Sunday, January 29, 2006

Politics - Final Post

“Blame the system, don’t blame people.”
“Fix the system, don’t try to fix people,.”
“Focus on the system rather than on people.”

The above do not tell the whole truth but they seem to tell part of the truth. In my work career I’ve seen things go wrong when good people worked hard and did all the right things. I’ve seen bad results when everyone worked for good results while knowing it was going to fail. The common element in all of these experiences was the system. The workers were intelligent, dedicated, competent and working within a flawed system that prevented success. Replacing the employees would not have fixed the problem because the system was the problem.

I’ve heard for years that the American political system is the best in the world. Maybe it is but being the “best” doesn’t count for much in my book. Assume I need a balloon. The best I can find has a small pin hole. It’s the best but it’s flawed!

Today, I read another editorial quoting statistics consistent with other sources of information that indicate a majority of the Americans are being led in a direction they do not choose. What’s the solution? Wait until the next election and vote for another candidate? This is focusing on people rather than the system. Do we have assurances that the next elected officials will better represent us?

I don’t have viable solutions to offer but two flaws that I see are the following.

Why doesn’t the ballot have a “none of the above” choice? The political parties select candidates and I have two choices – vote for one of the candidates or don’t vote. If I don’t vote, what does this communicate? If I do vote for one of the candidates, does this communicate I think he or she is qualified or does it communicate that I don’t want the other candidate? I want to change the system to give me the option of saying “none of the above! Give me new candidates and hold another election.” Yes, there are major problems inherent in this but surely some wise and experienced persons can offer better solutions.

I think it should be easier for voters to get access to pending legislation. With the massive federal deficit, would it add much to mail, distribute or publish pending legislation so all voters have access? Many years ago I was in a discussion with a group concerning the equal rights amendment. Everyone was opposed to the amendment. I asked who had read the amendment and not one of about twelve people present had read it. The following week I took copies of the amendment and distributed them. The most vocal opponent from the previous week read the amendment and exclaimed “I’m not opposed to that!” It’s ironic that we discuss, rant, talk, rave and vote without knowing the pending legislation. There’s something wrong with a system that encourages me to vote from a state of ignorance.

Enough about politics! I’ll close this series at three with a correction. In “Politics 101” I quoted the ending line of the Pledge as “with truth and justice for all.” The correct quote is “with liberty and justice for all.” No one commented on this. My focus in the post was on truth and honesty. Can we have liberty without truth?

I want honest poeople working in an effective system.


Blogger Buffalo said...

I am with you 100% on this one!

1/29/2006 12:34:00 PM  
Blogger Ben said...

Just to say, have found this series of posts fascinating.. don't konw what else to say, other than - you're right, I agree with you. I'm happy to disagree with people where necessary but there is no need in this case,this blog is intriguing, always sparking something in my mind I'd forgotten or ignored, so thankyou.

1/29/2006 05:35:00 PM  
Blogger Anvilcloud said...

Although we don't have a "None of the above" option either, because we just use an ordinary pencil, we can waste our ballot by marking it improperly. But it's still not the same as "None." I have been thinking that our multi party system is not the best, but maybe it is preferable to a two party system. I dunno.

1/29/2006 05:53:00 PM  

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