I hope that we can all remain civil here, even in a politically charged thread. I just can't stand how this country seems to be going. Everywhere I look in the news I see politicians and the media trying to divide us into little groups. Racial, economic, religious beliefs, when can we get back to being Americans first and foremost.
As a military man it just baffles me. We stress unity, despite our differences in the military. What happened to the campaign promises? I'm still waiting to see a bill from congress on the White House's web page to read prior to the Pres. signing the bill into law. Our politicians don't even know everything that is in the bills they are voting on.
I think our Washington's moral compass needs a tune-up.
I think, no matter which side you're on... we all feel there's enormous room for improvement. And, most are just plain disgusted with the whold damn thing! Now, having said that, I for one, don't have a clue as to how to fix it. Unfortunately, I think they call this syndrome, the "Catch 22". :-(
I'd like to see a few more political parties legitimized within our system... As we're currently arranged, it is much easier to try to knock down your opponent than to stand on your own convictions. My gut feeling is that 5 total parties would provide enough political diversity without too much confusion at the voter level.
This would, by no means, be a silver bullet but I think it would be a start to true dialogue as opposed to the constant bickering that goes on now.
I agree, Adventurer. This is my big beef with "the system." I sincerely believe that third-party candidates are almost always more qualified for office (at least ideologically), but they never garner the kind of support that they need to win.
And because we know they can't get the support, we throw our votes to one of the two stupid parties that remain standing.
Unfortunately the house rules were written for a two party system. A third party congressman or senator has no influence, parliamentary tools, or clout to do anything of significance. They are powerless. In order to change the rules the TWO PARTIES have to agree on the rules and vote to pass them. Talk about screwed! I used to sit and bemoan the two party system until I took a Poly Sci 200 class and learned about parliamentary rules and the lawmaking process. The only way to change the system is to be a part of the system. Merely getting a third party candidate elected to any one office would be of little more than a historical note. Even a major office like president. A third party president would still be virtually powerless. The media would not play their part in the spin process; the parliamentary house rules would negate him influencing the introduction of any legislation; and he would be a failure in his term in office. Ideology is great but the ability to actually get something done is what is important. We have to change the minds, practices, and consequences of the members in office that are part of the two parties. We are getting close because there are hundreds of thousands of people that are sick of the taxing and over spending. They're pissed at both the Democrats and the Republicans.
From what I've been reading, a lot of people are changing their party affiliation to "independent" until just before the primaries. Then they change to whichever party and after the primary, they switch back to "independent". Not a bad strategy.
There's also a move to completely vote out the incumbents in 2010. This is a great idea.
The promotion of minor parties would have a very positive effect. The Republicrats need to know that they're not the only game in town.
I wish we could start by taking away Washington's Credit Card! While we're at it, confiscate that printer they use for making money. I keep trying to tell my kids that money doesn't grow on trees, I guess some of our politicians parents skipped that lesson.
I've been politically aware and active since I was 12. I've noticed that the American people are lazy. According to the Census Bureau, around 60% of the population is registered to vote. Approximately 83% of the registered population actually votes. That's less than half the U.S. population that votes. To fix the problem there has to be consequences to the broken promises and the corruption in Washington. For that to happen the media has to report it (Not spin it), cult like love and hate has to stop (Not likely), people have to get involved and educate themselves and not rely on the media to do it for them (That wont happen).
In Australia, there's a $300 fine for not voting. The electoral campaign is limited to three weeks, and nobody is allowed to use private or corporate money for their campaigns. There are televised debates on public television, and the moderator is a neutral journalist (if they can find one) who asks really tough questions to everyone. It's a brief, tough slog, and then there's a winner. I would lay down my life to defend the First Amendment, but somehow I feel that if we tried something like that here, freedom of speech is what would kill it.
I still like the non-voting fine. Remember the $300 President Bush 43 gave everyone a few years back? What if he only gave it to voters?
It's tough, and I expect this thread to explode (but it hasn't yet!). I'll bite anyway, and address the specific promise you mention.
IWhy aren't these bills posted on the Internet as promised? It's been 8 months. Web sites are cheap. People in Congress and the White House have word processing just like the rest of us. The only conclusion I can draw is now that the elections are over, the people who made the promises see no point in keeping them.
And who can we blame for this?
I blame restrictions on campaign finance. It may have been unintentional, but by limiting contributions, those in power ensured that anybody who has a shot at a top post must either be a media darling; someone who's been collecting a war chest for many years, and is thus an insider (like them!); or is willing to flout the finance laws by taking anonymous contributions. You can't be an honest outsider with a popular message and get enough cash to advertise yourself. Paradoxical, but doesn't it often happen that people state an intention of doing one thing and end up doing the opposite?
To a lesser degree, I blame the media. It's often easy enough to identify who's a liar, by looking at his past record. But the media decided in our last election that the past didn't matter. At least I didn't see any coverage of the records of any of the Presidential frontrunners, beyond Romney's change in position on abortion.
And to a lesser degree, I blame us, the public. We knew we didn't know enough about the candidates, but how many of us investigated? The reason I don't entirely blame us is that in some cases we investigated and didn't find anybody that seemed honest and responsible. What do you do then?
"Its where you are buying your shoes and perhaps how tightly you strap the belt down.
You need a whole grain belt not the thin split grain cheap stuff.
A good belt will cost a bit but last a lot longer."
"No it is not. Perhaps rather then asking what he wants to do for work, ask where he wants to be in 5 years or 10. For me in college, it was doing engineering and wearing a suit like my father. Focus not on the work but the…"
"BBS world news is what I go to while shaving. The thing is its 20+ min.
NPR has an hourly 5 min news podcast. That is okay but very US focused.
I'm looking for a good international views podcast out of Candida and Australia.