OT Could tis be the end of the two party system?

I am thinking about the results of recent primaries, and the presidential race. I cannot help but wonder about the significance of
1) absence of passable and half serious Republican candidates, as well as 2) the fact that both Bernie as well as Trump are essentially outsiders to their nominal political parties. Does this possibly mean that the end to the two party system is near?
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On Tue, 09 Feb 2016 22:16:50 -0600, Ignoramus4548

No.
--
Ed Huntress

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On Tue, 09 Feb 2016 22:16:50 -0600, Ignoramus4548

Let me give you a better answer than "no."
First of all, we *have* a multi-party system. It's called the primaries. Unlike parliamentary systems, the compromises and coalitions in the US system are formed in the primaries, rather than in parliament itself. We have a huge variety of disparate interests competing in the primaries. Then they compromise and coalesce around candidates, and the coalitions stand for election -- as coalitions, which is our version of parties.
This has traditionally led to two close-to-center parties competing in elections. What's different now is that polarization is pushing the parties farther apart. This is not new; it's just new in our lifetimes. We've had extreme polarization in the past, many times. Whether this is a symptom or a cause of our current conflicts, and to the collections of pandering freaks who run for election, is a point debated among the political scientists.
Structurally, our system eats third parties up and spits them out. This is not a simple issue, but the primary one is well understood, and has been for most of a century. I took an entire course in it at the Univ. of Lausanne, in 1968 -- comparative politics -- and the main factor hasn't changed.
It is this: In a parliamentary system, where a prime minister is chosen by parliament, groups of the parties (usually) have to form coalitions in order to elect a prime minister and to acquire the power that accrues from being on the same side as the prime minister. This varies among the various parliamentary systems, but that's the general idea.
In the US, we have a separate election for president, and Congress doesn't have that power that parliaments have, to elect the government's high officer. There is no incentive for disparate parties to compromise and to form coalitions. This can lead to gridlock with no resolution. Candidates for office know this, so, like it or not, they participate in one of the two parties in order to acquire the power that comes from being on the president's side. If they lose, they have far more power as the opposition than they would have if they were one of five parties, say, that were out of power.
In summary, the incentives in our system are for two parties to form, rather than many, because you have no power in our system if you aren't in the majority or in a unified minority, and you have no ability to elect the high officer of government as they do in parliamentary systems.
Third parties in the US become nothing but spoilers, unless they emerge with a majority. That has happened a couple of times, but only in the early days of the republic. It soon settled down into a two-party system, for the reasons above.
Compounding the disincentive to form third parties is that the spoiling, which almost always occurs, results in taking votes away from the existing party to which you're closest in policy and direction, and forfeiting the election to the party you most oppose. That's happened two or three times in our lifetimes. Bill Clinton and GW Bush won elections that way. Nader swung the election in 2000; Perot, arguably, swung the 1992 election to Clinton.
So the results of third-party participation generally gives a result that the majority hates the most. Thus, we don't do it much.
--
Ed Huntress

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On 2/10/2016 12:45 AM, Ed Huntress wrote: snip

Well stated!
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On 2/10/2016 1:22 AM, jon_banquer wrote:

I understand that he used too many big words for you, try http://dictionary.reference.com/ or ask Ed nicely for the monosyllabic version.
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On 2/10/2016 3:01 PM, Ed Huntress wrote:

He shows his brilliance with every post, doesn't he? Actually, I suspect he's a Bot, and an outdated one at that. A good Bot is more creative and not repetitive or banal. So, who do you think owns the bot?
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wrote:

I used to think he was kind of bot-like, when he started repeating the same lines over and over, but I don't think so. You'd have to program the Bonkers-bot to act like a complete twit. Bot programmers usually make a stab at making them sound like they have some sense.
But, maybe it's a tricky bot-programmer who is trying to con us into thinking it couldn't be a bot, because no bot would sound so much like a twit. So maybe it *is* a bot.
--
Ed Huntress

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On Wed, 10 Feb 2016 19:31:44 -0800 (PST), jon_banquer
...the Bonkers Twit-bot is not programmed to respond...
--
Ed Huntress

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On 2/10/2016 11:18 PM, Ed Huntress wrote:

Twit-bot...says it all, well stated!
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wrote:

The Rasberry Pi Zero of automatons.
--
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The candidates still have too many chances to screw up for NH to pick the winner so early. What we do is give them all the opportunity for low-cost in-person face time with the voters, a prescreen in front of the finer filter of the other primaries.
When I listened to and then talked with Kasich there were only 24 voters at the meeting. At one point he need a $20 bill to make a point, and wouldn't take the one I offered him. Have you ever heard of a politician refusing money?
He's what's called a "policy wonk", a capable, detail-oriented manager if not so much an inspiring leader. https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/policy_wonk
--jsw
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wrote in message

Such aspects of a candidate don't come across as well on TV as in face-to-face meetings where they have to respond to unexpected questions from the audience, non-media people with real jobs who often have had a problem dealing with the bureaucracy.
They tend to circumlocute the question or BS us less in person here than they do on camera with attention-deficit national commentators more eager to ask the next question on their list than to adequately explore the previous one. We listen patiently to the full explanation.
--jsw
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The brief version of what I learned in high school is that unlike some other countries, notably France, the parties here are inclusive election machines more than exclusive magnets for narrow political viewpoints. In NH the Libertarian position gets a lot of verbal support from both sides but can't pull 3% in an election.
--jsw
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On Tue, 09 Feb 2016 22:16:50 -0600, Ignoramus4548

I PRAY that is true. Stats are looking good that people are rejecting the totally corrupt (and totally self-serving) asses within the two political parties.
--
I would be the most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people
who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves.
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On Wed, 10 Feb 2016 08:00:13 -0800, Larry Jaques

Trump is running as a Republican and Sanders as a Democrat. If they want to win, it's one or the other.
The two-party system isn't going away. The party characteristics may change, as the Democrats did when the conservative southern Democrats moved mostly to the Republicans and left the Democratic Party as largely left-of-center, beginning in the mid-'60s. But it's almost impossible for a third party to get a toehold at the national level, with a separately-elected president and a bicameral legislature.
--
Ed Huntress

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On 2/10/2016 11:00 AM, Larry Jaques wrote:

Nobody in their right mind would get into politics in the first place. So, the parties act as clearing houses to at least condense the field. Three or more parties would dilute the vote so that a small minority idealistic group could gain power.
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wrote:

Fairly true.

How can voting for your choice of candidates ever be considered "diluting the vote", Tawm? It only seems that way to folks from one of the two totally corrupt parties, don'tcha know?
When someone who is not a Rep or Dem does well, what part of "over 33% of Americans want this guy" don't Reps and Dems understand? And how would that be a bad thing?
Ross Perot and Donald Trump are the only two guys I've considered a positive in voting for in the past 30 or so years.
--
I would be the most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people
who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves.
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On Wed, 10 Feb 2016 19:40:30 -0800, Larry Jaques

Duh...if you didn't notice, Trump is running as a Republican. No spoilers, no split vote. If he's the nominee, he'll be head-to-head with the Democrat, and will win or lose without a third-party spoiler getting involved.
Tom is right. Third-party candidates for president can produce two results: either they take votes from the minority party, in which case they're irrelevant and quickly disappear; or they can take votes from the majority party, in which case they can (and often do) wind up putting the party into power which had the *minority* of the vote, effectively electing the party disliked by the majority of Americans.
Third-party voters can trash an election and wind up with *everyone* hating them for their self-indulgent, anti-democratic antics. Like Ralph Nader.
--
Ed Huntress

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On 2/10/2016 10:40 PM, Larry Jaques wrote:

If Trump looses the primary and runs as an independent, the Democrat will win with less that 33% because the conservative vote will be split among Trump and the Republican even though the total conservative vote is 66%.
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wrote:

We'll see if that sinks in.
--
Ed Huntress

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