I found myself driving yesterday and listened a bit to the radio news and talk shows. There was a lot of discussion by various personalities that indicated that there really probably are not any undecided voters out there still. The general idea was that folks had decided and were not saying how they felt at this point for one reason or another. I personally found this kind of humorous, especially given some of the blogs and comments that I have been reading from some friends of mine. There are a significant number of folks out there that I think who are still legitimately undecided. I think if we could pick and choose issues it would help a lot of us, instead of the whole ball of wax that comes with one person.
What is really interesting to me is the number of ads and such that are being ran both at the presidential level and especially the local senate election here in Kentucky which have absolutely nothing to do with platform issues. As a matter of fact, I do not think I have heard a legitimate platform issue put forth that was not designed for a sound bite effect since back early the primary runoffs at the beginning of the year. I think that is the biggest reason why a lot of folks are still undecided. That is certainly what a number of my friends have recently been saying in as many words as they contemplate their votes, especially those few that are doing absentee voting, having recently moved.
Even myself, typically one who sides more with conservative approach to things am starting to having some bad tastes left in my mouth in regards to the republican party (especially the senate race here in Kentucky – for those outside of the area – you really have no idea). There is even a certain part of me that remembers an idealistic young fellow from years ago that finds some ideas put forth by the other side appealing, but there are too many of their ideas that I can not agree with. There are of course some ideas from the right that I can not agree with either. Fundamentally, as I have said before, I am all about individual liberties and small government. Granted, I would much rather have a 3rd choice in both the senate and presidential races. One that really much more represents my libertarian view points, and while in the big race I would have that choice, it is not a realistic vote.
So, I have two new ideas that I want to put forth. To begin, lets actually have candidates speak about the issues and how they feel about it. Lets make all the negative ads and such completely off-limits. I don’t want to do this by infringing freedom of speech. Rather as a people decide that we are not going to tolerate it anymore and punish any politician so badly for going that way that it will fall out of favor in an election cycle or two. Of course this is not really going to happen.
Second idea – given that I would rather choose something that is between two the parties and a little bit different then what either is ever going offer up. Lets move to a system that allows an a la carte voting process based on individual issues. We have the technology to do that. Oddly enough, it would be like making us a true democracy again. Each thing that needs to be decided, we all take a big vote on it and make the choice. Technologically we are probably still a bit from making it happen, but not that far. Of course then I think about the undesirable votes that would creep in and the amount of apathy we already have, so that would not work. But maybe if we got to vote on leaders based on specific things. For instance, financially we could choose some one very against taxes and all for small government. But we could also choose someone who would still have an open mind about things and not want to tell us when and how we could do things in our homes or dictate morality to us in regards to things like art and so on.