THE BLOG
03/04/2013 06:20 pm ET Updated May 04, 2013

"None of the Above"

As the American people are seeing this "Sequestration" rule unfolding, it may be time for them to consider at new option at the polls: a "None of the Above" vote. Such a change would likely require a constitutional amendment. But at this point, with the poor quality of candidates, and their ongoing lack of responsiveness to the needs of voters, and the needs of the American nation as a whole, there may be no other choice. When agreements are always so far off, and hair-brained ideas like "Sequestration" become policy, we are looking a situation where something drastic is called for. Simply accepting the notion of the "lesser of two evils" is not a rational strategy for maintaining an effective election process, or a functional government.

Before anyone dismisses this idea out of hand, without giving it due consideration, there are some less than pleasant realities that need to be considered. One of the primary things to be considered is the overall level of dissatisfaction with the performance of our House members and senators. Polls are consistently showing that few Americans are satisfied with the lack of responsiveness, lack of actual work accomplished, and the public demeanor of the House and Senate members from their respective states. This is not simply because the process has become more complex, and it is harder to get things accomplished. It is because of the overwhelming level of influence by special interests that is impacting the process in a negative manner. While pundits can offer all manner of manufactured "technical" reasons why our elected officials are more and more often in political "stalemate," the bottom line reality is that it serves the interests of those who fronted the largest amount of resources to get them elected. That is not theory, it is apparent in their public positions, and in the way in which most of them vote.

Another consideration that cannot be ignored is the consequences of their inaction to the people of the United States and the world. It would appear that the latest "Sequestration" incident has deeply soured most Americans on our elected officials because, no matter what is being said, it is going to adversely impact every American in some manner. Some may see only limited impacts in the short term, but we will all see the impacts over time in ways not yet anticipated. Of that, we should all be aware. All the punditry in the media cannot diminish the fact that, when you take resources away from a situation where they are required, something is going to give. That is simple logic. If you slap someone, it hurts. We have been slapped by people claiming to be unable to do the nation's business, and the pain is coming. Do not doubt that.

As a personal consideration, and great care is being taken here to avoid unfair accusations, we need to consider the idea of potential corruption. It is hard to imagine, for example, that the Supreme Court could have come up with the Citizens United decision, which is such a huge perversion of legal and functional logic as to spark questioning of the sanity of those who voted for it, that something outside of legal reasoning was not in play. Without making any specific claims, it seems that it would be prudent to investigate each and every single penny taken in by Supreme Court Justices, and every single interaction they have had. People in the Law Enforcement and Intelligence communities endure this all the time. No justice should have any objection, given the power they hold in their jobs. On a similar note, it would be prudent to investigate every penny taken in by House members and senators, and they should be asked to hold to certain behavioral and ethical standards just like any other person in a position of power where absolute integrity is required. They should not be above scrutiny, simply because they believe that such privilege comes with elected office. Like Ronald Reagan once said, "Trust, but verify."

When we see so many behaviors among our national-level office holders that seem to defy reason, and give the appearance of impropriety, it is time to consider many extreme measures. Constant investigation and vigilance is just one. Another idea that most Americans should be more open to is the notion of recalls. When a politician fails to respond directly to the needs of their constituents, it is time to consider recalling their election. Recall drives are important, and that should be an option for all voters across the United States who feel that their officials have forgotten them after being elected. The power should be in the hands of the people of the nation as a whole, not in the hands of a few wealthy and powerful entities. For example, Citizens United was an abomination of justice. The justices who voted for that should be impeached, and banned from ever holding public positions of authority in the future. The idea of "money equaling free speech" is one of the most offensive and perverse concepts ever put forth by a governmental body in the history of the United States.

Lastly, it is seriously time to consider a constitutional amendment allowing voters to reject all the candidates put in front of them. A "None of the Above" option should exist, when we have an entrenched two-party system that continues to give us candidates hand picked by special interests. The specifics of such an amendment could be worked out, but the bottom line should be that people have the right to avoid voting for the "lesser of two evils." We should not have a two party system to start with. The two parties do not contain the numerous permutations of beliefs that Americans have. Allowing two heavily compromised parties to dominate the choices is like allowing a doctor to give us only two choices for treatment when we are ill, while knowing that numerous other, and potentially better options, exist. We have accepted this insane system for too long. It's time to change it. "None of the Above" is no crazier than a "Sequestration" rule, which is the equivalent of "mutually assured destruction" applied to a budget process that is basic to doing the business of the American people. This debacle is unforgivable.

The process of moving towards such an amendment would not be an easy one. The level of resistance would be tremendous. However, it is time to move the process to a formal one, if the level of support is there.

Please leave comments in response to this post expressing your personal opinions, and/or if you wish to establish contact related to this issue. Do not post email addresses please. If you wish to connect directly, take a look at my bio information.

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