Why Third-Party Votes Are More Important Than We’ve Realized

Media pundits, politicians, and everyday Party People (Democratic and Republican voters), tell us every four years that voting for a third-party candidate is a waste of our votes. I wrote-in Ron Paul in 2012, and this was apparently a waste of my vote, because I apparently helped Obama win his re-election by not voting for Mitt Romney.

If you’re supporting Bernie Sanders instead of Hillary Clinton, you’re wasting your time and only helping Donald Trump by not supporting Clinton, the only ‘real’ candidate who can stop Trump. Apparently.

The media and the political class (and the Party People who eat-up everything they say) tell us that what matters most is stopping the Greater Of Two Evils. You don’t want Trump to be president, do you? So you have to support Hillary Clinton, even if you don’t agree with everything she says and does.

We are hard-pressed to find a media-outlet that does not swing left or right. You can make the argument that CNN and NPR don’t have political leanings, but it doesn’t matter much – media, and the way many people think about politics, are led by Fox News, MSNBC, The Washington Post, The New York Times.

Our political discourse is dominated by the division of a polar-opposition: you are either right or left. If you are right, anything left is antithetical to your beliefs, morals, ideals; towards which ever side you identify with, the other side is antithetical to who you are as a person.

If you do not agree with Trump, you are going to vote for him, because Hillary (or Sanders) represents everything you disagree with. In fact, if you’re a Republican, you’re emotionally resentful of Hillary and Sanders. You have to be, because they represent the negation of everything you are as a person. The same stands if you’re a Democrat, being emotionally resentful of Trump and Cruz – these people are against everything you define yourself by.

If you see yourself as a Democrat, you are always going to vote for Democrats, because the only other option is the antithesis of you as a person. You will always vote for Democrats. Likewise for Republicans. Regardless of who the nominee is, you will support your party’s nominee to prevent the election of a candidate who represents the negation of who you are as a human being.

It doesn’t matter what the Republican Party has done in the past, or what the party says they’ll do in the future; it does not matter who the Republican Party nominates, or what policies they support, you will vote for Republicans.

What reason, then, does the Republican Party or the Democratic Party have to give a shit about your opinions? For what reason should your chosen party support the policies you favor? You have one choice to make: vote your party, or its polar-opposition.

You will never vote for your polar-opposition, no matter what. Your chosen party has your vote locked in. They do not have to care what you think, what policies you support, as long as they pay you lip service and position the ‘other’, the polar-opposite, as an evil you must emotionally resent.

If you vote for a Republican or a Democrat, your vote is worthless, because your vote was cast years ago when you realized it was You And Yours or Them And Theirs; your vote is worthless, because the party you vote for has no reason to support the policies you support (except, of course, while campaigning) – witness Obama pushing the TPP, opening drilling in Alaska, expanding the NDAA, letting the Pentagon give war-machines to police; witness Bush passing No Child Left Behind, Medicare Part D, letting the NSA spy on everyone, creating the Department of Homeland Security; Obama deporting ‘illegal’ families, Bush letting them in.

This will not change, because your chosen party has no reason to change.

This is why voting for third-party candidates matters more than voting for Republicans and Democrats – by voting for third-party candidates, we force the Republican and Democratic Parties to abide by our ideals, morals, and opinions, to win back our votes.

If you emotionally resent Hillary Clinton, but don’t like Trump (or Cruz), don’t give your vote away – vote for the Libertarian Party, or the Constitution Party.

If you emotionally resent Donald Trump, but don’t like Clinton (or Sanders), don’t resign your vote – vote for the Green Party, or the Socialist Party.

We can continue to vote for people we dislike, just to stop people we hate, and continue to watch our chosen Parties defy their promises and lip-service, or we can weather four years of someone we hate to force these two major political parties to pay attention to our opinions, to support the policies we desire.

Third-Party votes count more than any other vote. And the more people vote for third-parties, the more important these votes will become, the more the Republican and Democratic Parties will have to pass policies we actually approve of.

Want to stop the Republicans from taking over the country? Vote for Socialists. Want to stop the Democratic Party from taking over the country? Vote for Libertarians. The people you hate might win elections for a few years, but the politicians who pay lip-service to your opinions will actually have to start following your opinions, and their respective political party will be stronger for it.

In all, there are 37 third-party political platforms. Not all of these participate in national elections, and not all of these are on all ballots in multiple states. Here’s an excellent list at Ballotpedia.org outlining which third-party platforms are in what states.

Take back American Democracy; vote for Third-Party candidates.

Progressive Contradiction

We view the world in polar opposites, sets of two’s set against each other: men and women, white and black, night and day, love and hate, right and left. A person or a thing must be one of these; a thing can never be both polar opposites, or else it would be a contradiction and explode into some inward -8^8 dimension.

I don’t know if that’s an exact theory, but the gist’s correct: it can’t be night and day simultaneously, you can’t have war and peace at the same time, you aren’t going to turn the lights on by turning them off, and you’re not going to have rotten milk that’s fresh.

Therefor, we choose to value one polar-opposite over the other. It is better to be wise, good, and alive, than it is to be dumb, mean, and dead. Be greedy for yourself, or selfless for the masses. You can support Individualism, or you can support Collectivism.

Much of politics is framed around polar-opposition. If you’re against one, you’re for the other: you can be a Republican or a Democrat, Conservative or Liberal. And, if you don’t straight-forwardly identify with either or, you can only describe yourself, and you will only ever be described by others, as being more Red or more Blue.

Which brings me to Progressivism. Generally, Progressivism is a Collectivist ideology – find me a Progressive who disfavors unions, or who vocally supports personal greed at the expense of the community.

In our society, Collectivism is tied-up with Government – Government is of the people, for the people, by the people; Government is a social institution wherein people work together, collectively, for the collective good (ideally, anyway). Progressivism argues for collective government.

Which is where the Progressive Contradiction lies. Because, no matter how democratic a government is, a government is run by individuals. The President will have four years to individually pass whatever Executive Actions the President chooses. The FCC decided, on its own, to enforce Net Neutrality laws; the individuals who run Medicare/Medicaid have decided, on their own, to change the way they reimburse doctors; someone at the Pentagon decided to sell extraneous military equipment to police departments.

Our system of government relies on individuals who act on their own, or, at least in small groups.

Any system of government depends on authority to survive – these people must have authority over these other people. And, once a person is given authority over others, the collective becomes a series of individuals exerting power over other individuals.

Authority is the imposition of this will over another will.

There is nothing Collective about wielding authority over others, no matter how Progressive a policy is.

I’ll pose the argument that the only action that is collective is the action done for others, not to others. It is not collective or progressive to collect taxes, or pass regulation, or to have any government at all. It is only collective to work with others in non-compulsory agreement. It is only progressive to make a lot of money, and give it all to a children’s hospital. The only thing that is collective is cooperative, not authoritative.

I won’t pose the argument that we need to, in any short amount of time, disband all governments and organize into an anarchic society, but I will argue it’s where we should be heading, however slowly. All we need to do is stop quiveling about authority; instead, selflessly dedicate our time and efforts to others.