Voters' aim is hard to understand
It has been said that insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. Ten percent of the American people control two-thirds of America's net worth. Ninety percent control the remaining third.
Obviously trickle-down economics has not worked, so why are nearly 50 percent of Americans poised to return the American government to those same failed policies? I don't understand.
What's in it for Ashland?
My main question about the impending takeover of our beloved Ashland Community Hospital is "What's in it for us?" As an engineer I worked for several companies that were taken over by big corporations, and learned (often the hard way) that there is only one way that corporations "cut costs." And that is by firing as many people as possible, and cutting the pay and benefits of the rest.
Why not wait until after the November election? If Obama stays in, we will get funding for health care for all, and doctors and hospitals will quit hemorrhaging money.
Protect access to health options
If you want everyone to have access to 1) dying with dignity, and 2) contraception and abortion on demand, then email all our city councilors demanding no alliance with Dignity Health. Email councilors at firstname.lastname@example.org.
More than two parties
During major elections we are mesmerized into thinking that there are only two political parties. This perception could be what Noam Chomsky calls "manufactured consent." Are the two major party-corporations colluding to seat the next CEO of America? You might shout "never." Is it unreasonable to suspect that two deep-pocketed organizations might employ Madison Avenue to target and sell the American Dream to the public?
The importance of minor parties to democracy is that they originate around a cause that major parties are ignoring. Minor parties have historically been based on prohibition of alcohol, anti-masonry, suffrage, weekends and abolition of slavery. Voters didn't think that the larger parties were adequately addressing those issues.
Minor parties provide a platform for non-mainstream political views, thus preventing the two-party establishment from ignoring real problems. When an issue of national prominence wins a significant proportion of votes, major parties respond by adopting the issue later on.
In Oregon we have six minor parties. Pacific Greens remind us to take care of the earth, Libertarians argue against big government, Whigs decry polarization and ask for common sense, while Socialists rally against discrimination and exploitation. These minor parties can lead on issues such as campaign finance reform, health care for all, hemp farming, Move to Amend et al.
If you are interested in redeeming your relationship with democracy in America, join a minor party. You can still vote mainstream, if you have to! Minor party candidates, sometimes called "spoilers," analysts note, typically do not draw from one major party more than the other.