Resist “Common Wisdom”: Allow Yourself to Think “Third Party” (Join the Many Who Have Done Just That Throughout U.S. History)

(Editor’s Note: This piece from Kenosha Marge is cross-posted from her bunker up North known as “Witch’s Will“. Orignally posted under the title How do I know? The experts tell me so.”)

September 30, 2009

By Kenosha  Marge

It occurred to me recently, while bemoaning the fact that we do not have a viable 3rd party choice in this country that perhaps “I” was part of the problem. Part of the problem because I believed that we couldn’t have a viable party because the “common wisdom”  or   the “experts” tell us so.

Just as the power of positive thinking works, so does the power of negative thinking.  If we are convinced something can’t happen then we won’t make much of an effort in that direction. No use us “spinning our wheels” is there? The old beating our heads against a brick wall approach that everyone tells us is stupid and not constructive. Add painful.

Remember that old limerick that went something like this:

They told the young man it couldn’t be done

With a smile on his face he went right to it

He tackled that job that couldn’t be done

And you know what, he couldn’t do it.

Thinking about that limerick and how I let that kind of thing insidiously convince me that we couldn’t have a viable 3rd party I realized that I was a knothead. Of course that’s something I all ready knew, but I suddenly realized that on this issue I was more of a knothead than usual.  I was allowing the “common wisdom” and the “experts” to shape my opinion and thus help to make it a self-fulfilling prophecy.

I am not naive enough to believe that having a 3rd Party choice would solve all our problems. Getting rid of most of the corrupt and corrupted politicians in Washington D.C., while putting the fear of re-election into the rest is what’s absolutely necessary. Add a cease fire with shooting ourselves in the foot by electing the same old pols with our same old partisan votes.

Those would be the same pols that disappoint us time and again. As a punishment we re-elect them. Perhaps they packed us in pork and we consider that good governance. We do if we consider getting ours at the expense of the good of the country good governance.  Let me state for the record that I don’t.

My mantra has become “Partisanship is un-American and unpatriotic and dammit, it’s lazy too.” Quite a wordy mantra, it definitely needs some work. However, it work for me.

We get so focused on the Democrats and Republicans that we forget how many other parties have come and gone since the founding of our government.

Most know that Abraham Lincoln was a Republican and that Andrew Jackson was a Democrat. But did you know that Thomas Jefferson was a Democrat-Republican? Perhaps that doesn’t seem so strange given that we basically have the same thing today, they just pretend to be different on television. The two major parties each take a turn to screw the public, steal from the public and score points off their “adversaries” by doing things that will harm the public. Unlike Jefferson, what we have now are Democrat-Republican-Asshats.

Historical political parties

The following parties are no longer functioning. Some of them had considerable influence. Listed in order of founding.

Gone and mostly forgotten until Googled at Wikipedia.

The Top Three of the 3rd Parties are:

Constitution Partysocially conservative, fiscally conservative

Green Partysocially progressive, fiscally liberal

Libertarian Partysocially liberal, fiscally conservative

Libertarian Party: Founded in 1971, the Libertarian party is the third largest political party in America. Over the years, Libertarian Party candidates have been elected to many state and local offices.

Libertarians believe the federal government should play a minimal role in the day-to-day affairs of the people. They believe that the only appropriate role of government is to protect the citizens from acts of physical force or fraud. A libertarian-style government would therefore limit itself to a police, court, prison system and military. Members support free market economy and are dedicated to protection of civil liberties and individual freedom.

Constitution Party

is a United States political party rooted in the paleoconservative movement. It was founded as the U.S. Taxpayers’ Party in 1992. The party’s official name was changed to the Constitution Party in 1999; however, some state affiliate parties are known under different names. The party’s goal as stated in its own words is “to restore our government to its Constitutional limits and our law to its Biblical foundations.” [1] The party puts a large focus on immigration, calling for stricter penalties towards illegal immigrants and a moratorium on legal immigration until all federal subsidies to immigrants are discontinued.[2] The party absorbed the American Independent Party, originally founded for George Wallace’s 1968 presidential campaign. The American Independent Party of California was an affiliate of the Constitution Party since its founding, but disaffiliated itself after the 2008 Constitution Party Convention to support Alan Keyes and his America’s Independent Party. The Constitution Party’s affiliate in California now bears the name of California Constitution Party.

Green Party of the United States (GPUS)

is one of the political parties in the United States, and similar in mission to many of the worldwide Green Parties. The Greens, a voluntary association of state parties, have been active as a nationally recognized political party since 2001. Prior to national formation, many state affiliates had already formed and were recognized by their corresponding states. The Association of State Green Parties (ASGP), a forerunner organization, first gained widespread public attention during Ralph Nader’s presidential runs in 1996 and 2000. With the founding of the Green Party of the United States, the party established a national political presence becoming the primary national Green organization in the U.S. eclipsing the earlier Greens/Green Party USA which emphasized non-electoral movement building.

I have voted for Green Candidates now and again. Now I’m not sure I want to do that again. Being fiscally liberal is not a good fit for me. And voting for a “Green” is quite often the same as voting for a Democrat. The same skunk with a differant stipe isn’t what I’m looking for.

There are literally dozens of other “3rd Parties”, many whom I must confess I had never heard of before. There is a link below if you want to take a look around and see what’s available.

The problem for most 3rd Party candidates is getting on the ballot.

In most states a 3rd party candidate must gather signatures from citizens. The number varies from state to state. Here’s just a sample:

Georgia: The legislature passed a law in 1943 requiring that new party and independent candidates submit a petition signed by 5% of the number of registered voters in order to get on the ballot for any office. Previously, any party could get on the ballot just by requesting it. The result has been that since 1943, there has not been one third party candidate on the Georgia ballot for U.S. House of Representatives.

Florida: The ballot access laws for third parties and independent candidates have been very severe ever since 1931. Since 1931, there have been only two third party candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives on the ballot and only one third party candidate for the U.S. Senate. There has not been a third party or independent candidate on the ballot for Governor of Florida since 1920. Currently, a filing fee of 7% of the annual salary of the office is also required unless the candidate is a pauper, while a third party or independent candidate for any statewide office (other than president) needs 196,255 valid signatures — no independent candidate in any state in the U.S. has ever successfully complied with a signature requirement greater than 134,781 signatures.

Arkansas: The legislature passed a law in 1971 providing that new parties could not get on the ballot unless they submit a petition signed by a number of voters equal to 7% of the last vote cast. Because this law in 1977 was held unconstitutional (courts have since held that petition requirements cannot exceed 5% of the electorate), the legislature changed it to 3%. No political party has ever succeeded in getting on the Arkansas ballot, under either the 7% or the 3% rule — partly because the state requires that the petition be completed in the four months during the odd year before an election year.

West Virginia: Third party and independent candidates for office (other than president) must circulate their petition before the primary. It is a crime for any petition circulator to approach anyone without saying “If you sign my petition, you cannot vote in the primary.” The law can be enforced because it is illegal for anyone to circulate a petition without first obtaining “credentials” from election officials for this purpose. Furthermore, it is impossible for third party or independent candidates (not running for president) to ever know in advance if they have enough valid signatures because if anyone who signs a candidate’s petition then votes in a primary, the signature of that person is invalid. For candidates, it is impossible to know who will actually vote in the primary, and it is too late to get signatures after the primary.

Tennessee – 25 signatures is all that is required as of 2006 to be put on the ballot for any elected office. A candidate for President of the United States must put foward a full slate of candidates who have agreed to serve as electors (11, at least until the 2010 census). A party must mainatain five percent of the vote statewide in order to be recognized as a party and have its candidates listed on the ballot under that party’s name; the last third party to do so was the American Party in 1968; none of its candidates received five percent of the statewide vote in 1970 and it was then decertified as an official party.

Texas – For a registered political party in a statewide election to gain ballot access, they must either 1) obtain five percent of the vote in any statewide election or 2) collect petition signatures equal to one percent of the total votes cast in the preceding election for governor, and must do so by January 2 of the year in which such statewide election is held. An independent candidate for any statewide office must collect petition signatures equal to one percent of the total votes cast for governor, and must do so beginning the day after primary elections are held and complete collection within 60 days thereafter (if runoff elections are held, the window is shortened to beginning the day after runoff elections are held and completed within 30 days thereafter). The petition signature cannot be from anyone who voted in either primary (including runoff), and voters cannot sign multiple petitions (they must sign a petition for one party or candidate only).

Both major parties make it as difficult as possible for 3rd Party candidates to get on a ballot. It’s not that they fear that any 3rd party will win,although Ross Perot did give them a scare, it’s that 3rd parties often act as spoilers.

Perot’s candidacy received increasing media attention when the competitive phase of the primary season ended for the two major parties. President George H.W. Bush was losing support, and Democratic nominee Bill Clinton was still suffering from the numerous scandal allegations made in the previous months. With the insurgent candidacies of Republican Pat Buchanan and Democrat Jerry Brown winding down, Perot was the natural beneficiary of populist resentment toward establishment politicians. On May 25, 1992 he was featured on the cover of Time Magazine with the title “Waiting for Perot”, an allusion to Samuel Beckett’s play Waiting for Godot.

Whatever the reason the fact remains that we could have more choices when we vote. We can have more choices if we insist that those choices be made available to us in every election, local, state and national. We owe it to ourselves to look around and see what’s available.

Or we can just make our selection from a very limited menu as usual. Funny thing is, we wouldn’t accept that at a hamburger joint but we accept it meekly when it comes to our government.  If we don’t work to change that we have only ourselves to blame.

It doesn’t matter what the experts, the mavens, the pundidiots, and common wisdom is trying to tell us. Because all of the above are so wrong so often that why we listen to them/it at all is a complete mystery to me. A mystery I suspect would baffle the offspring of Sherlock Holmes and Miss Marple. And that’s the picture I leave you to try to get out of your head. Big winking smiley with sunglasses

links110_a

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_political_parties_in_the_United_States#Historical_political_parties

This link is for modern political parties:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Third_party_(United_States)

Ross Perot link:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ross_Perot

Campaign to get 3rd Party Candidates on Every Congressional Ballot

http://www.breakthematrix.com/Third-Party/campaign-to-get-3rd-party-candidates-on-EVERY-Congressional-ballot-in-2010

Getting 3rd Party Candidates on the ballot a difficult endeavor

http://www.satireandcomment.com/sc1007thirdparty.html

Ballot access

http://www.ballot-access.org/winger/fbfp.html

Ballot access laws by state

http://home.earthlink.net/~maxhamforpresident/id28.html

Wells Fargo Bank Goes Insane! (Antidote: Nice Pictures)

~~By InsightAnalytical-GRL

It’s way past my bedtime and after a very busy weekend tending to my mother, just home from the hospital, I ran out of gas when it came to doing a post for today.

However, I’m still up and wired since I got off the phone with Wells Fargo Bank.

It all started when my mother and I set up a joint checking account, a sort of  “just in case” account so I could pay bills, shop, etc. if she couldn’t get out on her own.

First paper statement comes, no problem.

I go online tonight to check this little account, as well as another account that is for an A-B  trust we have.  WELL……………I see that when I sign in to the checking account, there’s the info from the A-B Trust.  Then I try my mother’s separate account and the little joint checking account is there, too.  Well, that’s OK, but what’s freaky is that I don’t have the totals for each account separately. I get the info on the A-B trust,  HER account (a living trust), each combined with the the info from the joint checking account (money which is outside the trusts) into one total.

In other words, each trust account doesn’t have its total separate…the totals both include the  joint checking account. Not good!

So I call Wells Fargo. Around and around we go on the phone…it all has to do with Social Security numbers and since I’m a trustee of  the A-B trust, well, that little checking account is joined to that.  Same thing with my mother, whose SS on the joint checking account screws up her trust and the A-B trust.  And I get linked to my mother’s trust, too!  We’re all thrown in together.   And I’m finally told that the checking account can be de-linked, but if I do that, I won’t be able to see the trust account I need to access online.  WTF???  I’m supposed to straighten it out at the branch, but they are the ones who set it up to begin with…

I can sign onto an account at Schwab and find two accounts there, mine and a trust…but when I click on the one, I get that ONE account, not the money mixed together!  At TDAmeritrade, I have a separate sign-in each for my account and the trust.  NOTHING gets co-mingled there, either.

But not at Wells Fargo. The last question the guy on the phone asked me was, “Why would you not want them linked?”    “Shit,”  I thought… but said:

“Well, it’s useless to sign on to get a total on an account and instead get a number that combines another account in with it!! “

I finished with a flourish, telling the guy that now I understood how Wells Fargo could make a dumb deal and buy Wachovia and their mortgage mess.  The same jackasses who did that deal created this nightmare with accounts being glombed together.

Now, they MAY be able to fix all this, but we’ve decided to close the little checking account and take it elsewhere if we can find a place that won’t freak over two accounts and combine them!  I mean, a trust is treated as a separate individual and money outside of the trust, stays out of it!

I know this sounds boring but these people are taking our tax money to get “bailed out” and they can’t even set up a bunch of accounts correctly and according to the damned IRS rules.

I won’t bore you with this any longer.  To reward you for your patience, I’m posting a few pictures.  The banks are closed since it’s President’s Day so I can’t do anything to straighten out this mess…so I’ll enjoy the pictures and hope you do, too.

Slick in Stylish Off-the-Shoulder PJs

Slick in Stylish Off-the-Shoulder PJs

Tico with His Mealtime Squeaker Toy

Tico with His Mealtime Dinner Bell Squeaker Toy

Tico squeaks toys when he wants to eat!  This is his favorite…

Toro Trying on Some Thread, Which Went Back to the Store

Toro Trying on Some Threads, Which Went Back to the Store for Obvious Reasons

Awhile back, someone requested more pictures of sunsets, but I thought I’d go with a SUNRISE picture instead…

SUNRISE 1/23/09

SUNRISE 1/23/09

Well, hope you enjoy your day today!

And my condolences to Lincoln and Washington who now have to share one lousy day.  Washington who??

The Obama/Media Combine Whoring Abraham Lincoln, Non-Stop

~~By InsightAnalytical-GRL

President-elect Lincoln, February 23, 1961

President-elect Lincoln, February 23, 1861

If there’s one thing that really bugs me about the present sorry state of affairs we find ourselves in, it’s the utter lack of “history.”  Everything goes down the rabbit hole, unless it is re-written and spun into a revised version of what actually happened before. Rarely is any news item put into context, unless it pertains to the career/personal life of a Britney Spears or some other “celebs  in the news.”

Obama, of course, in his Reno, Nevada interview during the primaries in which he waxed poetic about Ronald Reagan, completely dissed continued references to lessons “learned” from the Vietnam War. (And, I see how lately, Wes Clark has joined the bandwagon).  History? WHO NEEDS IT WHEN WE ARE CREATING OUR OWN FOR MASS CONSUMPTION!!

The only history that matters these days is “Obama History.”   Almost nothing is ticking me off more about  this cheesy media creation hitting D.C. than the misuse of the legacy of Abraham Lincoln. To see “Honest Abe” being used like a brand logo a la Mr. Clean or Ronald McDonald, especially by a liar like Obama, is more than just cheesy–it’s downright nauseating.

Of course, the general public doesn’t give a hoot, since they don’t know squat about Lincoln. How could they? They don’t know squat about ANYTHING other than football scores and the weather.  Knowledge about George Washington isn’t faring too well either, from what I can see.

Of course, when they took away the holiday for each of these Presidents and glommed them into one day–President’s Day–that was the start of the disrespect.  Hey, why have two holidays, one for the guy who was there at the founding of the nation  and one for the guy who held the country together during a civil war and got assassinated for his trouble, if you can have one day and can get all this history out of the way in one fell swoop? And even better…banks only have to close for one day instead of two! As an extra bonus,  it’s easier to have one big sales event rather than changing the ads for another one only a week or so later!

I’ll make a prediction: You’re going to see a “Obama Day” as soon as is possible. I bet it will celebrated on August 4th, Obama’s birthday, nicely slotted in between July 4th and Labor Day.  The sales planned that day will be especially big in the sporting goods stores (lots of opportunity to sell bathing suits) and the grocery stores will feature bologna, of course.  There’s no way you’ll see “white sales” because they would be deemed racist, of course!

Now, back to Abraham Lincoln, who has been used by the Obama camp to the extreme. I get the “Lincoln freed the slaves” angle and the narrative that ties into the first “black” President, coming from Illinois, no less.  The Lincoln references kicked off  in February 2007, when Obama picked the Old State Capitol in Springfield, Illinois to announce his candidacy.  But since then, Lincoln has been cheapened by Axelrod and Obama and their marketing slaves who are in overdrive.

Over the weekend,  the Obama family visited the Lincoln Memorial:

Obama family visits Lincoln Memorial

By CHRISTINE SIMMONS, Associated Press Writer Christine Simmons, Associated Press Writer Sun Jan 11, 12:52 am ET

WASHINGTON – President-elect Barack Obama made an unannounced visit Saturday night with his family to see the Lincoln Memorial, paying tribute to a former president he frequently invokes as an inspiration.

It was a day in which Obama played the role of tourist, seeing the most famous monuments in the nation’s capital while experiencing the flavor of the city.

(SNIP)

AP – President-elect Barack Obama walks with his wife Michelle, and daughters Sasha and Malia, after touring …

snip

Obama will be back at the Lincoln Memorial soon. He plans to trace the train route that Lincoln took and hold a welcome event at the Lincoln Memorial ahead of his Jan. 20 inauguration.

Though he’s worked in Washington for about four years as a senator, Obama appeared to relish the sights of Washington on Saturday. Before arriving at the Lincoln Memorial, his motorcade drove on Constitution Avenue and then swerved around on a road right beside the Washington Monument. His family had the opportunity to get a full, close-up view of the monument for several minutes.

(MORE)

The whole tone of the article makes it seems that the Obama family are first-time tourists.  “Experienced the flavor of the city”??  “Appeared to relish the sight”??? Which makes me wonder…if  Obama and his family are so devoted to Abraham Lincoln, didn’t they hot foot it to the Lincoln Memorial when he first came to the Senate?? Maybe he was just too busy signing those book deals for later use in a the “unplanned” Presidential campaign…Of course, Obama didn’t really “work” in D.C. for four years, since half the time was spent running for President in spite of announcing that he didn’t have enough experience to do so…

Taking the train route that Lincoln traveled and the event planned at the Lincoln Memorial are  the culmination of this Lincoln blitz.  Some previous uses of Lincoln as a stage prop include:

1. The news that one of Obama’s kids will be doing her homework on Lincoln’s desk…and it was HER idea!!  Oh, please, who can buy this?? Well, Barbara Walter could and the whole video is still available with the ABC story:

Malia Obama Calls Dibs on Lincoln’s Desk

Obama Talks to Barbara Walters About Homework, History and Happy Family

Malia Obama, the 10-year-old daughter of President-elect Obama, plans to make herself right at home in the White House and has already called dibs on using Abraham Lincoln’s desk for her homework.

(SNIP)

“She says, ‘You know, Daddy, I’ve got an idea,'” Obama told ABC News’ Barbara Walters during an exclusive interview.

(SNIP)

“She says, ‘Well you know how sometimes I have these, you know, big papers that I have to write? If I’ve got an important paper, a history paper, I think I’m going to go in that room where Abraham Lincoln, where there’s that thing where he signed it?”

“You mean the Gettysburg Address?” Obama asked.

Yeah. I’m going to sit at that desk because I’m thinking that will inspire big thoughts,” she told her father.

“Hey, go ahead kid,” Michelle Obama said with a laugh.

OH, YEAH, the kid thought that one up ALL BY HERSELF!!  Any actual PROOF she said it??  I doubt it…sounds like a canned speech to me at the very least, or another FAKE part of Obama’s life history.

And, by the way, isn’t that desk a national treasure?? The kid’s got “dibs“????  What if this little scholar spills a soda all over it? I guess we’ll never hear about it, so not to worry…I bet Lincoln’s own kids never did there homework on this desk…Lincoln was too busy trying to deal with the Civil War, I would guess.  And, oh, yes, the White House was plenty “kid-friendly” then, too…

I really am curious, though, about who will be the first guest in the Lincoln Bedroom…

Of course, there’s MORE!

2. Obama will be EATING LIKE LINCOLN!!  From ABC’s Jake Tapper:

Obama Will Eat Like Lincoln on Inauguration Day

January 10, 2009 11:41 AM

On Inauguration Day, not only will President-elect Obama be sworn in using the Bible that was used to swear in President Abraham Lincoln, he will dine like Lincoln as well.

The luncheon that will be served in Congress’s Statuary Hall to the president-elect and vice president-elect and their families — as well as congressional leaders, justices of the Supreme Court and pending members of the Obama Cabinet — will be modeled after foods that Lincoln ate and enjoyed.

The first course will even be served on replicas of the china picked out by then-first lady Mary Todd Lincoln at the beginning of her husband’s term in office.

(MORE)

What, only replicas of the Lincoln china????

3. Then there’s THE BIBLE mentioned above:

Via the Columbus Dispatch (original story in the Chicago Tribune)

Obama’s Bible choice another nod to Lincoln

Wednesday,  December 24, 2008 2:58 AM

CHICAGO TRIBUNE

KAILUA, Hawaii — When he places his hand on a Bible to be sworn into office on Jan. 20, Barack Obama plans to use the holy book used by Abraham Lincoln at his first inauguration in 1861.

The selection maintains the Obama practice of encouraging historical comparisons with the 16th president, who was the first from Illinois and one of the next president’s favorites.

In announcing his presidential bid in February 2007, Obama picked the Old State Capitol in Springfield, where Lincoln had served. He also plans to follow Lincoln’s example by taking a train to Washington for his inauguration.

Obama will be the first president since Lincoln to use this particular Bible, which is typically housed at the Library of Congress. The book was not the Lincoln family Bible, which was packed away among family belongings that were being shipped from Springfield.

(MORE)

Well, no replica this time….it will be the REAL bible that Lincoln used.  I sure hope it isn’t raining or snowing on Inauguration Day, for the sake of the Lincoln Bible, if nothing else…

***

Yup,  Barack Obama really “hearts” Abe Lincoln!!  They have so much in common especially since they both represented Illinois. Of course, Obamas got to Illinois in a rather roundabout way.  At least Lincoln came from the nearby frontier…

And there’s so much more they share…not. While Lincoln was struggling in the wilds and living in a lean-to and log cabin, Obama was, well, er, a different set of character-building experiences:

Obama: From unknown to nominee, a meteoric rise

CHICAGO (AP) — When Barack Obama arrived at the Democratic National Convention eight years ago, he was a politician in need of clout.

He had just been trounced in his bid for Congress. His credit card was rejected at the car rental counter. He couldn’t snare a floor pass, so he ended up watching most of the speeches on TV monitors in the arena. And he went home early.

His political future was uncertain.

Four years later, Obama attended the 2004 Democratic convention. This time, though, there was a sea change: He had been tapped to be the keynote speaker, a coveted spot for up-and-comers — and as a U.S. Senate nominee generating political buzz, he fit the bill.

Gosh, what difficulties Obama had to face!  Heck, at least  he was spared the the horrors of Lincoln-Douglas-type debates!

Poor Lincoln, being used by this crowd.  But, how can anybody be surprised, since the Obama machine has shown so little capacity for class and respect all along?  Yup, Abraham Lincoln, right up there with Ludacris…

***

Abraham Lincoln — Timeline, Photos, Words (The History Place)