First There Were Only Two. Then There Was a Third. Trouble Began.

In the two-party trap of electoral democracy in the United States, people who vote for a third-party or not at all are constantly told that their choice not to support one of those two candidates necessarily leads to the victory of the other one. Here’s an analogy that might help drive a stake through that ridiculous idea.

8 thoughts on “First There Were Only Two. Then There Was a Third. Trouble Began.

  1. My analogy is: there is no mention of “economy,” “economics,” “economic system” nor any linguistic/legal derivative of “economy.” Therefore the economic system of the US is a choice and NOT an obligation.

    Apply similarly to “political party.”

      • Right.

        I got it, falco.

        All that additional shit is merely the whim of the big assholes worshiped by little assholes, authoritarians who don’t even know who they are.

        The fact that presidents have to swear loyalty to the Constitution implies non-swearers are not bound except by threat of state violence.

        I am atheist to the conceptual object of political theology.

  2. It is alarming on two fronts. First, someone advocating 7-Up? Ted, I thought you had taste. I thought you had refinement. Dr Pepper. It’s the sweet one (like winning a goddamned election honestly, dnc).
    Secondly, the problem isn’t the two-party system in itself. Imagine an n-party system. The winner achieved 8% of the vote.
    The simplest fix would be as follows:
    Institute a three-party system: Republican, democrat, and Neither/None of the Above (you can actively choose this group or automatically default to it by not showing up — due to disinterest, Jim Crow, whatever).
    At the end of the primaries (which are all held on the same day), either a candidate has accumulated 50.0001% of a state’s primary delegates, or the candidate has not. The two candidates with the most delegates in such a situation have a two-person run-off one month later at the state level. If, at the end of the run-off state primary neither candidate has a majority of the votes, the state’s delegates are disqualified. (Your candidates had two chances to get a majority. These are not strong candidates.)
    The General Election becomes a three-candidate race: A democrat, a Republican, and Neither/None of the Above. If the third option, Neither, gets the most votes, the other two candidates are disqualified and the voting goes to the Senate and House.
    Trust me, you will see the dnc start paying attention to their voters. The Republicans will stop the Jim Crow tactics because each person who doesn’t vote becomes a vote against their candidate.
    Right now? Biden’s bleeding out. His ain’t black gaffe is just one more of the thousand cuts he’s self-inflicting. The gummint isn’t doing anything to stimulate the economy for all the unemployed. The voters have to have a way to express their disgust and resentment for the current system that penalizes that system.

    • I suggest you check out “ranked choice voting.” It’s a lot more flexible than what you’re suggesting, it’s actually being practiced, and it works very well, one of its side effects being that political parties are nicer to each others’ voters in hopes that they will get to be their #2 pick.

      And then there’s proportional representation, in which political parties who get a certain percentage of the national vote get to have “at large” representatives, even if they didn’t win any districts outright.

      The US political system is designed to exclude anything but Coke or Pepsi, not to include more choices, and needs serious revision.

      • My big concern with ranked choice will be repetition of the Butterfly Ballot and the Iowa primary innumeracy fiascos (Sanders lost Iowa because people couldn’t do high school-level math: add, subtract, multiply, divide).
        Always keep it simple. And my Neither/None of the Above incentivizes both parties to get as many people as possible to the polls because every nonvote makes it that much harder for both parties.
        I also think the Do Not Call Registry should simply have eliminated every phone number from robocalling and required that individuals fill out a form to be placed on the list to be contacted.

  3. About 48% of Americans say that Trump is absolutely the worst president the US has ever had, so not voting early and often for Joe is a Vote Against America!!!
    Since Secretary Clinton promised regime change in Russia on Day 1, I’m not at all convinced Trump was the worst in ’16, and given Joe’s record, I’m not at all convinced Trump is the worst today.
    I am not at all sure which is the lesser of the two evils (probably Trump, but I still won’t vote for him, let alone Joe).

  4. I plan to vote PRESENT unless something changes more drastically than ever before.

    It’s simple to vote PRESENT.

    Just vote for someone that most likely won’t win but is less repulsive than the dominant two corporate brands.

    Let them know that you will turn out if something less repulsive is on the ballot.

    It’s almost like not voting except without the tinge of apathy of not turning out.

    I will not contribute my vote to either of the “viable parties” because there is nothing worse than winning what you don’t want with no one to blame but yourself.

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