Thursday, May 5, 2016

#4PARTYPARTY Don't Support the Establishment Nominees? Here's Why and What To Do About It

Are you a Republican who for some reason can't get behind the Republican nominee? What about a Democrat seriously split between Hilary and Bernie? I guarantee you that you are not alone.

There are 300+ million people in America, and for some reason we think that there are only two political ideologies shared by all of us. We act as if there are only two dimensions to political thought: "Right" and "Left." Thankfully, the 2016 election has caused serious political soul-searching among Americans, and hopefully their search brings them to this conclusion: there are not enough political parties in America to reflect the varied political beliefs of 300+ million Americans, and it's time to start some new ones. 

When you Think of Trump and Clinton, you probably think Trump is "far right" and Hilary is "far left." And Sanders? Even further left. Well, that's not entirely accurate. According to The Political Compass (an excellent website with a simple tool to help you find yourself on the political spectrum) the current spread of candidates looks more like this:

Political Compass of 2016 Primary Candidates
US Presidential Presidential candidates 2012 including Donald Trump, Jeb Bush, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders

You see, "Right and Left" are useful tools to identify an economic position, but it doesn't do much to help you identify a social position. Thus, The Political Compass has added the "Authoritarian" top side of the chart (essentially regulating social issues) and the "Libertarian" bottom side (essentially NOT regulating social issues). I won't go into explaining the different quadrants; The Political Compass already does an excellent job of that. My concern is what to do if you find out that you're sitting in a completely different quadrant than the establishment candidates. 

For instance, let's say you have socialist economic tendencies (meaning you are more for the government regulating markets and wealth), but you firmly oppose homosexual marriage and believe the government should regulate marriage accordingly. That is a "Left" economic stance and an "Authoritarian" social stance. You might end up in the top left quadrant somewhere.

Or let's say that you are all about free markets (meaining that you are for getting the government out of the economy and letting the markets do their thing), but you couldn't give a damn about two guys getting married. That is a "Right" economic policy and a more "Libertarian" social policy. That might put you in the bottom right quadrant. With me!

My Political Compass 

personalised chart
So what am I to do? Which candidate am I actually closest to? I'm going with... none! What should really happen is other traditionally Republican bottom-right-ers and I that can't get behind Trump should get together and MAKE OUR OWN POLITICAL PARTY... or just join the Libertarian Party, which is much closer to that bottom right quadrant than the establishment parties. When Hilary wins the Democratic nomination, those of you who cluster around Senator Sanders should START YOUR OWN PARTY. The reason the Democratic Party doesn't want Sanders as the nominee is because HE'S NOT A DEMOCRAT. And by extension, if you identify more with his policies than the Democratic establishment, YOU ARE NOT A DEMOCRAT EITHER. (Sorry about the bold caps; it's not about yelling at you, its more about helping me see what I'm really trying to say.

The real dilemma is that the only two political parties that people seem willing to support are 1) nearly identical in the political spectrum and 2) don't fully encompass the political spectrum, leaving many, many American disenfranchised with the parties and candidates. AND YET WE KEEP VOTING FOR THEM.

And this isn't unique to this election. Here's the political spectrum breakdown of the 2012 election from Political Compass:

Political Compass of the 2012 Presidential Election

US Presidential Presidential candidates 2012 including Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich, Barack Obama, Mitt Romney, Ron Paul

Now is the time. We have a real shot at more political parties in America. If Bernie loses the nomination and you don't can't get behind the establishment, write to him. YouTube him. Instagram him. Hashtag him. Plead with him to run anyway as an Independent or a Social Democrat or Democratic Socialist or whatever it is you want to call it, and then join his party.

If you're a Republican that just can't do Trump, then find another candidate or party to give your vote to. If you are like me in the bottom right quadrant of this spectrum, check out the Libertarian party. If that still doesn't do it for you, take to social media and hashtag your way to a collective voice and start from there.

Whatever you do, don't just perpetuate the misrepresentation of your voice by voting for someone you don't identify with. 

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