Thursday, November 6, 2008

Ranked Voting Follow-up

I want to thank those who have commented publicly and privately on my post about Ranked Voting I'm getting some objections more than once, which I want to address, just as my opinions, and I thank those who have shared theirs with me.

One concern about advocating for ranked voting is that it's very long term. There's no perfect party waiting in the wings to take up the mantle that the GOP dropped. The best candidates to become that would be the Constitution Party, followers of Ron Paul, or more likely a new entity. In my opinion, the problem of how long it would take to get ranked voting is one reason to start pushing toward this now.

As the Chinese axiom states, "the journey of a thousand miles begins with one step." For those who want to rankle the "Grand Old Party," we have to start somewhere to get to that goal. The bipartisan system is very entrenched, after all! The GOP would fight harder against the implementation of ranked voting once the heir apparent to the conservative throne is nipping at their heels. So it's best to start now.

Another concern about ranked voting is that it could open a "Pandora's box," unleashing the left-wing radical parties out there, other non-conservative parties, and independent candidates. In fact, I would guess from my reading that ranked voting is more often advocated by such groups than by conservatives. I'm not worried, though.

Remember that nobody's vote is wasted under this system and you don't have to rank candidates you wouldn't want your vote going to! Most people I know would have voted for John McCain first and nobody second. One physical therapist I know would have ranked Ron Paul first and McCain second (her vote would have gone to McCain anyway).

I use presidential candidates for illustrative purposes only. Again, I think the first phase for conservatives would be to get some worthy third party candidates into State Congress and the U.S. House and work up from there, perhaps over the course of a decade. I know Americans (I'm one) often have short attention spans. I also re-emphasize "worthy" candidates! An eventual conservative third party shouldn't be change for change's sake!

Continuing with the Pandora's box objection, I think the biggest loser would be the Democrat establishment. They'd hemorrhage state and U.S. House seats to the Green and Libertarian Parties, whose platforms aren't exactly the same as the Democrats'. The liberal third party gains would likely be minimal and at the expense of the DNC.

Although conservative third party gains would be at the expense of the GOP, I anticipate that they would work toward many similar, deserving goals including smaller government, protection of the unborn from abortion(and now, the recently born from infanticide too), freeing the market, etc.

Lastly, a concession. It's been suggested that Europe suffers from its multitude of parties. I'll just have to investigate that, then! Post-Christian Europe (or as I prefer to think of it: Pre-Re-Christian Europe) has many problems, biggest of which are their loss of the Christian faith and demographic collapse. I think this is more of a problem of the soul. We can probably agree that politics follow people's hearts and minds and not the other way around. I think religion (or its absence) moves the heart and culture forms based on many factors.

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