William Thien

Archive for the ‘Democratic Participation’ Category

While watching Chuck Todd interview Senator John McCain (R-AZ) this morning on Meet the Press Todd asked McCain if he thought the current administration’s flip-flopping from campaign positions to his current positions had something to do with Trump “being sucked in by the Washington establishment?”

McCain’s answer was to chuckle and say, “well, I hope so.”

To me this is proof that not only IS there a Washington establishment, it is proof that our elected know there is a Washington establishment and that perhaps our elected even provide support materially and vocally (obviously McCain supports it vocally in his response to Todd) to the Washington establishment.

Other elected officials were asked about Trump’s positional re-orientations throughout the week and the most common response was, “maybe he is ‘growing’ into the position.” Growing into the position? What a load of b.s.

To be sure, Trump doesn’t have to change his campaign positions. Something is forcing him to do so and it’s not that he “growing into the position.” He is there to implement the will of the people, not to “grow.” He isn’t on a weekend retreat. He is now the President of The United States.

I wrote earlier that it would only be a matter of time before Trump switched his campaign positions due to the Washington establishment and we see now that is exactly what is happening. You can read that post here: What’s Next for Conservatives?

The most disgusting aspect of the “Washington establishment” is that what it means is that those entrenched there in Washington are there to ensure that whomever is elected cannot implement the will of the people without the express consent of “the Washington establishment.”

Ultimately what a “Washington establishment” means is that the will of the people has been effectively thwarted, seemingly in perpetuity, by a bureaucratic element entrenched in our nation’s capital and that there is nothing, either voting for a Republican or voting for a Democrat, that the people can do about it.

What is the solution?

The two major parties take great pains to make sure the public is nearly equally divided (we see this in the election results) right down the middle when it comes to major elections and national issues. The parties talk about the base of the Republican party and the base The Democratic party in their political calculus.

Maybe it’s time that the bases of both parties come together for a new political calculus, disregarding the respective party apparatus so the country can really “drain the swamp” as Trump promised during the election and take care of the needs of the people and not that of “the Washington establishment,” which is what he is now doing.

There are common goals among the bases of both parties. Maybe it’s time we come together and focus on those common goals primarily and forget about our differences, such as abortion and gun rights for example, just once, and see what happens.

Maybe we can set those and other differences aside in order to bring the changes the country requires. Or maybe “the Washington establishment” can deal with that, too. And you know what that means? Think about it.

Because we now have proof that there is indeed a “Washington establishment” and it is working against us, working against us all.

Copyright © William Thien 2017

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First of all when we consider the entire election process in America we must understand that the election is not just the actual practice of voting and tabulating the votes.

There are other processes involved as well.

For example, the media have been fawning over The Clintons for decades. I could give reasons for that phenomenon but there is nothing like scandal to get the media tongue wagging in this age of tabloid journalism and of course The Clintons have been at the center of many major scandals.

The media have been catering to the Clintons with such media properties as “Madame Secretary” and the first five minutes favoring Hillary at the beginning of every evening news broadcast on a major network for at least since this election season began. Years before Clinton decided to run for president she has been receiving favorable media attention, not to say that she shouldn’t be receiving favorable media attention, she is after all a former First Lady.

There is also the treatment of Trump by The GOP as well and he has been treated like an outcast from the very beginning, required to publicly take special oaths and swear to boyscout style impromptu allegiances. Clearly it is not just The Democratic Party which has institutionalized some of its candidates.

So, when Donald Trump states the election is rigged, perhaps there is no question about the actual tabulation of votes, though many believe there are questionable practices there as well, at the very least there is significantly favorable treatment of one candidate, Hillary Clinton, by the media over the other, Donald Trump during the campaign season when there are significant questions about the integrity of the candidate that is receiving all of the favorable attention.

So, yes the election IS rigged.

Because the election isn’t just about the tabulation of votes, it is the entire process I’ve described, media fairness and more and from my perspective the entire process has treated Donal Trump unfairly. Yes, the election is rigged because the entire process has been rigged.

I not so sure it is the first time, though.

Copyright © William Thien 2016

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We often examine the differences between the candidates and magnify them or amplify them to make our choice at the ballot box easier, but my previous post briefly touched on political cloning, candidates that appear to be different but have in fact quite the same political composition or agenda, even if they come from different parties.

In the case of the two major candidates in the current presidential election, though at the outset they would appear diametrically opposed in many ways, there is one glaring fact that nobody is really talking about in any measurable way, both candidates are from New York.

Hillary Clinton was a New York Senator, even though she originated from Arkansas (go figure that!), and Donald Trump is of course a New York real estate developer. There is also the fact that one candidate has in the past donated significant amounts of money to the other candidate’s candidacy, but that’s neither here nor there, or is it? They tell us it is neither here nor there, that’s for sure. There are other similarities and or connections, some of them not so obvious. Our media is just being paid not to recognize them, I’m quite certain. The most glaring similarity though in my opinion is that both candidates are from New York.

Something about New York, I guess…or New Yorkers, or…

What’s that you say? We live in a democracy!?

Ah, yes, the illusion of choice and so much more efficiently accomplished this time around.

Democracy?! Really? Where?!

Had me going there for a second.

Copyright © William Thien 2016

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I have been hearing a lot lately about term limits for politicians as a major solution for the condition of the country and to a certain extent, I would have to agree. Term limits would provide a bulwark against political entrenchment.

But the question comes to mind, if term limits are indeed implemented, what to do about “party clones,” those that have identical special interest agendas and were it not for a different name and perhaps a different style of suit they work to achieve identical goals? We have often heard pundits say the guy from one party is no different from the guy of another party, another form of political cloning.

A great deal of attention is paid to removal of a particular candidate (term limits) but little if any attention is focused on the party from which the candidate originated which is likely where ideas develop as part of some political ideology.

What’s more dangerous, the candidate, the idea, or the party?

Copyright © William Thien 2016

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You almost have to feel sorry for a guy like Bernie Sanders. Yesterday he surrendered what may very well have been the nomination of The Democratic Party for president after having been clearly and publicly duped by the party to which he swore allegiance in order to achieve what he had, and he surrendered without a fight to those who betrayed him. In doing so he demonstrated that his followers should “surrender” with him. Oh, yes, that’s what he is suggesting, there can be no question. ‘You too must all surrender.’ Surrender with me, he said in so many words, surrender to the party that misled you until it could no longer afford to do so.

Don’t surrender with Bernie.

Copyright © William Thien 2016

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Though the current administration promised change to the country as a cornerstone of its initial presidential run, it has either been slow to come or has arrived in the form of some deformed legislative monster, such as The Affordable Care Act, also known as “Obamacare.”

In fact much of what comes out of Washington D.C. in terms of new legislation is just that, some bizarre, grossly mismatched legislative deformity which may benefit some portion of the country while totally insulting and incapacitating the rest.

The current administration isn’t the only party to have their hands in on “Obamacare,” to be sure and to be fair.

When I examine how such repeated legislative behavior happens, I can only conclude that it is the result of the predominant behaviors of two, not just one, not just the other side of the aisle, but the behaviors of two entrenched political parties, a tyrannical Washington elite, at the strings of special interests whom we may not or never know from where the strings are spun.

Therefore, one solution is to wrest control of important issues from the party apparatus wherein which resides the desires of said special interests.
That is the only way to deal with the collective tyranny of the Washington elite. Because that’s just what they are, an entrenched Washington elite, and it is difficult to relieve the country of the stranglehold they have on political behavior and effort.

In my previous post, Gun Rights vs. Gun Control, I do just that, show that issues are not owned by political parties and in fact can be separated from their control. Though the parties will attempt to grasp and retain ownership of such issues, many issues are not political at all, they are founded in The U.S. Constitution.

Unless we want to be beholden to those who are clearly abusing their power, we must continue to find ways to regain control over issues that the parties have thoroughly and in an orchestrated way made their own, and by doing so, have parsed the country out into neat little pieces that can be easily managed, marginalized, stifled, snuffed out.

Year in and year out it’s the same debate about the same issues, the threat of taking away one of our constitutional rights or preventing women from having control of their own bodies, for example, while the Washington elite raise our taxes and legislate our behavior into a corner.

We must demonstrate that much of what is done in Washington D.C. isn’t necessary and in fact has probably already been accomplished satisfactorily with respect to acceptance by The Supreme Court and in the eyes of the public. Or, matters will have to be dealt with more directly.

That is the only way that we can deal with the collective tyranny of the Washington elite. We may vote for them as individuals. But when many get to Washington, they form a solid body that is obstinate and unmoving. Regaining control from the parties over issues that effect us directly may be the best way to regain control of our country.

Copyright © William Thien 2014

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One of the things I find most disquieting about modern democracy is that it has been very slow to evolve. Elections are still the only method of changing political party affiliated personnel and the system has become to a certain extent antiquated in my opinion.

One of the ideas I included in the first edition of my book titled The Dream Chip was a discussion of a “redistribution of democracy” right down to the very individual. I gave it a name, THE COMMON COUNCIL SOFTWARE PROGRAM.

What the program involves is a redistribution of democracy out of the hands of the elected official and into the hands of the individual voter, segmenting the power of the elected into tiny parts with each part belonging to a voter. Naturally such ideas have many in the political professions concerned, to say the least. No longer would you be voting just for candidates, you would vote on the day-to-day issues of government, government right on up to the federal government. Your elected would have to vote based on the preponderance of your votes on each and every issue. Knowing we have the technological power to do something like that today and have for some time is why I believe our current system of democracy is antiquated.

You would receive an email or a post card and there would also be public notice about issues and you would vote on the issues at home or perhaps a public kiosk instead of letting your elected officials vote on the issues. Your elected officials would then vote based on your choices, not their choices. Their role would become more of a facilitator rather than a politician.

How many times have you voted for someone based on a campaign promise only to have them go back on that promise or to forget about it? Let me tell you something. If you are of voting age, you don’t have enough fingers and toes to count how many times that has happened to you.

Where I reside we don’t even have the right to vote in a referendum on the ballot during an election. If you ask me, that is archaic considering mass communication today.

But there are drawbacks. Just as today, individuals for example, could be pushed aside by the masses, even when today often the masses can be wrong or easily misled on matters through clever media manipulation. Democracy can be tyrannical, too. Democracy is in fact despotic. Democracy creates minorities.

Is it time we redistribute democracy right down to the individual? Because it can be done and with much less difficulty and cost in my opinion than maintaining the current structure of government. Giving you the power as voters to actually determine the outcome of political decisions would be an incredible enhancement to the current form of democracy. I know certain entrenched elements of our society have fought me on this matter. Some have suggested I’ve probably showed up on lists as a troublemaker because of my political ideas.

I think such forms of democracy are something to consider. In my opinion, what I describe “is what real modern democracy looks like.” What choice do you have now on issues, an email? Think about it.

Copyright © William Thien 2014

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