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Strange Famous Forum > Social stuff. Political stuff. KNOWMORE

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MessiahCarey



Joined: 01 Jul 2002
Posts: 10924
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August Spies wrote:
Woah!

apologies. Due to my tiredness I think I used majoritarian and plurality systems backwards. Sorry, switch the terms in my posts. Most of the world runs on a majoritarian system, its the plurality system the U.S. has that leads to two parties.

sorry.


Haha...well then, we'll start HERE:

August Spies wrote:

A majoritarian system ALWAYS leads to a two party system which in fact is a one party system


Is this supposed to mean that a pluralitarian system always leads to a two party system? HUH!? An egg ALWAYS leads to a chicken...

You're really starting to confuse me (could be me being dumb)

plurality:
1. *irrelevant
2. The greater number; a majority; also, the greatest of several numbers; in elections, the excess of the votes given for one candidate over those given for another, or for any other, candidate. When there are more than two candidates, the one who receives the plurality of votes may have less than a majority

I may be lax on my political theory or something - but could you go over, for my benefit, the difference between a majoritarian system and a pluralitarian system?

August Spies wrote:

you might want to take a look at how the labor goverment in england, or the green party in germany has faired. Once they got big they became the same as teh other parties. And they aren't even majoritarian systems.


Yeah, or you could look at Australia - where the Greens aren't Democrats by ANY means yet still hold the majority (unless that has changed). There's a couple other EU countries that have active Green parties that do well, also - I have a feeling if we look at the rest of the world's political structure we may find mixed results that will support EITHER of our positions...

August Spies wrote:

you misunderstand. For the party to become big enough to work in our majoritarian system they would HAVE to change. and they would eventually become the same as teh democrats.



I disagree entirely. With the amount of people I have heard say that they would have voted for Nader (or Jill Stein in MA) if they thought he had a chance I honestly beleive that if he was considered a viable option he would have received a good portion of the votes. Thus the party wouldn't have to change - just the misconception of the "wasted vote". Most Democrats that are actually liberal tend to lean Green...but that isn't to say the party would become the same as the Democrats - that would require big business backing, which just isn't on the Green Party platform, PERIOD.

Any politician who uses the "wasted vote" theory to attack Green Party candidates does NOT respect the democratic system and shouldn't be in politics in the first place. People just need to be turned on to that fact - again, the party doesn't need to change it's the interpretation voting that needs to be fixed (as evidenced by this thread...)

August Spies wrote:
people who are really PRO-VOTING are just as stupid as people who are really ANTI_VOTING. Either way it makes little difference.


Huh? That's fucking absurd. I'm pro-voting...I'm pro-direct action...I'm pro-whatever.you.want.to.do.to.make.things.change. What's stupid about that?

Everyone SHOULD vote. That's just a reality man - if we want a country in which we are represented, we have to vote. It's our only way to do it right now (again, I'd like to change that). If you (I'm using YOU figuratively) don't want to vote then you shouldn't have to - and I respect that (and yes, I think that if you don't vote you STILL CAN BITCH) However - if we are getting into a discussion regarding whether or not your vote COUNTS...that's just a silly argument...of course it does - perhaps not as much as you think it should count (i.e. everyone seems to think that whoever they voted for should automatically win or else "voting doesn't matter") - but it most definately counts...even if only to put your feelings on record...those who voted against Hitler should have just got in line for the slaughter? I mean DAMN...

I don't know man - I think that voting creatively is one of the very few monkey wrenches you can throw into the system nowadays.

"One of the biggest reasons I got back into voting was because I found out how fun it was to vote against giant sport stadiums coming into my city..." - Jello Biafra

You see a lot more of the democratic process working on a small local level...that's what we need - young people involved in local government.

- Shane


Last edited by MessiahCarey on Tue Dec 17, 2002 3:46 pm; edited 1 time in total
Post Tue Dec 17, 2002 3:21 pm
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August Spies



Joined: 09 Aug 2002
Posts: 1979
Location: D.C.
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Sarcastico, couldn't someone easily counter that YOUR attitude will keep everyting permenatnly stagnent. If everyoen votes for the lesser of two evils the two evils will stay about the same ad infinitum. It will always be the Rep and Dems. And they will boht always suck.
Post Tue Dec 17, 2002 3:21 pm
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Sarcastro



Joined: 27 Sep 2002
Posts: 3281
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I agree over time there would need to be changes but if you have no other choice, then why allow other people to decide the outcome for you.

Shouldn't people try to get the best out of a bad situation.
Post Tue Dec 17, 2002 3:27 pm
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August Spies



Joined: 09 Aug 2002
Posts: 1979
Location: D.C.
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Shane, like I said last post my bad I had just woken up and wrote majoritarian instead of pluralitarian.


I may be lax on my political theory or something - but could you go over, for my benefit, the difference between a majoritarian system and a pluralitarian system?


Look at it this way. Let us say there is an election with 4 parties. 3 of them left wing (B,C,D) , 1 of them right wing (A)
lets say the votes will be A= 30% B=26% C= 24% D=20%.

If this was a majoritarian election there would be a run-off election between A and B since no one got over 50%. This would mean B would likely win since 70% of the public is left wing. So if you lived there, you would vote for any party that you like the most, because there is no harm in it. The primary election would only matter if someone got over 50%. But if they were going to get over 50% its irrelevant who you voted for anyway. fairly democratic.

However, if this election was held in the United States A would win the election. They would win even though 70% of the population was left wing.

In pracitcal terms this means the left wing would need to work together and only have 1 canidate. Meaning there would only be TWO parties. Just look at the least election. If Nader had not run, Democrats would have won (they probalby won anyway, but there would not have been a debate). A third party HARMS the side they are closet two because they split votes.

The green party is effectivly out of the elections for the foreseable future because of this.

Again, can you should me a pluralitarian sysetm with Three major parties?

(that only skimmed the surface of pluralitarian problems)

Yeah, or you could look at Australia -

isn't Australia a pluralitarian system?

we may find mixed results that will support EITHER of our positions...
if you would like to show me one that supports your position that would be nice.


that would require big business backing, which just isn't on the Green Party platform, PERIOD.

Well this is why the greens will NEVER become a major party in the United States. The libertarians have a better chance, but its pretty slim too. Like I said the Green party would have to drastically change to have a chance at winning the presidency.

Any politician who uses the "wasted vote" theory to attack Green Party candidates does NOT respect the democratic system and shouldn't be in politics in the first place.

it IS a wasted vote in a pluralitarian system on any PRACTICAL level. It is only not wasted in the sense that it may force the Dems to be more liberal this election, or it is a PROTEST vote.

What's stupid about that?
cause in the end it makes little difference. It stupid to be so upset about it and shout "if you didn't vote you can't complain!" or other absurdities.

if we want a country in which we are represented, we have to vote.

no, we would need a whole new system.

of course it does

although kind of silly to say, it is still ture that YOUR vote doesn't really count. one vote has never ever ever ever ever in the history of large elections decided anything. ever.

I don't know man - I think that voting creatively is one of the very few monkey wrenches you can throw into the system nowadays.

right cause if you vote for Bill Gates it will even show up? no, no one even hears about it.

"One of the biggest reasons I got back into voting was because I found out how fun it was to vote against giant sport stadiums coming into my city..." - Jello Biafra

I will admit that voting on a local level is MUCH MUCH more likely to have an impact than at the national level.
Post Tue Dec 17, 2002 3:38 pm
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MessiahCarey



Joined: 01 Jul 2002
Posts: 10924
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Yep.

Sounds like a majoritarian system is better (by your explaination).

And I GUARANTEE YOU after the FIRST election won by the Green party for any governorship, Senate or House seat you'll see the Dems FLOCKING towards the majoritarian system.

The irony is that you gotta elect people to make the change you want to make, man...

And I was wrong regarding pluralitarian vs. majoritarian - therefore my comments regarding other nations was wrong. I was pretty sure that there are more than 2 active parties in Australia - any Aussies that can help us out with that one? Now that I know the difference between pluralitarian vs. majoritarian I can honestly say that I was basing what I said on # of primary parties - NOT the system by which votes are counted...so I was wrong on a lot of my assumptions.

So tell me if this is a fair middle ground:

"Your vote counts, though little, in a pluralitarian system. It would, however, be much more valid in a majoritarian system."

Sound good? That's what I've gotten out of this so far...doesn't change my premise, though. Voting is really the only way to enact change right now...including the one you want to make.

- Shane
Post Tue Dec 17, 2002 3:54 pm
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MessiahCarey



Joined: 01 Jul 2002
Posts: 10924
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August Spies wrote:

I don't know man - I think that voting creatively is one of the very few monkey wrenches you can throw into the system nowadays.

right cause if you vote for Bill Gates it will even show up? no, no one even hears about it.





Absurd. I was obviously talking about voting for third parties - I am not an idiot that was suggesting a write-in candidate (i.e. STROM THURMOND...he was a monkey wrench...first ever write-in to win an election).

The "monkey wrench" in my opinon is voting in the first place. They DON'T WANT YOU TO VOTE...because if you do so, in an informed manner, then they won't have jobs for very long....

- Shane
Post Tue Dec 17, 2002 4:02 pm
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August Spies



Joined: 09 Aug 2002
Posts: 1979
Location: D.C.
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""Your vote counts, though little, in a pluralitarian system. It would, however, be much more valid in a majoritarian system."

Sound good? That's what I've gotten out of this so far...doesn't change my premise, though. Voting is really the only way to enact change right now...including the one you want to make.


well the point I was trying to get accross was a pluralitarian system always leads to a two party system, where the parties are very similar. See parties have to campaign on a vague genearlities instead of real specifics (like they do in majoritarian systems).

im sorry im studying for exams now, ill try to write some more coherent tomorrow. peace
Post Tue Dec 17, 2002 4:19 pm
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MessiahCarey



Joined: 01 Jul 2002
Posts: 10924
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August Spies wrote:
im sorry im studying for exams now, ill try to write some more coherent tomorrow. peace


Sometimes I don't look at the board for days at a time - don't worry about being extra punctual.

Good luck on your exams.
Post Tue Dec 17, 2002 4:37 pm
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August Spies



Joined: 09 Aug 2002
Posts: 1979
Location: D.C.
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merci, im just such a procrastinator. (and a bad speller)
Post Tue Dec 17, 2002 4:39 pm
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Wakeaholic



Joined: 16 Sep 2002
Posts: 40
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Wow, this thread has gotten really long. I think what everyone needs to do is take a step back, look at the system as a whole entity over a couple hundred years and ask "Is this what a democracy is supposed to be?" Disregarding details, shit isn't getting done the way its supposed to, whether I'm a lame ass bitch for not voting, or a well informed independent human, it doesn't matter. All that matters is that no one, excluding those in power, is really all that happy with our government. Why the hell should people starve when we spend most of our money on "national defense" (which consists of mostly offensive weapons) especially when we wouldn't have to worry about our sorry asses getting attacked if we didn't piss so many people off. How big is the Swiss Army? Canadian? What country can honestly say, "I sure would like to see alot of Canadians die." My point is, we all can agree that something is obviously very very wrong here, and we should not argue about who's method of change is better. Whatever. Anyways, good luck on exams, I just finished mine at 6:30 today! Woo Woo Woo.(what the hell that is I don't know, but if it's one thing, it's exuberance)
Post Tue Dec 17, 2002 10:52 pm
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tim



Joined: 28 Jul 2002
Posts: 891
Location: la, ca
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Bottom line: it behooves you to vote 2004.
Post Wed Dec 18, 2002 12:01 am
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mack-mode



Joined: 02 Sep 2002
Posts: 402
Location: the dirty south
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MessiahCarey wrote:
Wakeaholic wrote:
In other words, it's true that if you voted for Nader you throw your vote away.


Again - circular logic. If enough people "threw their votes away" then we'd have Ralph Nader as President, right? (I am not saying this is a good or bad thing - I'm just saying).

Blah blah Florida blah blah...yeah...the system was manipulated in Florida...that's no mystery. If there was anything that SHOULD be learned regarding what happened in Florida it's that your vote counts an AWFUL FUCKING LOT. Had more cats voted against Bush in other states, Florida wouldn't have even been an issue.

Nobody wanted either of them as President (or at least most didn't) - but they also lacked the fortitude to go and vote for the 3rd option (or 4th if it's there...etc.) - it's fucking pathetic.

You're trying to justify your decision to not vote now - not the other way around. You need to decide whether or not to vote based on how things are - not explain how things are in order to come up with a reason not to vote...

Don't get me wrong though - I definately respect your right NOT to vote, but your reasoning behind it is pretty weak.

Peace,
Shane


more people did vote for gore, he had more votes.

i think what we need to do is to push that lessor of 2 evils to step up and do things right.

or just keep supporting that independant party, if it gains more popularity each year maybe one day we will see it rise, they can't just become one the big ones in a year or two.
Post Wed Dec 18, 2002 12:57 am
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Wallet Inspector



Joined: 02 Jul 2002
Posts: 1022
Location: Weymouth, MA
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Last minute Christmas gifts...

http://www.bushcalendar.com/
Post Wed Dec 18, 2002 4:17 pm
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