Today, Tuesday Nov. 6 is the big election day. Most Americans will be lining up to cast their votes for the presidential candidates of the Political Duopoly. But not me. We have a very efficient early vote-by-mail system here in the state of Washington. So I’ve already casted my ballot a week ago. And I voted for Dr. Jill Stein and Cheri Honkala of the Green Party.
Those who have been following my political rants on Facebook already know why I’ve decided to go with a Third Party. Bottom line: I refuse to accept the fallacy of the “lesser evil.” So I’ve chosen to exercise my right by voting for the best candidate whom I have the most political affinity. Dr. Jill Stein’s The Green New Deal appeals to my political, environmental, economic, and ethical sensibilities.
I understand the “lesser evil” argument. I sympathize with the core reasoning behind it and the idea of long-term political strategy. But I just refuse to be a part of a broken political system which continue to dumb down its citizens and make a mockery of its democratic principles.
Having said that, I also understand that Third Party candidates have virtually zero chance of winning an election. But this is not about winning. I don’t think that Third Party candidates run because they have a delusion that they might win the election. They do it because they want to send a message. They do it because they want to set an example. They do it because they’re tired of the same old political duopoly which are subservient to plutocratic and corporate interests. They do it because they care. A vote for a Third party is not a wasted vote. It’s a vote put to its rightful use. As one blogger eloquently put it:
“The most important political changes in the last century: Anti-Trust legislation, Women’s right to vote, the right of unionization, the advent of the social security system, the end of the Vietnam War – did NOT happen because the major parties initiated them, or because people continued to vote for the ‘lesser of two evils.’
They happened because people voted for Third Parties. Third Parties have *always* been the engines that have catapulted important change to the forefront of political discourse.
These parties did not ‘win’ the elections – but they raised the issues in ways that were much louder and much more effective. In each case, minor parties demanded these changes – and when the major parties saw their growing numbers, they finally found the political courage to adopt those positions.”
Exactly. In addition, there is a 5% rule which makes voting Third Party really matter.
“But there is a potential game changer in this election cycle that the mainstream media and political establishments don’t want you to know about, and it could transform the face of American politics: the 5% threshold for third-parties. If a third party candidate receives at least 5% of the national popular vote, his or her party becomes eligible for ballot access in all fifty states in 2016, and will gain access to federal campaign funding that will help to dramatically level the playing field.”
So don’t believe people who say voting for Third Party is a “wasted” vote. A wasted vote is a vote in automatic pilot, without knowing the issues, without adhering to your own principles, and without voting with your eyes wide open.
I will not bother to list my grievances with Pres. Obama, or why Mitt Romney will be a disaster for the country, or the sobering and chilling similarities between the two on key issues. I’ve already done that before. Thinking about it makes me feel nauseous. I will just recommend to anyone reading this to watch the Third Party Presidential debates and see how different, more substantial, and more focused the Third Party candidates are on the issues that really matter to us–the American people.
See also the most recent debate between Third Party candidates Jill Stein and Gary Johnson.
And when all things are said and done, who you vote for is up to you. As long as you vote your heart out and go to the polls with your eyes wide open on the issues you care about, that’s still democracy in action, even in the midst of a Two-Party dictatorship whose allegiance is with the Plutocratic Elites.
P.S. I’ve already called out the result of the election months back. I believe that Pres. Obama will have his second-term. In fact, I have a running bet with three of my Facebook peeps who are pro-Romney. I can’t wait to collect my winnings when this political kabuki theater is all over.
[Thanks! I could use some coffee :) ]