Today started out quite strange. I woke up like normal and found that there was a GAB (or Government Accountability Board) meeting to decide who goes on the Presidential ballot and who doesn’t for the primary. Wait? A meeting to decide who can and cannot run for President, that doesn’t sound very Democratic to me. But sure enough there was such a meeting at noon in the Governor’s Conference Room. As I glided in on my Segway, one of the Governor’s waterboys (he brings him water during meetings), greeted me by name which was rather peculiar. Even more peculiar was the friendly tone. Before the meetings started an Officer told me that I had to go to the basement to talk with them after the meeting (I am being investigated for allegedly breaking into the Governors private office, but more on that later). The meeting got off to a quick start with GAB Director, Kevin Kennedy noting that this was the first time one of these meetings was actually on time.
They appointed a chair to run the meeting who was not a legislator or party staff. There were people there from the Democratic National Committee, Republican National Committee, Democratic Party of Wisconsin, Republican Party of Wisconsin, and a few Senators and Representatives. I had never been to one of these meetings and didn’t even know it existed, likely putting me in the same boat as most Americans. But what happened in this meeting both astounded and sickened me. It was pure shredding of Democracy plain and simple. This meeting was to decide who can and cannot run for President in Wisconsin. The qualifications are treasonous. If you have been recognized by national media you are basically a shoe in, if you have not, you cannot run. That was the gist of the entire thing. They pulled up lists of everyone who is registered to run with the Federal Elections Commission. The Republicans allowed only the names of those in the Iowa Caucus to go through.
The Democrats, however, being represented by Chair Mike Tate, would only allow Barack Obama on the ballot despite the fact that many people had registered and completed all of the requirements to run outside of gaining support/attention from the national media. There were other candidates on the list like Aldous Tyler and Darcy Richardson. Darcy will be on the New Hampshire ballot so has already shown he is serious about this, but is unable to be on the WI ballot. Why? Well I asked Mike Tate in this video and all he could say is because he has never heard of him. But he is on the list. He has registered with the Federal Elections Commission, FACT! He is going to be on the NH ballot, FACT! He has a much more progressive platform than Obama, FACT! He has even mustered NATIONAL media attention, FACT! But the citizens of Wisconsin will not have the chance to even consider him a candidate as Mike Tate destroyed our Democracy by shooting down anyone but Obama. Is this what our country has come to? Party heads choose who does and doesn’t run for office?
This system may have been in place for years but it needs to go. America was founded on the principle that anyone could run for office, not just the people the party likes. To not allow American citizens these options is both treasonous and against the Democracy or Representative Republic in which we live. In WI the party has no control over who runs for any other office. Why should they for President? As Americans we complain about the two party system, yet we allow systems like this meeting to reinforce it. People say that we cannot have a primary against Obama because that would allow a GOP candidate to potentially win and would create division. So we are willing to throw out the power of the people to choose who represents them and Democracy to gain unity? Isn’t that hypocritical? Obama promised us a lot in 2008. He had a democratic congress and could have technically passed just about anything he wanted in his first two years. But he didn’t. Shouldn’t the people have a choice? What does it say about our system when the only way someone can win for sure is by rigging the system? Is he really the man we want for President if he cannot even bounce back from a primary and still win the general election?
The answer to these questions is plain and clear. Mike Tate, as well as the DNC, RNC, DPW, RPW, Senator Miller, Representative Barca, Senator Cowles, and Representative Fitzgerald, all undermined Democracy today. And this is unacceptable. Call it strategy, call it whatever you want, the FACT is that this is not the process our founding fathers intended. The constitution was made so that all people have a say whether you agree or not. Are we any better than the Republicans if we have to go out of our way to stifle opposition just to win? I value our Democracy. Although I will likely and begrudgingly vote for Obama, I would rather have a Tea Party candidate than have the voices and options of American voters stifled. We wonder why our choice in every Presidential election is bad versus evil and this is why. Because the parties choose who runs and who doesn’t. Obama is by far a moderate. He has allowed the violation of rights by continuing the Patriot Act. He has caused thousands of people suffering by raiding medicinal dispensaries out west. He has signed the NDAA, eliminating 1st and 4th Amendment rights. He half assed health care. And the list goes on.
Sure he is better than the candidates on the other side, but is that really saying much? Have we really resorted to thinking that mediocre is okay? Do we really want anyone to be President if they cannot win a fair and even process for everyone? The fact of the matter is that the Democrats have the easiest and best job right now. They get to watch the nation get destroyed and sometimes even vote for its destruction and still be viewed as the good guys. They can win elections simply by striking fear of losing in people. They can acquire sheep, people who blindly vote for them just because they are Democrats, something the left has always struggled to do. Why? Because look at our other options. But I won’t settle for this. Anyone who supports the system we saw in the meeting is giving away Democracy for an illusion of victory. The same illusion Obama promised us in 2008 when he had a congressional majority of which he could have done nearly anything he wanted. But that is all it has ever been, an illusion.
When the meeting got over I was told by Mike Tate that the only way I could change this was to sue him. Here is video of this exchange and the entire 10 minute meeting where Democracy was destroyed for political gains. I asked him only about Aldous Tyler, unaware at the time that he had ended his campaign and thrown his support behind Darcy. My objections to Mike Tate still hold true in the case of Darcy. I don’t fault Mike Tate or the people representing the DNC for supporting Obama. I do fault them for saying that their opinion and strategy is above anyone elses and that just because they want Obama to win, they will not allow anyone else to run, whether or not they have a legitimate campaign. Fact is that this system is the reason people need millions of dollars to become President. If they don’t have it the American people are never allowed to consider or vote for them because the party will just not allow them on the ballot. If we really want to change the way the Office of the President works, we must change this system. And anyone who complains about us never having the right person for President or complains about having to choose the lesser of two evils, cannot support this system in ANY way. There are other choices we could push for. Maybe even something like Direct Representation, but we must remember this moving forward with whoever we put in office. End this system in any state that uses it. Democracy means sometimes you have to fight a little harder to keep your seat but its worth it. And feel free to criticize or even boycott the party itself if you are as disgusted with this system as I am. There are plenty non party run organizations people can donate to.
I was upset, so I vented to a gentleman who was at the meeting and headed to the basement to see why I was under investigation. It turns out my business card ended up ON the Governor’s private desk and they suspected I had broken in. What they failed to realized was that whether I did or didn’t break into his office (how likely would that be anyway with no signs of forced entry anywhere?), complaining about my card turning up on his desk just proves how scared they are of me. I explained to the police my side of the story and offered a witness. I do not deny that my business card was, in fact, put in his office by me, but I do deny that I actually broke into his office to accomplish this. No criminal conduct occurred. As for how my card got on his desk, that is for everyone to wonder and for Walker’s staff to fear. As I finished with my meeting with the Capitol Police, they asked why I decided to put my card in his office anyways. My response was that I wanted him to know we are still watching. And I wanted to make a statement. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED! They then instructed me that there was no need for my card to be in his office, his staff knows full well who I am. I got a brief chuckle then continued on. But in all actuality I simply slid it under his door as his door was locked in the conference room which is public. How it got on his desk I have no clue but suspect the janitors. One day longer! One day stronger!
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Note: Segway Jeremy Ryan has become a full-time member of the protests at the Wisconsin State Capitol. Formerly a businessman, he gave up his business to join the fight for the middle class in the State of Wisconsin. Through videos and writings he has informed hundreds of thousands of people about what was going on at the Wisconsin State Capitol once the mainstream media had mostly abandoned the protests. His full-time activism is completely funded by the people. If you would like to help out please click here.