I wanted to comment on the Kevin Thompson’s leaving the CP and Red Phillips response to it. Like Red, I too believe non-major parties can be useful if they are used in the right manner and organized in the right way.
I have written about such uses for non-major parties and I agree such parties should not just use ideology as their sole building block. American political parties have alwasy been building blocks for various communities of interest. The weakest parties, you will find, are those only based on dogma and ideology. Every left-wing and right-wing splinter group can attest to that.
Actually, why leave the party at all? What law says you can’t be a member of two parties? Hmm? I am not a full member of the CP, but I affiliate with it. I also do the same with the LP and the GOP. I’m like old Raymond Burr in those Independent insurance business commercials, I don’t represent one party, I represent many. Kevin Thompson can do so too. No one is stopping him.
Without the CP or the LP around, there’s nothing stopping the GOP from going fully neocon. The Ron Paul Movement has made extraordinary progress within the GOP since it first started in December 2006 but it still has a long way to go and there is no guarantee it will get to where its going.
Using activists from small parties to influence a bigger one way non-major parties can be used effectively. Winning local elections, especially for non-partisan offices is another. Influence local communities so that policy is changed from the ground up should be the main goal for non-major parties.
Too many people in this country talk about political parties in the same manner that socialists do. They hold them sacred. The Founding Fathers would have said nonsense. Non-major parties keep our political system open and fluid. Without them, we would be at the mercy of a highly centralized duopoly. For the sake of our Republic alone, we need more than two choices. Whether or not Chuck Baldwin would have made a good President, your work and my work to get him on the ballot and have him as a choice for those not wishing to hold their nose and waste a vote on McCain, was very important.