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User avatar #8747 - failtolawl (09/13/2012) [-]
You know what the problem with America is right now?
it's not the politicians, those are the results of the problem, the problem is ill informed citizens.
There is only one way a politician can get into office- the vote of the people.
Our country is terribly educated into thinking politics is about blame and hatred. Mainly due to the media and mud-slinging. Do you want to vote for the same people that have been causing the problems in the world for the past 100 years (dems and repubs), or actually vote somebody who is in office based on ideas and not political affiliation.

there is more than two people running for president, you want to prove to them we aren't fucking mindless sheep?
put your vote into a third or fourth candidate, and to make it a just cause, actually RESEARCH his/her ideals before you make a vote, there should be no "lesser of two evils" bullshit.


oh, and pay attention in history class, for fucks sake do it
/rant
User avatar #8752 to #8747 - airguitar (09/13/2012) [-]
I am going to break down the economics of your comment, I have many problems with it:

1) People don't have a big enough incentive to pay attention. In other words they are "rationally ignorant". They are ignorant about politics because getting information is actually very costly- time is a very valuable resource. To someone who is thinking about voting, the benefits they might receive from voting may not equal to the expenses of voting. They are ignorant, but it is a rational decision on their part. Also consider how much more ignorant voters were in the past without news and media everywhere.

In addition, voting is costly. This includes the information costs, fuel, and time. It has been calculated that the chances of getting hit by a car on the way to a polling station are much higher than the chances of your vote actually influencing an election. This means that people may not think voting is worth it- which is true for many.

Here is a further example to express rational ignorance. Suppose that 300 farmers band together and decide that they want to get farming subsidies from the government. This group goes to their representative and ask for a $10,000 farming subsidy for EACH of them ($3 Million total). The group promises that they will donate funds to the representative's next election if he grants them the 10k each. For the farmers, adding $10,000 to each of their bank accounts is a big deal. They are willing to do a lot of research to find a candidate that will grant them the subsidy. However, there are a lot of people in the US. If the $3 Million total cost of the subsidies is divided evenly among 100 Million active taxpayers, each taxpayer would only be paying $0.30 each towards the farmers. This amount is so insignificant to the average voter that it would cost them more to buy a stamp to put on a letter to their congressman.

They are not ignorant because they are bad people. It's because they don't consider it worth their time.
User avatar #8753 to #8752 - airguitar (09/13/2012) [-]
2) The current system in the United States can not realistically support more than 2 parties. This is based on the constitution and the way the voting process in America was designed. I do not agree with it in any way, I am meerly explaining the truth.

Initially the founding fathers (I think it was James Madison's idea particularly) created the system to have two parties on purpose. They did this by requiring that a Majority (51%) popular vote be present for a candidate to be elected. A plurality cannot win you an election, having a larger percent than your opponents will not do. If you get 49% of the vote and your two opponents get 30% and 21%- you still did not get a large enough portion to win. Naturally, this type of system only allows there to be two parties who can compete for political positions. If another party were to enter, it would halt the political process until it merged with one of the other groups. Keep in mind that a party's only goal is to get members elected. A party would be more than willing to merge with another party if it had a similar ideology.

As I began to mention, the founding fathers did this on purpose. James Madison and the other founders new that the country was very divided soon after the Revolutionary war. a 51%+ majority was required so that the population would be forced to unify behind their candidate. If only a plurality was required to win, there would not be as much unity. For the first 50 years or so this type of system worked well in the United States and had the intended results. Without George Washington and the total support he had, the country might have easily fell apart. I agree with you that today the two parties are not adequate, but "3rd and 4th" parties can not survive under the current rules.
User avatar #8754 to #8753 - airguitar (09/13/2012) [-]

3) In the economic field of public choice it is highly agreed upon thaat voters typically do not really know what they will get out of a representative. This is for several reasons.

For starters, when you vote for a candidate you don't really have that big of a choice. Even in a 3, 4, 5, or 6 party system it is very rare to find a candidate who alligns with all of your political views. Thus, as voters we are forced to vote on candidates whom we believe closest to what we want. Just because someone votes for a candidate does not mean they actually support all, or even many, of the candidates platform.

Additionally, many candidates will lie or just say what people want to hear to get in to office. As voters, we do not actually know what a candidate's intentions are. Like so many representatives in the past, someone runnign for office may say one thing to get a lot of vots- and then they will do the complete opposite. As voters, we have absolutely NO control over this and is a big flaw in the politicians- not the voters. You can not blame voters "ignorance" for this and politicans deserve the blame in this area.

4) Corruption. I will not even go into the many intricate details and examples contained here. Just keep in mind it is incredibly nonsensical to blame the voters when a very high percentage of politicians end up being corrupted. This is not necessarily even their fault, power is very corrupting. However, this large amount of corruption that exists in US politics is much more damaging than many people believe and is absolutely the fault of politicians and the current system that allows campaign contributions and similar lobbying techniques.

I know you will probably have many disagreements with this response. I was just really annoyed you would try to blame the people. The people have much less of an impact than you think. Both parties will defend the current system and the politicians are worthy of a lot of criticism.
User avatar #8782 to #8754 - failtolawl (09/13/2012) [-]
Let me explain what I mean about the people being at fault here.

They are ill informed because they subconsciously want to be.

They are easily lied to because they are told what they want to hear, therefore selfish.

Politicians lie and cheat because the people allow it to happen. They are the result, the people are the cause.

And regarding to the 2 party system being the only way. The reasons parties exist is to follow in accordance to their certain ideals. A third party could have shared ideas with 2 others. Merging parties permanently because of one debate makes no sense. Polarity in congress separates us, not a variety of ideas under one roof.
User avatar #8793 to #8782 - airguitar (09/14/2012) [-]
- As I explained, they are "ill informed" because life is hard and not many people have enough time to go digging to learn about candidates. People vote for candidates that they will believe will benefit them, if they do not believe that conducting research will benefit their life- why should they learn more? It might be a problem, but it is a result of people making a RATIONAL decision not to learn about the candidates- it is an economic decision.

- Politicians "tell us what we want to hear" because politicians aren't idiots. If you are a politician you are a vote maximizer, you want to get as many votes as possible. Sadly, this causes you to seek votes by doing what you have to. This is a problem with the system much more than with voters.

- Politicians lie and cheat because humans are self-interested. The reason there is corruption is because the system is flawed, not the voters. How can I know, when voting, whether a politician is going to take bribes from lobbyists? In addition, power itelf is very corrupting- being in a position of power can corrupt ANY human.

- What I am saying is that under the 51% majority needed policy, there will NEVER be a 3rd party that stands a chance. The entire role of elections is to get 1 party member elected, and those elections are all or nothing. In other words, there is no second place- you need to win. This is different than in systems (parliaments for example) where a party just tries to win as many seats as it can.
User avatar #8748 to #8747 - pokemonstheshiz ONLINE (09/13/2012) [-]
fourth candidate? wut
User avatar #8779 to #8748 - failtolawl (09/13/2012) [-]
there are 175 people running for president.
User avatar #8781 to #8779 - pokemonstheshiz ONLINE (09/13/2012) [-]
But it would make more sense to just say 3rd party candidate or another candidate. I just meant that usage wasn't explicitly clear
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