Friday, January 18, 2008

Caucus for comics!

Tomorrow, Saturday, January 19th, Nevada will be doing the caucus thang. There probably won't be any candidates that will admit to reading comics (grin), because that's way too much of a liberal, outcast thing to do and they don't won't to alienate all the masses that are afraid of the truths contained in comics (grin).

SERIOUSLY though, I'm more excited about this year's presidential election than I have been in years. I think on the Democratic Party side, there's not a candidate that I would have a problem with if he or she won. I also think a Democrat has a great chance of winning this year because unlike the last two elections, the Democratic Parrty isn't trying to be like the Republican Party (it even seems like the candidates are no longer afraid of being called liberals) as people really seem to want a change from what has been delivered the past three years.

Until I read this week's Las Vegas CityLife (a local weekly newspaper) I wasn't real clear on what the differences are between a causcus and a primary. Basically a caucus is funded by the political party and a primary is funded by the local or state goverment. Primaries are more similar to how a person votes when they vote on the general election, but caucuses involve people going to their precient destination and then gathering under banners according to who they 'd like to see become the candidate and then speakers can try to persude others there why they should also choose that person as the candidate.

I have several problems with the way the political campaign process works, but my biggest problem with the whole system is the INSANE amounts of money it takes to run a successful campaign (just think of the more productive things that could be done with the money that is being spent on campaigns). I'd like to see all the candidates get the same amount of money to work with and with all the candidates getting the same length of time to play out their campaigns, similar to the system that England has, but that's not going to happen. Another thing that isn't going to happen is a third party winning a presidential election in this day and age (although I would have bet against the Berlin Wall coming down and most of communism having ended in my lifetime from happening so there is still some hope). Also with the way caucuses and primaries taking place earlier and earlier in the year, what ends up happening is some candidates end up dropping out before most of the other states even get to consider that candidate (like Biden and Dodds). Caucuses also are kind of akin to peer pressure groups in that some people may vote for a candidate that wasn't their first choice because the union they belong to may be there who want them to vote a certain way (for example). Some would argue that the present system is just a kind of survival of the fittest and that those candidates who bow out are just not representative of what the people want, but I'd argue that a big part of it is them not having endless pools of money and or that the media hasn't embraced them. Candidates taking money for ther campaign from lobbyists is also something I'm opposed to because again most lobby groups throw around huge sums of money with expectations that once they've helped fund a candidate and that person wins, that candidate has to put that lobbyists interests on their agenda.

Sadly, our present presidential campaign system isn't going to change any time soon because they are so entrenched in the United States political system. Since I do live here in the U.S. and I can't change the way things work, I'm going to caucus tomorrow. I'm hoping my presence and hopefully a large turnout in the Nevada Democratic caucus will continue to prove that people really want change to happen. Right now, while I like Edwards and Kucinich, I'll be in Hillary's corner (even though she too has taken money from lobbists) as I believe with her as a candidate (or Obama), a huge signal would be sent to people here in the U.S. and the world that the U.S. is really serious about change and would inspire people from all demographics with the possiblities of what the U.S. could be. It could be argued as to whether change will really happen with Hilary or Obama as our President, but I really think there's more of a chance of change happening with them at the helm than with the other candidates (especially with any of the Republican candidates, except maybe Ron Paul, but his ideas are too radical to be accepted by the masses and especially Republicans).

So even though none of the candidates will come out and say they like comic books and people should support them (comic books), I'm still pretty excited about this year and what the outcome will be come November. I also still think that it is important to vote even in light of what happened in 2000 and 2004, but I'll throw my hands up in the air in defeat if things ultimately mirror the end results of those years.

4 comments:

Camila said...

your title is funny :D

getting money from special interest groups is like getting money from drug dealers :P

go for edwards! He is the actually a good really candidate who has a chance to win.

Anyway, what gets on my nerves about the elections is the statistics. People (including myself) cannot handle statistics, they take every number too seriously and base their vote on it. I think president election statistics should be banned. But that is never going to happen.

There are some laws to "help" election money be fair. But people always find loopholes around it. There was a guy on The Daily Show talking about how he helped rig an election....
http://www.thedailyshow.com/video
/index.jhtml?videoId=148053&title
=allen-raymond

well, have a nice caucus.

Ralph Mathieu said...

I really do think that all of this year's Democratic candidates would make a good next president and even think that if Hillary is elected she'll transcend the minus points that go with accepting money from lobbyists.

Ultimately I think one of the reasons I'm going with Hillary (or Obama as a second choice), is I really think either of them can win and this will spark a great wake up call for the U.S. leading to forward progression, not stagnation or regression. I think a lot of people, especially young people, will be super dissapointed if either Hillary or Obama doesn't win and they'll get further detached from thinking that they are important to affecting future events.

I really think true change and progression would happen with someone like Dennis Kucinich or Ralph Nadar (who's not running), but they don't stand a chance of winning largely because they don't have the media appeal or huge amounts of money needed for a winning campaign.

Camila, I still wish we were caucusing at the same place even though we've got different choices.

aaron s. said...

I haven't picked a candidate to support yet. I watched the Democratic debate the other night and got annoyed at the way all the candidates were essentially giving identical answers. I think Obama is clearly the most charismatic figure in the race, but that isn't the same thing as being the most capable. Regardless, at this point any of the Democratic cadidates would be a better choice than the guys the Republicans are running, so I'm sure I'll just vote blue in November.

I do think you're on to something Ralph. A president who reads comics could only make the world a better place.

Ralph Mathieu said...

Aaron, I think you're spot on about Obama. He's still fairly young so he has plenty of time to mature into the great leader many think he is already. I think you're also right about the Democratic candidates saying the same things, but politicians have been doing this for years, trying to attract the largest pool of potential voters. This does make it hard to differentiate between them and that's partially why I think any of the Democratic candidates would be good as our next president (as long as they aren't just talking the talk).

Aaron,, you've been posting replies on my blog pretty much since I started this blog last June and I still don't know who you are. If you come to my store, next time say "hi, I'm Arron, the guy that posts on your blog" so that I can put a picture next to the name. And thanks for reading my rambling thoughts here!

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