And Now a Word from the Women

And Now a Word from the Women


Yours truly had a post on called “Political Independence is the New Feminism” — please check it out!

Jackie Salit, President of, a national association of independent voters and the manager of the NYC Independence Party’s campaign for Mike Bloomberg in which he became the first independent mayor of New York City, has a new article out “Independents See Through Washington’s Magic Show” where Salit posits “What’s really going on is Democrats and Republicans are using independents to produce the illusion that the parties are being responsive to the American people. Here’s how the trick works…”
(see Huffington Post)

  • Salit also ran an exclusive for the Christian Science Monitor “Tea Party Activists: Don’t Confuse Them with Independents” where she differentiates the social conservative movement with today’s diverse independent movement.
  • More on Independent Voters: Yes, Government is Broken. Now What?

  • Independents have had a busy week! CNN appears to be developing an independent track with the Don Lemon independent panel of Dr. Omar Ali, Joe Gandelman and Nicole Kurokawa — looking forward to tonight’s broadcast Sunday (6:20-6:40), February 21st, to discuss “Broken Government” from an independents’ perspective … Wish I could easily find a link but you might have to Go Fish….

  • NH at The Hankster

    • TerenceC

      So now we have an independent organization helping us elect an independent billionnaire in addition to to two other organiztions financed by billionnaires helping elect their candidates. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

    • Chris

      I wish that an “independant” candidate was viable in the last 3 presidential elections. But throwing my vote away isn’t worth it when people like sarah palin are involved.

    • Simon

      Nancy, I’d still like you to answer KK’s question from last month—the one you conspicuously ducked. What did you mean by “radical democracy” when you described yourself as a proponent of such? It was surprising and a little troubling that having so boldly nailed your colors to the mast, you wriggled and squirmed so much to avoid describing what they stand for.

    • Simon

      Chris, I think the last viable independent candidate was Wallace in 1968—hardly an auspicious progenitor. Generally, third party and independent candidates fall into two categories: those who are irrelevant (e.g. Nader 2004, Barr 2008), and those who are injurious to their professed cause (e.g. Nader 2000, Perot 1992 and 1996).

      Even with Wallace, however, who made real headway, the factors that contributed to his success also operated to limit it. On the one hand, “[a]lthough the electoral college system generally works to disempower third parties, who emerge from the process with no electoral votes, a regionally based third party candidate can do well,” a fortiori when they have a single issue hook. Ann Althouse, Electoral College Reform: Déjà vu, 95 Nw. U. L. Rev 993, 1001 (2001); cf. ibid., n. 46. Thus, Wallace was able to rack up significant wins because his support was geographically specific and his issue enjoyed significant support within that area. On the other hand, however, the source of Wallace’s strength also limited his reach: a campaign built on perpetuating segregation ensured that he gained little to no support outside of the old confederacy.

    • TerenceC

      Don’t discount Perot’s contribution to the defeat of Bush 41. Perot actually received alot more votes than Wallace – but it unfortunately resulted in Clinton’s election.

    • Simon

      I didn’t discount it, Terence. I placed his runs in the category of third party/indy activities that injured their professed cause—in Perot’s case by getting Clinton elected—not those who were ineffectual. Perot was poison. To him and those who voted for him, we owe Clinton and all the judges he appointed. When a Perot voter whines about something the Supreme Court decided 5-4 since 1994, you be sure to remind him that we would have won that case 6-3 but for Perot and his voters. That’s a gross oversimplification for rhetorical effect, of course, but you get the idea.

    • kranky kritter

      Yeah, I’m still waiting too. And willing to keep asking, as well.

      IMO, Independent voters are all folks who don’t associate with an official political party. That’s inconvenient for Nancy and Jackie and what they seem to be trying to accomplish.

      But if you consider yourself to be something of a centrist or moderate, it’s extraordinarily important to understand that independents spread across the left-right political spectrum. Iconoclasm and anti-establishment dissidence owe no particular allegiance to any political ideology. That’s as American as apple pie.

      Now, as a group, the majority of folks associating with the tea party movement (and it’s definitely more of a movement than a party per se) are conservative independents. But not all.

      For the current anti-establishment vibe to have real legs in the upcoming election, it will have to be about overspending and the congressional failure to do the people’s business and put regular folks first, before partisan politics and before each major party’s go-to special interests. An emphasis on social conservatism will have a self-limiting effect on the anti-establishment vibe, helping to preserve the status quo. I

      Ultimately, it’s in the interests of both major parties for the tea partiers to be seen as socially conservative rural kooks. Even if the Republicans are unable to resist the temptation to ride the wave.

    • TerenceC

      I actually liked Clinton’s SCOTUS appointments. I take other issues with Clinton specifically ratification of NAFTA, signing the Telecom Reform Act, the Defense of marriage act, and Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. He signed the Financial Services Modernization Act which in large part contributed to the massive financial problems we have had for the past 12-18 months. And of course the Blue Dress fiasco which directly contributed to Bush 43’s election.

      As far as Independents are concerned – I want responsive, transparent, responsible leaders in the Federal government. I want leaders who aren’t average Joes’s, but instead are highly above average Joe’s (and Jane’s). I don’t want to have a beer with my elected leaders – I want them to be the very best people our country has to offer. I want leaders who don’t use emotional issues to obfuscate very complicated problems and avoid making decisions and laws that affect those problems. I want leaders who are as honest as they can be, and take the responsibility to the people in their districts seriously. I don’t care what party they come from if they can fill most (all) of my requirements. Just because someone is an Independent doesn’t mean they are any better than R’s or D’s – it simply means they don’t like the R’s or D’s (or the R’s or D’s don’t like them) – which would be the majority of us I think.

    • larry

      Let’s face it: politics requires huge amounts of money and that means appealing to the very wealthy (individuals and corporations) and an ability to reach the “common man” whose IQ is somewhat south of 110. Those folks vote too and think they’re just like the “good ol’ boy” they elected in 2000. Sure Clinton didn’t measure up to what we all wanted but he was able to balance the budget and then create a surplus. Should have skilled the elimination of industry oversight and controls we blame Bush for but it started, as pointed out above, in the ’90’s. There is no perfect system but we should still try. Resolving the tax issue would be a good start, then Medicare (allowing Americans to buy drugs at prices available everywhere else in the world would help). If we can get a handle on these escalating costs, we can then start to improve education and try to stay competitive in the world. Otherwise, we are in for a nasty ride.