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Forget a Third Party — Let’s Go for a Fourth Party!

Maybe a third party would be a complete disaster, but a fourth party could actually work. Sort of.

by
Frank J. Fleming

Bio

February 18, 2010 - 12:00 am

Democrats suck. Republicans suck. Time for a third party, no?

Right now, Democrats are in a death spiral, thanks to their spectacular, over-the-top awfulness under the leadership (or lack thereof) of Barack Obama. Still, Republicans aren’t exactly shooting up in popularity, as it wasn’t that long ago that they were in charge, and did they usher us into a new era of liberty and fiscal responsibility? No, they were turds; they just sat there — maybe occasionally working to get pork for their districts. So the answer is to start over with a completely new party, right? Yes, some might say it’s not the politically strategic thing to do, but if we all vote with our consciences, it will all work out for the best in the end.

And while we’re at it, why don’t we ride to the voting booth on a unicorn and have our ballots counted by griffins? Real world, people. Third parties are political suicide. Instead of musing about a third party, you might as well muse about what a shotgun barrel tastes like. More efficient than starting a third party would be taking all the issues you care about, throwing them in a garbage can, and setting them on fire. Third parties never work.

Never.

Yeah, a third party seems like a neat idea, but in execution it’s always just a huge failure. Look at NY-23 with Doug Hoffman. That was an almost best-case scenario where the Republican dropped out, making it a two-person race, and the third-party candidate still lost. We’re just so set up around the two parties and it doesn’t look like that will change any time soon. The Democrats can almost trace their roots back to the beginning of the nation. (Sure, those guys would shoot the current Democrats with muskets if they saw what they did with the federal government, but the point is that the party has been around awhile.) The Republicans originally called themselves the “Grand Old Party” as a joke, because it was the newer party, but now it’s been around for over a hundred and fifty years, so the only ironic part of its nickname is the word “Grand.” And you think you can replace those parties now? Come on.

The problem with third parties is that they always take from the extreme ends, weakening just one of the parties and leaving the party with the opposite views of the third party the strongest. Just listen to liberals whine about Ralph Nader for his part in the 2000 election. Also, third parties attract all the crazies — all the people who give up on the social niceties (read: “sanity”) — needed to be a member of one of the major parties. For instance, libertarians have seemingly rational stances of fiscal conservatism and social liberalism, but who does the Libertarian Party nominate? Candidates who dye themselves blue and like to have their promotional pictures taken with ferrets. The only real way a third party could be viable would be to steal the moderates out of both parties, which would basically be a repeat of Obama promising some ephemeral hope and change and no specifics (specifics and principled stances scare moderates).

But the tea party is popular and has regular Americans behind it, right? Maybe, but how is it supposed to do anything other than sap support away from the Republicans, thus leaving the Democrats in power? Besides, it’s called the “tea party.” I know that’s a reference to the Boston Tea Party, but nowadays a tea party is something a little girl has with her dolls. Plus, we’re a coffee nation.

So get it out of your heads. You scared the Republicans good in NY-23, but a third party is going to do nothing but ruin us. There’s no way to make it work. You can plot and scheme, but it just reminds me of that Seinfeld episode where Seinfeld is trying to switch from dating one roommate to the other, and he and George plot and plan and eventually come up with the idea to suggest a ménage à trois solution and … well, nothing works. It’s impossible. Give it up. It will never happen.

Unless … hmm …

Okay, hear me out: Maybe a third party would be a complete disaster, but a fourth party could actually work. You see, the liberals are already getting restless with Obama. They don’t understand that their entire ideology is basically political poison, and when Rahm Emanuel tried to calmly explain that to them, it only upset them even more (and even Sarah Palin, oddly). So maybe it’s time we give them a little push. Right now, Democrats are going to start moderating themselves, because they know they’re in for a beating this November and don’t want to make it any worse. This will only make the liberals even angrier, as they’re convinced the Democrats would do awesomely if they would just cram the liberal agenda down the throats of the American people. So we should tell the liberals, “You guys would totally win everything if you just articulated progressive views. Like, if you had a whole party of Alan Graysons, you’d be unstoppable. Also, I saw this guy Che4ever commenting on the Huffington Post that the Rethuglicans should all be locked up; you should find people like him and run them for office in your own party and totally win everything.”

So then the left wing will start its own party — probably called something like the “We Smart Party” — and it will be havoc for the Democrats, but the liberals won’t care because the Democrats were already going down and also because liberals are kinda dense.

So now the Republicans are just going to be sitting easy thinking the whole election is in the bag, not even caring to fire up the base. That’s when we start a fourth party of badass liberty that punches anyone in the face who tries to mess with our freedoms or touch our stuff. We could be like the “Don’t Tread On Me Party” — let’s see the liberals try and come up with a sexual slur for that one (don’t worry; I’m sure they will). Anyway, with the Democrats fractured and the Republicans caught off guard, we could actually succeed.

Maybe.

But probably not.

Still, it’s better than the third-party option. So I don’t want to hear any of your ideas about the need for a third party; that’s political death. But if the other side makes a third party, I’ll listen to the idea of a fourth party.

Though I’ll still probably chicken out and vote Republican. What do you expect? It’s a two-party system.

Frank J. Fleming is the author of books such as "Obama: The Greatest President in the History of Everything," wrote the short story "Who Murdered the Dinosaurs?" at Liberty Island, writes columns for PJ Media and the New York Post, blogs at IMAO.us, and is a scientist (prove he's not).
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