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  • #31
    Re: Our Next President?

    Originally posted by EJ View Post
    I'm in! Who's your candidate?
    I've got one...Michael Hudson!

    Comment


    • #32
      The Real Problem

      Originally posted by EJ View Post
      Can an anti-FIRE Economy candidate possibly win?
      Good candidates cannot win in the US because of the electoral system.
      Political scientists call it "first past the post" . I call it
      "winner take all". In any voting district, the candidate with the largest number of votes gets the office, even if it is a margin
      of 1 vote out of 10 million. The other voters get no representation.

      Nearly every other democracy has some form of "proportional representation". This creates a multi party system where every vote does count,
      as nearly as possible in a mass society.

      How to save the country:

      The senate has 100 seats. Make each seat represent 1% of the vote nationwide.
      If 5% of voters vote for the slate of libertarians, than the top 5 of those candidates will be senators.

      People will vote for libertarian, socialist, and peace candidates if they can win seats in the senate.

      That will have impacts on the congressional, state and presidential elections.

      A multi-party system is not dysfunctional. A two party system is what is dysfunctional.

      Right now, if you wanted a candidate that would oppose wars, you could not vote
      in any major party. Outliers, like Paul and Sanders, opposed some of the wars. But the parties overwhelmingly supported
      the wars. Of parties above, all three of them would likely oppose any war that did not threaten US territory, which I believe was the intention
      of the founding fathers. These disparate parties would agree on many profound issues and create better policy outcomes.

      Other areas where these "wingnut" parties might agree is reforming the financial and health care systems.


      Problems with the current system:

      0) Most Votes do not count.
      Unless your district is 50/50, your vote will not make a difference.
      Voting for a democrat in South Carolina is as futile as voting for a republican in Connecticut.

      1) The president is the only office that represents the entire country. Everyone else in Washington represents (at best) a majority of a small region.
      In fact, many states are dominated by one party or the other, which means that the primary election of the dominant party controls the general election outcome. But primary voters are "core loyalists" --often a small minority of total voters and with fringe views. So a small minority
      gets to elect the representative.

      2) Strategic Voting: Most voters do not really like the candidates they vote for. They are just less unacceptable than others.
      Even in a swing state, only two candidates have a realistic chance to win. So you identify the one most unacceptable, and vote for the other.
      In a multi-party system with "instant run off" you could really vote your heart, and not waste your vote.

      3) Party loyalty: Since the parties are bankrupt intellectually and morally, voters are motivated more by loyalty and demonizing the opposition
      than by thought and alignment of values. The two party system feeds a dualistic good/bad mentality in which issues are subordinated to
      fear mongering.

      4) The influence of Money.
      Since the elections are based on personality and party loyalty, campaign money has a big effect on outcome. A multi party campaign would be
      more issues focused, reducing the effect of money.


      This change would require a constitutional convention--(why isn't there a mandatory one every 10 years?) or the state level amendment process.

      If we do not change the electoral process, we will not solve the problems in health care, wars to win elections, etc.

      Comment


      • #33
        warreb's economic thinking

        Originally posted by thriftyandboringinohio View Post
        Senator Warren would be a great president, whip smart and hard working.
        But it seems the victory of FIRE is essentially complete now.
        The Citizens United environment allows unlimited amounts of untraceable money to be spent on elections, and FIRE has more money than can be imagined.
        Senator Warren has been fully vilified by right wing media since 2011, and would seem to stand no realistic chance of being elected to national office.

        I would be delighted to find myself wrong on this one.
        I was impressed by the depth and nuance of Warren's thinking on economic issues.
        .


        I Have to agree with your post, Thrifty!

        Comment


        • #34
          The charisma Gap

          BK, you are totally right about that. The Book "no sense of place" explains how this is the result of TV ,
          and more recently , the internet. Deep thinking people like James Madison or Lincoln would not have a chance
          now. And that is scarry, really scarry !
          But: acting is a skill that can be learned, right?
          Perhaps Warren could take some "Trump lessons" .

          Comment


          • #35
            Re: warreb's economic thinking

            Originally posted by Polish_Silver View Post
            I was impressed by the depth and nuance of Warren's thinking on economic issues.
            .


            I Have to agree with your post, Thrifty!
            I still think she has a better chance in the primaries than other folks do.
            Reasons?

            1. I'd be surprised if she didn't finish in the top 3 in NH (out of a field of maybe 2 dozen). She has a chance to be 1st. She has proven she can organize and fundraise in New England.
            2. In the last 100 years there have been 18 Dem nominees. Half of them came from just 3 states: Massachusetts, New York, and Illinois. Of the half that came from other states, half again were VPs. I'd argue that the primary system (delegate allocation and media markets) are designed such that folks from these states have an edge, and the party designed it that way.
            3. Even though Massachusetts is her home base, she's obviously not from there, and has more midwestern/southern Sooner mannerisms and turns of phrase. This can be a weakness if people see it as fake or carpetbagging or whatever. And she will get attacked for it. But it can also be a strength.
            4. This is more speculative. But I think she's in an intellectual sweet spot within the party. Still a capitalist so moderates on the right of the party can stomach her, but mindful enough of existing problems that the left wing of the party can still trust her. Combined with #3, I think that means she can play in the south in a way Sanders could not.

            Who knows what happens in a general. It's all going to be one thing at a time. But unless she flubs up and gets knocked out early (screws up bad and takes a bath in NH or something), I'd be surprised if she weren't one of the final contenders. Certainly I think she has a better shot than the other 5 who've announced campaigns so far (Gabbard, Castro, Delaney, Ojeda & Yang).

            Comment


            • #36
              Re: The Real Problem

              I disagree. An excellent third party candidate can win. Perot showed the possibilities.

              The problem is money. It's hard to campaign across the nation without funding, though a viral campaign
              might have a very slim chance to get lots of small to medium contributions.

              You can win with 34% of the vote, assuming the other two split the other 66%. Heck Clinton only got
              43%. The polls definitely support it in that 60% of the people hate both parties. They would love the choice in voting against the devil on the right and the devil on the left.

              It would be a huge task for a third party candidate to articulate the minefield of creating the right message to attract enough moderates to pull it off. However he or she might attract a good portion of the 35% plus of eligible voters that just don't vote. They could show up for excellent and rare electable third party wonder.

              I don't understand why the media and pundits missed the 2016 election. There were all sorts of indications like Trump's crowds and energy vs. Clinton. I felt two weeks before the election that Trump was going to win. Frankly I didn't want either candidate. Woodsman was also writing that Trump had the momentum.

              Comment


              • #37
                Re: Our Next President?

                Originally posted by EJ View Post
                Asking if it's possible for a presidential candidate to win who takes such a strong anti-finance and insurance industry position. Brown ran a shabby, lazy campaign. Warren ran circles around him.
                If charismatic and persuasive, then yes.
                Last edited by Slimprofits; 01-14-19, 10:52 AM.

                Comment


                • #38
                  Re: Our Next President?

                  Attached Files

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    Re: The Real Problem

                    Originally posted by vt View Post
                    I disagree. An excellent third party candidate can win. Perot showed the possibilities.
                    I agree. However, isn't that only part of the solution? Even after winning, can a third party candidate govern and lead the nation? Can they work with the two houses effectively to get the reforms through?

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Re: The Real Problem

                      There is no evidence to support the claim that a third party candidate can be elected president of the United States.
                      Ross Perot got less than 19 percent of all individual votes, got zero electoral college votes, and won zero states.

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        Re: The Real Problem

                        Originally posted by thriftyandboringinohio View Post
                        There is no evidence to support the claim that a third party candidate can be elected president of the United States.
                        Ross Perot got less than 19 percent of all individual votes, got zero electoral college votes, and won zero states.
                        perot provided a means for conservative to moderate voters to exercise their franchise but to NOT vote for george hw bush. this allowed clinton to win.
                        i can't think of an example in which a 3rd party candidate was not either an irrelevancy or a spoiler.
                        the most important 3rd party possibility would be a conservative anti-trumper, giving disaffected republicans a way to not vote for trump. perhaps mike bloomberg would fulfill this role.

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Re: The Real Problem

                          I'm not just suggesting a third party candidate can win, but that a third party could replace one of the other two parties, as when the Whigs were
                          replaced by Republicans.

                          https://qz.com/813355/2016-president...he-presidency/

                          https://www.pbs.org/newshour/politic...rty-candidates
                          Last edited by vt; 01-14-19, 12:55 PM.

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            Re: The Real Problem

                            Originally posted by thriftyandboringinohio View Post
                            There is no evidence to support the claim that a third party candidate can be elected president of the United States.
                            Ross Perot got less than 19 percent of all individual votes, got zero electoral college votes, and won zero states.
                            The old Duverger's Law. FPTP, winnter-take-all, plurality wins, single-member-district elections end up a 2 party system. Very occasionally third parties pop up and do somewhat well in the electoral college. But this tends to be a sign of realignment more than anything. And often 4th parties come with them.

                            Sometimes it's a sign of things to come. The 1824 election was bananas and led to the rise of Jackson and the Democrats in 1828. In that one, 4 people split electoral votes. John Quincy Adams won, but Jackson was the candidate with the most popular vote AND the most electoral votes and still did not win. In 1860 we had a similar bananas election that led to the rise of Lincoln and the Republicans. In this one Lincoln was the clear winner, but 4 candidates won electoral votes again. 1912 was the next one with 4 major candidates, Wilson, Roosevelt, Taft & Debs. Roosevelt had previously been a Republican, but his Progressive Party got more electoral votes and popular votes than Taft's under the GOP banner. Don't see another real game-thrower until 1968 with George Wallace (previewed by Strom Thurmond's Dixiecrats in 48), and that really gives way to the rise of Nixon, the South flipping from solid Dem to solid GOP, the end of the New Deal Era, and the beginning of a more conservative era both for the GOP and for the nation in general. Nixon and Humphrey both got 43% of the vote. Wallace was the spoiler who had the other 14% locked up. And that year was a wild ride that included assassinations and convention riots.

                            We might be due for one of these again. I suppose it can't be totally ruled out. But here's the thing: In the 2 instances a third party candidate won, another party had to die (basically Federalists & Whigs to make room for Democrats & Republicans respectively). But each time there was also a driving structural issue. Expanding the franchise to men with without property in the first case, and slavery in the second. I can't clearly identify that issue this time. The electorate is quite polarized right now and the media's increasingly national/international. So it's hard to see a regional third party rebellion brewing. If anything, moderates in both parties are losing elections across the board, so if it does happen, it's not going to be about brave defenders of whatever people think "the center" is now. Definitely not boring, milquetoast both-siderism or debt fretting. It would need it's own raison d'etre. One that struck deep or had deep regional resonance. Cutting social security and kicking grandma off Medicare so you can cut more taxes for Apple and Amazon, but doing it politely, just ain't gonna make the cut on this one. Neither is the kinder, gentler machine gun hand.

                            So maybe tomorrow Charlie Baker breaks off and makes the Northern Republicans or Jim Webb breaks off and makes the General Lee Democrats. But even if they did, they'd be hard-pressed to answer "Why?" You know what they call someone with Charlie Baker's exact politics in Virginia? An unelectable Democrat. You know what they call someone with Jim Webb's exact politics in Massachusetts? An unelectable Republican. I think that's not only the truth, I think that's the nature of the electorate at the moment.

                            What seems progressive to a Virginian seems reactionary to a Bostonian: Just think about it, a $10 minimum wage is a $3/hour increase in the Old Dominion and a $2/hr decrease in the Bay State. Has the spread ever been this wide? And it's like this on issue after issue. The "common sense middle ground" is now a huge 30% jump in Richmond and a huge 20% cut in Worcester. So I can all but be certain that to the general electorate, advocating a $10/hr federal minimum wage seems boring and conservative in one place, but it seems radical and sharply progressive in another. In the last 20 years, Virginia's minimum wage has only increased by $2/hr, Massachusetts' has by $6/hr. It's like this on issue after issue. State laws have drifted far apart, and it's accelerating.

                            Let me spin this up another way: Would you have thought in 2000 that by about election-time 2020, Massachusetts will certainly have legal recreational marijuana stores (it already does), but probably also cafés where adults can smoke it, civil rights guarantees and constitutional marriage for LBGT etc. groups (probably saw this coming), a $13.50/hr statewide minimum wage (maybe that if you were optimistic), 25% lower CO2 output than 1990 levels (seemed fringe), free community college (already free for Pell-Grant recipients in Boston), casinos everywhere (not just Connecticut), criminal justice reform including the elimination of mandatory minimums for low-level drug charges and bail for the poor (fringe again), labor reforms including limitations and bans on non-competes and non-disclosures and other tools employers use to suppress wages, 12 weeks of paid family leave, 20 weeks of medical leave, and 5 days of paid sick leave per year for all employees, etc (huge shift). On the other side you'll have to be 21 to buy tobacco products, homeschooling and gun purchases have a lot of restrictions, drivers' licenses have more restrictions, there's a state health insurance mandate regardless of the elimination of the federal one, etc.

                            I only wrote all that out to illustrate some of the range of how far MA and VA's laws have spread apart in the past generation. The further apart they get, the more likely it is that it will become impossible to ignore the differences, and the federal government will have to pick a path rather than sit on the fence.

                            Comment


                            • #44
                              Re: The Real Problem

                              one thought you stir up, dc, is that the new direction that is already happening is more devolution of issues to the states, i.e. instead of the federal gov't picking paths, just have the federal gov't step back and say leave it to the states. divergences will probably increase but maybe that's ok. i'm not sure of the implications of this trend, besides low tax states trying to poach businesses from higher tax states. i haven't thought it through. but it sure is a change from the march to the ever more imperial presidency.

                              Comment


                              • #45
                                Re: The Real Problem

                                Originally posted by jk View Post
                                one thought you stir up, dc, is that the new direction that is already happening is more devolution of issues to the states, i.e. instead of the federal gov't picking paths, just have the federal gov't step back and say leave it to the states. divergences will probably increase but maybe that's ok. i'm not sure of the implications of this trend, besides low tax states trying to poach businesses from higher tax states. i haven't thought it through. but it sure is a change from the march to the ever more imperial presidency.
                                Sort of wish I was as optimistic as you about the prospects of interstate divergence putting the reigns on the imperial presidency. Reminds me of Tocqueville in 1830 pointing out interstate political divergences and how they're fundamentally irreconcilable. How long will Yankee moralizers sit back and accept 5 million uninsured people in Texas or 6 million disenfranchised felons throughout the south? There's some folks already calling it the New Jim Crow. The 14th amendment must be interpreted and enforced one way or the other. There's little room for a grey zone once you start drawing lines in the sand there.

                                In 20 more years, if (I mean this as a hypothetical) a new generation in the northeast grows up that has never known work with non-compete agreements or without paid sick leave or family leave or health coverage; that has never known criminal charges for marijuana or mandatory minimum sentences, or disenfranchisement for felons, or the death penalty; that looks south and sees a 500% to 1,000% higher incarceration rate all under the stars and stripes, US history suggests they probably won't just mind their own business and butt out.

                                And that's if things stay copacetic. If the divergences accelerate, it'll be even more glaring. California and Mass et all already have adopted everything from stricter vehicle emissions packages to tighter definitions on what constitutes an employee. Here's one small example of what we have to look forward to in the immediate term. So that's playing out in courts now. When the career Uber drivers in some states get social security and minimum wage etc, but not in others, the long game outside of the corporate poaching gets more obvious. Will those in states not receiving these benefits under the FLSA truly be receiving substantive due process and equal protection under the law? Stay tuned.

                                For now, this is all mostly framed in material terms. So it's prone to stat and cost-benefit policy analysis. And America can handle that debate. But what happens when it gets recast in terms of freedom? Then it comes with absolute moral certitude. Material arguments fall to a support role behind spiritual ones. Politics overtakes policy. I can already see it coming.

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