Friday, March 09, 2007

Sour Grapes, New Hampshire Style

By having unusually disproportionate influence in the primaries of both parties, tiny states like New Hampshire and Iowa have high jacked the presidential politics of this country for too long. Now that California is trying to have an early primary, pundits from New Hampshire are sour. Read the editorial in Union Leader, March 8, 2008.
(http://www.unionleader.com/article.aspx?headline=California+schemin%27%3a+The+end+of+retail+politics&articleId=d97b5a25-7fcd-49ee-a42b-f01d1de4119e )

First of all there is this ridiculous argument that some how one to one dialogue with 800,000 residents of New Hampshire is better than modern political process involving 16 million people of California. Why then have votes all across USA? Let us just people from New Hampshire and Iowa elect the president of USA and rest of the country accept that. How pompous and arrogant people from these states can be or the so-called pundits from these states, these editorial board types?

And by the way how good recent Presidents have been who started their presidential primary campaigns from these two states? The record is there for everyone to see. The fact is Americans have not got any better presidents because these two tiny, self claimed intelligent states started the political process first.

It is ridicules and hypocritical that these two states want to pride on their democratic credentials but want to deny the legitimate democratic rights and aspirations to other states, states like California where everyone simply want to show for fund raising. It is as if living in a populous state mean you loose your brains. If one reads Union Leader editorial, one gets impression that California is full of dumb, useless people. Oh, America’s democratic tradition is retained only because of New Hampshire and Iowa! How ludicrous.

If money is the problem (which surely is), then retaining monopoly of these two ‘narrow minded’ states is not the answer. There are different means to address that problem. (Has Union Leader heard a phrase called ‘campaign finance reform’?)

In fact if American democracy is to have any future, we need to move away from the next silly thing called ‘electoral college’ system of electing presidents. We simply need to have two stage, direct presidential election. Well to expect such a broader view from the prosaic type of intellectuals of New Hampshire is too much.


Umesh Patil
Cupertino, CA 95014
March 9, 2007.

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