Issue #20 – Thursday, Oct. 16, 2014
NH Republican Platform 2014:
or, Where the Jahannam Were YOU? Plus, Foreshadowing and Spoilers from Your Personal Timeline
by Bill Walker
No one reads political party platforms. They are a symbolic blood sacrifice of rationality to satisfy the “party faithful”, without actually giving them any power. Thus, the Democratic Party platform tends to read like Mao’s little red book, and the Republican reads like a 60/40 mix of watered-down Milton Friedman and Muhammed the Prophet. Meanwhile the high levels of both parties continue with their jobs of shoveling hundreds of billions into corporate welfare, getting us into every war on the planet, and extending Federal government control into every area of life. Are you ready for National Car Care? Don’t the poor deserve free oil changes?
That said, the less toxic the party platforms, the better. It was a step up for civilization when the Democrats dropped black slavery from their platform. It will be a step up when the Republicans drop discrimination against gays from theirs. (Actually, thanks to poor choice of wording, that faction has voted to censure King Solomon, but they don’t see the irony).
Unfortunately that didn’t happen in New Hampshire in 2014. Only 413 delegates showed up for the platform meeting, and only 141 of those voted to get the Republican party out of the bedroom. The ratio was hilariously similar a short time later on a vote to single out and oppose Sharia law (because, you know, mixing religion and politics is bad, mmmmK?… unless it’s your religion. And of course, there are so many Bedouin keffiyehs in the NH General Court that we have to be ever vigilant…). No, no one saw the irony (this is foreshadowing for three paragraphs down).
Now, a lot of “activists” will spend thousands of hours posting on Facebook about how bad “the political parties” are. I know I have. We can save most of those hours by becoming a party political delegate (which takes only one day per year, and you can sleep during the speeches), fixing the problem, and then not wasting time on Facebook 😉
There is no way to “run the economy” using the US political system. But that was not the Founders’ intention. Their idea was to give enough power to ordinary people to let us STOP the powerful from trying to “run the economy”. And the system still lets anyone who bothers to show up do exactly that.
There are over 1600 Free State Project “movers” in New Hampshire. If even a tenth of that number had become delegates to the Republican state party, the headlines would have been “NH Republican Party votes for pro-freedom platform”. The same goes for the Democratic Party, which has fewer delegates because it doesn’t elect them democratically in the primaries (no, they don’t see the irony… see, foreshadowing!).
More important, in the alternate years, the delegates elect the party officials.
Let me repeat that more loudly, in the tone one uses to scream that there is a negative void coefficient in the reactor core cooling design: THE DELEGATES ELECT THE PARTY OFFICIALS. So “the political parties” are not things magically created by television sitcom writers (which is why they have low Nielson ratings). They consist of WHOEVER SHOWS UP.
How to become a delegate to a NH political party
Political parties are not made of magic (although as Rumpelstiltskin says, they do always come at a price). They are composed of the people who SHOW UP (note the subliminal message) to be delegates one day a year at the party conventions. Those people create the party platforms, vote for the party officials, and conduct the sinister graveyard rituals and chants (Tekel-li! Tekel-li!). After putting on the garlic necklace and loading all magazines with silver bullets (it’s OK if the powder is still Gold Dot), here’s how you get the secret handshake:
How to become a Republican delegate
Republican delegates are elected during the primary election, by registered Republican voters (spiritually guided by the Higherest Power*). All you do is sign up to run for delegate at your town hall in even-numbered year elections (by the filing deadline for the primary, which is on the NH Secretary of State’s page). There isn’t even a filing fee. Then you talk to your neighbors and get a few votes (there is a minimum requirement of votes, something like 1% of votes cast [there are 3000 voters in a NH single-town district, but of course they don’t all vote] or the other ridiculously low minimum which I’m too lazy to look up and so are you. Unless you deliberately don’t tell the local gossips that you’re running, you can’t avoid getting the minimum number… Jason Sorens (founder of the Free State Project) got 300 votes on his first try.)
Many delegate candidates are uncontested… in fact, many delegate slots are left vacant because no one runs. For example, in three out of four towns in my local state rep district (Sullivan County 1) in 2012, no one bothered to become a Republican delegate. So if you’re specifically running to become a delegate, the easy way is to run in the “out” party in your district.
The second way to become a delegate is to run for state-level office and get past the primary election. This method carries the dreadful risk that you might be elected to office, though, which takes a lot more than one day per year. Plus, it costs two dollars to file for state rep.
How to become a Democratic delegate
Democrats in NH do not allow democratic election of their delegates in primaries. Democratic delegates are summoned from the outer dimensions at party caucus meetings (at midnight, while the twisted creatures chant “,ph’nglui mglw’nafh Obama R’lyeh wgah’nagl fhtagn” ), so the only people that can vote are the caucus attendees (spiritually guided by the Old OnesTM). This means that to become a Democratic delegate, you must:
1. Find out where the heck the caucus meeting is (you may have to create it yourself, if there is no local Democratic committee. If there isn’t enough government-mana in the local ley lines, simply construct a Pentagon, that always works)
2. Bring your cycle gang and other social acquaintances to the caucus (don’t worry, they will fit right in with the union goons that normally attend). Make sure they have registered as Democrats with the Supervisor of the Checklist before the caucus. And have fun! There’s no dress code, but Goodthink is always in style.
You can learn the full Democrat delegate process here.
If escrima knife-fighting at the local bar or library meeting room is too tame for your taste, one can also become a Democratic delegate by running for a state-level office and winning the primary. Very easy in a Republican district, the filing fee is only two dollars. The only permanently sanity-draining event would be accidentally winning and becoming a state rep, like poor Tim O’Flaherty. Poor, poor Tim O’Flaherty, God bless his soul and the personality recording in the muon antineutrinos streaming backward in time from his eerily glowing gravesite beside the wreckage of the Tardis. (A particularly bad soul-copyright violation since he’s not dead).
Remember: To Be Effective, Don’t See the Fnords. Or the Irony. Just Show Up.
Our political cooling system has a negative void coefficient. So it’s kind of “critical” that we don’t leave a “void”. SO SHOW UP! And don’t waste time on irony, because the Old Ones don’t care that you have good taste, they just know that your taxes taste good.
Stop yelling at your TV, posting impotently on Facebook, and hiding in your closed darkened room from The Thing Which Should Not Be. Use the time saved to start a billion-dollar company or binge-watch “The Guild”. I’ll see you at the next convention (yep, more foreshadowing. And, pre-hypnotic suggestion: “Speeches are over. Wake up and vote.”).
*Fox News, or Mr. Scofield in off-year and local elections
TMHillary, PBS, Pol Pot… they’re all really Old.