By Alan Caruba
I received my official general election sample ballot and was surprised to discover that, in addition to the Democratic and Republican Parties, there were eight others.
I am familiar with the Libertarian Party and the Constitution Party, even the Green Party, but some of the others were a surprise.
Running for president was Peta Lindsay of the Socialism and Liberation Party. Giving her some competition was James Harris of the Socialist Workers Party. Then there were some strange ones like Ross C. Anderson of the NJ Justice Party, Merlin Miller of the American Third Position Party, and Jeff Boss of the NSA Did 911 Party.
The American Third Position Party is not about yoga and ballet. It is a reincarnation of the Ku Klux Klan advocating white supremacy. They don’t like immigration or globalization and, I might add, can’t do a damn thing about it.
The NSA Did 911 party is the project of some loon who claims he has proof that the National Security Agency was behind the attack on the Twin Towers and Pentagon. Like Don Quixote he is running for president to present his evidence to a world that is thoroughly disinterested. Given that it takes 10,000 signatures to get on the NJ ballot, that means there are a lot of others out there who subscribe to this. There is nothing like paranoia to bring people together.
The Socialist Workers Party has been around since the 1920s. It is a far-left political party that currently supports Cuba and engages in something called “solidarity work” to aid strikes. It publishes a weekly newspaper “The Militant” that dates back to 1928 when it was founded by members of the Communist Party USA who were expelled for supporting Leon Trotsky against Joseph Stalin. In the furtherance of communism in Russia, Stalin ordered the murders of millions. People who still think communism is some kind of romantic adventure are generally idiots with no knowledge of history and rarely display a sense of humor.
According to the information of the Socialism and Liberation Party it is “a newly formed working class party of “leaders and activists from many different struggles” founded to promote the movement for revolutionary change. If you are a capitalist, you may be surprised to learn that you are “the source of the main problems confronting humanity today: imperialist war, poverty, exploitation, layoffs, unemployment, racism, sexism, lesbian/gay/trans oppression, environmental destruction, mass imprisonment, union busting, and more.”
The Green Party—a paler shade of Red—is fielding a candidate for president and must be very unhappy since neither Obama nor Romney has mentioned “global warming” though Obama may have made a passing reference to “climate change” just to keep his environmental credentials up to date. The Greens are just communism “light” and, like the beer, are weak on logic, facts, and anything else about our 4.5 billion year old planet. They don’t like humans much because, according to them, we are “polluting” everything.
In the competition for ideas, this election has amply demonstrated that the Democratic Party ran out of them decades ago, somewhere between the turn of the century in 1900 and 1945. Any party that advocates raising taxes in the midst of a recession is devoid of any memory of the Great Depression and other financial crises. Add to that reducing the size of our military and the usual nonsense that comes from people who still have no clue how the free market works and you have a very well organized political machine that has nowhere to go except the mythical past.
The Republican Party is now fully engaged in its historic role of cleaning up the mess that Democrats leave behind when they hold political power. And, yes, Republican politicians have a tendency to go along with liberal policies when they think it will get them political points or votes.
The result of this is the familiar refrain that there is no difference between the parties, but there are very big differences and one need only look back over the past four years to figure that out.
I suppose one can credit our political system with making room for the leftists and loons who show up on the ballot, but one can also thank a merciful God that most Americans are not lured into the extremes they represent.
Editor's Note: Caruba resides in Essex County, NJ.
© Alan Caruba, 2012