Politics and Whatnot
Recently, a mysterious organization calling itself “Americans Elect” has been making a lot of news. It claims that it wants to reform the electoral system and create a viable third party. I initially reacted with joy at the news – finally, an organization devoted to creating a system in which a third party can run, rather than merely picking someone and watching them fall to the spoiler effect and Duverger’s Law.
However, when I looked more at the organization’s plan, I noticed several worrying aspects:
2.The process seems designed to choose a liberal candidate that will divert votes from Obama. One of the key aspects of AE’s plan is that it would use the internet to choose a candidate, without mentioning any option to mail in or call in a vote. Why is this suspicious? Because internet users tend to be younger and more educated, and younger and more educated people tend to be liberal. Older, more conservative people are far less likely to use or trust the internet over the traditional voting process. AE also lists the logos of five media organizations on their front page to advertise where they’ve been covered: the New York Times, MSNBC, PBS, the Daily Beast, and the Colbert Report. All of these are news organizations that the right alleges to have a liberal bias, and many of them are downright detested. If internet voting did not turn off conservatives, this list will.
3.They have mysteriously come up with a lot of funding out of nowhere, and are keeping their donors secret. [...]
Apparently plenty of people want to give money to this organization, but no one wants any credit for it. Seems odd.
I’m not saying I have any knowledge or that there’s any smoking-gun evidence that AE is in fact a front, only that they look a lot like one. [...] However, the difference between this group and past third parties is that instead of being driven to prominence by well known politically minded individuals like Teddy Roosevelt, Ross Perot, or Ralph Nader, this third party owes its prominence to mysterious funding and tactically-minded individuals who came out of nowhere and often have prior loyalties to the Republican party. Now it could be that the secretive Republican members are just dissatisfied with the moronic extremists in their own party and would rather have a moderate bring the country together. But regardless of their motivations, the effect will be the same – a Republican will be much more likely to win if AE succeeds in getting young, educated internet users who watch the MSNBC and the Colbert Report to choose their candidate instead of Obama. If they truly want a viable third party candidate, they will fix the plurality voting problem first. Until then, I have a right to be suspicious.
Yes you do.