In the previous installment I brought together the various threads of my stories and concerns, which point to the need to create a third party. This Legislative Party would target specific Congressional and Senate seats which have proven to be friends of lobbyists over workers, prefer gaining power through donations rather than constituents, and help businesses recover faster than American citizens. Campaign finance reform, Citizens United, and lobbying work together to create a system where money is all-powerful in Washington. Subsequent to the last post, two major banking scandals have emerged in one week. We need something to keep the banks, and other powerful businesses, in line – and that would be government, if it was functioning. Since it is not we are reaching a point of democratic crisis, with the majority of our country’s population disenfranchised.
In this section I tackle the questions and concerns that follow on from declaring the need of a third party.
It won’t work. The money’s too powerful.
This is how a lot of the Loser Generation, and many Americans, feel. But the corporations haven’t taken total control – yet. We have a window in which if we make demands and use our remaining voting power we can change American politics, and deal a blow to the corrupting influence of money that is trying to silence us.
But the parties, Democrat and Republican, are going to fight this.
Yes, they probably will. Hopefully one or both of them will realize that the majority of the voting populace wants it, at which point they’ve little choice – and great incentive to the contrary – to ignore such a large number of potential supporting votes' demands.
If both parties obstinately fight, spread smears, scream on the airwaves, and attempt to inundate us with their slimy messages we do not have to engage with them. We can turn the commercials off, mute the radio ads, avoid the webpage banners. We know what they’re fighting for – millions of dollars in personal profits for their security, and power. Nothing they say to us will change that fact.
Can we really do this?
Yes. If we make it our national priority.
How do I know if my Representative is one of the bad ones?
We certainly don’t want to get rid of those individuals who have been fighting against the majority in the House and Senate to get these laws passed for us. If you want to know your Rep’s record go to: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/votes
Likewise numerous sites have done their homework and listed off the worst Reps in their eyes. If your Congressman or Senator is on one of those lists let them know you won’t vote for them unless they change their ways.
Oh no! My Rep is one of the bad ones! What do I do?
You have many options. Writing your Representative is sometimes effective, and even more so if you get a large number in your district or state to join you. Likewise you can start a petition to demand their support of these issues. They do listen – they want to keep their jobs. Examples abound of these sorts of movements flying in the face of corporate interests and winning for the voters.
Or, of course, you can get involved with the Legislative Party movement.
Um…there is no Legislative Party registered in my state.
Excellent! Then you may be just the person to start it.
Every state has different laws on how to form a party. Once you’ve established your state is in need of Legislative Party candidates then you will have to go through the specific state process of registering a party. Usually this means a certain percentage of voters have to say they’re interested in the formation of the party.
Like the letter drive or petition, these initial steps require investments of time and labor. As the party becomes reality it will have to link up with other states’ LP leadership, and then the hard work really begins. You’ll need to find people with experience in campaigns and activism. If you have this background, or are adept at getting these sorts of people together in a room, you’re ideally suited to take on this most critical problem facing America. If you have a different background, no worries, with enough hard work, patience, and drive, a dedicated group of individuals can get this started in their home state, and those with experience will find you out when you get big enough.
This series began with a reflection upon the Loser Generation. We seem ideally qualified to take this on. We’re many of us dissatisfied, working terrible jobs, or under- and unemployed. We’re adults now. Democracy is hard. Showing up with a sign somewhere isn't bad, but the corporations no longer care about those sorts of displays. We need to get in the game. There is a country at stake. If we lose then we will live out our lives in a country that exploits and marginalizes us. If we win then American fortunes, and our livelihoods, will begin again to improve.
This is our fight. A fight for freedoms. Freedom of speech. Freedom to vote. Freedom from want, and fear. Together we will keep democracy on the march!