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Old 05-07-2004, 03:24 PM   #26
Martigan
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I think if most people were informed, then we would scrap the two party system and establish real democracy in this country.
You mean like they have in places like India or Israel...where you can never really get a majority and have to kiss ass to make coalitions? I think we have a very good clean system...not perfect...but I think it is better than anything else out there.

No political system can be perfect when you involve humans..
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Old 05-07-2004, 03:27 PM   #27
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I think they missed your answer Luri.



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Old 05-07-2004, 03:29 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by Martigan
You mean like they have in places like India or Israel...where you can never really get a majority and have to kiss ass to make coalitions? I think we have a very good clean system...not perfect...but I think it is better than anything else out there.

No political system can be perfect when you involve humans..
Then maybe we should have no political system

I WILL push anarchy on you all
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Old 05-07-2004, 03:47 PM   #29
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Really? Why?

BTW, I don't see what relevance that comment had to the rest of your posting. So you baited, I took it.
Maybe silly was too irresponsible of a word, but I'm trying to determine what type of real democracy you meant. Because, in the US, we have never had a real democracy. The two-party system almost seems like a constant in elected governmental systems. The two-person adversarial conflict is what drives politics now and what has driven it throughout the entire history of our nation. The goal of the third party candidate is not to win the election, but to present on a national platform new ideas and reform plans for the country. Many times these plans get assimilated into one of the two major parties and the third party dies until enough people decide that more reform is in order. In a roundabout way, this establishes the impression of a truly representative government that you were looking for. Your comment to scrap the two-party system just seemed a little off the wall and lacking serious consideration to the role that our current political system has played.
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Old 05-07-2004, 04:13 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by Valleycrest
Maybe silly was too irresponsible of a word, but I'm trying to determine what type of real democracy you meant. Because, in the US, we have never had a real democracy. The two-party system almost seems like a constant in elected governmental systems. The two-person adversarial conflict is what drives politics now and what has driven it throughout the entire history of our nation. The goal of the third party candidate is not to win the election, but to present on a national platform new ideas and reform plans for the country. Many times these plans get assimilated into one of the two major parties and the third party dies until enough people decide that more reform is in order. In a roundabout way, this establishes the impression of a truly representative government that you were looking for. Your comment to scrap the two-party system just seemed a little off the wall and lacking serious consideration to the role that our current political system has played.
2 questions,
(1) Do you breathe when you talk?
(2) Do you understand what you read?

I really hate to be rude, but at least follow the thread. Luri has already answered
most of your questions before you even posted them. As did I, too his post.

Get a grip on yourself man. The world isn't ending.



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Old 05-07-2004, 04:49 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Valleycrest
Maybe silly was too irresponsible of a word, but I'm trying to determine what type of real democracy you meant.
"Real democracy" is obviously vague, but using vague words generally stimulates conversation at times.

What I mean by "real democracy" is one where every citizen has equal power (i.e., equal access to their representatives). I think many feel as I do that the US government caters to a relatively small group of people wielding great wealth and therefore rule by proxy.

Because, in the US, we have never had a real democracy.
I suppose you have to now clarify what you mean by "real democracy".

The two-party system almost seems like a constant in elected governmental systems. The two-person adversarial conflict is what drives politics now and what has driven it throughout the entire history of our nation.
Not true. Yes, conflict drives politics, but conflict is not at issue. Rather, representation is the issue.

I think Americans have become brainwashed into thinking that taking the middle ground is the best way, because it avoids conflict. Most people use gravity to move their asses because it is far easier to sit in a chair than to take a stand on some issue.

I think this laziness about politics is endemic to a society that by and large has given up on working for change because they see that lobbyists and special interests win at the end of the day. Electing a Democrat did no good because the moment they furnished their office on the hill, they were taking kickbacks from the same lobby their "opponents" were just to pay for the furniture.

I think it was James Madison who valued "factions" because while it took longer to accomplish some end, usually the means to the end truly represented the best way towards it. Further, multiple factions entails that every party must work towards a compromise so that every segment represented gets something... not a muddled middle of the road piece of legislation that only caters to the few with enough cash to enact change.

The goal of the third party candidate is not to win the election, but to present on a national platform new ideas and reform plans for the country.
Well, that's the sort of thing the two parties would like us to believe. That a third party is simply an emasculated entity that can't make change... third parties just run up a flag for people to look at. Nevermind it will be promptly pulled down, packed up, and the same old tired flag will be flown again.

Many times these plans get assimilated into one of the two major parties and the third party dies until enough people decide that more reform is in order. In a roundabout way, this establishes the impression of a truly representative government that you were looking for.
Or, it simply mollifies the majority, lulling them into a peacfull slumber while no real change happens. In fact, think about what is important to people in America... is it really just money? People seem to be voting for the most tax cuts and the hope of a better paying job. Not one of the two major parties have even seriously touched upon the foundering infrastructure of America, the failed education system, or health care. Both parties just pay lip service to these real issues then battle it out over who will "really" provide the tax cuts. WOOP-TI-DOO! That isn't reform in the slightest.

Your comment to scrap the two-party system just seemed a little off the wall and lacking serious consideration to the role that our current political system has played.
Perhaps you were being a tad bit hasty given the amount of information I shared?
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Old 05-07-2004, 05:01 PM   #32
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Oh, and sorry Flub... your thread got jacked.

/runs up the Jolly Roger
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Old 05-07-2004, 05:49 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by Lurikeen
Or, it simply mollifies the majority, lulling them into a peacfull
slumber while no real change happens. In fact, think about what is important to
people in America... is it really just money? People seem to be voting for the
most tax cuts and the hope of a better paying job. Not one of the two major
parties have even seriously touched upon the foundering infrastructure of
America, the failed education system, or health care.
Lurikeen finds logic? Not this overall post, but..
Hmm

Your posts are questionable as to wether you're the original Lurikeen, Lurikeen.
Not that it's a bad thing. I appreciate your candor in this thread. But still,
90's are very rare for people with such (past) extreme beliefs.
Not to mention those g-forcing 120s, and 180s.

Not a question, nothing to answer. Just stating my observation.




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Old 05-07-2004, 06:02 PM   #34
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Zolmaz, perhaps my flaming detracted from the points I was making and now that I have dropped the flames my points can shine through?

I don't know... it is the same person. Just look at my avatar. I haven't stopped bashing Bush.
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Old 05-07-2004, 06:15 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by Lurikeen
Zolmaz, perhaps my flaming detracted from the points I was making and now that I have dropped the flames my points can shine through?

I don't know... it is the same person. Just look at my avatar. I haven't stopped bashing Bush.
Actually, your flaming did diminish your points so far away that,
I couldn't see past the fires.

Welcome back Lurikeen.
It's Good to have your poitical angle in a brighter light. /Bow




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Old 05-08-2004, 04:17 AM   #36
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So what>? I dont reward him doing nothing for three years =)
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Old 05-08-2004, 05:16 AM   #37
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I think if most people were informed, then we would scrap the two party system and establish real democracy in this country.
Hmmm. Don't mean any disrespect here, but we have 3 parties in parliament in Britain and it hasn't really changed anything much.

Voting now is kind of like having to choose between 3 flavours of shit sandwich instead of only 2...
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Old 05-10-2004, 09:02 AM   #38
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2 questions,
(1) Do you breathe when you talk?
(2) Do you understand what you read?

I really hate to be rude, but at least follow the thread. Luri has already answered
most of your questions before you even posted them. As did I, too his post.

Get a grip on yourself man. The world isn't ending.
Zolmaz, wth are you talking about? my lack of paragraphs? I didn't think it necessary as I was trying to be brief. I do understand what I read, I also understand what I write, and if I'm not mistaken I did not ask any questions of Lurikeen, so I don't know what questions you are referring to. Just fyi, a question is normally followed with a question mark. I also don't recall speaking about the end of the world. Could you explain why you think I'm decribing the end of the world please? (btw, that was a question--note the question mark)
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Old 05-10-2004, 09:26 AM   #39
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"Real democracy" is obviously vague, but using vague words generally stimulates conversation at times.

What I mean by "real democracy" is one where every citizen has equal power (i.e., equal access to their representatives). I think many feel as I do that the US government caters to a relatively small group of people wielding great wealth and therefore rule by proxy.
It's a noble dream, but I don't see how it will ever work. The real democracy I was referring to is one where everyone has a direct vote or a say in legislation, not through a representative. We have never had this. The irresponsibility I saw was the fact that you presented an idea that is unattainable. It like saying that you'd like to eliminate poverty...Yeah that's a nice idea, but how do you even begin to deal with it. Now that you've added a little more consideration, I don't consider it irresponsible, but I'm sure how you can see that the original one-liner had me shaking my head.

I think this laziness about politics is endemic to a society that by and large has given up on working for change because they see that lobbyists and special interests win at the end of the day. Electing a Democrat did no good because the moment they furnished their office on the hill, they were taking kickbacks from the same lobby their "opponents" were just to pay for the furniture.

I think it was James Madison who valued "factions" because while it took longer to accomplish some end, usually the means to the end truly represented the best way towards it. Further, multiple factions entails that every party must work towards a compromise so that every segment represented gets something... not a muddled middle of the road piece of legislation that only caters to the few with enough cash to enact change.
Right, the Federalist papers were somewhat of a template of how our society was going to be created. You are stating how you think things should be, I'm basically discussing why I think things can't be that way; not because your ideas are stupid or wrong, but because your ideas rely heavily on the responsibility and voluntary cooperation of people. I just don't see how we can get there from where we are now. Madison obviously thought that this was the best way, the only way to resolve conflicts effectively between peoples in a society.

Well, that's the sort of thing the two parties would like us to believe. That a third party is simply an emasculated entity that can't make change... third parties just run up a flag for people to look at. Nevermind it will be promptly pulled down, packed up, and the same old tired flag will be flown again.
Correct, that's how things have been politically for the United States since the formation of our government. It doesn't matter that the two major parties presented this idea, historically, it has happened this way. I'm just stating things how they are and how they've always been. As a corrolary to that, occasionally a third party has replaced an existing majority party and on one occasion we had only one major political party.

Or, it simply mollifies the majority, lulling them into a peacfull slumber while no real change happens. In fact, think about what is important to people in America... is it really just money? People seem to be voting for the most tax cuts and the hope of a better paying job. Not one of the two major parties have even seriously touched upon the foundering infrastructure of America, the failed education system, or health care. Both parties just pay lip service to these real issues then battle it out over who will "really" provide the tax cuts. WOOP-TI-DOO! That isn't reform in the slightest.
You have a point here, although it is a matter of opinion. I can neither agree nor disagree because the point is too general to form an opinion. I would venture to say though, that the more radical ideas were streamlined and editted to make them acceptable to the vast majority. Sometimes the change that was originally intended never happens.

Perhaps you were being a tad bit hasty given the amount of information I shared?
Perhaps I was, but making a radical statement like that with no explanation or plan of action causes others to wonder if the comment was made by a dreamer or by a revolutionist.

Last edited by Valleycrest; 05-10-2004 at 10:58 AM.
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Old 05-10-2004, 10:07 AM   #40
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Originally Posted by Valleycrest
It's a noble dream, but I don't see how it will ever work. The real democracy I was referring to is one where everyone has a direct vote or a say in legislation, not through a representative. We have never had this. The irresponsibility I saw was the fact that you presented an idea that is unattainable. It like saying that you'd like to eliminate poverty...Yeah that's a nice idea, but how do you even begin to deal with it. Now that you've added a little more consideration, I don't consider it irresponsible, but I'm sure how you can see that the original one-liner had me shaking my head.
Irresponsibility? Well, I am glad you changed your opinion, but for the life of me I can't see where the original "one-line" was irresponsible. Simply because it is your opinion that such is a "noble dream" that can never work doesn't entail that the idea (or even the one-line) is irresponsible.

Also, simply because you think such is not attainable doesn't mean it isn't. As technology grows direct access to our legislature is becoming more widespread and common place. If we can enact significant changes to campaign finance, then we could very well see equal access to our representatives. Really, it isn't such a "noble idea", but a change resulting from technological advancements; especially in communications and networking.

...your ideas rely heavily on the responsibility and voluntary cooperation of people. I just don't see how we can get there from where we are now. Madison obviously thought that this was the best way, the only way to resolve conflicts effectively between peoples in a society.
Yes, well, Arthur C. Clarke wrote a science fiction novel where there were these strange things called "telecommunication satellites" orbiting the planet. We have them today because one man dared to dream. I see your view, on this point, as cynical. I have faith in humanity and can see how we not only can get to the sort of democracy I point at, but see how we are actually slowly moving in that direction now.

I'm just stating things how they are and how they've always been.
I am stating that change is realistic and quite possible.
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Old 05-10-2004, 11:14 AM   #41
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Originally Posted by Lurikeen
I am stating that change is realistic and quite possible.
I am stating that the type of change you suggest is remote and improbable.

You assume that special interest groups and factions can be eliminated. I believe these will always be present. 250 million people do not want the same thing. A candidate is willing to do what he/she knows 1,000 constituents want. This ensures him/her votes and possibly campaign money. Even with direct access to our legislature, I believe special interest will always exist.

You also assume that people care or even want to be involved in their own government. Judging by voter turnouts, I would say most people would care less how things in the government are run. A democracy relies on the people, and if the people have no desire to participate, then the democracy is weak.

Well, I may be cynical or I may be practical, it's hard to say. I actually hope that I'm being cynical because the utopia you describe would be nice to live in.
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Old 05-10-2004, 11:21 AM   #42
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I hate jumping into discussions like these, but I really wish people would understand the meaning of the words they use sometimes

http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=DEMOCRACY

http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=REPUBLIC

Which of these definitions best describe the United States?



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P.S. If you dun know after reading the definitions, just say the Pledge of Allegiance.
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Old 05-10-2004, 12:42 PM   #43
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Old 05-10-2004, 01:26 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by Valleycrest
I actually hope that I'm being cynical because the utopia you describe would be nice to live in.
Utopia? Hardly. I don't think of campaign finance reform and using technology to grant equal access to our representatives the "perfect solution", or one that is not attainable because it is so idealistic.

I do think people care. I think they have become disillusioned by the current political system. People aren't generally apathetic, something has to happen causing us to have little to no interest in the political process. In general, I think people feel disempowered to make change, since choosing between the two political parties in America is much like a choice between Coke and Pepsi. Not anything radically different between the two. So, why bother?
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Old 05-10-2004, 01:31 PM   #45
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Originally Posted by Lurikeen
Oh, and sorry Flub... your thread got jacked.
I knew it would. If you noticed I treated this one like a fart at a cocktail party. I dealt it and walked away. Leaving everyone else to fight about who done it.
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Old 05-10-2004, 01:39 PM   #46
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I hate jumping into discussions like these, but I really wish people would understand the meaning of the words they use sometimes

http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=DEMOCRACY

http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=REPUBLIC

Which of these definitions best describe the United States?
Democratic Republic.
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Old 05-10-2004, 01:48 PM   #47
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What I mean by "real democracy" is one where every citizen has equal power
Originally Posted by Lurikeen
I am talking about a truly representative form of government.
This is what I'm referring to when I say you have a utopic vision. I agree, advances in technology can make communications between a legislator and his/her constituents easier, but you have to remember that 10,000 voices (i.e. special interest groups and lobbyists) are always going to be stronger than one voice.

Originally Posted by Lurikeen
I suppose you have to now clarify what you mean by "real democracy".
Originally Posted by Yendar
I hate jumping into discussions like these, but I really wish people would understand the meaning of the words they use sometimes

http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=DEMOCRACY

http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=REPUBLIC
I meant the literal definition like Yendar pointed out, but I didn't feel it necessary to bring it up.
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Old 05-10-2004, 02:31 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by Valleycrest
I meant the literal definition like Yendar pointed out, but I didn't feel it necessary to bring it up.
Yet, you did.

I don't think you are applying the word "utopia" correctly. I haven't argued for a "perfect" government. Arguing for equal representation is no more "utopian" than arguing for equal rights between the races. Do you think equal rights between races is a utopian idea? Maybe you do. I don't. I don't even think such is an idealistic notion.

The definitions provided by Yendar are not mutually exclusive as Fanon aptly points out with "Democratic Republic". In fact, please take note of item 3 in the definition of Democracy: "The common people, considered as the primary source of political power" and compare that with item 2a under the definition of "republic".

The idea of a Democratic Republic is the establishment of political institutions where ultimate power and authority resides with the people. Honestly, I don't see where there is any conflict between the two definitions and what I have provided as far as the removal of a two party system. In fact, what I have stated is nothing new and is wholly consistent with a republican form of democracy.

My point is that if we have a government where the voice of the people is not being heard becasue of lobbies and special interests, then we have failed to implement a republican form of democracy; the power doesn't rest with the people, per se, but with those people who have money (or power).
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Old 05-10-2004, 03:03 PM   #49
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Yet, you did.
Yendar brought it up.

My point is that if we have a government where the voice of the people is not being heard becasue of lobbies and special interests, then we have failed to implement a republican form of democracy;
The voice of the people? /boggle You make it sound like the population of the US is harmoniously asking for one thing and politicians are blatently ignoring it. Lobbies and special interest groups are made up of groups of people with similar beliefs trying to enact change in the social or political structure to attain the reform they are interested in. Lobbies and special interest groups are not bad, in fact in many ways, they are good because they are the only way to make politicians aware of concerns of the citizens. Like I said, 1,000 or 10,000 voices go a long way with politicians.
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Old 05-10-2004, 04:44 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by Valleycrest
Like I said, $1,000 or $10,000 dollars go a long way with politicians.
I hope you don't mind, but I took the liberty to edit your statement to reflect what many people think goes on in Washington, D.C..

Lobbies and Interest groups aren't bad, per se. It is the wheeling and dealing that is bad. It is the PAC money and soft money that is bad. The favors, trips, etc., are bad. In short, it is called corruption and that is bad.

BTW, I don't disagree with much of what you are writing. However, I think you may be settling for the status quo and I am not. I think we need deeper campaign finance reform; especially limiting the total value of contributions (including gifts and trips) any politician may recieve each year. Maybe that is already happening, but I am not aware of it? If it is, then I think the limit should be lowered dramatically. Basically, I would like to see access to our representatives made much easier for the average person.

I don't have a $1000 dollars to contribute to a campaign and I can't buy a $10,000 dollar per plate dinner so I can bend my President's ear with ideas. In fact, don't you find that incredibly corrupt? I do.

I don't see why, for example, that inner city poor people need to form a grass roots lobby that can raise enough $cash$ in order to convince their congressman (or woman) to push a bill that would rebuild our inner cities. Are we truly a society were people talk, but money walks?

I am truly surprised that you would even boggle over the idea that there is (or should be) a voice of the people. Are you from a democratic country or a communist country? Maybe you live under a dictatorship? I live in a country where there are people, like me, who still believe we have a voice. We aren't confounded or amazed by others who also believe the people have a voice.
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