Updated 6/20/2007, originally posted 6/3/2003
Update 6/20/2007: Yesterday Michael Bloomberg, mayor of New York City, announced he was leaving the Republican Party and will now be an independent. This follows on his switch from the Democratic to Republican parties a few years ago. Mr. Bloomberg has also been travelling to states with upcoming Presidential primaries, inflaming speculation that he will be running for President. Based on what I know at this point, Mr. Bloomberg is the first Presidential candidate in a long while for whom I would be willing to vote, and I hope he runs.
He fits the profile of an ideal candidate (from the article below) in that he has had a career outside of politics, he’s not a Republican or a Democrat, he can speak extemporaneously, he acknowledges that the system is broken, and he’s not a lawyer. I’ve liked what he’s done in New York so far, and I think he’d be an absolutely refreshing change from the past eight years of idiocracy.
Below is the original post from 6/3/2003:
Die-hard, straight-ticket-voting,we’re-right-they’re-wrong supporters of either of the two major American political parties should read no further, as little or nothing that is said here will have any meaning for zealots and/or fanatics and/or conformists. The same goes for single-issue voters.
I rarely vote. Many folks tell me that by not voting I am neglecting my duties as an American, but I beg to differ. In fact, from my perspective it is the people who vote out of a sense of duty who are being un-American. Why? Because by virtue of their participation they are demonstrating tacit approval for a system that is fundamentally flawed. How is it flawed? Let me count the ways:
The Monopoly of the Demoblicans and the Republicrats.
With exceedingly rare exception, all serious candidates are the product of either the Democratic or Republican parties. And although there are superficial differences between the parties, they both strive to maintain the status quo, and to evolve the system to the advantage of the politically connected. So your “choice” between their candidates is like the choice between french vanilla and vanilla bean ice cream. Yes, they’re different, if you’re talking vanilla, but they’re both still just vanilla. Right now our political process is Baskin Robbins 2 Flavors.
The Electoral College. Back when our electoral process was developed (when delivery by horseback was the fastest communication method), it made a lot of sense to have the individual states compile their results and turn them over to a representative who would then deliver those to the central government in person for the final tallying. But now we have instantaneous, secure, ubiquitous communications, and the selection/use of the electoral college is outdated, outmoded, inefficient, inexact and unnecessary.
Functional Qualifications: Rich, White, Photogenic, Ruthless, with Powerful Supporters.
Yes, there are a few serious Candidates that don’t match these qualifications, but they are so few and far between as to be irrelevant. Show me a grass-roots candidate that doesn’t meet the above, and I’ll show