The Forces of Darkness
Elizabeth Dole?

To Be Fair

If you haven't read "The Forces of Darkness" post, do. It is a rant against last night's Republican National Convention. And go read Greg's blog .

But I decided in order to be fair, that I'd state why I am not a Democrat (remember, I've been an independent since May 2003, when I left the Republican Party).

I have two serious objections to the Democrats.

1) They rarely seem to be rational.

2) They wouldn't know a good, big, original idea if it hit them in the face (and I don't think they'd have the courage to see it through if they did).

Evidence for #1 -- Maxine Waters. I could site other pieces of evidence, but this should be enough.

The Democrat Party had some great ideas in the 1960's. We tried them. They, mostly, didn't work. But the Democrats never realized this. Did you hear the speech Howard Dean made when Al Gore endorsed him? Sounded like he wanted to return to 1965 and try all the same Johnson administration stuff again. I think all those ideas were worth the try back then, but there's no need to revisit them.

The only Democrat of recent decades who was a good rational creative thinker was Daniel Patrick Moynihan, but he's now dead.

The Republicans, on the other hand, have been loaded with ideas big and original for most of the last 35 years. The Reagan Revolution is a good example. Even Newt Gingrich is. There is little I agreed with Newt on, but he was a rational thinker who had some new big ideas to try. The Clinton's never did. Health care? Looked more like those programs from the '60's. And Clinton never even got around to proposing anything for Social Security or Medicare (reform of which he ran on both in '92 and '96). All through the '90's GOP mayors and governors were trying all sorts of new things (Giuliani's success against crime in NYC, Tommy Thompson's governorship in Wisconsin, etc.). Even W had a few big good ideas (I know he didn't come up with them) in the 2000 campaign -- like his Social Security Reform plan.

The GOP just now seems to be caught up with a big idea that's basically evil (thanks to those blasted Neo-Cons and Religious Righters, both of whom were Democrats 30 years ago).

And the Democrats seem puny.


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I agree with you for the most part.

I can't be a Republican because I have a heart.
I can't be a Democrat because I have a spine.

The major difference between the two parties is the list of corporations that own them.



I think I'm taking this post much more personally than I should, or would if I hadn't just worked my ass off for the last 19 hours to help insure that the next Senator from Oklahoma is a Democrat. Like it or's the system we've got...discuss it, debate it, but for fuck's sake participate in it.



I sympathize with your work for Mr. Carson. I'm an independent, and I'll be voting for Carson this year, but let's not pretend he's a real Democrat. He's as close to an indy as we see around these parts. I'm a little weary of the dems and reps telling me taht this is the system we have so deal with it. I sympathize with Nader on this issue. It's broken. Let's admit it and do something different.


That's a lovely sentiment. But - a little reality check Nov. 2, either Brad Carson or Tom Coburn WILL win this election. That will effect the state of Oklahoma. On Nov. 2, either John Kerry or George W. Bush WILL be elected. This will, in my estimation, help determine the course of US and world events for many years to come. So rally round the independent tree because it's cool, whatever, become the only member of a brand new...what would that be now 60,008th independent party. But, realize that until independent thinking voters unite with each other and field credible candidates, you are continuous stick with two choices. In Dr. Coburn's's a choice between good and evil...interesting rhetoric.

Scott Jones

Hallie, I hope you don't miss that I'm solidly for Kerry in this election and for the Democrats -- I'll likely vote straight ticket Democrat as I did in the 2002 election when I was still a Republican and living in a swing state. I'm just not a Democrat and have no interest in being. I must constantly explain to my Democrat friends that when I left the Republican Party it was not to join theirs. Now, I really liked their convention. If that was really the Democrats, then I'd join. And I could be persuaded to over time. But I'm reluctant to believe the Dem 2004 Convention after having seen the Republican 2000 Convention end up not reflecting anything about how this administration has governed.


I do understand where you are and who you'll vote for. My point is that this is bigger than one man or one election. So many of my friends, friends that read this board included, are riding the "it's hip to be independent" wave. Which is great. I appreciate independent thinking voters. My point is that, as an independent, you are entirely removed from the process that will, in the end, net the only two real least how the system is now. I completely agree that the electoral and party systems are broken, as is say the IRS...but I still pay my taxes. When you remove yourself from the process of choosing the candidate for the general election, your voice, a voice I that is extremely important, is silenced. Some states have figured this out and allow I voters to vote in primaries, but the majority have not. Many elections are won or lost months before the general election. And in those races, I voters could make a difference. Throughout this primary election season, I watched some really good candiates fall because they were in line with what many I's think, and what I believe, yet had difficulty raising support because in the primary season, party hacks -on both sides- come to play and moderate I minded candidates are ignored.

Scott Jones

Yes, I agree. If the Texas primary had mattered, I would have voted Democrat, which would have registered me that way (here you don't pick a party when you actually register -- it's weird). But since the Texas primary didn't matter, I didn't go. Now, I would not have called myself a Democrat, but I would have been officially considered a part of the Democrat Party in Texas. If I were in a state that forced me to pick with my registration, I would likely have registered Democrat or if I were still in Arkansas or Oklahoma I would have probably remained officially Republican in order to affect primaries in those states.


By the way, Greg, I appreciate your support and vote. This particular topic (of independent voters) is a sore spot, obviously.


(This is in no way meant to irritate Hallie, who is a good friend and who I love.)
1. It's anti-democratic to suggest that an indipendant candidate shouldn't be in the running. If we are to believe we are a democracy (which, by the way, is naive and foolish to think, since we're not- nor were we ever intended to be- a democracy) or a democratic nation, we need the viability of selection.
2. It irks me to no end when I hear people say that Nader caused Bush's election. Because it's usually democrats who say so. And I'm pretty much positive that Al Gore would have won the election if a bunch of democrats in Florida had been smart enough to use a butterfly ballot.
3. Will we ever get rid of the archaic/obsolete electoral college? It has become easy enough to count votes in the U.S. that at least the debate could be legitimately raised. Right?


I would love to see a viable independent candidate. I would love to see this system demolished. The electoral system is extremely out of date, as is the two party mind set. But again. My thinking that -You thinking that-Scott thinking that, because I think we all agree on these points doesn't change the realtiy of the situation. Democrats make up a hard 1/3 of the voter file, Rep. make up a hard 1/3 and the middle 1/3 is either registered Independent or say they vote independent of party. That's a major chunck of voters. Let's take that middle chunck and force the system to change. Let's not work outside the system. It's our government. If we choose to embrace it or not.

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