The Libertarians
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13-09-2010, 04:51 AM
 
The Libertarians
For many years, I voted for Libertarian candidates for two reasons:

1. I sort of liked the idea of as little government, at all levels, as possible
2. I detested most of the candidates put up by both major political parties

This gave me some basis for complaining about elected officials - after all, I'd voted - and I could honestly say that I didn't vote for the bastard that got elected.

Unfortunately, of late, the Libertarians have taken to putting up candidates that I detest nearly as much as those of the Democrats and Republicans.

Moreover, I now believe that government can play a more positive role, even if the current lot who occupy offices in said government are mostly worthless. We have a lot of problems - fighting in wars that we shouldn't, health care, global climate change, suppression of important stem cell research, etc. that require our government to act. But our government seems notably disinclined to act along the lines I believe they should. If we go issue by issue, I see absolutely no party that matches my stand on all (or even most) of the issues that I believe are important - and I see the dominance of the religious right to be at the heart of a lot of my problems with the candidates. Any candidate has to be palatable to them to stand a chance of being elected.

It does pose something of a quandry for voting. Last election, I voted reluctantly for Obama (but, living on a blue island in a red state ocean, my vote meant zero to the outcome of the state's electors). Unfortunately, now I can't say I didn't vote for the bastard! Even if my views probably will remain within a tiny minority for the rest of my life, it would be nice to have a candidate on the ballot I had some confidence would reflect my views on most issues of importance to me. Alas, such seems quite unlikely.
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13-09-2010, 05:26 AM
 
RE: The Libertarians
(13-09-2010 04:51 AM)2buckchuck Wrote:  For many years, I voted for Libertarian candidates for two reasons:

1. I sort of liked the idea of as little government, at all levels, as possible
2. I detested most of the candidates put up by both major political parties

This gave me some basis for complaining about elected officials - after all, I'd voted - and I could honestly say that I didn't vote for the bastard that got elected.

Unfortunately, of late, the Libertarians have taken to putting up candidates that I detest nearly as much as those of the Democrats and Republicans.

Moreover, I now believe that government can play a more positive role, even if the current lot who occupy offices in said government are mostly worthless. We have a lot of problems - fighting in wars that we shouldn't, health care, global climate change, suppression of important stem cell research, etc. that require our government to act. But our government seems notably disinclined to act along the lines I believe they should. If we go issue by issue, I see absolutely no party that matches my stand on all (or even most) of the issues that I believe are important - and I see the dominance of the religious right to be at the heart of a lot of my problems with the candidates. Any candidate has to be palatable to them to stand a chance of being elected.

It does pose something of a quandry for voting. Last election, I voted reluctantly for Obama (but, living on a blue island in a red state ocean, my vote meant zero to the outcome of the state's electors). Unfortunately, now I can't say I didn't vote for the bastard! Even if my views probably will remain within a tiny minority for the rest of my life, it would be nice to have a candidate on the ballot I had some confidence would reflect my views on most issues of importance to me. Alas, such seems quite unlikely.

So you won't base your endorsement of a candidate on his religious background? For shame. Smile

The problem that you are describing is exactly why I have a problem picking a political party. None of them seem to fit me. I am closer to Libertarianism than anything else, but I recognize that I am willfully rebellious because of my circumstances.

I just can't really be pigeonholed. Not with a party, anyway. I hope that the party system (which seems to be breaking apart) crumbles slowly. I believe that we are seeing the rise of the little person, as evidenced by the Tea Party. These grass roots organizations form in a time of turmoil, and seem to bring about change followed by prosperity before it falls apart again. It seems pretty cyclical, and i think we are at (or near) the end of a cycle. Like my comments on a cult, though, this is all conjecture with not a shred of data.
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13-09-2010, 06:36 AM
RE: The Libertarians
2buck, we are very similar people. I think somewhere on this board I wrote almost the exact same post about my voting. I could not vote Libertarian in 2008 because I would not vote for Bob Barr, I reluctantly voted for Obama, and I'm not at all happy with the job he's done.

I think the problem is as follows, and it's not just an American problem: we are taken completely for granted by the political parties because they know our choices are A or B. Obama can take his base for granted because who else are they going to vote for? He caters to the people who supply him the most money and, despite having a majority in both houses of Congress, he plays the game of trying to placate the other side with compromise. Say what you want about Bush but he knew how to utilize his position and his majority.

Until Democrats (or Republicans) stay home or vote for the other side, the 2 parties will never be motivated to do what the majority of people really want them to do but instead will cater to special interests and the fringe left or right. What we need is a viable 3rd party.

I was initially intrigued by the Tea Party movement and thought it had some promise with its message of fiscal responsibility. Unfortunately, and perhaps predictably, it was basically hijacked by the fringe on the right and a lot of their message has become very unpalatable, at least to me. It doesn't help that the Queen of Idiots, Sarah Palin, is their loudest voice. I can't believe that dimwits 15 minutes are not up yet, but there you go.

I've never been afraid to vote 3rd party and I've never felt like I've thrown my vote away. The other thing I tend to do is vote against incumbents, irrespective of party affiliation. I don't think any of them really represent my interests so what possible difference can it make to me if I vote for a Republican in one race and a Democrat in the other? I know some people go batshit over "their" party but to me they are two sides of the same coin.

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When ignorance reigns, life is lost
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13-09-2010, 07:12 AM
RE: The Libertarians
All politicians are bad. They might start out with the best of intentions, but simply being in a position of any kind of power, corrupts.
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13-09-2010, 08:51 AM
RE: The Libertarians
(13-09-2010 07:12 AM)catdance62 Wrote:  All politicians are bad. They might start out with the best of intentions, but simply being in a position of any kind of power, corrupts.

I can't decide if that is unfair or overly simplistic. I think it's both.

I don't think that all politicians are corrupt. I think the problem is that the system itself is corrupt. It is almost impossible for a politician, at least in the US, to do what they think is right AND maintain any relevance within their party.

Politics by its nature requires compromises. The problem is there are too many diverse interests that need to be appeased and there is too much money being spent by special interests. The money has made the process corrupted. What individual politicians do is almost besides the point.

I think there are some good, honest and moral people in office. I just think it doesn't matter that they are there.

Shackle their minds when they're bent on the cross
When ignorance reigns, life is lost
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13-09-2010, 09:09 AM
RE: The Libertarians
(13-09-2010 07:12 AM)catdance62 Wrote:  All politicians are bad. They might start out with the best of intentions, but simply being in a position of any kind of power, corrupts.

In my limited years, I have many times made the mistake of painting an entire group with the same brush. Inevitably, someone always surfaces to show how impossible this is to do. Every time you say, "All <insert group here> are <insert action/behavior/generalization here>." you will eventually be proven wrong. Thank goodness you said it, because now you have opened yourself to the opportunity of finding a politician that breaks the mold you have created!

Just visiting.

-SR
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13-09-2010, 10:56 AM
RE: The Libertarians
(13-09-2010 04:51 AM)2buckchuck Wrote:  Even if my views probably will remain within a tiny minority for the rest of my life, it would be nice to have a candidate on the ballot I had some confidence would reflect my views on most issues of importance to me. Alas, such seems quite unlikely.

Run for office.

"Sometimes it is better to light a flamethrower than to curse the darkness."
- Terry Pratchett
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13-09-2010, 08:20 PM
RE: The Libertarians
There's too much money influencing politics
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