For Non-Americans

Discussion in 'The Watering Hole' started by GaryAyala, Sep 6, 2012.

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  1. GaryAyala

    GaryAyala Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    SoCal
    Hey,

    If any of you non-Americans watched the RNC and DNC ... what is your take on our Two Party political process?

    No comments on who you would vote for president or which party you'd support ... just your opinion what you saw or read. I think it would be okay if you say you like this speaker or that speaker ... just sorta wondering what the world thinks on how we do things here.

    Gary
     
  2. Grinch

    Grinch Mu-43 Top Veteran

    813
    Jan 9, 2011
    Canada
    I'm a Canuck, and the one thing that has always amazed me is that you have two choices and that's it. I'm amazed that people even vote, as I'm sure there are groups that are not represented by either party. Our system is by no means perfect, but I have more than a heads or tails choice.I hope this comment doesn't break any of the rules, if so please delete( no need for a pm explaining why).
     
  3. GaryAyala

    GaryAyala Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    SoCal
    I agree. Typically, the wide spectrum of choices are offered during the primary election ... after the primaries the choices get reduced down to two. I do appreciate much of the good contained in the parliamentary system.

    Gary
     
  4. drewbot

    drewbot Mu-43 Top Veteran

    702
    Oct 21, 2011
    Toronto, ON
    Also as a Canadian, our press follows American politics very closely.

    My own opinion thinks American TV gets tunnel vision during election time, and a whole lot of hot air is exhausted by these analysts. I tend to glaze over the coverage in general, as I am more of an actions speak louder than words kind of guy.

    There are a lot of other issues closer to home we should be looking into than watch our neighbors flip a coin.

    However, the holograms they had one year were cool.
     
  5. phrenic

    phrenic Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 13, 2010
    People should care and watch the American election process. Frankly, it has a major impact on international affairs..and as a Canadian, our country's fate is closely tied to yours. So I follow closely.

    Plus, it makes for good entertainment.

    Sad to only have 2 parties. Voters have to make lots of compromises in party platform stances, I guess you choose the lesser of 2 evils, or simply vote on what your most important issue is. I can't imagine too many people fully endorse their party on every stance.
     
  6. Antonio

    Antonio Mu-43 Regular

    98
    Jun 27, 2011
    Sao Paulo, Brazil
    Well, I am from Brazil. Every election we start with about 4 or 5 candidates that could have a chance of winning but we have for the last 5 elections ended up with the same parties at the run off (if no candidate gets more than 50% of the casted votes in the first ballot the two most voted go for a second ballot one month later). I believe it is natural (and good) to have a certain predictability in who is going to participate in the election with real chances to win.

    What I know about the US is that it has been a huge success (although some may disagree). I am listening to Barack Obama this very moment. He is delivering a great speach. I don't know who will win (but have my preference...), but certainly the system is interesting. I think that more than the system itself the problem today is that people in general have shorter attention span and take a more shallow view of things. It is hard to elect a president if you're only interested in slogans and trends. From the tea party to yes we can everything looks a bit fake.

    Well, maybe a spoke too much and really said nothing that is really meaningful...

    We in Brazil now have our first woman president, elected after the first manual worker elected for the presidential office. Although I don't agree with everything they did (and have not actually voted for them either), I have to admit that they took some "truths" upside down and implemented some very good things that everyone thought would be impossible. Maybe the US must look outside the same old institutions to do something different.
     
  7. RnR

    RnR Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 25, 2011
    Brisbane, Australia
    Hasse
    Agree with Grinch and others. Somewhat mystified that the champion of capitalism and consumer choice are reduced to two choices in arguably the most important area of decision making. But it is broadly the same here in Australia (although the Greens seems to be gaining voters every election) and England. Something funny going on with these Anglo-saxons :biggrin:
     
  8. GaryAyala

    GaryAyala Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    SoCal
    Don't hold anything back .. this is enlightening.

    G
     
  9. KVG

    KVG Banned User

    May 10, 2011
    yyc(Calgary, AB)
    Kelly Gibbons
    I find the two parties campaign on different platforms then when elected do the something for the most part. The two party system is the biggest problem and since they have so much power they make it impossible for a real chance of more parties to emerge. When traveling in the US I also find the news very propaganda heavy and have a very skewed world view.

    typed on my phone, sorry.
     
  10. RobWatson

    RobWatson Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Not to rage on all political like but this is not a correct characterization of the system but only a current snapshot of the state of affairs. Parties come and go with the times (e.g. whigs, bull moose, etc) and there are several other parties with candidates for various offices.

    Of course, I'm american (actually USAian since american captures most of the western hemisphere) so I'm ignorant of important things besides consumerism and pop culture (or so I've been told).
     
  11. jukka

    jukka Mu-43 Regular

    86
    Jul 31, 2011
    In Finland people and media always follow U.S. presidential elections very closely. Its part of the general knowledge, you discuss it and you have an opinion. There's a lot of people laughing at Fox, but also at Micheal Moore.

    I personally follow the RNC / DNC and the debates. I think it's entertaining but I also admire the level of professionalism involved - it's a good show on so many levels. On couple of last elections nights we have sat down with friends, drank beer and watched the evening unfold.

    Regarding the two party system, it clearly has it advantages and disadvantages. Most importantly I think it gives you a possibility to concentrate on clear topics and issues.

    In Finland we have the conservatives, the anti-immigrants/anti-EU, the farmers, the social democrats, the greens, the swedes, the communists and what not. These then agree on something, disagree on another, the whole thing leading to one big mess.

    At the moment I tend to think that no matter what the system; one party (China), two party (U.S.) or multi-party (Finland), the "normal" people have the same joys and sorrows, and politicians do what they have always done - play the game.

    P.s. I am absolutely not saying there isn't sincere people among politicians, I actually know there is.
     
  12. hanzo

    hanzo Mu-43 Veteran

    341
    Jan 22, 2010
    Chan
    And don't forget our favourite, pirate party :biggrin:
     
  13. DownUnderDog

    DownUnderDog Mu-43 Regular

    Here in Australia we have compulsory voting on all state and federal elections. This avoids circumstances like "buying votes or stacking elections". Also our elections are full of "what the candidates will do for the electorate" rather than who will be President". The Westminster system is not popular anymore but it does have a lot of plusses. What the USA needs now is excellent leadership so whoever wins let's hope that's what the world achieves.
    Cheers
    DUD
     
  14. Iconindustries

    Iconindustries Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    I have no idea what's going on in America but I reckon vote for Chuck Norris to be prime minister (or whatever they're called over there). If I were american that's who i'd vote for.:smile:
     
  15. goldenlight

    goldenlight Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 30, 2010
    Essex
    John
    I get the impression that the whole election campaign is a bit of a circus. However, I don't really follow it because I'm too busy enjoying, with an increasing sense of Schadenfreude, the pantomime we have going on in the UK at the moment.
     
  16. msk

    msk Mu-43 Rookie

    16
    Aug 10, 2012
    NW Indiana
    Mike Kehle
    As an American it gets very frustrating to me that on both sides of the isle candidates tend to attack personally and not debate the issues. We all know that when you vote you aren't voting for a man per say but for a platform.
     
  17. PetitP

    PetitP Mu-43 Regular

    RNC ? DNC ?

    We have already enough photo acronyms here and you want to add the political ones ? :biggrin:

    Honnestly, we (sorry.... "I"), over here in Low lands, just don't care about all this internal cooking. Let's wait for how tasty will be the final plate and if the world can digest.
     
  18. digitalandfilm

    digitalandfilm Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jul 18, 2011
  19. NJH

    NJH Mu-43 Regular

    164
    Mar 8, 2012
    South West England
    Trying not to speak for the rest of Europe but as a European one of the big things that has stood out in recent years is how vehemently socialist/commie those on the right accuse Obama of being. Ok we might just get the extreme shock jock opinions but this aspect of US politics is highly amusing. Obama on the political spectrum is somewhere way to the right of the vast majority of politicians and political parties in Europe IMHO.

    I can't remember who said it but many years ago there was a famous quote from a UK politician who upon returning from a visit to the US was asked by the PM what he found in the US parties. His response was along the lines of "well PM they have a Republican party which is much like our Tory party and a Democratic party which is much like our Tory party".

    Thus my take on the two party approach in the US isn't so much the fact its dominated by two parties but that to me the two parties are almost right next to each other on the spectrum of political possibilities. The fact they then rip into each other for being 5% different is highly amusing.
     
  20. phrenic

    phrenic Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 13, 2010
    Yeah the parties rarely greatly diverge. And where they do it seems like its often culture issues like religion (from this outside perspective).

    In Canada, we're probably somewhere in between the US and Europe.. Our conservatives are probably a bit right of the democrats. And our liberal-left wing parties are probably still rather conservative by european standards. ;)

    Sent from my iPad using Mu-43 App
     
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