't call the party of Ben Nelson, Mark Pryor, Mary Landrieu, Claire McCaskill, Jon Tester, Kay Hagan, Kent Conrad, Tim Johnson, Jim Webb, Mark Warner, and Joe Manchin not centrist - and that's only the Senate.

Quote:
So while you say a third party in power only contorts things more, I think it may be the only thing that might reign in the idiocy.


Speaking as someone who actually has experience living in a first-past-the-post political system with more than two parties, what happens in practice is that you still have a left-right divide, but the left and right take turns being divided amongst themselves. Right now in Canada, we have a left-wing divide and the Conservative party is dominating. Previously, the right wing was split and the Liberals dominated. That is about the most that extra political parties can do.

Except, of course, that Canada has a political system designed to at least partially handle the stresses third parties present, and the United States doesn't. Not even close.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
MGK
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
FunkyBlue wrote:
That's the math. What they don't factor in is what's going on currently here, which is voter apathy. Most time, the dropout parties just stop voting. if you can garner enough support for a third party that appeals to that 60% of the voters not voting for the big two, then you have a viable candidate.


But you're asserting that Dreamy Third Party will get all of the votes of the dropout vote! And that's silly, because many of the dropout voters are tuning out because there is no party that represents them, and it's not because there is an insufficiently centrist party that is willing to compromise practically everything away it believes in for the sake of incremental progress and the idea of civility, because the Democrats already exist.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
fightcitymayor
United States
Pennsylvania
flag msg tools
badge
"This is a really weird game, and you’ll find that most people will not want to play this."
Avatar
mb
mightygodking wrote:
The idea that a third party is going to fix these things is, bluntly, ridiculous.
Technically it isn't a third party, it's a nominating process. And the nomination is open to candidates of any party.

On the surface, anything that gins up interest in voting gets my vote (har-har!) but I do have a few concerns:

1) Proposed candidates are certified by a committee of Americans Elect. And according to the organization, "this is done using criteria of demonstrated achievements (developed by the committee) that are based on qualifications of past presidents and vice presidents." So there is no direct election of whomever you want, there is a pool of folks to be vetted by this committee & narrowed down to six nominees (i believe) before the actual internet convention popular vote.

2) When a candidate chooses a running mate, they must choose someone from a party different from their own.

3) They have yet to gain ballot status in 39 states.

4) So far, Americans Elect has chosen not to reveal their donors. Which is a weird way to go about "ripping the system."

5) The only name I've heard that is 100% running for the nomination is Buddy Roemer.

 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
MGK
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
fightcitymayor wrote:
Technically it isn't a third party, it's a nominating process. And the nomination is open to candidates of any party.


Except, as you note, only candidates that Americans Elect's special committee approves of will be certified. Which makes it, for all intents and purposes, a party.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Alexis Carlough
msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
FunkyBlue wrote:

To actually put in a stipulation that any candidate must have a running mate from a different party really did surprise me, but it's a good idea.


Originally the VP wasn't a running mate--it was the person with the second most votes, actually, so it was always an opponent in the election. Think how different politics would be if it still worked this way!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ken
United States
Crystal Lake
Illinois
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
FunkyBlue wrote:
This is different because it's not about hard stances on issues. It's about compromise. A candidate that wants to work to get both sides to cooperate. Each candidate will have thier own values and they will differ from each other in different ways.


Except we clearly don't want compromise at present. Or at least, not enough to demand it from our leaders. Do you honestly think that if John Boehner's constituents told him "look, get a workable compromise together or we'll vote you out of office" he wouldn't take that at least somewhat seriously?

I love the idea of a third party. But it needs to be backed with dramatic reforms to our system of government if it's going to be worth a damn. As noted, our system is nearly designed to result in two parties if you play just a bit of game theory. So unless we're going to move towards a more parliamentary legislature (not the worst idea in the world, though hardly a comprehensive fix), reform campaign financing, change the way districts are drawn, and actually follow through with it by not voting for the same jackasses over and over, this is nothing worth investing time in. It'd be more effective to get involved with the party you like and work on changing the way they approach the issues.

I want the Democrats to be more effective. I want Republican voters to stand up and say "gridlock won't get us anywhere - find a good deal to make." I want Democratic voters to stand up and say "Look, if you started your policy proposals more forcefully to the left, then when you have to give stuff up you end up with stuff we'd still vote for."

If we actually demonstrated that we were willing to vote for someone else, then maybe our representatives would listen more. As it is, 85% of incumbents won in 2010 and that was an exceptionally bad year for incumbents.

We don't seem to care about Congress giving ground to find workable compromises at the moment as voters. We shouldn't be surprised that they're therefore doing a crap job of it. We also shouldn't expect that a third party would do much to solve it. Hell, it's more likely that a third party with some muscle puts a Republican in the White House than anything else right now. I'm distinctly uninterested in that particular outcome given the fiscal policies of the Republican candidates (generally speaking). So I hope that these guys are do little more than get sufficient attention from moderates in both parties to shift the platforms towards more workable attitudes.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ken
United States
Crystal Lake
Illinois
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
alexiscarlough wrote:
FunkyBlue wrote:

To actually put in a stipulation that any candidate must have a running mate from a different party really did surprise me, but it's a good idea.


Originally the VP wasn't a running mate--it was the person with the second most votes, actually, so it was always an opponent in the election. Think how different politics would be if it still worked this way!


An opponent for President, yes. Not necessarily politically. It was not at all unusual for a party who knew that they had overwhelming support for two candidates to "arrange" which would win and which would come in second. Jefferson/Burr is the most shocking example of how badly that could go, but they certainly weren't the first or last to handle an election in this way.

It wasn't a coincidence that John Adams was George Washington's VP...
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Rich Shipley
United States
Baltimore
Maryland
flag msg tools
badge
the liberal unsavory type
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
alexiscarlough wrote:
Originally the VP wasn't a running mate--it was the person with the second most votes, actually, so it was always an opponent in the election. Think how different politics would be if it still worked this way!


More assassinations?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.