Part Two: The political process has changed in this country.
And the change has not been for the better.“I confidently trust that the American people will prove themselves too wise not to detect the false pride or the dangerous ambitions or the selfish schemes which so often hide themselves under that deceptive cry of mock patriotism: ‘Our country, right or wrong!’ They will not fail to recognize that our dignity, our free institutions and the peace and welfare of this and coming generations of Americans will be secure only as we cling to the watchword of TRUE patriotism: Our country–when right to be kept right; when wrong to be put right.” - Carl SchurzAmerica, it is time to put our country right.
First, we must accept a few harsh realities. The law has been changed. Now corporate money is guaranteed the same political rights as individuals. This means that you, the individual, will never again be able to influence the political system because you cannot compete against the financial wherewithal of businesses. And most importantly for a functioning democratic republic, like ours is supposed to be, this new change essentially prevents small competitors from entering races against the richly backed corporate sponsored major parties. In essence, it kills the real threat of any independent challenger.
Large Political Action Committees, called PACs, can now accumulate as much money as they want to apply to the candidates of their choice. The scale of economics in election politics have now gone beyond any sense of reality and far beyond the ability of individual voters to have any effect on the political process.
It’s estimated that it can now take as much as a quarter to a half billion dollars to get elected to Federal office. That’s $250 to $500 million per candidate. Multiply that by the 537 national elected offices and it could be over a quarter trillion dollars spent on every election cycle.
What a waste of resources.
But the reason major party candidates need lots of money is to advertise for their campaign, or more often than not, against their competitors. This takes a lot of money and now that corporations are involved in the donation side of the equation, the individual will never see any representation from these entities again… ever.
However, it is important to note that the advertising campaigns run by the political candidates and aired on the mass media are all aimed at getting voters to actually leave their homes or place of work and go vote… for them. It is still necessary for these candidates to have our votes to actually win the election.
Here is where the opportunity to bypass the corporate money and big party politics exists.
To do this, we must accept the truth that you cannot elect a solution to a problem that starts with getting elected. What does this mean? It means that the way the system works now is this: people vote for a candidate on the promises he makes during the election. Then when he gets to office, he does what he wants and has little to fear from disgruntled constituents. Corporate money only exacerbates this problem beyond the range of the individual to have any effect on the behavior of the elected candidate once in office.To address this problem will require changing the contract between the voter and the recipient of that vote.How do we do that? We change how we choose who to vote for.
First, we must recognize that we are not limited to only those people they tell us we can vote between. We can actually vote for whoever we want, even if they aren’t on the ballot.
Every state in the union allows for some form of write-in candidate. As long as the candidate is legally eligible and has the appropriate paperwork filed ahead of time, write-in candidates are fully and legally capable of winning the election if they receive the majority of votes. Also contrary to popular belief, it is not necessary to be in or affiliated with a mainstream party to win. Any independent candidate, whether a write-in or just outside the mainstream parties, can legally be in any election. If they get the majority of votes, then they can legally be the winner of the popular election, too. And this is true all the way up to and including the Presidential election. The electoral college members are ethically and statutorily compelled to vote with the majority of the voters except in a few well known states where it is not mandated by law. It would be impossible, however, for the electoral college in any state to ignore a clear majority. And in this country, a clear majority still wins, even if it’s a write-in or independent candidate. Only in close elections can the Electoral College numerically work against the popular vote.
Imagine if a large group of people from every state went to the polls with a list of names that they had previously agreed on with all the other voters in their group around the country. And imagine when they got to the polls, they were going to write-in all of the names on their list (if they weren’t already on the ballot) and then vote for just those candidates specifically and exclusively. And imagine that this group of potential elected officials, who are receiving this focussed grassroots support, had previously signed legal contracts outlining exactly what set of goals and actions they were going to take when they got in office. And imagine if these potential politicians agreed in the contract that if they didn’t do exactly what they said they would do to the satisfaction of those voters who put them in office (by direct measurement of performance approval voting) the elected official would step down or be recalled by new election. Imagine that for a minute.
This is not a fantasy scenario. This is merely a logistics problem. One that could easily be solved online.
All elections are local in nature. Voters vote in the precincts they live in. They vote for their local, state and federal politicians at the same time. Ignore for the moment any of your doubt about whether it is possible to gather together a large enough group of people across the country to go to the election polls and vote as a group. The point right now isn’t whether it’s possible. The point is that it is legal
to vote in this manner. The Republicans have even established a legal precedent regarding signing contracts as part of a political party affiliation. All of these facts together have created an opportunity to create a functional voting block that is united by a different political contract between the voters and the politicians they elect. And we do it by actual, legal, written contract.Introducing the Freedom Contract
The Freedom Contract is a set of specific contractual demands for immediate national action that address a stated set of issues. The national level planks were determined by research as part of the method of building a majority voter block from disparate groups and, most importantly, as the fundamental steps necessary to:
1) re-establish the Bill of Rights in full force,
2) dismantle the police state structures created since the sixties,
3) sever political ties with the corporate influence industry,
4) ensure future voters have a direct voice in government,
5) pay down the national debt rapidly.
The specific set of demands for action will be codified into a contract and then used to establish a national party called the Freedom Contract Party. Using this contract as a basis for voter support, any person wishing to run for office under the Freedom Contract Party must sign a local or state contract with the specific set of voters from their district and anyone wishing to run as a Federal level official must sign a national contract pledging to support the official party planks. Once elected, if the official fails to address the immediate issues he or she agreed to in writing, then they agree to step down from office right away. If they refuse, a recall election will be called by the majority that put them in office and they will be removed legally and in shame.So what good does a contract do? How can this help?
Americans need to stop wanting a President, or any elected official, who is going to do what HE
thinks is the right thing to do. We should want a President who is going to do what we tell him to do. We’re not talking about the minutiae of day to day operation, rather on the big things. We should have a direct technological way to tell him what we want him to do on the big things and we get to decide what’s big. And that technological method of telling him should be an amalgamated voice of the people who elected him. No one person should be entrusted with the power to represent all the people of the United States. But I’m willing to accept a leader who does what his constituents tell him to do, because to me, that seems like the point of the job. Personally, I want someone who is going to do the will of the people, not the other way around. Neither the President nor any other elected official should have the right to do what THEY
think is the correct thing. Elected officials should do what the people who elected them tell them to do
and those actions should only be chosen originally if they are good for the majority of all the people.
And if they don’t do what we tell them to do, they should be removed from office immediately.
By the way, this strategy is the same used by corporations. Corporations are only concerned about profit and they are legally bound to be that way. The leaders of the corporation must follow the explicit instructions given to them by a majority of stockholders and the Board of Directors. And they can be contractually obligated to a performance standard or they will be summarily replaced. And if they do anything that has a detrimental outcome on the majority of the stockholders by financially damaging the company, they can be held responsible.
Fine idea if you ask me. And since corporations can now be involved in politics, it’s only fair that we can use their tools against the politicians they buy off.
Every politician who gets elected ought to be required to sign a performance contract. But good luck with ever getting that to happen.
Our idea is different. We won’t give you our vote until you agree and sign our pre-determined and inviolable performance contract called the Freedom Contract. If you think that’s the way the relationship should be with potential elected officials, then you should join the Freedom Contract Party.
Here’s how the math works.
Every member of the House of Representatives must get re-elected every two years. The President must be elected or re-elected every four years. And Senators serve for six years. What this means is that in the coming 2012 election all 435 Representatives in the House are up for potential replacement. The President and the Vice-President are up for potential replacement. And approximately one third of the Senators could be also replaced. That’s only about 470 people total out of the whole country. And in two years at the mid-term election, another 33 Senators could be replaced. That’s 503 elected positions that will be coming up for election in the next twenty-four months. Put another way, that means only twenty-four months are needed to put up for election complete legal control
of two out of three branches of the federal government. Once the Executive and Legislative branches were legally controlled by election, any legislation or reforms that were proposed could be done without any limits other than constitutionality. Imagine a functioning government reversing the madness that has been legislatively burdening and anti-constitutional at its core. Wouldn’t that be refreshing.
In fact, it's only 537 jobs to control every single seat of the Legislative and the Executive branches of the federal government legally.
That's it. 537 positions. That’s a small logistical effort when you consider that it’s spread over all fifty states.
537 people who sign a contract for our support and we could transform our country back into the financially mighty nation and peaceful world leader it should be.
From a purely pragmatic standpoint, you actually only need the President and VP along with 290 Representatives and the 33 Senators to have the maximum voting power available for election in November. That’s only 325 people.
So the only real question is this: can we find 325 people who are eligible to be elected and who are willing to sign the Freedom Contract?
Absolutely we can. The beautiful thing about this plan is that the people who we elect, are no longer important. Only the contract is important. The politicians we hire to implement our demands are replaceable like Lego pieces. That’s how it should be if you ask me.Is this really possible to do? Can a privately arranged group of voters from across the country really have enough numbers to elect a majority of candidates?
Critics are going to scream that the idea is naive or impossible to do. However, that’s just not true. It’s both possible and legal. It would not be easy, but Americans have never shied away from difficulty – if it’s important to them. And it is not naive to believe that you can gather together a group large enough to win an election because that’s what the major parties do. Our idea is that we could do it ourselves and do it better. From a practical perspective, the President, VP and Senators can be elected by a simple majority of voters from an entire state. That would require only gathering a majority and it would not be necessary for that majority to be geographically representative of the entire state. They could all be from one large city or one area. But for the House of Representatives, a broader geographic consensus group will be necessary to put the 290 House seats into play. Although this is a complex proposal, it is not impossible. It’s mostly a matter of logistics and message. The internet is perfect for that. So is the water-cooler. When it’s all said and done, the dinner table and family couch are where viral type influences are most effective.Can people online really affect political change?Yes, without a doubt and it has recently been proven that the methodology works. To accomplish something like this would require a grassroots effort from a coordinated online viral based community. This process is not new. It’s been done before. The Arab Spring from last year was undeniably aided because of online and viral efforts. Consider the following examples from recent news:
1) Social media undid a billion dollar brand in two days when Susan G. Komen screwed up. That shows that big money and powerful corporations cannot stop a viral message, especially when the message is against the money interests.
2) The Kony 2012 video hit 100 million views in six days. That shows that viral messages can propagate quickly and big if the message hits a nerve. It also shows political messages can still go viral.
Current research has shown that viral messages are propagated at the individual level. It was once thought that large influence peddlers were necessary to initiate the propagation cascade needed for viral spread. The nature of viral message propagation is now known to be by personal one-to-one sharing often face to face. That’s why you can’t buy viral.
So how do we use viral messaging to get a majority voting block?
Although you cannot purchase viral propagation, we do understand a lot about how it happens and what causes the phenomenon. It has been scientifically shown that in large group dynamics, a strong and compelling minority (of as little as 10%) is capable of influencing the decisions of the entire group. In the United States, that means we only need 31 million Americans actively supporting our party to have a good chance to sway the opinions of a large portion of the remaining Americans.Is it possible to mobilize 31 million Americans? Could they persuade enough other people to create a majority voting block?
Yes. Look what happened when SOPA hit a nerve on the internet. If a coordinated 31 million people across the country decided to vote as a block it would represent a formidable challenge to any mainstream party. If those 31 million people were able to convince others that making politicians sign a contract of performance is a good idea, then we could easily accumulate an unbeatable majority of voters.The key will be in the ability to create a majority party from people who don’t necessarily agree with each other.
Here’s how we do that in Part Three:
Part One: https://plus.google.com/103984595971776502972/posts/9fUWoNmzbZb
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