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Thursday, September 13, 2012

Utah’s Rocky Anderson Runs For President Criticizing Two Party System

Rocky Anderson, presidential candidate for the Justice Party.

The presidential election could hinge on three debates next month. One Democratic pollster told Reuters that those debates are “a do or die for Romney,” while RNC chairman Reince Priebus says the president, “will have to explain to the American people why thing are so bad.”

One thing neither the president nor Romney will have to worry about is answering to a third-party candidate. There won’t be one taking part in the debate because the Commission on Presidential Debates only accepts candidates who are polling at a certain level nationally.

But there are a number of online petitions to allow third-party candidates into the debate — people like Libertarian Gary Johnson or Green Party candidate Jill Stein. Or Rocky Anderson, a former Democratic mayor of Salt Lake City and a Justice Party candidate for president in 2012.


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  • Charlotte Scot

    Rocky Anderson would be incredible in the debates.  He actually talks about the issues. No pretense just honest, bold words which would make the “Obomneys” cringe. He presents factual evidence and has a passion for truth telling and the rule of law. However, with the debates controlled by the RNC and DNC most voters will remain in the dark. The charade of the two-party Presidential debates  is positively not democracy.  No one seems to have the guts to present a third party debate … then again the networks make a fortune off the current system and candidates like Rocky Anderson cannot but $500,000,000 worth of media advertising.

  • RobbieRob

    I believe there is corruption driven by corporations who lobby and hire former politicians and vice versa… and I believe the Democrats are trying to work with the people and for the people while Republicans have lost all sense of reality and are deeply influenced by big money and large corporate interests (ala Koch Bros) and ideology while facts don’t matter — the unprecedented blocking of the GOP lead congress during second round of investment stimulus for infrastructure jobs and renewal energy etc. is treason in my mind… where party over people is the GOP so yes we need another party to replace the GOP 

    so when Rocky says both parties yes there are players on both sides but the overwhelming corruption is the direction of the GOP

    love another party to create awareness but not dismiss the Dems attempt and Pres. Obama’s attempt to change the corruption and gridlock system

    • RobbieRob

      so when Rocky says both parties are corrupt… yes there are players on both sides but the overwhelming corruption is the direction of the GOPlove another party to create awareness but not dismiss the Dems attempt and Pres. Obama’s attempt to change the corruption and gridlock in our system

  • Michael Bowyer

    Is Rocky fighting the good fight or just wasting his time? Unfortunately, the answer is both… He’s absolutely correct, in that both parties are primarily concern with staying in power, by any means possible, and excluding any outside competition is just one of the means at their disposal. He’s also correct that they will never relenquish their monopoly (thus the futility of his efforts.)

    • mattlove1

       It’s people who won’t support somebody who is fighting for change that are wasting their time.

  • Barbara Glassman

    He is fighting the good fight and I wish he had a chance — I would vote for him, but my fear  of a Romney presidency forces me to vote for Obama.

    • mattlove1

       Don’t be weak. Do the right thing.

  • Grant Hatch

    Rocky Anderson is correct in his assesment of the war in Iraq as illegal and immoral, driven by special interests (military industrial complex) and the corruption rampant in Washington. It’s little wonder the Islamic world is increasingly anti-american as the extremists grow in number and strength due to our policies….. We are dying the death of a thousand cuts…..not only in blood and treasure, but in the values that made the US the great country it used to be. Our senseless and counter productive aggression around the world, our support of dictatorships and repressive regimes for economic and political “gain” have strained the goodwill we enjoyed after WWII to the breaking point.  `

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001969680540 Benjamin Franklin

    Interesting comments from someone that knew Mitt Romney during his Olympic organization days…[From Wikpedia] “Anderson endorsed Romney’s subsequent 2002 gubernatorial bid in Massachusetts.[98] Romney later endorsed Anderson’s 2003 mayoral re-election campaign.[99] Anderson has criticized Romney’s changes in positions on certain issues since he decided to run for president of the U.S.[100] “The Mitt Romney who ran for and served as governor of Massachusetts was a very different Mitt Romney than has been running for President of the United States… the real Mitt Romney — the Mitt Romney we all knew and [who] served as governor of Massachusetts — was very reasonable, very moderate — he felt that Roe versus Wade should be the end of the debate on choice; supporter of stem cell research — he was not the right-winger that he seemed to be when he decided he would run for President of the United States.”[101]” This begs the question; “Who exactly is Mitt Romney?”

  • BobbyL

    Every four years when third party candidates like Rocky Anderson run for president we are painfully reminded how limited our democracy has become. Our government has been totally corrupted by corporate money, not just the Republicans but both parties. After presidents serve in office they can become rich by giving speeches at corporate functions. People now run for congress as a career step for becoming high paid corporate lobbyists. The congressional aides are doing the same thing. Not everyone in Congress does this but too many do. The revolving door needs to be stopped. It is not surprising in a country with a consumer culture drenched in advertising and obsessed with celebrities that greed is undermining our democracy. Rocky Anderson’s pledge to not take corporate money and limit individual donations to $100 is a stark contrast with the battle between Obama and Romney for fat cat money. Greed is winning the day but Rocky Anderson sounds like he isn’t giving up. We need people like him more than ever.

  • swhatithink

    Activists will remember Mayor Rocky Anderson’s long record as one of the great voices against the Iraq war; against torture; for aggressive action on climate change; against attacks on whistleblowers and free speech — including Bradley Manning; calling for impeachment of Bush and Cheney; against empire building, against abuse of executive powers; government corruption and corporate money in politics.  When I look at a candidate, I look at their record and actions, not just campaign slogans.Rocky has always been and still is one of the big kahunas in activist circles — a constitutional lawyer with executive experience, who we can call to give legal analysis and electrify crowds at demonstrations.  Rocky used his powers as Mayor to protect civil liberties, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to inspire mayors across the country to do the same.  He wrote an executive order forbidding discrimination based on sexual orientation.  Rocky Anderson has consistently worked for justice for his entire career, spanning some thirty years.  Please consider supporting Rocky Anderson’s campaign. Rocky’s huge voice for Justice, and the broad based movement for the common good he promotes,  is needed more than ever.VoteRocky.org——————-

  • Walter Mason

    I think this is definitely the good fight. Dialogue about changing the system is only as futile as we are myopic. With our democracy so strained by imperialism, threatened by authoritarianism, and traded for free-market fundamentalism, we must participate. If we stop challenging the status-quo plutocracy and relent to the talking points that they define then there is no one left to rouse public concern about the corruption and injustice. Thanks for putting yourself out there, Rocky, when there is so little to gain and so much challenge by choosing a path that is against the grain. 

  • Bryan Burke

    I have voted in every election since I was old enough, starting in 1978. Only twice have I voted for one of the two main parties, and that was with deep misgivings. When people ask me why I am “wasting my vote” on a third party, I just reply “Wait two years and ask yourself who wasted their vote.” It is great to have at least one or two principled alternates that I can support, regardless of their chances. You can vote for principle, or make your best guess about the lesser of two evils.

  • D_burdick

    There is ample evidence in the last four years of what another four years of Obama would be like. There is strong evidence in the words, and ever changing positions, of Romney, of what four years of Romney would be like.

    We are on the edge of a precipice, and we will tumple over if we do not have serious solutions.
    Not only do neither Obama nor Romney have serious solutions, neither of them is even willing to open a serious discussion.

    Either would do little more than apply bandaids to gaping, hemorrhaging wounds.

    We have options in the voting booth.

    To waste these options on one or the other of two sides of the same corporate coin, is little more than to discard our vote.

    The naysayers are dead wrong. To vote third party is anything but a waste.

    At least look into the history of commitment and action by Rocky Anderson, and into his solutions, before you settle for the lesser of two evils.

    We cannot change the world if we don’t take that first brave step.

  • Info

    This only says that now is the time to start promoting open primaries throughout the U.S.

    • KSGranny

      No, open primaries are not a good idea. Example: my father was a Republican, but registered Democrat so he could vote in the only primary that mattered. (Texas was a solid Democratic state back then.)  Because the winner in the primary would go on to win the office, he voted for the best candidate.
      However, in a close race, an ardent supporter of a candidate might want to vote for the least electable opponent for his candidate. The closed primary system makes this less of a threat than the open primary.

  • peter

    His assertion that the two parties are the same makes one wonder if he follows politics.  Michelle Bachmann is no different from Nancy Pelosi?    Really?  Furthermore, the idea that more choice is better isn’t necessarily true.  Studies have shown that people don’t actually like more choices.  A consumer confronted with 18 varieties of tea will throw up his hands and walk away – with no tea.  A consumer choosing between green and black tea will pick one and enjoy his tea.

    • http://www.facebook.com/rocky.highroad Rocky Anderson

      I never said the two parties are the same.  Please listen to the interview again.  (And I urge you to check out my web site, http://www.voterocky.org)   I said that the two parties, together, have a stranglehold on our Democracy — from ballot access, sources of money to campaign in a system the two parties have created, and the presidential debates (which the two parties hijacked from the League of Women Voters).  
      Certainly, there are some differences on social issues, but the two parties feed from the same trough of special interest money and both serve the interests of Wall Street.  Who signed the repeal of Glass-Steagall and the Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000? And who continues to refrain from prosecuting anyone for massive financial fraud leading to the economic collapse of 2008?  Wall St. and the insurance, pharmaceutical, and fossil fuel industries have both parties in their hip pockets.  About those “studies” to which you refer, Peter:  Polls  reflect that the American people want third party or alternative candidates for president (regardless of what selection of tea they prefer).  See, e.g., http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424053111903461304576524313844439194.html. And this from Gallup: “Fifty-two percent of Americans believe the Republican and Democratic parties do such a poor job of representing the people that a third party is needed. . . . Gallup currently finds essentially no differences in support for a third party by political ideology, with 51% of conservatives, 52% ofmoderates, and 52% of liberals in favor. Given that a majority of Americans see a need for a third party, and that their level of satisfaction with the way things are going in the country is fairly low, it would not be surprising if a third-party candidate emerged.”

  • Lin More

    Sasha interviewed the wrong person.  Libertarian Party Candidate, Gary Johnson, successful former 2-term Governor of New Mexico is on 47 ballots and is in court trying to get on the 3 remaining states, including Pennsylvania where I live.   (It’s easier to get on the ballot in Iraq than in the Cradle of Liberty: Pennsylvania…..)

    Gary Johnson is fiscal conservative; socially tolerant and favors a non-interventionist foreign policy.   

    Don’t waste your vote on the Evil of Two Lessers — either of the DemoPublican candidates.

  • http://twitter.com/MirkoClarkins Progressives4Rocky

    Rocky Anderson is the best choice we have for President. We need to stop this back and forth between Democrats and Republicans. Democrats have all but abandoned their base. Rahm Emanual has come out and stated that Obama is on his side on the fight against the teacher’s union in Chicago. President Obama feels he is immune to disenchanted voters and that is why he can pass laws that strip all Americans of their civil liberties. The Obama administration is fighting a federal judge’s injunction on the indefinite detention clause of the NDAA. Most are unaware that his administration requested the language in the bill to do detain US citizens indefinitely. The judge ruled that it was unconstitutionally vague.  Now he is fighting to keep this new executive power. No Republican President would get away with these actions. The Democrats I talk to make up excuse after excuse. It is truly sickening to see where the candidate of hope and change has lead us. As Americans we need to have our voice heard and Rocky is our voice. That is why he has my vote this November. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Michael-J-Cavlan/626320422 Michael J Cavlan

    Dear NPR- Thank You – Now if Minnesota Public Radio could be so honest……

    Michael Cavlan
    Candidate US Senate 2012
    Minnesota Open Progressives

  • Celine

    Thank you for airing this piece on Ross Anderson’s bid for President.  I feel uplifted when someone who wants to represent the majority of American’s real interests is allowed to speak on a respected show like this one.

    “Justice!”  IMAGINE!

    There is never a perfect time to start a third party, but the despair I usually feel listening to the sweet talkers and the nasty ones tells me this is the right time….for JUSTICE!

  • Celine

    Let’s not be fools:  If one or the other of the corporate parties’candidates is sure to win in your state, you (and I) can vote for someone who’s worth his salt (little joke), Ross of Salt Lake City.

  • Greenli

    Anyone foolish enough to believe voting for who “could win” is better than voting on principle is buying into a lie. We live in a world of color not black and white. We shouldn’t be represented only by two extremes. PLenty of people are hungry for candidates that are not bought by corporate interest. It could take a generation or two to unseat the DemRepub death grip, and it would have to be done with the understanding that voting for the right candidate could directly lead to the wrong candidate being elected in the short term. However, it could be done. There is a tipping point, and if enough people could throw off this oppressive belief that their only options are Democrat or Republican then our nation could change. Until then, the status quo will continue. Our government has been bought. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1625461443 facebook-1625461443

    Libertarian Gary Johnson, Green Party candidate Jill Stein. and Justice Party,s Gary Johnson should be in the debates and be heard, 

  • http://www.opednews.com/author/author24983.html Scott Baker

    I heard Rocky speak in person in NYC.  He is articulate, reasonable and correct on the issues.  One thing he said stuck with me regarding the debates.  He said the League of Women voters, who used to run the debates, has been completely shut out, in favor of a Democrat-Republic committee that runs, surprise, only Republicans and Democrats, making up pseudo-rules to keep out third parties as it goes along.  For a third party candidate without access to huge swaths of money, automatic ballot access, and MSM coverage, the debate is the last chance to compete equally.  John Anderson (1980) and Ross Perot (1992) both were decisive factors in their presidential races precisely because of their debate performance (to be fair, elections cost a lot less to run back then) and scored near double digits or over because of this opportunity.
    Today, no third party stands a chance to get much more than 4%.
    It is an unfair, stacked system – exactly how the duopoly wants it.

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Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

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