Gang Green


Tom Van Dyke

Tom Van Dyke, businessman, musician, bon vivant and game-show champ (The Joker's Wild, and Win Ben Stein's Money), knows lots of stuff, although not quite everything yet. A past inactive to The American Spectator Online, the late great Reform Club blog, and currently on religion and the American Founding at American Creation, TVD continues to write on matters of both great and small importance from his ranch type style tract house high on a hill above Los Angeles.

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23 Responses

  1. Avatar Stillwater says:

    Is this a slap at the Greens, or a slap at American electioneering?

    Can’t tell.


  2. Avatar Kazzy says:

    I heard this on the radio driving home before the debate. Thought about making an Off the Cuff post but barely got everything done for 9PM. Probably worth a more thorough analysis but first people had to know it happened.

    Personally, I think the Debate Committee’s policy is a bit troubling. Very chicken-and-eggish.

    “You don’t have 15% support!”
    “How can we get 15% support when folks like you don’t treat us like legitimate candidates!”
    “You don’t have 15% support!”

    I realize you can’t just let EVERYONE up on stage. I also realize that many folks would just want Stein to sit down and shut up so they could hear the two boys shake their dongs at each other. But for those of us who REALLY care, I’m sure we’d prefer to see a broader range of ideas represented in the campaign, even if we don’t necessarily agree with them (though Stein seemed like she might win here at the LoOG based on that quiz).Report

    • Avatar Jesse Ewiak in reply to Kazzy says:

      As a supporter of the evil two-party duopoly (largely because I believe in Duverger’s Law), I’m perfectly OK with their being a fourth debate involving the two major party nominees plus what other people are on enough state ballots that they in theory could win 270 electoral votes.Report

      • Avatar Tom Van Dyke in reply to Jesse Ewiak says:

        Thing is, the purpose of an election is to elect, not vent. Debates are not mandatory, and Obama would be nuts to agree to get pummelled from his left by these, um, persons.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to Jesse Ewiak says:

        As a supporter of the evil two-party duopoly (largely because I believe in Duverger’s Law)

        You seem to be trying to get an ought from an is. I believe there’s some kind of rule against that.Report

    • Avatar b-psycho in reply to Kazzy says:

      Is it just me, or did the standards for inclusion tighten right after Perot?Report

    • Avatar Scott in reply to Kazzy says:


      ““How can we get 15% support when folks like you don’t treat us like legitimate candidates!”

      The problem the Greens have isn’t with the Debate Committee not treating them like legitimate candidates, no, is the fact that the people don’t think of them as legitimate candidates. Third parties always want to run a presidential candidate but not do the hard work of actually building a large grass roots organization. First elect mayors and city council members not presidents.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Scott says:

        That is an entirely fair criticism/piece of advice.Report

      • Avatar b-psycho in reply to Scott says:

        I think a key part of the reason for that type of emphasis is what particularly motivates them. Local issues may be important, but they’re not world-changing, they want to change how the BIG issues are approached — foreign policy! drug laws! national economic policy! Immigration!

        Potholes, local sales taxes fluctuating by a penny & parking don’t exactly excite these people.

        I can understand that. When it comes to local ballot initiatives, yeah, I participate, I speak out, but primarily what boils my blood when it comes to politics are things like murders being committed in my name overseas, people being locked up for what they choose to do with their own body, the finance system being rigged…y’know, BIG things! Things that the city council has squat to do with!Report

        • Avatar Scott in reply to b-psycho says:

          The “small stuff” may not excite the Greens but no one is going to trust them with the large stuff without proving they can handle the small stuff. Until they learn that they will just be the punchline to a joke.Report

        • Avatar NewDealer in reply to b-psycho says:

          Okay, the small that you mentioned might not be very exciting but local government is the level that most people interact with one a daily basis.

          There are plenty of local issues like police brutality, crimes that the District Attorney (a local position), and many more that do have high impact and can be connected to the big issues you mentioned. Education funding is a largely local/state issue.

          On a more real politic level, working from the ground up is a long term but necessary tactic. Suppose Jill Stein or another Green Party (or Libertarian for that matter) candidate did get elected to the Presidency. Then what? They will still need to deal with a Congress that is likely to be against them. They might get some judicial appointments but beyond that….By starting local and then getting bigger, it shows people that you are serious not only but the big issues but the nuts and bolts and it is the boring nuts and bolts of government that can be really important to many people.Report

  3. Avatar Damon says:

    “…a bit troubling. Very chicken-and-eggish.”

    Yah think? It’s a set up. The rules have been crafted to minimize any actual debate. Link. Frankly, I’m disgusted by this, but not surprised.