One billion dollars.
The current price tag of getting elected as president of the United States is one billion dollars.
Something is seriously wrong.
For a while I was naïve enough to believe that the candidates set up their own platform on specific problems with corresponding solutions. Then our job was to read up on each candidate’s history, viewpoints, and vision for the future and then make our choice.
I’ve come to understand that we don’t elect a public official anymore.
We elect a political party.
Well, we elect the person that the people who run the political parties have groomed, shaped, and made to conform to what they feel best suits their needs.
Loyalty to the party over voting your conscience.
I wish that were sarcasm, but it’s not.
It’s become a fact.
Doesn’t that seem a little fishy to you?
It makes me wonder just who these people really are that are pulling the strings and deciding who will and won’t appear on the ballot.
Do I agree with their positions?
And, if I somehow could find out their positions, what options do I have if I disagree with them?
We may claim to have five political parties in the U.S., but the reality is there are only two: Democrat and Republican.
And they have effectively erased any glimmer of hope of someone not firmly affiliated with one or the other of winning an election.
It wasn’t that long ago that one of these powerhouse parties flooded Utah with outside money to ensure that their candidate would win the congressional seat. It wasn’t about the people of Utah at all (I would imagine that the party never paused to think about who may be the best representative for this particular and unique constituency); rather, it was all about having control in Washington.
It’s not about public service, or problem solving, or even about finding someone who may work well with existing officials to get something done.
All that matters is that THEY don’t get what THEY want.
Now that’s power.
We have three branches of government to provide checks and balances, so that no single branch can override the others.
We have nine Supreme Court justices so that there is always someone who would be a tie breaker.
But we have settled for only two political parties who again and again seem to be in a tie, resulting in gridlock, gamesmanship, and posturing for the next election – all about being the party in power.
They actually hold off for years on major legislation, waiting to vote on it when the right party is in control.
I’ve read several reports where the majority of Americans are moderate in their views. I would imagine many people are like me who see that each party has some pretty great ideas as well as some that are, well, just huge stinkers.
People like me also understand that this is a land for all, not just some. For this to succeed, each side will not get all it wants, but each side has the greatest chance to get what matters the most to them when working with, and not against, others.
Wouldn’t it be great to actually have that as a choice in our elections? You know, instead of having to pick one side as completely right because the other is the devil himself.
No one is completely right about everything, and no one is completely wrong about everything – no matter how many commercials tell us otherwise.
Sounds to me like the time may be ripe for a new alternative: a third party.
The liberals can continue to progress farther and father to the left, the conservatives can work as close to the right as they want.
There just needs to be a place for the rest of us to go.
Somewhere in the middle.
Of course, there is always the danger that this would only result in another powerhouse political machine that wants to be in control and squash the other two.
I guess we could spend three billion on an election instead of just two, while all sides continue to fight to the death.
To have a choice that more closely represents what we think.
You know, elect the person and not the party.
Just a thought.