What if they gave a party ... and nobody came?
Well, that's precisely what did happen. Some folks gave a party _ a third party _ and nobody came.
We hear complaints all the time about the Democrats and the Republicans, and yearnings for a third party that would appeal to the moderates among us.
Everyone, it appears, is tired of the Republicans being so far to the right, and the Democrats holding such far-left views. Nothing seems to get done in an atmosphere dominated by partisan politics.
Hence the idea of a third party. A group called Americans Elect raised about $35 million _ mostly from deep-pocketed but anonymous individuals _ and received a lot of publicity from the news media.
The group managed to qualify to get on the presidential ballot in 27 states, no small feat, and intended to nominate a candidate by virtue of a very complicated Internet process that made candidates pass a certain threshold of national support.
These folks seemingly had everything _ money, a cooperative media, a disgruntled populace tired of the same, old politics _ except for one thing.
It's awfully tough to win the presidency if you don't have one of those.
They tried to draw interest from several politicians and former office-holders. Maine Sen. Olympia Snowe said, "No thanks." So did former Indiana Sen. Evan Bayh. As for New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg?
That's also essentially what Americans Elect said last week, packing it because it couldn't find a qualified candidate. "The primary process for the Americans Elect nomination has come to an end," it announced.
Third party efforts are nothing new in this country, but the most they have been able to do on a presidential level is act as spoilers.
Teddy Roosevelt and his Bull Moose Party got more votes in 1912 than his Republican successor, William Howard Taft, throwing the election to Democrat Woodrow Wilson.
Strom Thurmond ran on a segregationalist platform in 1948, and George Wallace did the same thing in 1968, but didn't have much of an effect on who became president.
Ross Perot made a lot of noise in 1992, running against George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton, but didn't win even a single state. Ralph Nader, while not winning any states, got enough votes to tilt the 2000 election from Al Gore to George Bush.
It's too soon to determine what effect the Americans Elect fiasco will have on future third-party endeavors. Still, instead of being a shot in arm ...
"This may not be a death knell for third-party efforts," Republican strategist Mark McKinnon told the Washington Post, "but it's a pretty good shot to the groin."
What if they gave a party ... and nobody came?
Fed ammo theories show who is gullible
Ask 10 people for their thoughts on the National Rifle Association, and you'll likely get a broad range of responses. But on one point, we can all agree - if a threat to the Second Amendment appears, the NRA will find out about it and quickly spread the word. That's why it was nice to see the NRA last summer shoot down one of the more absurd rumors that's been making the rounds: that the federal Department of Homeland Security and other agencies are hoarding massive stockpiles of ammunition for secret, nefarious purposes.
Natural gas boom is a false promise
Support for the Constitution and Leatherstocking Pipelines is based primarily on the false promise of affordable shale gas. False, since the price of this gas is too volatile to make it a reliable energy source in the future.
Locally led baseball team deserves support
Springtime has finally come to us in the greater Oneonta area, with its warmth, sunshine, emerging shrubs, green lawns, with more smiles than frowns, and how we relish it!
Schools must find ways to deal with threats
Anonymous threats to schools are nothing new. Through the years, they have consisted -- among other messages -- of anonymous phone calls, magazine or newspaper lettering glued to a letter, and scrawled warnings on a bathroom mirror.
City should improve access to river
Many cities make the river running through it a focal point for its scenic qualities. By doing this, they attract more people to their city to spend some time there and also utilize the stores, restaurants and hotels.
Otsego County veteran's director is top-notch
The veterans of Otsego County are being well-served by Jack Henson, director. I feel he is the best director that has ever served in this county.
- Tuesday, May 21, 2013
On our Opinion: Cheers
To the DEP's "The Watershed Experience," the Oneonta High School Envirothon team, and to ROPS rebate funding.
Make sure Blodgett project holds water
Many thanks to Dennis Finn and the Planning Commission for allowing unrestricted public comment on the Blodgett Drive housing project at the commissionâ€™s May 15 meeting. Most who spoke are residents of the area who know the safety and drainage issues well.
We need a law against Google Glass
Itâ€™s a technological marvel; a product ahead of its time, or at least ahead of the law for the time being, that is.
- Monday, May 20, 2013
Make sure you vote in school tax election
School superintendents have it anything but easy in these challenging economic times. In addition to dealing with myriad day-to-day and semester-to-semester issues, they have to have Solomon-like political acumen and management skills.
No foreign aid until our needs are met
I couldn't agree more with Sal Furnari's letter published in the Weekend edition. I would also like to add that when I was growing up I was taught to "take care of my own first" and then share with others.
THIS WEEK'S POLL
It's sad to see Rich Murphy retire
It was a sad day for Otsego County when Rich Murphy announced his intention to retire from the county board at the end of his current term.
Liberal media only care about themselves
Sounds like it all depends on 'whose ox is being gored' when it comes to the illegal phone tappings of reporters.
Street Talk: May 20, 2013
Do you think that recent high school graduates have a harder time finding a job than previous generations?
- Saturday, May 18, 2013
Casino in our area worth talking about
If Gov. Andrew Cuomo has his way, casinos will be awarded to three upstate locations.
Public financing could cure pols' paranoia
Paranoia is an irrational fear of persons, places or events that have no basis in reality.
Resort proposal is just too big
Belleayre Mountain Ski Center is a New York state taxpayer-owned recreational area. People who have paid for BMSC with their hard-earned dollars should not have to also pay for the infrastructure necessary to assure an enjoyable ski experience for the visitors to a private developer's monster mega-mall/spa resort on a mountaintop.
- Friday, May 17, 2013
Take precautions to prevent kidnappings
It has been nearly two weeks since the arrest of Ariel Castro in Cleveland on rape and kidnapping charges for acts that should send a chill through the spines of everyone in America.
Redistributing wealth just isn't fair
Yesterday a dozen of us were eating lunch in the break room where I work, most of us complaining that all we could afford was peanut butter and jelly and bologna ... except for Rob.
- Fed ammo theories show who is gullible