Once again it’s election time.

Here we are in the same place we find ourselves every 2, 4, or 6 years.  It’s election time.  You can rest assured that Wed morning we’ll wake up with either Clinton or Trump the elected president and about half of us will be happy or bragging and the other half will be unhappy and possibly even complaining about how rigged the process is.  Then, a few days later we’ll all go back to our lives and forget about the process for another 2/4/6 years then it starts all over again.

I’ll admit, I don’t like the election process too much.  The delegates to elect the nominee is rigged plus the media likes to jump in and potentially influence the election (perfect example, Hillary Clinton announced she won the New Hampshire primary at 7:45PM eastern time even though the polls in New Hampshire were open until 8PM.  The news ran with this from that minute over the next 48 hours and then people oved onto the next set of states.  The truth?  Bernie Sanders won NH’s Democratic primary but not a single person or news agency went back and recanted the store about Clinton winning.  This isn’t the first time, too, remember Florida in 2000 when the news announced a winner even though polls were still open?

This election we do have two other parties running, Jill Stein and her Green Party as well as Gary Johnson and his Libertarian party.  Gary Johnson has the potential to get 5% of the vote meaning his party would qualify for federal funding in 2020.  This could make the two dominant parties re-think some of their strategies (but it’s doubtful).

The big issue is that our nation has become so polarized that we refused to meet at some proverbial middle-ground (including politicians).  Politicians are so polarized that even middle ground is out of sight and mind for them.  It’s also clear that the political parties are too focused with promoting and expanding their influences and agendas that it seems not much is done for us, the people who put them into power.

So, here we are with a system that is broken, but isn’t beyond repair.  We have roughly 3 years before the process starts again for president (which is the big one that most people pay attention to).  While the changes won’t be overnight and I don’t think it will happen in 4 years but we can get the ball rolling and hopefully in 8 years the process will be much improved (we can’t think short term anymore, we have to think long term- this also includes 3rd parties).

Contact your party leaders, your national level, state level, and even local level politicians about this.  Heck, most towns’ officials don’t work 9-5 (many board of selectmen meet 1-2 times a week in the evening) and this could be a good opportunity for us (the people) to get involved.

We also need to educate ourselves with FACTS.  Facts aren’t in all Facebook / Twitter pages.  Yes, articles do pop up but read the article and see if it is from a reliable source and also look for counter-stories about it and weigh out the facts.  I’ve learned it’s easier to stand up for a cause when you study the opposition as well as your side.  This helps you see both points of view and when both sides are studied you start to see holes in claims one side makes over the other (I did this extensively with wolf (and other wildlife predator) conservation.   Stick with facts and don’t let fear and/or intimidation decide your vote.

So, tomorrow (Monday) we’ll be hit from every direction with why we should vote for one person, Tuesday we’ll vote (hopefully more of us will vote) and the news will “predict” their winner (but won’t say the words predict or projection too loudly), and Wed the news will be trumpeting the winner.  It’s way too late to fix it for the 2016 election but hopefully we can get the ball rolling in 2020.

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