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Ban political parties!

“All obstructions to the execution of the Laws, all combinations and associations, under whatever plausible character, with the real design to direct, control, counteract, or awe the regular deliberation and action of the constituted authorities, are destructive of this fundamental principle, and of fatal tendency. They [political parties] serve to organize faction, to give it an artificial and extraordinary force; to put, in the place of the delegated will of the nation, the will of a party, often a small but artful and enterprising minority of the community; and, according to the alternate triumphs of different parties, to make the public administration the mirror of the ill-concerted and incongruous projects of faction, rather than the organ of consistent and wholesome plans digested by common counsels, and modified by mutual interests.

“However combinations or associations of the above description may now and then answer popular ends, they are likely, in the course of time and things, to become potent engines, by which cunning, ambitious, and unprincipled men will be enabled to subvert the power of the people, and to usurp for themselves the reins of government; destroying afterwards the very engines, which have lifted them to unjust dominion.

George Washington’s farewell address, 1796.

If only the founding fathers could return and straighten our sad asses out!

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2 Responses to “Ban political parties!”

  1. November 11th, 2009 at 2:41 am

    laackey says:

    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/f3/Dean_Franklin_-_06.04.03_Mount_Rushmore_Monument_%28by-sa%29-3_new.jpg/800px-Dean_Franklin_-_06.04.03_Mount_Rushmore_Monument_%28by-sa%29-3_new.jpg

    My main thought on seeing it? I wish we still had great leaders like these people. Men, indeed people, like that are still made – but would never make it into prominent positions.

    That after I got over the farcical new entrance: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/5/5e/Rushmoreentrance.jpg/800px-Rushmoreentrance.jpg

    Sure it’s grand, but this addition changes the place from a sculpture honoring great people to a tourist attraction. It provides a stark contrast between the majesty of the old and the showy facade of the new. Cost of original construction: US$989,992.32. Cost of the addition: $56,000,000. Present value of the original amount, adjusted for CPI, is approximately $14.3 million. All the new crap cost 4 times the cost of the sculpture!!! I’m all for parking improvements and visitor accessibility, but I’m NOT for needless decadence.

    According to wiki, we could change our voting system from “first past the post” to “proportional representation” or “preferential voting” systems to increase the likelihood of more viable political party choices than two. Or easier, evidently we could just institute a “negative vote” option. I rather like that idea.

    Yes, I’d prefer to take the simpler approach of banning political parties, but that doesn’t seem practical to me. I’m guessing that people will establish political parties in some form no matter what you do. I’m sure there’s some sort of game theory explanation. Also, though, simply banning it doesn’t necessarily make organic sense to me. For example, capitalism doesn’t legislate efficient outcomes; rather it provides them naturally by the actions of people’s natural behavior of doing what aids them the most at any time. Just like this multi-decade fuel economy debacle: adjusting the manufacturer/regulation side is never going to do it because it is not economically natural – but adjusting it on the consumer side might work. You notice how $4/gal gas changed everything? Yep. Consumer-side actions change everything in no time.

  2. November 11th, 2009 at 2:57 am

    laackey says:

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