: Having taken a refreshing few days off to paint my dining room (petit bourgeoisie that I am, but I'll be damned if I eat in a celery-green room), I see that certain recurring themes continue to recur.
: 1. When the Revolution comes...
: To which I respond, there won't be any damned revolution, and from the rhetoric that flies around here concerning it, that's a good thing. Firing squads lining up the cancerous old guard -- the hell with that!
: 2. Vote mainstream, vote Green/3rd party, don't vote.
: I'm voting in November: first, because there are millions around the world who are dying for the opportunity to vote; second, because not voting is a cop-out -- other people will certainly vote, and you have no right to complain if you don't like the results; third, it does make a difference who wins. Having a Green like Nader in the White House will be far better for the future of this planet than an environmental enemy like Bush, or even a wishy-washing green like Gore or Bradley. I can picture Nader voting for Kyoto, and I can see Gore doing it if he's kicked hard enough, but Bush will never do it.
: 3. All or nothing, now!
: That's the bullshit strategy of frigid ideologues. Small steps forward can mean big things for those at the bottom (including the environment), and such steps are better than nothing at all. Take big steps when you can, and continue to strive for them, but don't reject progress on account of it being to small to satisfy you -- that's vanity.
: 4. Dictators who fought "communism" and jailed leftists (or simply the poor) were our friends, and therefore worthy of our support.
: No one who tortures and murders others is worthy of your support.
I'm sure we don't agree on a lot, MDG. I'd like to say, however, that when level heads discourse, the validity of any idea will present itself without the advocate resorting to inflamatory rhetoric, name calling, sweeping generalizations, or mischaracterizations.
To answer only one issue; I think (only in the presidential election) a vote outside the parties is a vote for the opposite ideal. Given the electoral college, it is quite impossible for a third party to win the office. If you were to tally the votes cast in previous elections of every single independent, reform party, green party candidate,and lump them all together, you'd barely have enough to win even one of the smallest states in the electoral college. Even Ross Perot, who made the best showing in recent history with 19.7 million votes failed to get a single state. At face value this might seem unfair but I think all it really does is guarantee a two party system. That, in turn, does quite a bit to create a functional mandate for the newly elected official.
This link is a pretty good agument for our electoral college.