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8/25/02

STRAPPADO WRACK

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A new poll showed that if the election was held today, people would be confused because it is normally held in November. Kevin Nealon

Politics American Style

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If you know the name, restrict your vote

A good way to get a fresh perspective on U.S. politics is to read the foreign press. The Economist has a little blurb that the distinguish analyst J Olin Grabbe calls - American Politics for Dummies. What is revealing about the list of current want-a-bees is that many come from familiar families and most of the rest have been in government before. If you get past the partisan affiliations, what is clear is a pattern - to join the accepted political class one needs to adopt a willingness to get the nomination from the DemocRATS or the RepubliCANT'S.

This point may seem obvious, but what underlies this conclusion is a need to investigate just what is takes to get the nomination of either party. Is it realistic for a unknown to run for Congress if their platform or proposed issues vary from the standard party positions? One can't say that it is all about money. There are many affluent potential candidates that can fund a campaign, but could they ever get the nomination?

The case on independent businessman
Tom Golisano illustrates that if you have the money you can run for Governor of New York State. But could he ever be an heir to George Pataki and get the Republican nomination? While New York has seldom been friendly to upstate politicians for statewide office, could a Golisano ever get the nomination for either party to run for a seat in the House of representatives?

The point is simple, if a politician wants to present a program for reform - either from the right or left - they will not get a friendly welcome from the major parties. What drives the political machine is not beliefs or principles, but the desire to gain office. Trading back and forth seats from the few districts that come into play during each cycle just goes to filter out potential candidates that won't accept the standard party game.

This reality within the political process reveals why meaningful change is so elusive, if not impossible. Safe seats are prizes for the loyal. Gerrymandering is an effective tool to discipline any rogue elements. Team politics is central for keeping the march to more intrusive government unbroken. Where is the effective counterweight from within either party?

Now look into the character of the family dynasties. Which one can accurately be called a reformer? The reason that they are anointed for nominations is that they have been tutored into accepting that the objective is only the power, not the results for change from having that influence.

Can anyone expect a Kennedy to stand for small government, or a Dole to be a bold activist for reform? The reason we get the same paralyzed clique of insiders is because there is only one way to get an invite to that club. PLAY BALL . . .

While none of this assessment is new, what is striking is that it no longer needs to be concealed from the public. Only the ignorant can deny that the focal nature of both parties is to prevent profound change. Reformation must be seen in terms of correcting abuses, concentration of rule and control over individuals. Who among the general population really wants to be treated as chattel? So why do the vast majority of party loyalists continue to defend a partisan system that has been designed to prevent Liberty?

When all the speeches are over, the policies that prevail are steered to expel independent behavior. Politicians are selected for their reliability to continue the model of State dominance. The reason that so many people are turned off from the political debate is that they know intuitively, nothing ever changes for the better.

The passion for genuine improvement is absent in the populace, while the desire for public benefits is insatiable. These kinds of citizens vote, while the disillusioned are insulted with the process. So just how can this two party monopoly be broken? How can there be truly open primaries that would allow for a Golisano unaffiliated to gain the nomination from either major party? The record says it is impossible to get the nod or the blessing without the purification rite that requires the party loyalty oath.

Third party candidates don't get elected, because the voter is brainwashed into thinking their vote would be wasted. But the reality is that a vote for either a Republican or Democrat will assure another round of continued government expansion. The nomination process is the initial subversion that cries out for reform. But folks, the probability for that happening is as much as finding a Clinton confident you can trust. The fallacy is that those who believe in elections refuse to admit that an election rigged between two staunch party purists, is no choice at all.

As the election season starts to gear up, remember that the results are already in. They speak volumes about the condition of our society. The Republic will, once again, get to vote for candidates that support Empire. Celebrity politicians breed privileged culture. Is a Bill Simmons the answer to replace a Gray Davis? Is there any difference between a Elizabeth Dole from an Erskine Bowles? Surely we abhor an Andrew Cuomo over our own George Pataki, but what would it take to get the reform policies of a Tom Golisano to be enacted by a Republican administration? And on and on it goes, selection between tweedle dee and tweedle dumb.

Ask yourselves the only real question that has merit: Can America obtain true and needed reform from either party, when the process for nomination is carved in the image of imperial rule? All these questions beg for an answer. Will you defend that the people can take back the selection process because you want to be part of the system, or will you have the courage to accept that you have no real choice, nor any plausibility to change the two parties? As long as you refuse to vote third party, your fate is sealed. Maybe that is exactly what you want - more of the same . . .

SARTRE - August 25, 2002

Politics are about power; we cannot evade that truth or its consequences. We dream of a better world but it is in Utopia - that is, nowhere. Denis William Brogan

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