I do not like being negative about things, but sometimes I believe that a “crude” face to face with reality is more valuable than keeping false hopes. I also believe that as a Philosopher it’s my duty to disagree with any given group of people at any given time (insert ironic emoticon here).
The 3rd wheel in this two wheel bike
For years third parties have played a marginal, but sometimes faithful role in US politics; the most recent case being the Gore – Bush election, although it has been argued that the 3rd parties also had a negative effect on the Bush – Kerry election and hence have become the little mosquito that doesn’t let the major parties have a good night sleep, but that nobody really cares much in the big skim of things.
And then, there was the 2016 election
All of the suden we are faced with Donald Trump (Republican) and Hillary Clinton (Democratic) the two most unpopular presidential candidates in history and next thing we know third parties have a better placement than ever because many of us have discover that we don’t want to be constrain by just two political options (mostly because our favorite candidates in each of those options didn’t make it this far).
In the middle of all this, the Libertarian Party has somewhat become the “party of the disenfranchised” but, as indicated by their Vice Presidential Candidate Willian Weld (former Republican who in my humble opinion should be the Presidential Candidate), their real expectation is to achieve a 5% of the vote, so that they can receive Federal Funds that will allow them to be in the national ballot, but have no expectations on winning even many local elections.
Whatcha gonna do?
Let me keep it short and simple, what is on stake in this election if very important, perhaps more important than other elections, the risk of having a “Chávez like” president could be not just bad, but could send us backwards and this is no small thing.
What to do? Do what Bernie Sanders asked his followers to do, build the third party option (Libertarian or otherwise) from the ground up, be involved, work the long term goals instead of trying to create and “all of the sudden I just don’t like anybody option”. The democratic process does not begin and end with the presidential election, but this is one part of it.
The electoral system
As a final point, I would like to highlight the fact that our electoral system is ton of he most retrograde systems in the world which instead of giving the tools to every citizen to express their political opinion, gives the power to an elite that may very well choose whatever president they decide because there is no nominal, but electoral system vote.
Not only that, the system is so very different per state, or even county that makes the whole election process much more complicated than necessary.
I am an advocate of “One Person, One Vote”, also known as “Nominal Election System” where you can choose and vote for the person for office instead of the party.
Finally, be aware, be educated and be active on what you believe is the path government should move through and as a very important part of that process I believe it is necessary to reform the way political campaigns are funded, so that not only those who do not have millions of dollars at their disposition can also be a real part of the democratic process and not just the mosquito in the room.
Now, make your voice be heard and GO VOTE!