Thursday, November 16, 2006

Political parties – as I see it

It’s time. It’s actually far overdue. It is time to start a new political party. Don’t tell me that we have the Independents for that, or talk about the Green/Rainbow Party – I mean a real party – right up there with the GOPs and the Dems.
Since our country is so divided – right down to local, small town politics – we need to do something for the moderates among us. So today, I am proposing a platform for a new party. We’ll also need a name, but for now, here is what I think we should have in our charter:

1) We do not lie. Plain and simple. It does not mean we have never lied or that we might not occasionally tell a little white lie (“No Mrs. Kramer, I don’t think you are unreasonable.” or “No, Mr. Bush, I don’t think that smirk makes you look like a scheming, arrogant jerk.”). I mean we will not lie about the reality of situations and we will present ALL sides of issues – because we will actually believe that we are working for the people we represent.

2) We will have a far better vocabulary than the current parties. Words like “wrong”, “sorry”, “reconsider”, “reasonable” and the phrases associated with them, will roll off our tongues when appropriate. It will not be a cold day in you know where when our members might say “I’m sorry - I was wrong – I did not have all the facts and I will reconsider my decision.”

Is everyone still ok reading this? I know this is difficult to wrap your head around given where US politics stand today – but stick with me here. I have been known to get a little crazy.

3) Once we are in power, we will not presume to be better than every other world culture, nor will we need to impose our politics on others who resist. As much as it pains me to say – we will not know everything. We will be a respectful party who does not seek to isolate the US from the rest of the world. We will do our best not to call other leaders, no matter how tyrannical, “evil” or “the devil” in public.

4) If someone in our party does something wrong, we will not look the other way. If we mess up on this one, we will refer back to item 2.

5) We will not bury self-promoting items in completely unrelated legislation so as to benefit a small number of constituents at the expense of the rest. This will also include not initiating or supporting pork barrel spending. For instance, Citizens Against Government Waste reports that, since 1985, we have spent $65.7 million on shrimp aquaculture research and $86 million on wood utilization research. Our members will have already figured out how to use wood and will know that we can do better things with that money, and the rest of the estimated $3 billion plus that is spent every year on ‘pork’.

6) We will ban lobbyists – enough said.

7) Our party members will be allowed to have different opinions. We will not make members feel like traitors if they think one of our new proposals is not the best thing ever. If you don’t like this idea, don’t join us – I mean do join us. Uh-oh, I need to work on this point.

8) Finally, our new party will not allow campaigning that costs big money. We will spend a modest amount to travel around and talk to people. We will get our coverage through interviews with reporters so that they can publish information in their papers, magazines and TV reports - for free. Candidates can put up web sites that tell about themselves and what they believe and what they plan to do if elected. We most definitely will never talk about an opponent’s family members, clothing choices, cosmetic surgery or hair style – no matter how tempting it might be.

Although there has to be more to a political party than this – let’s start here and see what happens.

Now, we need to name this new party. We could combine our current party names - be the Democans or the Republicrats – but I think we need more distance from these people. How about the Centralists? Moderators? Reasonablists? Honest Abes?
OK, this is harder than I expected. Progressives? New Order? Goodfellows? Those sound familiar, don’t they? Since this is all starting in New England, maybe we could be The Patriots? The New Patriots? The Other Patriots??? (That would make us the TOP party!)
What’s in a name anyway? Maybe the acronym idea would work well. How about BILL (Believe in life and liberty)? HHH (Honesty, Hard work and Happiness)? I give up (no, that is not a name suggestion). We’ll just be the no name party for now – heck, I think that might catch on – at least in the Boston area.


Genie said...

This is the kind of party I could get behind!

I particularly love item #2. I've worked in media relations and have never understood why people don't grasp the concept that sweeping something under the rug and/or holding fast to a wrong decision just because one MADE a decision is a good idea in the public arena. Sure, some of it is just human nature -- no one likes to admit wrongdoing and their own humanity -- but in the 24-7 media culture that's out there right now, the politicians who do wrong and then try to lie about it inevitably extend their 15 minutes of media time to 20 or 25 or longer.

Now...I'm not advocating for giving a pass to any politician who starts serially doing wrong and apologizing for it, but there is something to be said for being man or woman enough to just admit your own failings and try to make it better.

This, however, is why I'm not in politics.

The Inadvertent Gardener

Lee said...

I'm not in politics because I call it as I see it - unfortunately, that does not seem to be popular in politics!!
Thanks for the comment. I put this up on a board on ivillage too and got some positive responses - maybe we should start this party!