Policy

These “Policy” documents are works in progress. We will update them as we validate, expand, and refine our ideas through our local meetings.

Our intent is to define specific changes, laws or constitutional amendments we can make so our country and political system are more reasonable and fair. Below are summaries of some general ideas, which are to be expanded upon in their own pages over time.

We do not intend to tackle any specific policies such as immigration or climate change, but rather focus on the system itself. We need a fair and functioning system before we can expect to do anything else. These issues affect all Americans and we hope we can find common ground on these issues regardless of your other political views.

It’s Service, Not Self Service

Let’s design our high level government jobs to attract good people with integrity who want to serve rather than people interested in power and personal agendas. This might involve things like limiting the financial and power incentives and imposing term limits on congress. We want people looking to serve, not looking for a personally lucrative career.

One Person, One Vote

Our system should pass the five year old test. If a five year old can’t understand it we are probably doing something wrong. Try to explain the electoral college to a kid. Or super delegates. Or why we vote on a workday instead of the weekend when everyone is free. Explain gerrymandering and why your vote doesn’t really matter if you don’t live in a swing state. These are all simple issues about fairness and making sure every American’s vote is valued the same.

Facts Matter

At some point, facts stopped mattering. It is ridiculous. Between fake news, biased news, journalists who let candidates lie to the American people with unchecked nonsense, it is a sad state indeed.

Debates Worth Having

this may be a specific case of “Facts Matter,” but there are ways to have debates that are actually worthwhile. They may not be ratings getters but if that is what the networks care about, they shouldn’t be in charge of the debates. There’s no reason we can’t make people actually answer a question. There’s no reason we can’t cut their mic if they refuse to stop interrupting and talking over their competitors. There are ways to give fair time to each candidate. The 2016 debates were more about reality TV than substance.

Actually Choose Our Candidates

We pretend we have a great democracy where anyone can make it to any office and in theory that is true, but in reality, not so much. Almost all congresspeople are supported by either the Republican or Democratic parties and have a net worth of over a million dollars. If you don’t want to vote the party line, you will be unlikely to get on an established party ticket. If you don’t have money, you have virtually no chance. This is unacceptable. There are ways we can reduce the dominance of the two parties and get exposure to real Americans that are not wealthy or political elites.

Lifetime (Dis)appointments

I’m sure there are reasons the founders gave supreme court justices lifetime appointments, but there are some serious downsides. Part of the reason our political system and country is so divided is that getting to make a supreme court nomination is SOOOOO huge. We’ve gotten to the point where congress can decide to just not consider new justices? Really? What if there was a serious problem with the 2016 election and we needed the 8 person supreme court to decide an outcome and they deadlocked? If they too had term limits, the enormity wouldn’t encourage going nuclear over who gets to pick them. I bet the concerns of the founders could be mitigated in other ways than lifetime appointments.

Let the Legislators Legislate

Members of congress spend a ridiculous amount of time fundraising. Is there some way to just prohibit this altogether? Maybe crazy, but them spending major time on it seems crazier. They’d love it too from what I understand… What if they just had their staff paid etc. paid for as part of their employment so they didn’t have to worry about it (do they?). With term limits and promotion by the reasonable majority they didn’t need to do that?

A True Balance of Power

I need to learn more about this, but it seems the majority leader can control what gets voted on and committee chairs can decide which bills get consideration at all. Why should one person have such enormous power? Can they literally block anything they want? Why not just let anything that at least a certain amount of members want or something similar. If one party has the majority, they shouldn’t have additional power other than the fact that they have more votes. Need to learn more and perhaps get more examples of this type of thing. Generally, anything that lets one party control things should go. They can always win the vote if they have majority, but it shouldn’t be so easy to just obstruct everything the other wants to do. Balance requires at least three legs… with two parties it is more of a tipping act (from side to side) rather than the balancing act it should be.