Think ... People,  THINK!


"de moc ra cy - government by the people; a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them or by their elected agents under a free electoral system".

Democracy as a form of government is generally thought to have come into being following a popular uprising in Athens in 508 BC. Key aspects of democracy include: equality (all votes are equal), freedom to vote, and majority rule. A problem, in general, in "voting" is how well informed is the voter. Does the voter have the facts necessary to cast a meaningful ballot? Near voting times we continually  hear "Vote. Make your voice heard" and similar entreaties, with little if any urging to get informed.

I think we need more emphasis on developing intelligent voters. Although organizations try to "get the word out", there is often conflicting and just plain erroneous information distributed prior to voting. Heavy penalties should be imposed for distributing false information, and some level of testing should be done to assure that a voter understands the information that has been made available from official sources.

What do you think?

Our Constitution and its Twelfth amendment define an indirect election process, whereby members of an Electoral College decide by their vote the President and Vice President. The Constitution defines how many Electoral College votes are allowed by each State, and each State's legislature determines how the electors are chosen. In the 2000 election  George Bush received the majority of Electoral College votes, but Al Gore received a larger number of direct votes nationwide. Strictly speaking we do not have a "democracy", where collective authorized individual votes determine matters at hand. The Electoral College system periodically comes under modern criticism and appears to be one of the elements that needs to be addressed in a revised Constitution.

Modern technology today can provide quick, reliable, electronic direct voting nationwide. Electronic voting booths  in Walmart, Walgreens, Krogers, and other central gathering places can instantaneously register an individual vote.

In December 1969 a computer-based electronic-polling "Government Information System" was proposed by the Electro-Sciences Division of Sanders Associates, Inc. Even with the technology available then it was thought that public opinion and interests on specified issues could be rapidly summarized and transmitted directly to the appropriate representatives in Government. Nationwide electronic information gathering and direct electronic voting are certainly the way of the future ... and can be implemented now. Imagine directly sending your views to your representatives in Congress by inserting a card and pushing a few buttons while waiting for a prescription to be filled at Walgreens. The elements of the system could also be used at local levels (state, county, city, school district, etc.) to similarly poll and vote on local issues.

I think a system to provide nationwide and local electronic polling and voting needs to be a national priority. I think a Constitutional change should be initiated to eliminate the Electoral College system. 

 What do you think?

If we look at some of our past presidents, it makes you wonder how these people got to be President. Richard Nixon is certainly a recent standout of corruption. Clinton, paying $850,000 to settle the Paula Jones sexual harassment lawsuit and his lying to the public about sex with Monica Lewinski, is not far behind. Lyndon Johnson, Andrew Johnson, Grant and Harding also deserve recognition for corruption in the Presidency. How does a person even get to be a candidate for President? Out of the 300,000,000+ people in this country, there must be 10 or so who would be an outstanding President. Why aren't they? How do we get these people to run for office? What should we look for in candidates that would be indicators of their performance as President? What are the qulaifications we should look for in candidates for any public office?

I think the major factors we should consider in any candidate for public office are: (1) demonstrated honesty and personal integrity, (2) demonstrated capability to look at facts and think logically about issues, (3) demonstrated knowledge about the position being sought, (4) demonstrated experience applicable to the position being sought. Because family and our early years are important in our overall development, information about the total lives of candidates should be considered.

 What do you think?

I think the above factors are applicable to candidates for appointed positions as well as for elected positions. I think, for example, candidates for ambassadorships should be experienced in diplomacy and be able to speak the language of the country to which they will be assigned. They should NOT be appointed based on their monetary contributions to their political party.

 What do you think?

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