>From Cheryl at the Worker's World party:
>Thank you for your letter. Although we thoroughly
>understand the frustration of many confronted by the
>undemocratic character of the United States and its
>electoral shams, it much more than electoral methods that
>need to be changed, it is the entire profit driven
Dear Cheryl at Worker's World.
I totally agree lots of things are wrong that your party is rightly concerned about,
such as Hurricane Katrina, racial inequalities, the Iraq war, and
lots about the profit driven Capitalist System.
However, those are big mega-problems and the Worker's World Party is a small micro-party.
The best you can hope for is to make a small dent in those problems.
I advise working on some smaller problem that you can hope to make a bigger dent in and
maybe even really solve - like the US voting system. And if you really want
to make a dent in one of those huge mega-problems, then you have to first focus
on getting your party way bigger, big enough to do something about it.
To make an analogy: if a hole appears in a levee near you,
it would not be smart to say "why bother fixing that hole?
heck, compared to all the other problems in the world, it is
just a little hole in the wall... I'll get back to it
in a few decades after I've worked on the other problems
of the world."
So what would be the best such issue for WWP to focus on?
It has to be small enough to try to conquer, but still big and important, and
it should have special properties that make it especially solvable and especially helpful
to you when it does get solved.
That is why RANGE VOTING a very good choice for Worker World to focus on.
* Like the hole in the levee, it affects you very much. The voting system is killing
you, it is drowning you. But there is a comparatively easy simple change to make to fix it.
Not like racial problems and Katrina - there's no easy quick fix for that.
If the US changes to range voting, then WWP candidates will immediately get at least
50 times - and perhaps 1000 times - more votes and the various socialist parties
will immediately stop being electoral rivals but instead allies. (And it'd be about time, too.)
With those much better results you'll immediately get lots more money donations
and interest and help and media coverage. And it'd be nice for the WWP to have some
good successes ("we got the Range Voting revolution started!") to notch in its belt.
* It wouldn't be just you, the small weak WWP. I want all US third parties unified
to try for range voting. The WWP is just one brick in that wall. That unity means you
immediately have a lot of allies and help on this, multiplying your force by 10 or 100 or 1000.
Even though US third parties are weak, put them together and that is 1 million votes in 2004.
That is a significant enough force to do some things.
* And it wouldn't be just the US third parties - there also is what I call "leverage."
The two major parties WANT to have range voting in their Iowa 2008 caucuses.
(It is just a matter of making them aware of the facts, then they will want it. Because
that would help the Dems versus the Repubs, and vice versa, and numerous other reasons.)
That means we can use their huge strength to help us get Range Voting rolling.
* Once we get Iowa 2008, which will be covered big time in the news media,
that opens the floodgates as lots of US citizens will realize they are massively being
denied true democracy and this is a problem that really can be fixed. Why the hell
is Iowa being fixed and not us? - they'll ask. That's still more huge leverage.
Fixing the US voting system is a very big problem, but it's a much smaller problem
than the mega-problems at the start of this letter. The WWP can for this problem
realistically hope to get huge help and unity across all US third parties, multiplying
their force by a huge amount, AND we can use "leverage" to multiply by an even huger
amount, AND all we are asking is a mere change in Dem & Repub internal party rules
in the Iowa caucuses - a change which they themselves will want anyway if they get
educated, AND it'll lead to an amplifying chain of consequences like starting an avalanche.
OK? That means THIS IS DOABLE.
And it will help your party tremendously. In fact it quite likely is the difference
between life and death for your party. (Historically: Third parties usually die.)
Remember how I said that to nail those huge mega-problems, you have to first focus
on getting your party way bigger, big enough to do something about it. Once range voting
is in place, I guarantee your party or at least one of the US socialist parties really will
get way bigger.
Also, range voting will by itslef have a lot of good impacts on a lot of other problems.
I'm currently preparing a writeup about how a big collection of problems (collected
from the writings of Noam Chomsky) all would get partially or totally solved
automatically with range voting - with Range Voting in place a lot of problems just will
automatically fix themselves. That writeup should appear in a few days at
What I want the WWP & you to do ASAP to help:
* Can you help me get WWP bigwigs like Monica Moorehead and the WWP National Committee
on board on this?
* I want them aware of range voting, I want them to give either their individual or
the WWP-party ENDORSEMENT (or both) to the CRV (Center for Range Voting, my organization).
* I would like to have Monica Moorehead's email and phone number and address, or whatever
I need to get seriously communicating back & forth with her. Same goes
for other important WWPers such as John Parker. And give them mine in return (see bottom).
* Like I said, your WWP endorsement is a brick in a wall of third party endorsements I am trying
to build up. Just endorsing me costs you nothing, but it can help a good deal. Like
I said, third parties add up to a million votes and (if we had range voting) more
like 50 million votes. I can use those endorsements and numbers like a giant club
to hit major party politicians over the head. Admittedly this "giant club" may be more
like a whiffle-ball bat, but it should be enough to make them pay attention to
see the virtues of the Iowa project. We do not need a cannon to make them see
the advantages of helping themselves.
* Also, the more bricks we get, the easier the rest of the wall is to build.
* Even if the Iowa project does not work, then still we can at least get all US third parties
both unified on this issue, and educated about range voting. That is important.
History shows that a lot of third party ideas eventually get adopted. For example
the Populist party's idea of floating currencies eventually was adopted (long after the Populist
Party had died) and so was their socialist-like drive for "trust busting" antitrust laws.
So I think if the US third parties get unified and educated on range voting, even only that
will by itself make success probable EVENTUALLY.
Warren D. Smith
Mathematician and CRV founder.
CRV home page:
email (best): warren.wds AT gmail.com
email (less good): wds AT math.temple.edu