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Sunday, October 19, 2008

Defining a Party

In the United States we live in what most consider a two party system. Unless of course you are a stark believer in the Green Party, Libertarian Party, or the Constitution Party then you feel your beliefs on how the United States Government should or shouldn’t control the country are not being met. The United States has been primarily a two-party system since the 1860’s.There has been a couple dozen other parties to vote for elected officials in the United States over the last two hundred years to mention a few: The Socialist Workers Party, which was considered a communist party here in the United States with leaders such as Malcolm X and Che Guevara. Another one being the Socialist Party USA in the early 70’s whose platform was this “The Party's principles and platform call for the elimination of the power of big business through public ownership and workers' control, production for use instead of profit, and the establishment of a classless society.” I am sorry what is wrong with this? Is this such a bad thing if we all as American's could live happy and equal?

I want to break down the five major parties and what they stand for so the average American can understand. If only because it seems most people stand behind a “party name” while not knowing what they are standing for.

The Democratic Party which was formed originally in the late 1700’s and then the modern form as we know it was formed in the 1820’s. Being one of the oldest political parties in the world it stands for the government playing a large role in the reduction of poverty and social injustice while using taxation as the means to providing the programs that help with social causes. Some major key points for the Democratic Party in this very important election year are Universal Healthcare, ending the war in Iraq and to lower the amount of money the DOD gets, environmental and energy plans to bring the country where it belongs in the 21st century. The need for less big business in the government and more for the people of the United States in order to provide the people the opportunity to live the American Dream.

The Green Party is still a fairly new party since it was initially formed in 1996, with only being an active portion of out government since 2001. The green party is very far to the left and an idealist dream come true wanting everything from ecological change, gender/feminist equality, future focus, decentralization of the government and non-violence. I think the reason the Green Party has had such a hard time gaining popularity is because socially it is as liberal as liberal gets.( I will admit in 2000 I voted for Green Party and I was part of the 3% wasted vote that could have changed the direction of the last 8 years if those votes were cast for Gore instead of Nader.)

The Republican Party or the GOP (Grand Old Party) is the 2nd largest party in the United States. The Republican Party believes in smaller government and bigger business. They believe that legislators should create the laws and govern the people and that judges (Supreme Court) should not create laws. The biggest issue in this direction was Roe vs. Wade that allows for woman’s rights in deciding how to handle her body and the life of her unborn baby. The Republicans have supported many laws that restrict judge’s ability to hear cases such as same-sex marriage in the Marriage Protection Act, and the rights of detainees in Guantanamo Bay in the Detainee Treatment Act. They believe in fiscal conservatism with higher spending for defense. They believe that private sectors are more effective in helping the poor than government is. Some key points for the GOP this year are defense and making sure the war in Iraq is won, privatization of Social Security and the health care system. Their stand on Energy is prehistoric with emphasize on drilling domestically instead of advancing on alternative forms of energy such as hydrogen, solar and wind. Finally, Republicans are anti-union and oppose the raising of minimum wage because their focus is Big Business and not small town USA.

The Libertarian Party being the 5th largest party in the United States that has elected officials. This party stands behind privatization of Social Security and Welfare, with hopes in eliminating Social Welfare altogether. Protection of Property Rights as stated in the 5th and 14th amendment of the Constitution. Against any civil rights as Affirmative action as they restrict the private sector. The party is pro-choice in thoughts of abortion. Libertarians’ would like to eliminate the punishment for victimless crimes such as prostitution and use of controlled substances. The elimination of tax-payer funded social programs such as food stamps and section eight housing are also their key points. The one point I can stand behind is the use of “hard” currency and making sure the value of the dollar is backed by commodities.

Finally we have the Constitution Party which was founded as the US Taxpayers Party in 1992 is the 3rd largest party in the United States with just over 300k registered voters. This party backs the constitution and rights of the United States of America. This Party wants to reduce spending, cut political regulation and eliminate the income tax while replacing it with an excise tax. They stand behind having a smaller role in the United Nations and other international affairs and withdrawal from trade agreements such as the WTO and NAFTA. They also oppose same-sex unions, abortion and limit the death penalty to those convicted of capital crimes. Also opposing pornography citing it is the most destructive element in families. They support the repealing of the 16th (which allows Congress to tax income) and the 17th (which requires the direct election of senators)Amendments.

Why I bring this up is because as of the last week or so McCain has been throwing around the word “Socialist” as if it was a derogatory statement about Obama. He is trying to use scare tactics in order to ensure his win as the next President of the United States of America. Most average Americans know what they believe in, the role of government they want in their lives and do not go any further to know what politicians are selling them during an election. Stating that Obama wants to “spread the wealth” in the United States, but the conversation with Joe the Plumber was misunderstood. He wants to help the Americans that could use Joe’s services and without money to do so how could Joe’s business grow. I love that philosophy because it is the bottom-up plan and not the trickle down effect (this doesn’t work). Put more money in Americans hands to then spend and grow the economy.

In a McCain speech and the coward Joe Lieberman standing with him. Here McCain acts if he is not the one that started this whole “Joe the Plumber” mess to begin with. Joe the Plumber later stated that thebusiness he wanted to buy would not make more than 250k a year so he would be okay with Obama’s tax plan. But seems McCain can not get the facts straight or at least he makes them work for him for the time being.

This was my 2+ cents on education of the American voter.
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