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About that election thing...

Posted Monday, March 31, 2008, at 10:23 AM

I have to admit that I haven't been following the mess that has been our electoral process this year too closely. I'm trying to keep my blood pressure down and the ulcers to an absolute minimum.

However, some reports I saw this weekend nearly had me doubled over in laughter.

You see, it was reported that some party big wigs are looking at asking Al Gore to step in and run in case of some sort of weirdness at the Democratic convention later this year ...


Apparently, it would work like this: If neither Obama nor Clinton is considered a viable candidate, or the convention is hopelessly deadlocked, the Dems could convince a sizable portion of their superdelegates to say that they will skip the first ballot in Denver. This would deny the 2,025 delegates needed to both Obama and Clinton. Then the party could approach Al and asked him to be the nominee, "for the good of the party/country." Obama might even be his running mate.

So if this comes to pass, you know what that means? NONE of the votes cast by Democratic voters in the primary will count!

Oh, that will go over really well. Laugh at all the primary voters and hand the nomination to a guy who didn't run, then announce that "the people have spoken!"

This is from the same party that was shouting "let every vote count," several years back.

Not a very democratic idea, is it?

However, considering how much Al is making with his global warming efforts, I doubt he'd want to take that much of a pay cut.

Showing comments in chronological order
[Show most recent comments first]

Actually, Al has donated 100% of his earnings from the movie and his Nobel peace prize to the global warming cause plus donating some of his own wealth to the cause and the foundation he has set up to work on the issue. What he is making his money off of is the green hedge funds he has invested in over the years and the rise of Google.

To be honest, if he was to run then it would solve my problems because currently I don't know which of the three idiots running so far I would vote for. I think Al would do a great job but I agree that it would be a slap in the face of the voters if they pulled something like that. The candidates need to be chosen by the people no matter how bad of a chose it might be because that is the system we have in place.

-- Posted by jaxspike on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 11:42 AM

Can they really do that ???? If so then why do we even bother to vote ????? If they try to do this is there anything we can do to stop it ???

-- Posted by rebelrose on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 11:58 AM

Well, that's the way the party nomination system used to work. A "brokered convention," as they would call it, would be a step back to the old days, when there were fewer primaries, when campaign spending was less of a factor and where candidates tended to stay in the race all the way to the party convention. This sometimes meant that you got to the convention without any candidate having a clear majority.

While a general election belongs to the public, the party nomination process belongs to the party -- and the party has a lot of free rein in how that nomination system operates.

That having been said, the anger from voters who would feel disenfranchised at the emergence of a dark horse candidate would be something the party would have to take into account before deciding such a thing. If they though that nominating Gore would alienate the vast majority of the voters, they would be foolish to do it -- because they'd be dooming their own ticket to failure. But if they thought that nominating Gore was the best way out of an otherwise-unwinnable deadlock, and if they thought the public could be convinced of that, they might consider it.

As far as the legality of it, it's generally assumed in most states that the results of the primary are only binding on delegates for the first ballot at the convention. If, as in the old days, no one wins a majority on that first ballot, the delegates can vote their consciences. Naturally, many of the people who signed up to be a delegate for Candidate X will continue to vote for Candidate X out of loyalty, even after the rules no longer require them to. But others may decide to change their vote because of what they perceive as the good of the party.

There's a great old movie from 1964 called "The Best Man," starring Henry Fonda and Cliff Robertson as rival candidates for their party's nomination, which illustrates the process quite well. Like Clinton and Obama, the rancor and mudslinging (reluctant mudslinging, on Fonda's part) between the two men threatens to make whichever one is nominated unelectable in November. And so


another candidate ends up getting the nomination. The difference in that case is that the dark-horse candidate was, at least, a minor candidate who had been running all along and who brought a handful of delegates into the convention. That can't be said of Gore.

-- Posted by Jicarney on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 12:24 PM

Brian, it's called a Convention for a reason... In the Republican party, there were talks of Ron Paul and his people pushing for a possible nomination, if no candidate got the amount of delegates necessary...

Why do you think all the other candidates who were stealing McCain's thunder dropped out? It's not "Undemocratic" to choose a person who wasn't a huge part of the original process, it's actually part of the rules. That process is in place, so that if some looney-tune gets the popular votes, and the educated folks who KNOW the person would be disasterous, they could keep him/her from getting the nomination. It's called checks and balances, not undemocratic. I suppose though, being Republican, you've never heard of those things..

-- Posted by darrick_04 on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 12:27 PM


I Couldn't agree more. Al would get my vote in a New York minute!

-- Posted by Dianatn on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 1:08 PM


China Celebrates Its Status As World's Number One Air Polluter

-- Posted by Evil Monkey on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 3:25 PM

Al Gore has done more to bring the world together, than Bush ever has or ever will...

Ironically enough, the person who really won in 2000, but was wrongfully denied that position, has accomplished more good things and tried to place America on a grand scale, by asking us to set the example, that we wish the world would always follow...

-- Posted by jesuslovesevery1 on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 3:58 PM

It's called checks and balances, not undemocratic. I suppose though, being Republican, you've never heard of those things..

-- Posted by darrick_04 on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 12:27 PM

The Electoral College is written into the US law. That's also a form of checks and balances. So that's not undemocratic either I guess. Even though it elected the demon Bush. (note sarcasm)

-- Posted by devan on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 5:17 PM

It is also archaic and useless for this millenium... Hmm, well if the votes were counted correctly, then Gore would have won the electoral vote as well..

So yes, it's a democratic process, but it was handled illegally.

-- Posted by darrick_04 on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 6:01 PM

Oh dear God! Has Al Gore has got you liberals snowed or what? He lives in a house that (until he was "outed") consumed 12 TIMES the average for households in the Nashville area. Carbon dioxide is NOT a pollutant, it's what you exhale! What Al Gore exhales is pollution. He didn't invent the internet, mankind's contribution to global warming is but a theory, global warming itself is in question, and his award of the Nobel PEACE prize was a joke. He's a socialist, just like the others running.

At least I don't have to worry about him being elected, he couldn't even carry his home state in is last FAILED attempt. That just proves that the people that know him best, know they'd be better without him.

-- Posted by Thom on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 8:35 PM

And yet he is STILL better than anyone else who is running.

-- Posted by Dianatn on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 8:50 PM

Strangely enough, I seriously doubt that.

-- Posted by Thom on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 9:30 PM

The term "liberal" is no longer successful as a scare tactic... We've seen exactly what 8 years of "conservatism" has done for us all.

-- Posted by darrick_04 on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 9:38 PM

Umm...did that seem like I was trying to use some sort of a scare tactic? Seriously? Darrick, I thought better than that of you. Ok, how about socialist? Is that a better word for it? As far as that retard in the Oval Office now, he is FAR from conservative.

-- Posted by Thom on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 9:42 PM

The scare tactic I was referring to, was the same one that the Republicans used in 2004... Omg John Kerry the "liberal", like it's a bad thing. Some folks to like to change with the times, advance a bit.. Don't you?

Socialist? That doesn't scare anyone either... Same xenophobia B/S that the American government used about Communism... It's always better to be scared of something that we have yet to experience, than to continue what isn't working... Right?

Making people fear socialism is no different than having the American people fear terrorism... It's pretty easy to take their rights away, and pass all the legislation you want, when you have the people so focused on every other country around us trying to attack...

Was Bill Clinton a socialist? I think not. Are Barack or Hillary? NO... Just because the two of them wish to help 50,000,000 people out (not the 250,000,000 who enjoy high premiums, increased drug prices, etc) get healthcare, does not mean they are socialist. What is NCLB? Patriot Act? Those are Republican designed hysteria that sought government control over our liberty and private conversations, and tried to invent government mandates on education, without providing the adequate funds necessary... If you really look at the last 8 years you'll notice that BIG government goes hand in hand with GOP. Our national debt can attest to that fact.

-- Posted by darrick_04 on Mon, Mar 31, 2008, at 11:03 PM

I agree . . . Al Gore is a far better choice than McCain, Obama, or Clinton. Depending on what side of the fence you are sitting on, that might not say too much for those three candidates. At least with Al, you get a sense that he actually cares about something and not just being the typical politician and fulfilling their ever increasing ego.

What I find really ignorant are people who throw around words like "liberals" and "conservatives" like they are a bad thing. That is what is wrong with this country . . . too many people believe you have to be on one side of the other and don't listen to actual reasoning anymore. Democrats and Republicans come up with bad and good ideas . . . we need to start working together and weeding out the good and bad and realize that is the only way we are going to fix this.

If you think about it . . . we have too much of the pot calling the kettle black and that is proven with the disagreement between Thom and Darrick_04.

-- Posted by jaxspike on Tue, Apr 1, 2008, at 8:41 AM

You know, jaxspike, you're right. I've got no beefs with darrick_04 except that he's decided to take one word from my post to harp about.

My main point was to show just what a hypocrite Al Gore is. He spouts all of this rhetoric about global warming and how bad we are for the environment, but he maintains at least three houses (one of which uses more energy than the average house does in a year) and flies in a private jet to promote his work of fiction. Occidental Petroleum, a company in which Gore has controlled hundreds of thousands of dollars in stock, has been involved in controversy over drilling in ecologically sensitive areas. His home in Carthage has a zinc mine on the property that has been cited by the state for adding large quantities of barium, iron, and zinc to the Caney Fork River. That does not sound like someone that is concerned about our environment.

Sure, he purchases "carbon credits" (whatever they are), but he does so from a company that he's an owner of, so he is "purchasing" these from himself in order to get other people hooked so that they too can "purchase" these mythical "carbon credits" from him. P.T. Barnum had it right. There really is a sucker born every minute.

Why can't people get behind people like Ed Begley, Jr. or Leonardo DiCaprio? At least they live what they preach.

Al Gore is the environmental equivalent of Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton in matters of race relations…always out to make a buck, regardless of the fallout.

-- Posted by Thom on Tue, Apr 1, 2008, at 12:57 PM

Al Gore would be the fourth idiot in the candidate pool.

-- Posted by cfder on Tue, Apr 1, 2008, at 5:02 PM

Thom you the MAN!!!!

-- Posted by jim8377 on Tue, Apr 1, 2008, at 5:33 PM

Well, we all know who I voted for in the primaries... It's devestating that he has no chance. It just proves the ignorance of the vast majority of the entire American population..

Thom, if I remember correctly, didn't we vote for the same person?

-- Posted by darrick_04 on Tue, Apr 1, 2008, at 7:58 PM

Yes, we did. That's why it amazes me that people think Al Gore would be a good President. Don't get me wrong, not ONE of the current candidates are worth their weight in manure. But socialism is NOT what Dr. Paul is about. Get offended if you want, but that's exactly what Obama and Clinton are preaching.

-- Posted by Thom on Tue, Apr 1, 2008, at 8:13 PM

Never said Socialism was what Dr. Paul was about.. It's also not what Hillary and Obama are about. I will repost some of what I said:

"Socialist? That doesn't scare anyone either... Same xenophobia B/S that the American government used about Communism... It's always better to be scared of something that we have yet to experience, than to continue what isn't working... Right?

Making people fear socialism is no different than having the American people fear terrorism... It's pretty easy to take their rights away, and pass all the legislation you want, when you have the people so focused on every other country around us trying to attack..."

Socialism means the government controls the entire process of something. What part of allowing the 200+ million who already have health insurance keep it, withouth mandating they switch to "government healthcare" don't you understand? Besides healthcare though, exactly what are they seeking complete governmental control of?

-- Posted by darrick_04 on Tue, Apr 1, 2008, at 9:40 PM

"I'm Al Gore, I used to be the next president of the United States..."


-- Posted by jesuslovesevery1 on Tue, Apr 1, 2008, at 9:50 PM

Encyclopedia Britannica:

"Socialism: system of social organization in which property and the distribution of income are subject to social control rather than individual determination or market forces.

Socialism refers to both a set of doctrines and the political movements that aspire to put these doctrines into practice."

Regardless of what you choose to believe as a definition of socialism, the Federal government has no authority to do this, just like they really don't have any reason to have the social security tax and medicare tax and ninety percent of the other things that they have their hands in...mainly OUR pockets. Some people claim to have been supporters of Dr. Ron Paul during the primary election, but obviously they have no idea what powers the Constitution grants to the Federal government. Maybe these people should read that document over a few times since they were backing a candidate that supported it completely.

-- Posted by Thom on Tue, Apr 1, 2008, at 10:45 PM

One of the main reasons I supported Ron Paul is because of his fundamental belief in limited government. Darrick, if you believe in his message of freedom and liberty, then you must realize that we need LESS government to achieve that, not MORE government.

I agree that the term "liberal" itself isn't a bad thing, neither is term "conservative". But as far as the labels are concerned, here is quote from Dr. Paul himself that I think accurately describes our major political parties:

"Liberalism," which once stood for civil, political, and economic liberties, has become a synonym for omnipotent coercive government.

"Conservatism," which once meant respect for tradition and distrust of active government, has transformed into big-government utopian grandiosity.

We must reject the current meaningless designations of "liberals" and "conservatives," in favor of an accurate term for both: statists.

Every politician on earth claims to support freedom. The problem is so few of them understand the simple meaning of the word.

-- Posted by Richard on Wed, Apr 2, 2008, at 1:46 AM

Great comment Richard. We must get beyond labels. I still hope and pray that there are enough good people left on all the sides to sustain us through these trying times.

-- Posted by devan on Wed, Apr 2, 2008, at 9:11 AM


If we want to get in some debate about what all is socialized in this country, you'd be astounded by what already is. I supported Ron Paul, but he obvioulsy isn't going to win. I supported him on three principles...

1) Get out of Iraq, b/c we had no business being there

2) Stop printing money out of thin air, and bring back the strong presence of the dollar on a global scale.

3) His honesty regarding U.S. relations with foreign dictators, i.e. China, Saudi Arabia, (and the list goes on)...

So tell me, since we can't vote for Ron Paul, you must make a decision, and surely you wouldn't vote for a Republican who couldn't even honestly debate Ron Paul if he had to.

-- Posted by darrick_04 on Wed, Apr 2, 2008, at 9:57 AM

If we want to get in some debate about what all is socialized in this country, you'd be astounded by what already is.

-- Posted by darrick_04 on Wed, Apr 2, 2008, at 9:57 AM

And maybe the debate should focus on backing out of some of the things that are socialized instead of moving toward those that aren't. Just an idea - in the era of Fed Ex and UPS is the US Postal Service necessary.

-- Posted by devan on Wed, Apr 2, 2008, at 10:33 AM


I can't say yet who I will be voting for since I don't know who the candidates are. I will not be voting for John McCain, Hillary Clinton, or Barak Obama though. I will most likely be voting third party for the first time in my life. Over the past two administrations I have become so dissatisfied with the entire process of selecting the "lesser of two evils" that I refuse to play their game anymore. If there isn't a candidate in either of the two major parties, then I will choose one from the fringe to support. The Constitution Party is having their convention in June and I like several of their candidates. Alan Keyes will most likely be their candidate this round and, if he is, I will most likely be voting for him. Does their candidate stand a chance of winning? Very unlikely, but I refuse to play the game with the major parties when they are all the same.

I just wish Ron Paul had run as a Libertarian. Actually, I like their leading candidate, Wayne Root, also. I agree with the latter two of your points regarding Ron Paul, but those points alone should not be enough to garner support for a Presidential candidate. If the whole of the American voting population were to actually research the candidates and decide based on a candidate's stand on a number of issues, rather than just a few, then we would be more likely to elect a President that would help our country rather than their own agendas. Unfortunately the majority of Americans look at a select few issues that are near and dear to them and vote accordingly, rather than helping to decide what is best for our country.

Now, I would like to apologize to Brian for hijacking his blog and taking this in a direction that I'm sure he didn't intend to go. I will not post anything more on this blog unless it's regarding my distaste for Al Gore or the "democratic" process, which I think is abundantly clear to anyone that has read my posts.

-- Posted by Thom on Wed, Apr 2, 2008, at 11:04 AM

Pardon me, I misspelled Obama's first name. It's Barack, not Barak. Ok, NOW I'm not posting anything more on this blog unless it fits the above criteria.

-- Posted by Thom on Wed, Apr 2, 2008, at 11:28 AM


What about education? In the U.S. it is still largely controlled by the states, i.e. socialism... There are plenty more instituions and/or industries that are largely ran by government subsidies... What about SOCIAL Security? What about The FEDEREAL Reserve Bank? What about our military, it's a socialist network, though corporations make the majority of money from government contracts.. The list could go on and on, if you chose to open your eyes you'd see far more than the postal system is a "socialist" dogma that the U.S. takes part of. Btw UPS nor FedEx want the job that the USPS does... Besides, if they did get the job, stamps would probably triple the cost of the current price.

-- Posted by jesuslovesevery1 on Wed, Apr 2, 2008, at 10:50 PM

The USPS was used as just one example. I wasn't really proposing a specific change. It was just a way to point out that the road is two ways. We don't have to go toward more socialization. We can go back. Darrick has made his point several times before and he is absolutely right that we are socialized in several areas. The bigger issue is should we be.

-- Posted by devan on Thu, Apr 3, 2008, at 6:18 AM

Al Gore is a looney toon, period.

I agree we are living so close to socialism now its not even funny. I also will probably vote for a third party, and I think alot of people will. So whoever is in that third party spot needs to campaign pretty heavy because I think they stand a better chance than some may think.

-- Posted by greasemonkey on Thu, Apr 3, 2008, at 9:30 PM

Looney toon? Hmm... Do explain?

As John McCain himself said, What is wrong with making a cleaner America, even if years from now we find out Global Warming is just a natural cycle. Will we feel bad for making a cleaner world for our children to live in, or do we just continue to pollute it into oblivion?

The problem with America is we have from a proactive country to 100% reactive. We are losing our rankings as the top achievers in multiple worldwide studies, including happy citizens, overworked citizens, underpaid citizens, good healthcare, polluting, etc etc etc. It's time we start LEADING again, perhaps by example rather than ideologies. We've discovered what leading by ideals accomplishes, nothing, because we weren't prepared.

-- Posted by nascarfanatic on Thu, Apr 3, 2008, at 11:29 PM

I agree we should be trying to clean up our environment and make things as "green" as possible. I have no problem with that, just not at such great costs. Everytime it gets warm outside Al Gore says, global warming, then the next cool day he says its climate change. He changes his story every other day. I am glad he invented the internet though, LOL.

-- Posted by greasemonkey on Thu, Apr 3, 2008, at 11:50 PM

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Brian Mosely is a staff writer for the Times-Gazette.
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