a reply to: Lompyt
We have two political parties because of tradition, our "winner takes all" voting system that supports it, and our Constitutional allocations of power
that supports it. That's what our country's original leaders thought best for us. Our system is based on the notion of compromise
two governing parties.
This has done well for us, until now. The two parties have always "reached across the aisle" to get things done, because there were left, right, and
center in each
party. Since 1980 the country has been made to divide over cultural wedge issues, with one party becoming the "home" for right
wing wedge issues, taking in many of the other party's conservatives, while their own party began to lose its liberals and centers. Since 1990 the
party gave increasing political power to its right wing reactionaries and extremists, causing an historical asymmetry, as less extreme members dropped
out. Plus, the party started to refuse to find compromise with the other party, preferring to act as obstructionists.
Note, this obstructionism went nuclear in 2009, when it became "Damn The Country, Obama Must
(an ATS thread)
At the moment, we have asymmetrical political ideological power with no way to enforce compromise or force "coalitions".
Re multi parties. As noted in erictheawful's post prior, we do have other parties and candidates, but only the two major parties are registered in ALL
50 states and have experience governing in ALL 50 states and at ALL levels of state and local govt. Parties and candidates that only show up every
four years are given the term "vanity".
If citizens wish to establish party apparatus and govern everywhere as the two major parties have done, they are free to do so. Some third and fourth
parties are registered in many states, but have no (or a tiny) record of governing. This takes citizen effort, money, and time. Also, for a third or
more party to govern at the federal level, once it has established that it can govern, some of the structural barriers (as noted in first paragraph)
must be changed. This is not something that can be completed in a short time.
I think that for a large country with 50 independently governed states, we have done pretty well so far. I live in a state that ranks 7 or 8 in world
income, if it were its own nation, because we are part of a great nation. This mess at the federal level will take years of unwinding. Either we try
to get back to symmetrical political power or we abandon our traditional structure of government by compromise.
my 2c data ran out