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The authoritarian power of the political parties is being used to prevent Americans from voting for @Independents
— Independents (@Independents) March 18, 2017
— Independents (@Independents) March 18, 2017
Crossroads for an Independent America:
Four in ten voters don’t want to be in a political party. Why? Because parties have become special interests — perhaps the biggest special interests of all. On Saturday, March 18, 2015, Jackie Salit, President of Independent Voting and author of Independents Rising, will host Crossroads for an Independent America, the ninth biennial National Conference of Independents, convening hundreds of independent voter activists and supporters from the organization’s network in 40 states. The conference will be the largest gathering of independent voters in the United States assembled to engage specifically, the empowerment of independent voters and the creation of a new political culture. On display will be the new coalitions coming together in this movement, a discussion of strategies to expand the movements influence and perspectives on the mid-term and 2020 election.
— Independents (@Independents) June 2, 2016
On Monday May 30, 2016 the Honourable Sinclair Stevens and John Richardson explained their vision for Canada’s Progressive Canadian Party.
The Progressive Canadian Party could provide benefits to those wishing to run as Independent Candidates in Canada.
— Independents (@Independents) May 18, 2016
Clinton holds a commanding lead of nearly 300 pledged delegates over Sanders and a dominant advantage among party officials and elected leaders known as superdelegates. The outcomes in Kentucky and Oregon were not expected to change that and the former secretary of state remains on track to clinch the nomination in early June.
Tuesday’s elections took place amid new questions about party unity following a divisive weekend state party convention in Nevada. Supporters of Sanders tossed chairs and made death threats against the Nevada party chairwoman at the event in Las Vegas, arguing the party leadership rigged the results of the convention in favour of Clinton.
In a sign of the tensions between the two sides, Sanders issued a defiant statement Tuesday dismissing complaints from Nevada Democrats as “nonsense” and said his supporters were not being treated with “fairness and respect.”
In California, Sanders urged the party to be welcoming to voters who are “prepared to fight for real economic and social change.” Addressing the party’s leadership, Sanders declared, “Open the doors, let the people in.”
The 2016 U.S. Presidential Election is really about the political parties versus the voters. In other words, the political parties are waging war on the voters!
"About the role of political parties in a Westminster democracy … The article includes the…" — John Richardson https://t.co/XgZZbWpDdE
— Independents (@Independents) March 23, 2016
First, if you have never heard of FATCA …
To put it simply: FATCA is a U.S. law that stands for “Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act“. According to this U.S. law, the United States will confiscate 30% of all U.S. dollar payments going to a non-U.S. bank, unless:
1. The bank agrees to hunt for people who the USA defines as a U.S. citizen (the U.S. can change the definition any time it wants);
2. The bank agrees to turn over all the bank account information of anybody who the U.S. decides is a U.S. citizen (note that this includes about one million Canadian citizens who had the bad fortune to have been born in the United States);
3. The purpose is to to force these unfortunate souls into the U.S. tax system; which
4. Will allow the U.S. to extract Canadian capital (under the guise of citizenship-taxation) from Canada to the United States.
In order to protect the Canadian banks from the threats of the 30% penalty, the Harper Government agreed to change Canada’s law to allow Canadian banks to “perform this service” for the United States. The Harper Agreement is also known in the profession as the “Canada U.S. FATCA IGA” and was signed on February 4, 2014.
But, this is just to provide context to this post. Those who want to learn more should visit the site of the “Alliance For The Defence of Canadian Sovereignty” which has brought a lawsuit against the Government of Canada to prevent this outreageous transfer of Canadian sovereignty to the U.S. Treasury.
For those who think I am making this up, here is a copy of the Canada U.S. FATCA IGA:
For those who wish to learn more, I suggest that you visit the Isaac Brock Society.
With that as background, I now turn to the question of what this has to do with independent candidates, political parties, and the role of the opposition …
About the role of political parties in a Westminster democracy …
The March 22, 2016 iPolitica.ca article by Elizabeth Thompson includes the response of Mr. Brison, now that he is a Liberal cabinet minister in a majority government and no longer the “critic” of a party that was lost in the political wilderness. It is an interesting example of how individual MPs and parties can be more effective in opposition AND the important role played by opposition parties!
Leaving aside the FATCA issue, Mr. Brison’s response speaks volumes about the reality and role of political parties in a Westminster democracy (particularly when the party has a majority government). The manner that the FATCA IGA issue has been handled, is a case study on the weaknesses of the “first past the post system” of determining election results.
The Democratic Process
Winston Churchill: "Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others." http://t.co/AJSU2Lb9el – Whatever democracy means
— Independents (@Independents) October 4, 2015
“Democracy” has become a “code word” for everything’s okay. We live in a democracy. There are many different kinds of democracies. They function differently. Canada has a “first past the post” system. Other countries may have some form or proportional representation. My point is a simple one. Whatever form of democracy a country has, that form is one of many different flavors of democracy in the democratic process.
Don’t ever confuse “democracy” with “freedom”
— Independents (@Independents) July 8, 2015
It’s election season. We support independent candidates. That said, the “independent experience” is NOT for everybody.
1. Are “independent minded” people
2. Don’t want to run a campaign as an “independent candidate”
3. Would like to run with a party that will allow them to define their own positions and priorities.
If you are interested in discussing this opportunity, please contact us …
— Independents (@Independents) December 2, 2013
OTTAWA — An NDP MP signalled Friday her party may not support a forthcoming bill aimed at limiting the power of the prime minister. The problems the bill aims to fix — such as curbing the control of party leaders over their MPs — are only found in the Conservative caucus, Edmonton NDP MP Linda Duncan told The Huffington Post Canada.
HuffPost reported Thursday that Tory backbencher Michael Chong plans to bring forward legislation next week to curb the power of all party leaders. The bill is the culmination of months of discussion among a small group of MPs who are hoping to loosen the stranglehold of the prime minister’s office on individual representatives, giving MPs more freedom to speak their minds and vote their conscience.
The Tory backbenchers involved in the group, dubbed “Committee 2012”, insist their efforts to inject more democracy into the Commons have nothing to do with the current Senate scandal engulfing the PMO. But the NDP suggested it won’t support the bill because it responds to a uniquely Tory problem
— Independents (@Independents) October 18, 2013
Since Republicans in the House forced a government shutdown, many Americans have turned against the G.O.P. Even conservative business leaders, who were once the middle of the “big tent,” have been pushed aside by the prevailing Tea Party faction.
What will come of those trends? Do the current unpopularity of Congress and the infighting in the Republican Party create an opening for independent or third-party candidates in the 2014 midterms?