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Reply #72: it is not some corporate conspiracy as to why we have a two party system. [View All]

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expatriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-31-05 01:19 AM
Response to Reply #48
72. it is not some corporate conspiracy as to why we have a two party system.
I do not understand the whole premise behind the idea that progressives would somehow be more effective outside the Democratic Party.

Two points:
One: Federally, our electoral system nearly decrees the duopoly of the two party system. Third Party movements arise when there is a sizable constituency that lies unclaimed by either party and they are shorlived until either, because of their size, one of the major parties concedes a few planks in their platform to their cause, or the temporary disturbance in the shifting forces of politics resettles as to the third party constituency is reabsorbed by their former party allegiances. With this said, there are always third parties in this country with a quite marginalized impact that do have but a fleeting (if that) on the body politic.

Multi-Party systems (parliamentary) systems foster multiple parties because you can vote for any ticket you like and the next morning the various parties come to the bargaining table with their percentages of the vote-won and form a coalition government. If we had such a system of course I would be voting for a progressive ticket every time because I would know the more votes such a party got the more bargaining power they'd have in forming the next government.

But we have a winner take all system.

As an example, let's just say for the sake of argument a week before the next election in some country with a parliamentary, multi-party system it was decided (by magical powers that everyone accepted, remember this is just an example) that the party with the most votes would win the ENTIRE government.... there would be no bargaining for who got prime minister, finance minister, labor minister, etc. but rather the party with the most votes got to pick the entire cabinet. In this alternative world, you also gave all the parties a week to either change or withdraw their names from the ballot. What you'd have is a LOT of horse trading all of a sudden. the center-right parties would be all of a sudden be in talks with the conservatives and the conservatives would be willing to talk because god forbid a LEFTIST party got the plurality of votes. Same thing on the left. What you'd have is the alliances being drawn up each alliance trying to keep the plurality edge over other alliances until you got down to two major alliances. Because the leftist party, who'd normally get 10% of the vote and often enjoyed playing the king maker in forming a government with the the center-left party would KNOW that its 10% wouldn't mean SHIT anymore the morning after.

That is why we have a 2-party system. We have to form our coalitions BEFORE general election day... so when do we, as progressives, "go into negotiations" with the centrist elements of our party? That is what primaries are for and that is what messaging is for.

In the rules of DU it says....

"Members are expected to be generally supportive of progressive ideals, and to support Democratic candidates for political office."

So, in short, Democratic Underground is a forum for progressives who accept the premise that the most effective political impact progressives can make in our political system is to simultaneously work for progressive change within the Democratic Party and thereby within the politics of the nation as a whole by working from within the Democratic Party.

In my humble opinion, if you are of the opinion that progressives can no longer be effective within the structure of the Democratic Party and are advocating a breaking of ranks of progressives from the Democratic Party then perhaps, as illustrated by the above excerpt, this forum is not the one for you since you advocate a distancing from the Democratic Party that most assuredly is quite the opposite of "support Democratic candidates for political office."

It is one thing to be vocally and actively supportive of progressive Democratic candidates in the primaries to unseat the centrist-corporatist-conservative Democrats and to debate (many times heatedly) policy points with the centrist-corporatist-conservative policies of the less-progressive elements of our party - we need to do this - it is essential: it is quite another thing, however, to be calling for a break with the Party because of these different constituencies within the party we do not agree with or to threaten abandonment of the party if, i.e. a DLCer is elected to serve as our nominee in 2008. Yes, we need to work our asses off to get the progressive banner in the front of the Democrat's parade but we mustn't leave the parade in protest.

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  -Progressive Democrats and Greens should form a coalition. Cascadian  Jul-29-05 09:40 PM   #0 
  - as should prog dems, greens and libs  nashville_brook   Jul-29-05 09:43 PM   #1 
  - the democratic party leadership is too dependent on  nosmokes   Jul-29-05 09:56 PM   #10 
     - Actually either the D or the Rs will get back to real  nadinbrzezinski   Jul-30-05 12:38 PM   #51 
  - The funny thing is. . .  leanin_green   Jul-29-05 09:44 PM   #2 
  - This post calls for UNITY - so glad you get that.  Tigress DEM   Jul-30-05 02:50 AM   #42 
  - Nominate This Thread!  ChiciB1   Jul-30-05 08:51 PM   #66 
  - I could support that sort of thing.  tarkus   Jul-29-05 09:45 PM   #3 
  - Hey, I admired the Greens for the recount  MissWaverly   Jul-29-05 09:46 PM   #4 
  - Hillary Must Retire from the Politics!  GoreDean2008   Jul-29-05 09:50 PM   #7 
     - quick/how did you get the idea for Gore/Dean  MissWaverly   Jul-29-05 09:56 PM   #11 
     - I Got This Idea Before Dean Decided to Run for DNC Chair  GoreDean2008   Jul-29-05 10:05 PM   #16 
     - I like Al Gore too  MissWaverly   Jul-29-05 10:19 PM   #24 
     - I think Al Gore realized the truth about the DLC.  Cascadian   Jul-30-05 12:35 PM   #50 
        - well, he's not the only one who is waking up  MissWaverly   Jul-30-05 01:02 PM   #53 
     - *snicker*  election_2004   Jul-29-05 11:24 PM   #31 
     - You want to unseat Hillary in 2006?  Lecky   Jul-30-05 02:03 AM   #38 
     - .  fujiyama   Jul-30-05 05:15 AM   #44 
     - Clintons are INFINITELY PREFERABLE to ANY RWer. Please think@that  Sparkman   Jul-30-05 06:56 PM   #61 
     - Here, here  leanin_green   Jul-29-05 10:03 PM   #15 
     - Hillary/DLC, yes; Bill, no  AJH032   Jul-29-05 10:24 PM   #25 
     - I rather the neocons collapse before the DLC  Lecky   Jul-30-05 02:00 AM   #36 
        - OBVIOUS-and keep our eyes on the worst case Repub  Sparkman   Jul-30-05 07:03 PM   #62 
  - I agree  AJH032   Jul-29-05 09:47 PM   #5 
  - how about progressive dems just join the greens...?  mike_c   Jul-29-05 09:48 PM   #6 
  - I don't think a 3rd party candidate will win  MissWaverly   Jul-29-05 10:01 PM   #12 
  - An excellent idea!  Somawas   Jul-29-05 10:46 PM   #29 
  - The Democratic  bloom   Jul-29-05 11:50 PM   #33 
  - This progressive Democrat rather die than vote Green  Lecky   Jul-30-05 02:16 AM   #39 
  - I keep hearing this over and over again....  mike_c   Jul-30-05 10:22 AM   #48 
  - I would have agreed with you in 2000  Lecky   Jul-30-05 01:57 PM   #56 
  - What you mean is  omega minimo   Jul-31-05 02:09 AM   #74 
  - it is not some corporate conspiracy as to why we have a two party system.  expatriot   Jul-31-05 01:19 AM   #72 
  - yeah, well i din't for the green candidate in'00 and i got bush  nosmokes   Jul-30-05 06:07 PM   #58 
  - .  fujiyama   Jul-30-05 05:19 AM   #45 
  - small correction  GreenInNC   Jul-30-05 06:44 PM   #59 
     - yep-- you're right....  mike_c   Jul-30-05 11:13 PM   #68 
  - Sounds like a good idea...  marmar   Jul-29-05 09:50 PM   #8 
  - There should be a Green endorsed candidate in every democratic primary.  Idioteque   Jul-29-05 09:53 PM   #9 
  - I have been posting this idea for a long time.  Disturbed   Jul-29-05 10:09 PM   #18 
  - I agree  Lecky   Jul-30-05 02:22 AM   #40 
  - They already have !!! read this ...  welshTerrier2   Jul-29-05 10:02 PM   #13 
  - Yes, they say one thing but do another  MissWaverly   Jul-29-05 10:08 PM   #17 
  - Yes, isn't it astonishing how they all get religion around election time  Mairead   Jul-31-05 12:45 PM   #80 
     - what is new is that the internet has given people their power  MissWaverly   Jul-31-05 01:30 PM   #82 
  - I think your post is important.  Don1   Jul-30-05 09:54 PM   #67 
     - i've been thinking about this ...  welshTerrier2   Jul-30-05 11:30 PM   #71 
     - Good ideas.  Don1   Jul-31-05 01:30 AM   #73 
        - great article, Don1 ...  welshTerrier2   Jul-31-05 11:55 AM   #76 
     - here's the next step ...  welshTerrier2   Jul-31-05 12:21 PM   #78 
  - I have no problem with that. I think the Progressives and the left  Jon8503   Jul-29-05 10:03 PM   #14 
  - State & Local, Green - National, Dems  mouyard   Jul-29-05 10:09 PM   #19 
  - I`ve given this a lot of thought.  democrank   Jul-29-05 10:14 PM   #20 
  - For the love of god, YES  sandnsea   Jul-29-05 10:14 PM   #21 
  - We should have ballots like in NY.  skids   Jul-29-05 10:18 PM   #22 
  - Along with these other reforms  GreenPartyVoter   Jul-29-05 10:26 PM   #27 
  - Something like that in the works:  bvar22   Jul-29-05 10:18 PM   #23 
  - thanks, I have bookmarked your site, very impressive  MissWaverly   Jul-29-05 10:26 PM   #26 
  - Yes. Thanks!  Cascadian   Jul-29-05 11:41 PM   #32 
     - BIG KICK!!  ChiciB1   Jul-30-05 08:48 PM   #65 
  - I agree. This is a good idea.  longship   Jul-29-05 10:38 PM   #28 
  - Duh!  Sooner75   Jul-29-05 11:20 PM   #30 
  - My main problem with Greens--  eridani   Jul-30-05 12:39 AM   #34 
  - I totally agree with this statement.  Totally Committed   Jul-30-05 06:54 AM   #47 
     - This is why there needs to be a summit, some meeting between the two.  Cascadian   Jul-30-05 01:06 PM   #54 
     - Greens Didn't Support Nader Last Time Out!!  ChiciB1   Jul-30-05 08:45 PM   #64 
     - It's more what Nader DIDN'T do than what he did do  eridani   Jul-31-05 07:16 PM   #83 
  - self removed. double post  baron j   Jul-30-05 01:59 AM   #35 
  - I agree. It's time to splinter.  baron j   Jul-30-05 02:00 AM   #37 
  - I am not necessarily saying to splinter just now.  Cascadian   Jul-30-05 12:40 PM   #52 
  - Get me a candidate who really supports "NO MORE LIES"  Tigress DEM   Jul-30-05 02:40 AM   #41 
  - Working together.  Disturbed   Jul-30-05 04:53 AM   #43 
  - yes john kerry failed, but more to the point the dem party did  nosmokes   Jul-30-05 01:39 PM   #55 
     - Kerry won the popular vote. DEMs did our job. There's more to do.  Tigress DEM   Jul-30-05 04:47 PM   #57 
  - in the realm of generalizations, sounds great to me.  ulysses   Jul-30-05 06:09 AM   #46 
  - kick  Cascadian   Jul-30-05 12:29 PM   #49 
  - Why are you advocating a split from the party so soon ?  madfloridian   Jul-30-05 06:52 PM   #60 
  - I am not advocating a split unless...  Cascadian   Jul-31-05 11:51 AM   #75 
     - You think we can undo decades of the right wing machine so quickly?  madfloridian   Jul-31-05 11:58 AM   #77 
        - The posting is actually about bringing the Greens and Democrats together.  Cascadian   Jul-31-05 12:26 PM   #79 
           - Green and Kucinich people are at PDA.  madfloridian   Jul-31-05 01:21 PM   #81 
  - This Will Do It For Me!!  ChiciB1   Jul-30-05 08:37 PM   #63 
  - I don't think the Greens are as much a power as you think  Yo_Mama_Been_Loggin   Jul-30-05 11:17 PM   #69 
  - Thats a great Idea, but can we get a decent animal icon?  DanCa   Jul-30-05 11:23 PM   #70 

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