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Political Debate? In My America?

Populist Nonpartisan Perspectives are Blocked

By Rich Stevenson ÓJune 01, 2004
Interim Acting Chair of the Hamilton County OHIVA

IVA LeadershipDebates Without Democracy: There were five Presidential candidates on the 2000 ballot in a sufficient number of states to win enough electoral votes to win the Presidency. Those five legitimate candidates were not included in the three Presidential debates. Only Bush and Gore were in the debates. The so-called debates involved “one corrupt party with two heads debating itself,” according to Gore Vidal on Politically Incorrect, a cancelled TV voice of political dissent hosted by Bill Maher, a very serious humorist. We have two parties with one bipartisan voice crushing all dissent. Michael Moore agreed with Gore Vidal that night. I associate myself with their remarks. 

The Democrats and Republicans have proved that the multi-candidate debate format works in Presidential primary elections. Six or more candidates on the stage at the same time works very well. The multi-candidate debate format is not the reason the dictatorship objects. An uncontrolled competition of ideas introduced from outside of the public policy dictatorship is the real objection. 

Every boring two-party word in the  three 2000 Presidential debates were repeated over and over ad nauseum in every media venue available until the election. The free exposure gained was worth several times more than the 100s of millions of illegal contributor dollars already skewing the contest. Skewed opinion polls were pushed in the collective public face to further brainwash voters to think they had only two viable Presidential candidates on the ballot. One of the two corrupt chosen ones became President. America lost an opportunity.

Two Parties Not Worthy of Leadership: The impression is left that no one else is in the race. The implication is that there are only two candidates worth considering. The self-fulfilling prophecy that one of the two men in the debates will win is powerfully created. Neither of our two political  parties is worthy of leadership in a democratic republic. Of course, democracy is exactly what they do not want. No wonder voters feel powerless and stay away from the polls.

In 2000, that same year, two candidates for OH District One U.S. Congress, two of four candidates, were not allowed in the first two Congressional debates. Undemocratic debates are staged to control the outcome of all elections. Democracy is exactly what the bipartisan two-party monopoly does not want. Two parties have nearly all the money and want to be perceived as having the only candidates on the ballot. 

The door to competition is closed and our political dark ages continue.

Campaign finance reform is a term used so often over the years that it has no meaning. The term must be explained with every use. Getting the flood of money out of campaigns is the necessary first step for Good Government reforms. The flood of money has eliminated viable competition in our elections. I am convinced that we have a bipartisan political monopoly, or even a “dictatorship.”

Debates limited to two candidates and controlled by two incumbent political parties is a sure sign of political tyranny. We would denounce, and have denounced, any country with politics as undemocratic as our own. We recently invaded one obvious example of undemocratic tyranny.

Billions of Free Media Exposure Dollars: The problem is much greater than exclusion from candidate debates. Looking back at the media “news” coverage of every nuance of every word and gesture of Bush and Gore on every spare minute of every station, broadcast, public and cable, I am aware of the value in airtime of all that free coverage. Each of those candidates spent over $100 million from special interest contributions in their own campaign activities. Far above those  substantial amounts, I estimate that the free voluntary airtime from all Radio, TV, and other Media “news” sources dwarfs the $200 million in direct campaign contributions. The corporations that own our airwaves, far less than ten, probably provided $1 billion in free Presidential debate airtime to the two major parties in their 24-hour news venues. The boring Presidential debates were re-shown hundreds of times, probably many thousands of times.

In the year or more before the debates, free “news” coverage of the two “major” Presidential candidates was daily and constant, which probably provided another $1 billion in free airtime. All of the minor party candidates probably received less than $1 million in free “news” airtime all the way to General Election day. A ratio of at least two  thousand to one.

2004 has embarked upon the same pattern. Twice the amount of  hard campaign money is available, and the media giants are on standby to deliver another Presidential election to one of the two corrupt parties.

Voters can have their right to hear all candidates equally in every debate and in every media outlet realized in a few decades. Voters must make it happen. Elect populist nonpartisans to public office. The law to have all candidates in every debate will not cost a dime and will be invaluable to our people and our nation. Equal news coverage for all candidates in the debates on all media outlets would likewise not cost media companies any revenue. Indeed, the increase in public interest would probably increase revenues.

A new set of FCC regulations could guarantee equal participation and news coverage for every Presidential and Congressional Candidate. FCC regulations could set penalties and fines, or revoke broadcast licenses to overcome the power of the media giants. We could have freedom of speech that informs the electors (voters) with equal media “news” time provided for each and every Presidential and Congressional Candidate.


Your Responsibility: Who gives a Democrat or a Republican the right to limit debate? You do, every time you waste your vote on a Democrat or a Republican. Remember in November! Use your vote to elect fellow populist nonpartisans to public office. You win a voice in the political process.


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rls/June 01, 2004

edit: 11-14-05, 07-24-06, 10-03-06, 12-25-06, 05-11-08, 09-25-08, 03-23-09,
07-04-09, 07-04-11 & 02-27-13

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