Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Time To Give The US Election System An Enema!

I don’t know about you but I think it’s time that the US Presidential election system could use a good enema to help expel what is about to happen. Let’s truly begin a movement to change the process that so many despise and weep over.

The argument over the Electoral College is a tired debate, it’s cliché to attack but it’s loved by Pundits to play games and beat the victory drum. Look it’s only a matter of time before we start hearing the cries of heartbroken about how the Electoral College system must go in favor of the popular vote. Think about it, can one, voter and candidate alike, take pride in winning the popular vote knowing full well that Hillary and Donnie are the least popular candidates in Presidential election history?

Outside of calling for candidates to partake in a version of Survivor or for higher entertainment value a game of Wipe Out, we’re stuck with the same old complaints of a system that has survived this long under its true intention.

So why not look around at where changes can take place to save the collective sanity of a nation that has been beaten down over Campaign 2016 since Campaign 2012 ended! Yes, behind the Media curtain is a list of possible contenders for the next presidential election and they must be talked about now! Because the viewers haven’t recovered from the past 4 year hangover, so keep pouring the juice.

The 2012 election hadn’t even ended and Pundits were already pulling names from their partisan sponsored hats, which explains why the GOP had such a lackluster roster thanks to likes of Hannity rubbing the shoulders and ear nibbling of Christie, Cruz, Paul and Rubio. Hell Tom Cotton wrote a letter to the Shah of Iran and people were clamoring for him to jump in.

Hey don’t get me wrong Left/Right Media were already running their pre-recorded Hillary specials before her cankles waddled to the announcement podium giving no hope to any DEM even thinking about stepping up.

In all honesty, countries like Germany and England have the right ideas on how campaigns should be run and I truly think we need to adopt some of ideas. I say this because there is absolutely no reason why a Presidential election should begin just hours after one ended!

From TV commercial limitation, stranglehold on campaign finance and a limited campaign schedule Germany and England have the right ideas. There’s a theme here and it could be enjoyable, especially for those that aren’t into politics as many claim. Let’s call it a campaign abbreviation; less advertisements, less debate, less primary, less annoyance. Yes just like a diet only with less withdrawal symptoms.

Germany only allows one 90 second political commercial per candidate. Yes just one ad for the entire campaign season and it only airs equal to that of how many votes the party received in the last election, so 100 votes equals 100 times commercial airtime. Seriously Germany does not believe in negative campaigning. For “Jolly ‘Ol” England the rules are even harsher as campaign tv commercials are banished completely.

Both Germany and UK allow candidates to campaign but those are only allowed to happen in a 6 week timeframe ending on Election Day and somewhere in that timeframe a debate may take place. Grant it that the UK voters are not choosing their prime minister, they are voting for Parliament who then choose their leaders

"If you have one party that's just able to amass a load of money and shout louder than the others, that's not healthy for democracy. And we wouldn't interpret freedom of speech to mean an unlimited ability to spend, spend, spend." Katie Ghose/Chief Executive of the Electoral Reform Society

Where’s the fun in trying to polarize a nation with overpriced, overplayed attack ads that spew the same regurgitated myths and tales of (insert name) opponents for people to buy bumper stickers and t-shirts to state their allegiance to one candidate/party? With all the headaches and regurgitated myths being passed we really need to put limits on everything from Candidate merchandise, Pundits endorsement, SuperPacs, and even Primary calendars. It's the latter that seems to be easiest to begin with.

There’s so much to list that has Germany and UK doing that seems to be correct however there is so much money tied up in American politics that we have become accustomed too that any changes might end in a revolt. But let’s play

Taxpayers spend just north of $400 million on primary elections. There’s no need to have 12-13 months of primary campaigning with 6 months of sporadic elections to widdle down the numerous candidates, especially when the majority of the candidates are Governors and members of Congress that aren’t doing their day jump while traveling around the nation kissing hands, shaking babies and shoveling food in their mouths while acting interested in your thoughts. I’m declaring an 8 week primary campaign calendar, say from April 1 to May 30 with everyone voting on the same day. None of this first in the nation, caucuses and super delegates garbage, simply toss tradition for a winner take all one night melee.

Candidates can still do their interviews but the true campaigning begins on April 1 and of course their advertising dollars are saved with only one commercial allowed to play. Ya know what, I'm feeling generous, so let's allow two commercials and those are only allowed to play per the candidates national approval rating. So pucker up candidates and buy stick in lip balm.

Of course we need primary debates, but those are limited to only four national debates because anything over four is just repetitive talking points and slander anyway. Besides haven’t we complained enough about the GOP’s scheduled 15-18 debates or how the DNC scheduled their debates on Saturday/Sunday evenings against College/NFL football or The Walking Dead to hide Hillary?

Plus, and for me the golden ticket, there’s truly no need for a party convention. Yes bars and strippers will be saddened by that proposal but it's not needed and a city will not have to prepare for protesters and drunk delegates.

Problem solved. Move along, enjoy your summer till the General Election begins.

As for the General Election, the primary rules apply; limit commercials to quantity of 2 and airplay equals that of National approval rating, 8 week campaign schedule that beginning with the first Tuesday after Labor Day and ending on Election Night, and the already agreed upon three debate system between the candidates.

Sounds pretty fair and balanced. How can anyone complain about that set up, outside of the candidates, media, pundits, and special interests?

Wait, what am I thinking? This is the US and I'm positive a very smart lawyer would figure out that one or two 90 second political ads is against one’s freedom of speech or a candidate would revert back to the much maligned 2008 Obama 30 minute campaign ad about his “policies and ideas” that has yet to be matched, unless you want to consider the ESPN/LeBron James free agency special as one.

The other wrinkle that shows is that of the PAC/SuperPAC that raise ungodly amounts of money to push a candidate's agenda with actually being associated with the candidate. That would be a long, expensive SCOTUS battle to get Citizens United struck from law. I have a better chance of passing a kidney stone the size of a Volkswagen Beetle then defeating Citizens United and the Koch Bros money behind it.

In the end there’s too much at stake in the our election cycle to allow changes. Special interests, political party and big money donors would not have time to gloat and spend so much time as too why their boy (or girl) is the best for the country no matter how bad they perform or embarrass.

That's it, slap the tap on some Little Bitchin' Otter Ale and pay your political tab because it's not long before you're drowning under the nozzle


Thursday, June 16, 2016

Has the political endorsement become a career death knell?

Think about it, the everyday usage of the words “endorse” and “support” are pretty similar in definition, however in the political arena the spin on the definitions hold greater meaning, especially in the Media and the hardcore party card holder.

For example, when a politician “endorses” a candidate/legislation, they own it, especially when they autograph their intention. But by “supporting” a candidate/legislation it leaves an open door to walk away or simply say “I was for it before being against it.” It all sounds silly, but it’s true.

I’ve always wanted to hear establishment members of either party say they can’t endorse a presumptive candidate and I always felt the GOP would be the one to fall first, more or less in thanks to the 2010 Tea Party invasion. But as “independent” as many GOP’ers say the party is, they sure are showing their colors and calling out any politician that is not “endorsing” the presumptive candidate Donnie.

I ain’t sticking up for the DEM or Hillary. DEM’s have been drinking the juice like it’s a Jonestown revival way too long in hopes of anointing Hillary to her throne. Actually I think it’s a prerequisite to swallow a big gulp once you check the “D” on your voter registration card. Hell even a large majority of the Bernie backers will fall in line when the Philly convention begins because they know it’s a safe bet and the DEM establishment’s backbone is very flexible to appease their demands.

But with five months left till the election, the “endorsement” game is in full motion. It’s fun to watch Punditries excitement to announce who’s ready to endorse, even if it’s only a Pseudo-celebrity. But the numbers don’t lie and show the party loyalty is stronger in the DEM.

As we know, the GOP holds the majority in the Senate and House, plus Governors. Currently, 12:54 Senators, 30:247 House Reps and 13:31 Governors have all pledged their undying endorsement to Donnie. Small numbers when considering the Clinton inaugural ball has already seated the current 40:46 Senators, 182:188 House Reps, and 16 Govs.
Hey give the DEM props for keeping their politicians and fandom in check.

In a way, one can understand the GOP’s crusade to find a loophole to rid themselves of having to listen to Donnie’s victory speech in Cleveland, but it’s their own fault. By having a lackluster stable of candidates for the past three Presidential election cycles, two of which were theirs to lose, it was inevitable that someone like Donnie would be victorious.

The GOP is now trying to reign in a person whose character is what people have been asking for; a tough talking, strong backbone, non-apologetic candidate or the complete opposite of McCain and Romney. GOP leadership has time and time again instructed Donnie to “tone down the rhetoric, stop speaking in abbreviation, and get on script” to rid themselves of looking like a bunch of monkeys f*cking a football.

Sorry but the analogy fits the GOP this election cycle.

For all the off color remarks, arrogance and multiple trips to Principal Preibus’ office, Donnie simply will not be broken. The Media and GOP establishment (not to mention other campaigns) never took Donnie’s entrance seriously as they considered it a typical Donnie stunt to garner the attention he relishes and if he went forth it would be a “quickie, in & out” run because he just cannot handle negativity in an adult manner. But for all his cringe worthy sound bites, he has gained momentum but what does that actually show; are the so called base tired of the career politician? Are they really tired of PC candidates bending over to gain popularity points with outside party demographics?

The genius of the Donnie campaign with spewing one-liners, spitting insults, and of course soapbox knee jerk reactionism sound bites has people gathering and Media loving those ratings. He has forced every candidate, politician and punditry to consistently mention his name during every interview.

The Media feels it’s necessary for those who have endorsed to address Donnie’s actions and as of late it’s left many out in the cold with his folk. Speaker Paul Ryan has been taking heat for not jumping on board the endorsement train immediately and then when he finally did, it was in a “ho-hum” manner yet that has had him scorning Donnie’s remarks which brought Sarah Palin riding her caribou from the Great White North in an attempt to knock Ryan out of office.

Psst! Hey Sarah, even he loses his primary, he can still be speaker, but since Ryan is ahead by 90% I’d say keep your day job (whatever that might be).

No matter how many times the GOP establishment will have to wave their magical hand, the mouth of Donnie can’t be stopped. They’ve tried the teleprompter adjustment, they’ve tried handing him scripts, they’ve requested softer voice, but it has proven all for not as the Media loves unscripted Donnie.

Half-witted statements such as; "He's not a war hero. He's a war hero because he was captured. I like people that weren't captured," when talking about Sen. McCain’s failed 2008 Presidential bid or in pointing to an African American supporter at rally: "Oh, look at my African-American over here. Look at him.Are you the greatest?" to the current “ask the gays” when asked about which candidate will be more supportive of the LGBT community, have the GOP scrambling like the Keystone cops, trying to control the fire and get back on message.

It will be interesting to see if the GOP endorsement numbers go up or how many will cop-out and go for the “supportive” role to save face come November. As I’ve stated in the past, I am not endorsing nor supporting either Hillary or Donnie and that leaves the only alternative as Gary Johnson. But then he had to go and pull a “Putin” with a shirtless GQ photo shoot!

That’s it, slap the political tap and stock up the liquor cabinet because it’s gonna be a bumping 5 months