Two Parties do the Two Step! - Public Policy Institute of California Judges Competition.
Food for thought?
Also of Interest...
My Partisan saying...
When Republicans do something, they put their hands in my right pocket. When Democrats do something, they put their hands in my left pocket. When they do something "bi-partsan," they put their hands in both pockets.
What we should be looking for is the word non-partisan, which hopefully means less money is taken from either pocket.
You have to be pretty dense, or out of touch, or both, if you don't realize the bias in the CA State Assembly or Senate, the two dominant parties, or the press. You probably also realize that Californians are political sheep, lemmings and ostriches–just not you. Yesterday, the Public Policy Institute of California presented a luncheon forum at the Sterling Hotel in Sacramento. Today, Dan Walters presented another mush article talking about the presentation.
The institute's David Lesher moderated the panel, which consisted of Senator Art Torres (Ret.), chairman of the CA Democratic Party, Duf Sundheim, former chairman of the CA Republican Party and Daniel Weintraub, a political columnist for the Sacramento Bee. Obviously missing, and unexplained by the panel, were any representatives of the Green or Libertarian parties. Since the topic was the growth of Decline to State (DTS) voters and third party stagnation, I think those parties would have had a lot to say and added a dimension to the discussion. I can imagine that even if the PPIC invited them, that Torres and Sundheim might have refused to attend, taking the air out of the whole event.
The other thing that was interesting was that the luncheon was "free" and I think many of the attendees came for the delicious spread put on by the hotel. I had additional motives.
The Decline of the Demopublican Empire
I'll present the gist of the forum. For more details, go to the institute's website at www.ppic.org. Basically, everything presented would be as Republicans and Democrats would expect. However, what they might not expect is that the party platforms are polarizing as the "less convinced" are leaving the parties to the zealots and party extremists. Ironically, it was brought up that the elected officials don't even follow the wishes of the remaining party loyalists.
Registrations in the Democratic Party and Republican Party are going down as DTS independent registrations are going up. The result has the demopublicans scrambling to appeal to the independent vote. What wasn't mentioned was that many Californians are fooled by the American Independent Party. These folks say to themselves, "I'm an American and I'm independent. Therefore, that's my party." They don't realize that the American Independent Party is an actual party with a platform and running candidates to represent that platform which is very far from Independent. It is probably most suitable to Christian Libertarians. My how dumb we are–never reading the fine print!In the end, the PPIC is talking about the end of either the CA Republican or Democratic parties by 2025. Perhaps they were trying to be nice to Art and Duf. I say they were giving them false hope as I see the end closer to 2016 and "don't let the door hit them on the way out."
Solving the Problem
Having a world of DTS voters means no more party politics as usual. It means that people will have to be more responsible for who gets nominated to be elected. It means we might have more choices and more candidates that reflect more individual beliefs. However, none of this addresses the real problems in America, and for that fact, around the world. California, as the 8th largest economy in the world, could take a leadership role in world politics, should we Californians be so ambitious. This will require the following process.
If Americans had done this 40 years ago, we would not be dealing with Republicans or Democrats today. The more we procrastinate and elect the lesser of two evils, the longer we will tolerate evil. The more we keep doing things over and over again, while expecting different results, the crazier we will become. We are in effect, producing our own Osama Bin Ladens. I'm sure you don't want that, but as folks continue to put up with American ignorance and apathy, a few of these extremists will burst.
What I said to the Forum
During the question and answer period, I brought up the fact that I ran for the State Assembly as a Libertarian and am currently registered Decline to State for good reasons. The reason many folks register DTS is that we are tired of the political corruption. Had I not brought this up, I'm afraid the panel wouldn't have addressed this fundamental reason for the increase in independent registrations. I told them that they could make all the political reform laws they want, but crime would find its way around them. (After all, the Federal government is nothing but the worlds largest protection racket, where money is stolen from the people for their own supposed good. It is the biggest Mafia.) To stop the railroading of the American people, we must demand candidates that won't take the money. Then folks must step up to the plate and run for office under that condition. That is who I'll vote for.
In answering me, the Bee's pessimistic Dan Weintraub basically said it will never happen. It seemed to me that he implied that we should never try. In him, and the Bee in general, lies the problem. They encourage the people to give up all hope for positive change. I am here to say that he and his Sacramento Bee are uninformed. After all, I had already run for office under that premise, refusing to take the money from business, special interests and from folks outside my district. Furthermore, I would not accept over $150 from individuals that lived in the district. Anyone could have easily looked me up on line and that cost very little to set up. Most of the money I had went to paying the government so they could see my statement on the ballots in the various counties in my district. I could not afford to even do Sacramento County. Perhaps, because the Bee barely reported on my campaign, Dan thinks it never actually happened. I am living proof, that Weintraub is wrong and that "we the people" can change. We can do better. We just have to "DO IT" or at least support others that refuse to take the big money from special interests, especially those outside the district they will be representing. This includes money from the Parties, the biggest special interest of all!
Michael Patrick Murphy is the author of two books. The Greens and The Government, ISBN 0-595-30863-5. Both are available online or from your favorite bookstores by special order. Mike also ran for the California State Assembly in 2006.
Mike can be reached at email@example.com