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cathyn: (Johnny!)
[personal profile] cathyn
This Presidential cycle we have four candidates who, to their supporters, look like the saviours of the Nation, and to the supporters of any of the other three look like varying degrees of corrupt, evil, uninformed or insane. Of these, two have an actual chance at succeeding, and the other two have a small but fantastically vocal cadre screaming "If you'd stop thinking they didn't have a chance, and just vote for them, they'd win!" As this is not a piece on who I'm voting for and why, nor is an attempt to get you to vote for the same candidate I'm supporting, I'll eschew discussing why this particular line of thought won't work.

What I am here to say is that the Presidency is a terrible place to start your political movement. It is akin to attempting to put a roof on a house before the foundation has been poured, and the walls framed. Should, against all odds, Stein or Johnson win the Presidency, I can guarantee a few things. They will get absolutely nothing, whatsoever, of their platforms accomplished, as the entrenched parties that hold the legislature will do nothing to diminish their brand. You thought Obama faced harsh obstructionism? To quote Al Jolson, "You ain't heard nothing yet!" The Congresscritters in either major party will refuse to support anything which could then be called a "victory" for the third party President, which will lead to the second prediction: That Third Party President (TPP) will absolutely, positively, beyond a shadow of a doubt, be a One Term President. They will lose the 2020 Election in the biggest landslide ever seen, for having been the most utterly ineffectual person to have ever held the Oval Office. Book it, done.

Here's the biggest, most frightening part about that defeat. In 2020, when that TPP is drubbed out of the White House, the Third Party Experiment will be DECEASED. Never ever again will a third party candidate get elected, as it will be a simple exercise to say "What? Vote Libertarian/Green?!? Do you remember how well that worked out last time?!?" DEAD. Green Party: DEAD. Libertarian Party: DEAD. Any other party that crops up: DOA.

Getting back to the house-building analogy, starting with the roof is so very wrong that no builder, anywhere, ever, would consider doing it. How do you build a house? Prepare the site. Layout the foundation. Lay out the inlets and outlets for plumbing, water, electrical. Dig the trenches. Build the steel network that will reinforce the foundation, then pour the foundation. Frame the walls. Et cetera, you get the point. You start from the ground up.

It's EXACTLY the same with a Third Party. You support a Third Party more than you support the Elephant or the Mule? Great. Run for local office, school board, city, county, whatever, and run BIG, BOLD, and BUTCH! Run as your Party's standard bearer, and support others who think like you in their runs. Win some, lose some, and keep running. Two years later, support others when they run for State positions, run for State positions yourself! Make a strong foundation for your Party. At every turn, however, bear your party's flag, and make yourself and your party's ideas the news, and the GOOD NEWS. Do good things for your constituents, "build your brand", make a good name for yourselves and your party. Then run again, for Congress. For the House, for the Senate. Maybe become Governor of your state. Build a good building, a solid building. Then, and only then can you consider putting the roof on the building. The best part of this is, of course, having done all this work, WHEN you, or your guy, wins the Presidency, that Presidency will have the support of the strong foundation you built, the good building you've erected, and when they bring forth the Party's Platform, and ask Congress to make that Platform THE LAW OF THE LAND, there will be members of the Third Party in the House to work on the Federal Budget to fund the proposed measures, and there will be Third Party Senators to pass confirm that Budget, and to Confirm Third Party Justices to the Supreme Court and the other Federal positions which require the Advice and Consent of the Senate to fill.

Then, and only then, will your better ideas have the support required to make the Nation the Libertarian/Green Party Paradise you envision. That's how it's done, and, the ONLY way it's possible to get it done.
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