Gee Whiz

What the Debates Forgot to Mention

“We need a revolution; that’s what we deserve. What we don’t deserve is pandering, irresponsible bullshit…”

Would you believe these words climbed out of the mouth of one of our current, 2012 presidential candidates? What if I told you they were born of a candidate who purposely got arrested to call attention to a volatile issue? My guess – you wouldn’t be able to wrap your brain around the idea of either Mitt or Obama getting arrested let alone using profanity.

There’s a good reason for that – you’re right.

With all the stuffy rhetoric flying around during campaign season passing itself off as real talk, a quote calling out pandering “bullshit” rushes in like a crisp autumn breeze, especially to the crowd of people just coming of age to vote in November’s highly contentious presidential election. Wondering why every news network station isn’t talking about it despite its controversial nature? They’re not doing so, according to Libertarian candidate, Gary Johnson, and Green Party candidate and professed bullshit caller-outer, Jill Stein, because that’s exactly what the two-party controlled system wants. To bolster this claim both offer that no other party but the prominent two, Democrat and Republican are debating on the national stage.

With a two-party system often in gridlock, one that leaves little room left for ideas outside the status quo, a breath of fresh air is what both of these contenders hope to bring to the race. Although we don’t hear much about candidates running on party tickets that are not of the prominent two parties, there is, in fact, a choice beyond the two. Thousands have signed a petition posted on change.org requesting national debates be opened to third party candidates Gary Johnson and Jill Stein for just this reason, however, unless a candidate is polling at 15% nationally, that idea is as good as trash.

This absence in the debates means the majority of people will never get a chance to hear Jill Stein speak about her platform of political and economic overhaul dubbed, The Green New Deal. Her platform, inspired by Teddy Roosevelt’s Depression busting economic reform, has all the stuff of trying to equal out the economic playing field while being dressed with a thread of environmental stewardship and democratic protection. This plan calls jobs for employable citizens a right and invests funding into sustainable energy technologies – including hemp. Sweeping reforms to the U.S. financial system through heftier bank regulations and wider debt reliefs are also a keystone of Stein’s plan. Last but far from least, The Green New Deal spearheads a program of democratic protections for individual citizens that includes revoking the highly controversial “personhood” of corporations as granted by the landmark Supreme Court ruling Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission in January of 2010.

Gary Johnson, also slated to be on ballots nationwide, is running on a platform dedicated to rolling back the war on drugs, protecting civil liberties, and balancing the budget with tactics like reducing military spending by up to 43%, a move he clarifies will bring spending levels back to 2003, not to the “end of the world.” If you vote Johnson, you’re making a vote to take spending from foreign shores back to America through nation building – repaving roads, updating schools and hospitals, and rebuilding bridges. Johnson takes a hardline approach to freedom and looks at voting for the major two parties as akin to voting for tyranny, which he guarantees you can go back to voting for if you don’t enjoy his platform of “peace, prosperity, and freedom.” Speaking of peace, if that’s what you’re into, Johnson’s your man as he takes a non-interventionist approach to foreign affairs, regularly criticizing the United States’ use of remote drones to attack the Middle East.

According to both candidates, to deny a population of the right to hear their ideas is at its worst its own form of mental tyranny; people can’t vote for different ideas if they aren’t even aware they exist. Jill Stein and Gary Johnson will appear on at least 85% of ballots if not more in the way of write-in options come this November. Though many will throw out the argument that a vote for a third party candidate is a vote for the opposition, Stein and Johnson mutually assert that voting for either of the “Wall Street-sponsored” candidates is counter-productive to citizen prosperity. According to Johnson a vote for the Obama or Romney ticket is a vote for “heightened police states and indefinite military interventions,” and according to Stein it is no more than “a mandate for four more years of the same.”

By: Sass Linneken

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