Could You Possibly Be An “Independent”?

In a previous OJ blog post, Art Pedroza points out that the Liberal OC and the Red County blogs are fast becoming irrelevant in rankings and increasingly irrelevant to shrinking readership.  The left wing vs. right wing arguments smack of “fringe” thinking to some members of a large political party – the Independent Party -that currently has no official representation in our two-party system. 

Our two party system even forces those of us middle-of-the-road types to claim as our party affiliation as “Decline to State” (DTS).  I don’t think we are DTS’ers.  I think we are non-joiners of the other two prominent parties.  Sure, you can align yourself up with one of the 7 official political parties of California but who can even name one successful representative that has emerged from the American Independent Party, The Libertarian Party, Green Party etc…?  Those groups seem even more fringe than what’s left of the post- Bush GOP or even the nuttiest of the liberals who take refuge in the Democratic party.  Just who makes up the country’s largest voting bloc swaying elections?  Might YOU possibly be one of these Independents?  Let’s look at some of the characteristics and see…..

In a recently published opinion at the Rant/Rave site a poster who uses the moniker, Coloranter Raver, wrote a rant titled, “The Power of the Independents – GOP Beware”.   Here are some of his conclusions about Independent voters:

  • Being an Independent takes a lot of work and research
  • Independents can and do change their minds on positions.  Our opinions are fluid.
  • Independents are swing voters.
  • Independents need lively debate to help make up their decisions, not one-sided diatribes.
  • Spokespersons who appeal to the “base” of either Republican or Democratic parties, do not appeal to Independents.
  • Independents don’t trust either of the Republican or Democratic parties.

Here are a couple of excerpts, and the rest of the rant can be found at this link

As a staunch Independent, I believe the time has come for us to assert some of our power despite the fact that we technically have no representation in our government under a Congress beholden to a two party system.

If the United States were made up strictly of Democrats and Republicans, the one with the majority of the citizens would win every election. Instead, however, there are people who don’t subscribe to these labels that mask their underpinning philosophies of liberalism and conservativism. Instead, we choose a different course where our opinions are not informed by the party, but by our own moral and philosophical ideologies. We prefer not to have our opinions fed to us by a talking head on any network but, rather, by our own research, analysis, and both internal and external debate. We do not take what we are told as the final word. Instead, we fold all that we uncover into a dough of knowledge from which we taste and sample. This informs our opinions.

Being an Independent is an incredible amount of work. You cannot just turn on the Glen Beck show or read the Huffington Post to get your daily opinion download. You have to read a lot of source material including newspapers from all over the world. You have to listen to and read information for all sides. You have to put yourself in the shoes of other people and walk around for a day. You have to be open-minded and be able to change your mind with new information. Most of all, however, you have to be willing to put up with people on both sides filling your mind with their dogma, and they will try. One of the most obvious things about both parties to the Independents is that neither can be counted upon to deliver on their promises or to stick to core ideologies. Rather, they will flip flop to ensure the election of their members. If you follow one party exclusively, you might not have noticed this tendency.

Both the Democrats and the Republicans, right now, need to realize that neither has a majority without the Independents. Therefore, to ignore us, is to lose our votes and theoretically power as we’ve seen in the past two elections. The difficult thing about dealing with us is that we don’t all have the same opinions and there is no one dictating them to us………………

What say you?  Do you have a political party that you feel comfortable calling your own or might you be an Independent? 


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