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Tzatziki

US Election reform

With the massive amounts of money involved campaigns, does your vote really matter?  

7 members have voted

  1. 1. With the massive amounts of money involved campaigns, does your vote really matter?

    • Yes, we must vote
      3
    • Nope, both parties are financed more or less by the same people
      3
    • I don't know
      0
    • Drop dead Tzatziki
      0
    • It's Marinaki's fault
      1


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Thoughts? I think some form of campaign finance reform should be seriously considered.

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My beef with many posters here is that they fail to see multi-causality and generally the complexities of issues/people.

 

For example, the only thing you need to know is whether Tzatziki stole something, cheated, lied. Therefore if he has, he's a really bad person who should burn in hell. I, on the other hand, think that the reality is more complex, and over all he's a decent guy.

 

Same with the US political system. Perhaps all you need to know is that Obama is a communist Muslim from Kenya, therefore anything he does is to undermine this country.  Same with your topic of elections, money in politics, and voting.

 

Is big money influencing elections? Absolutely. Do candidates and parties go to big donors and listen to what the money sources want? Sure. Maybe that's all you need to know to dismiss the notion that voting does not matter.  I, on the other hand, think it matters a lot, more than most people realize--especially the people who float from party to party.

 

Some points to ponder:

  • does it matter who is on the Supreme Court? Obviously Dems and Repubs nominate opposite judges
  • does it matter whether there's social security, national parks, net neutrality, public education and health care, consumer protection, the environment, etc, etc?
  • does it matter if the president believes the earth is only 5,000 years old, wants to merge church-state, is anti-science, etc?
  • does it matter whether the middle class does better or worse? Does it matter that it pays more in taxes than billionaires? does it matter which party causes huge recessions and the Great Depression?
  • does it matter whether a man-child with bad temper becomes president?
  • and to your point, who is more likely to push for campaign finance reform, including overturning "Citizens United" supreme court decision that allowed unlimited $$ into politics? (oh, yeah, the supreme court is at stake too in this election)

I could go on, but you get the point. Different candidates and political parties have different agendas and have steered the country in certain directions. So, now, get your ass out there and vote :box:

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Good points!  :tup:

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So, I was reading Forbes magazine the other day, and everyone was complaining that Obama has practically destroyed capitalism. I hear Repubs saying we have the highest corporate taxes in the world, that the free market is no more, etc.  On the other side we have views like yours that also promote a very distorted (and thus false) reality, because it fits with a pee-conceived narrative--the story people like to hear and repeat like parrots.

 

And, that's the problem when trying to have a discussion with people who converse by using bumper-sticker statements and broad slogans. It's tiresome to have to start every conversation by starting with square one: If A is not B, and B=C, the A is not C. :huh:   It's usually also a waste of time because such persons have no interest in amending their views, nor learning how to analyze, synthesize, and theorize. *

 

 

...

* I know, Socrates was a pain in the ass; good thing they democratically got rid of that prick.

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Do independents play much of a role in the U.S. ?

 

In Australia, voting for the two non-major parties has decreased at every election from 1983 onwards.  In 1983 approximately 92.5% of people voted for the major parties.  And since then it has gradually but consistently decreased.  At our most recent election a few months ago the two major parties accounted for 77% of the vote and "other" parties 23% of the vote.  This trend is only going to continue as the younger generation fail to identify with the traditional parties and identify more with say the Green Party.

 

My point being, yes, your vote does count.  Even if one single vote statistically makes no difference.  What people fail to grasp is it's not about changing the result today, with your single vote.  It's about momentum, and that takes years if not decades to develop.

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Not sure if that's in response to me, but I never mentioned the destruction of capitalism, nor did I pinpoint one single person for the downfall in American, and in general, western democracy. 

 

What I said is not bumper-sticker statements or a broad statement. If you just look up the amount of lobbyists, and how much money is handed out in order to gain in economic or political influence than you would know that its not simply a "bumper-sticker statement" or a "broad slogan" 

 

You don't have to agree with my belief about the American public's effect on the political scene in America. I have seen from your posts that we won't ever agree and that's totally fine. But calling someone's post a bumper sticker statement, a "broad slogan, pee-conceived narrative" seems a bit off considering there's no constructive criticism. It's just a "I don't agree with you, so I'm going to call your post broad, and bumper sticker slogan like". 

 

Anyways, it is true that America does have one of the highest corporate taxes in the world, (in fact America had the 3rd highest in the world) and the largest of any OECD (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development) nation  which is probably why we have seen American Industry dwindle over time, and which is why many American companies have off shored their working forces. 

 

Also, as to your Forbes magazine point, and how people want to repeat the argument like parrots, first, Forbes magazine does not represent the opinion of all, the republican party in this country does not speak for everyone's concerns, and why would anyone want to repeat a story of failed policies? I would love to be saying American policies have led everyone to higher living standards, more money in the bank, more cars in the driveway, etc., but I can't and it's just not an Obama thing either. 

 

My opinions are my own, not from Forbes magazine. 

 

Friend,

 

You followed my post by saying, " I voted that our votes don't really matter because lobbyists pretty much control Washington DC. I personally think lobbyists have ruined this country because major corporations have now grabbed control over the political scene with their monetary prowess. 

 

America, and must of the west has completely lost its way when it comes down to the meaning of democracy. And I essentially believe that the general public is just along for the ride while corporate interests/crooked politicians conduct some of the worst domestic/foreign policies aided by the millions of dollars they receive in donations."

 

So I called you on your broad statement, that sounds like a bumper sticker. (see your first sentence). Your second statement is equally broad and, in my view, fails to explain reality. Because, as the Forbes example demonstrates, reality (in my view) is very different.  Just look around with open eyes. I won't repeat the points I made, but within the corruption, the huge influence of the big corporations and rich donors, there are notable benefits, some of them increasing--and this is why this election is crucial because it does matter who the next president is. If you want to have an effective corporate tax rate of 7% or less, well vote accordingly.  If you want the market to do better, for strengthening the middle class (I assume it includes you) with higher incomes and less taxation, then don't vote for the GOP. If you want consumer protection, science, education, environment, etc...

 

In your simplistic way of looking at the world, you miss reality. If you think this is offensive (me saying so), well so be it. Let me make it clear: I respect your right to freedom of expression and however you want to feel about everything. Unfortunately while communicating through written barrages often seems very threatening or disrespectful.

 

People have rights, ideas don't. I can respect the person's rights but I can ridicule their ideas. I'm sorry if you can't distinguish these two.  All of us make judgments about all sorts of things everyday.  Having the right to free expression does not buy immunity from criticism nor buys credibility. 

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Do independents play much of a role in the U.S. ?

 

In Australia, voting for the two non-major parties has decreased at every election from 1983 onwards.  In 1983 approximately 92.5% of people voted for the major parties.  And since then it has gradually but consistently decreased.  At our most recent election a few months ago the two major parties accounted for 77% of the vote and "other" parties 23% of the vote.  This trend is only going to continue as the younger generation fail to identify with the traditional parties and identify more with say the Green Party.

 

My point being, yes, your vote does count.  Even if one single vote statistically makes no difference.  What people fail to grasp is it's not about changing the result today, with your single vote.  It's about momentum, and that takes years if not decades to develop.

 

 

Well, first we have to define what an "independent" voter is.  Roughly the country is divided into 3 thirds; Dems a bit more, R's and I's a few % less. This is how people self-identify. But the US has been increasingly polarizing. The majority of the I's (who may also have not chosen a pol party when they register to vote*) are leaners. They have strong views on main issues, like abortion, church-state, education, environment, immigration, etc. So they tend to vote based on these views.

 

Then there's 10-15% of floaters who are very low information and highly impressionable and will vote for personalities, swinging wildly from one party to next.  They often determine elections, but they don't have high participation numbers (in the US voting is not compulsory).  So, the 5% that floats and votes plus turnout of a party's base is what determines elections.

 

 

*Most states require voters to pick a party if they want to participate in that party's primary/selection process for choosing nominees. Trump's children hadn't picked Republican so they couldn't vote for their father in the NYS primary.  In the general election any citizen can vote.... Unless certain states permanently revoke such right for convicted felons. (even after they're released)

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Having the right to free expression does not buy immunity from criticism nor buys credibility. 

 

:tup:

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Well, first we have to define what an "independent" voter is.  Roughly the country is divided into 3 thirds; Dems a bit more, R's and I's a few % less. This is how people self-identify. But the US has been increasingly polarizing. The majority of the I's (who may also have not chosen a pol party when they register to vote*) are leaners. They have strong views on main issues, like abortion, church-state, education, environment, immigration, etc. So they tend to vote based on these views.

 

Then there's 10-15% of floaters who are very low information and highly impressionable and will vote for personalities, swinging wildly from one party to next.  They often determine elections, but they don't have high participation numbers (in the US voting is not compulsory).  So, the 5% that floats and votes plus turnout of a party's base is what determines elections.

 

 

*Most states require voters to pick a party if they want to participate in that party's primary/selection process for choosing nominees. Trump's children hadn't picked Republican so they couldn't vote for their father in the NYS primary.  In the general election any citizen can vote.... Unless certain states permanently revoke such right for convicted felons. (even after they're released)

 

Sounds like the percentage of voters who vote for the major parties is similar.  If anything, it may be a little higher in the U.S. based on what you've said.  I think another key difference is that in Australia voting is compulsory.  If this is a good or a bad thing is an interesting question.

 

The "donkey vote"  percentage in Australia was 5% at the last election a few months ago and 6% at the one before that.  Note that a donkey vote means a vote which has been deliberately not filled in correctly.  Maybe it was left blank, or graffitied, but regardless it's not counted.

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In the US, the winner-take all electoral system rewards only 1 winner. Even states are like that. You win a state (of 50 states plus DC) by 1 vote, you win all. For example, you win California you get all 55, NY 26, Vermont 3, etc. There are 538 total Electoral Votes, so the candidates that reach 270 win the presidency and VP.

 

In high participation years (presidential elections) we get upper 50s ... so many people don't vote. In off years, it's 40% or less, and in primaries as low as 3-5% (but rarely more than 20%)

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So, the 2016 election is over. Trump wins the presidency by winning the Electoral College and losing to Clinton by about 2 million votes in the popular count. Funny thing, because he has been deriding the EC for years as "unfair", "stupid" etc.

The best change the country can do without a constitutional amendment is that every state passes a law that says it'll allocate its electors either based on % of the state vote or give them to the person that wins the national popular vote. This way the EC will be rendered moot. The EC is a 18th century anachronism, invented by the elites as a safety mechanism to prevent the election of someone like Trump chosen by the ignorant public.

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I agree, the Electoral College needs to be abolished and the popular vote should decide the president.

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EC should have been abolished decades ago. Not just now. It's the 21st Century after all.

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  1. At https://www.archives.gov/federal-register/electoral-college/provisions.html#law) we read

    The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America. He shall hold his Office during the Term of four Years, and, together with the Vice President, chosen for the same Term, be elected, as follows 
    Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress: but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector.

  2. At https://www.archives.gov/federal-register/electoral-college/about.html we read

           Most states have a “winner-take-all” system that awards all electors to the winning presidential candidate. However, Maine              and  Nebraska each have a variation of “proportional representation.

  1. There is a European country τhat in fewer than 200 years has created 17 constitutional texts. In the very latest constitutional text and before the constitutional text we read:

    Εις το όνομα της Αγίας, και Ομοουσίου και αδιαιρέτου Τριάδος

  2. The diaspora of the nation that concocted the 17 texts knows who should have been elected and, inspired by the Trinity, can conceive of better ways of selecting the proper candidate for office. Unfortunately for them, the unwashed majority values wisdom more than unhampered smartness.

Edited by Bashibozuk
grammar

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3 hours ago, Pana97 said:

Now if the roles were reversed and Hillary won on EC would we be hearing the same complaints? :animaatjes-confused-1124061:

Yes, most definitely, Trump would not accept the result and we would never hear the end of it.The calls for revolution and storming the Bastille would echo in this forum too.

For me, Trump is the legitimate president because he won based on established rules. But, I'm also for abolishing the EC or changing its relevance by states deciding to allocate their electors differently. It's an 18th century "safety device" put in place by the elites to prevent the common people from doing something crazy.

In my mind there's no need to have the EC today. We should allow the national vote to determine the national president. It's absurd to have a candidate get millions of votes more than her opponent and lose the election.

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I suspect the liberals would say, if the system elected Clinton via the EC had she lost the national vote, she should be the legitimate president, because, as I said, the established rules dictate so. It would be Attila the Hun who would be yelling bring down the system. No?

But, it's one side that has  consistently labeled its opponents as illegitimate. BO won everything and was never accepted as legitimate by a big faction on the right that now says, let's play by the rules...

However, liberals are on the record since 2000 (remember that election??) that the EC should go.

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37 minutes ago, Pana97 said:

Let me clarify: would we be hearing the same complaints from liberals, or would the EC issue be swept under the carpet? 

Can I ask what your beef with liberals is?

You come across as having a a view that all liberals are all horrible individuals. If you think the people protesting the election result are liberals you are thoroughly deluded. These people are professional left-wingers hiding under the liberal banner. 

In fact the way the platform Trump promoted himself on can be perceived as a liberal platform. Especially since he decided he wanted to ensure the peoples of the inner cities were not forgotten, and were empowered economically. I suppose however, parts of his economic policy were not liberal at all and massively protectionist, something  generally associated with the far left, rather than the traditionally conservative view of free markets. 

 

Edited by King_Katsouranis

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52 minutes ago, Pana97 said:

You're talking to a history major my age is not a factor in this :cool:

No, I didn't imply anything bad by it. I simply pointed out something people may not be aware of, that in 2000 we had the same phenomenon.

Actually I remember how both parties played both sides of the issue. As Gore and Bush went up and down in the polls, it looked possible that either of them could win the popular but lose the EC vote. And, yes, both sides had criticized the EC when it was convenient to them. After the election, it was the Dems that asked for constitutional amendment.  New York, for example, has passed a law saying that if the other states do it, NYS will allocate its electors on national vote outcome!

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6 hours ago, Pana97 said:

I don't have any specific hate on liberals. This forum is littered with a few that have been criticizing and basically forcing their opinion on the posters that are conservative. Trump was expected to lose by a landslide according to the media and people alike. That is not how it turned out however, and I find it ironic that the criticisms Trump supporters were receiving backfired as we see what resulted with their candidate not winning. 

I agree Trump would have claimed a rigged election if he had lost and he received lots of backlash from Hillary supporters and even people in his own party, but the actions and excuses coming from Hillary's supporters is hypocritical. 

Ok that's fair enough. But genuinely, I think both spectrums of opinions are just as forceful on the other side... But, there is a larger majority of conservatives, so it is apparently fair game. Even if the narrative is boring, hypocritical and a load of crap.

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On 8/17/2016 at 7:33 PM, Bananas said:

 

Edited by paokara777

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