Editor’s Note: Colleague Rob Kall’s defection from the LOTE camp is to be welcome, although we’re tempted to ask (considering his intelligence and political savvy) what took you so long? As well, it’s worth recalling that the peak of “liberalism” happened many decades ago, possibly crested with LBJ signing off on Medicare in 1965, and that in general the two party system has always been in all matters that counted a party of out and out capitalism, empire and war. Still, well done, Rob. And you’re right that just as important as leaving the Democrats behind is to find new ways to do politics in the US, way outside and beyond the narrow confines of electoral politics.—PG
By Rob Kall
I’m switching my voting registration from Democrat to independent. I’m doing it to send a message to the democratic party that I’m not happy with the way they operate, not happy with their leadership and not happy with their pseudo-liberalism and the pro-corporatist policies that they have embraced. I’m changing to independent because the two party system is killing America and killing democracy.
I’m switching my voting registration from Democrat to independent.
I’m doing it to send a message to the Democratic party that I’m not happy with the way they operate, not happy with their leadership and not happy with their pseudo-liberalism and the pro-corporatist policies that they have embraced.
I’m changing to independent because the two party system is killing America and killing democracy.
I’m changing to independent because choosing the lesser of two evils in an election leads to two worse evils in the next election cycle.
I’m changing having gone to vote in the PA 2012 primary, with no need to be a Democrat for quite a while, and knowing I can re-register as a Democrat if I choose to, for future primaries.
I’m changing to independent knowing that it may upset some activist colleagues.
I’m changing to independent because I’d like to set an example, and at the same time join millions of others who already made the choice. The example I’d like to set is of millions of Democrats leaving the Democratic party sending a message that we’re not happy, in fact, we’re really disgusted and are not going to take it any more.
I haven’t done it yet. I’m thinking it might be good to identify a few Dump the Democrats days– where a lot of people, en masse, change their registration at the same time, so the message to the Democrats and Obama is even stronger.
I will probably not vote for Obama. It looks like my state is trending strong enough for him so my vote won’t matter. If I lived in a very close swing state like Florida, Ohio, Arizona, Virginia, my attitude might be a bit different. But it seems to me that if you live in a state that is pretty safe for Obama or totally lost for Obama, the smart thing to do is to vote your heart and send a message to Obama and the Democrats that you won’t be taken for granted anymore.
I realize that some readers will argue that I’m still kowtowing to lesser evilism with my swing state approach, that there is little difference between Obama and Romney. It’s true that there’s little difference. It’s true that I have not reached the point where I’ve totally written off the differences between Obama and Romney. We can expect that that Obama and Romney will act very similarly on corporate issues. But Obama will throw some social justice scraps at loyal Democrats– probably something to do with women’s rights.
The truth is, I am still ambivalent about just giving up on Obama. I realize that he is more warlike than Romney and that, as a Democrat, he’s made the anti-war movement close to impotent, except for groups like World Can’t Wait and Veterans for Peace. I realize that groups like MoveOn Van Jones’ projects are surrogates for the Democrats, that they don’t serve progressive values, that they actually sabotage progressive values and candidates.
I’m pulling way back from the level of activism I engaged in during the 2008 election cycle. Recent conversations with some of the political thinkers I respect most– editors on Opednews, Chris Hedges, Kevin Zeese, Margaret Flowers, David Swanson, to name a few, have shown that we’re all on the same page– standard electoral politics– focusing on Congress and the White House– is not going to change much of anything. Those people, in both parties, are bought and paid for by corporations. We need to put our efforts elsewhere– OWS, local politics, local community building. And totally forget about MoveOn and Van Jones’ associated projects. They are subterfuges to get you to support Obama and corporocrats.
I realize that many of my liberal and progressive friends will continue to be Democrats, continue to work on Democratic campaigns and I respect that decision. Each person has to reach the conclusions I’ve come to at their own pace and time. I was totally opposed to this viewpoint four years ago. People who treated me like a fool or idiot, even though they were right, did not help me.
The most persuasive arguments that have converted me have been my observations of the lies and failures to fulfill promises that Obama and the Democrats engaged in, and conversations about lesser of two evilism.
I’d like to see more articles, from others, on why you dropped your Democratic registration to become an independent or green, or other party member. The interest is more in getting to understand the thinking process than in soliciting sales pitches for other parties.
One more thought. I’ve become a real believer in bottom up approaches and processes. The two party system is VERY top-down. Joining any party gives more power to the top of that party. Remaining an independent retains YOUR power. Now, if there were ways to join together and wield independent power. That would be something. Are there ways I don’t know about?
Have you done it recently? Have you switched your registration to independent?
Have you been an independent, or some other third party? What’s been your experience?
Rob Kall is executive editor, publisher and site architect of OpEdNews.com, Host of the Rob Kall Bottom Up Radio Show (WNJC 1360 AM), President of Futurehealth, Inc. He is also published regularly on the Huffingtonpost.com
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