Tag Archives: elections

Duverger’s Law Is Why Voting For Dr. Jill Stein Will Never Change Things

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Dr. Jill Stein – Green Party Candidate in 2016

When arguing with friends why they shouldn’t support 3rd party candidates in the national elections, I never had any solid evidence why it would never work. They made good points about principles and needing to ‘send a message’ but Duverger’s Law is concrete proof that voting 3rd party, in our current election system, is plain dumb and helps give us elected people like Donald Trump.

Duverger’s Law provides that “single-member plurality districts produce two-party systems.” That is, when multiple candidates compete for a single job, and the job goes to whoever gets a plurality of the votes, the candidates will tend to sort into exactly two political parties. Third parties will vanish.
According to Duverger, this sorting happens because “the brutal finality of a majority vote on a single ballot forces parties with similar tendencies to regroup their forces at the risk of being overwhelmingly defeated.”

Duverger’s insight is that similarly-minded candidates have no choice but to join together into one of two parties, lest they wind up being divided and conquered. Similarly, third parties wind up undermining democracy because they often cause the candidate who is least preferred by a majority of the electorate to win the election.

The premise of Schultz’s doomed campaign is that there is a burning hunger for a candidate who combines Republican economic policy with Democratic cultural values. Think of him as Paul Ryan, but pro-choice.

But there’s no appetite whatsoever for this kind of candidate outside of a narrow band of Wall Street billionaires and cable news executives. A seminal study of the 2016 election plotted the American electorate on a chart measuring their views on economic and social policy. You see that quadrant in the bottom-right? That’s socially liberal fiscal conservatives. Notice that it’s almost empty.

Meet the dead Frenchman who proved that Howard Schultz is an arrogant twit

The tired argument of “both sides are the same” is not true but if you have three candidates and one of them have views similar to one of the other two then that 3rd person will split the vote of the one they are close to in views.

If people want to see more progressive elected officials then we MUST change our election system to tamp down the unhealthy power of the two major parties. One way to start is increase access to voting and move to a proportional representation voting system just has ranked choice voting.

I also think our election system should be federally based so that the system used is the same in all 50 states.

Unlike how Senator Mitch McConnell feels, election day should be a federal holiday.

After our election system is reformed, then voting for someone like Dr. Stein will actually mean something.

Ohio Press Group Says We Deserve Better Political Reporting

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offical image Dennis Hetzel, executive director of the Ohio Newspaper Association and president of the Ohio Coalition for Open Government
Dennis Hetzel, executive director of the Ohio Newspaper Association and president of the Ohio Coalition for Open Government

I found an interesting guest column in my local paper the other day from Dennis Hetzel, who is executive director of the Ohio Newspaper Association and president of the Ohio Coalition for Open Government. In his column, he admits that journalists in Ohio need to do a better job in reporting on the upcoming elections. Hetzel believes it should be based on issues and not the horse race. I’ve been complaining about that for years and I’m glad Hetzel offers some solutions.
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Swiss Cheese 2016

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Official campaign page for the Swiss Cheese for President 2016 campaign

Cheese! 2016 logo

Read the first interview with the candidate

Swiss’ 4 Point Plan to return America to greatness:

Here is the announcement video:

Download and share this poster on all your social media accounts:


Editor note: In case you read this far I hope you realized this has all been a satire on our sometimes stupid election system. If you didn’t know it before know I apologize for your confusion.

Support real candidates who don’t pander to the small subset of bigots in this country and who want to actually create change.

Not Surprised I Side With Jill Stein

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featured image with text I side with Jill SteinOne of the mainstays of the Internet are self-check quizzes you can take. The ones I like are the political ones. The most famous is the “World’s Smallest Political Quiz” to find out if one is a Libertarian – I’m not by the way. Another quiz that actually can help one understand US politics today is the isidewith.com. You answer questions on various issues and as if by magic the quiz tells you which Presidential candidate your views align with. I wasn’t surprised mine were aligned with Jill Stein from the Green Party.
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National Atheist Party Is Too Thin For A Political Party

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image of National Atheist Party logoRead an article on the Washington Post about a new political party called the National Atheist Party. While I applaud the effort to get atheists more involved in the political process, trying to include a broad progressive platform into such a narrow religious belief label is the wrong way to go.
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