Democracy literally means ‘people power’ so even a Wall Street billionaire cannot buy an election unless you allow it. You have the power to vote and you have your voice. We can eradicate government corruption by working together, but to end politics as usual you must not vote for the usual politicians!
Establish Fair & Clean Elections
Provide public funds matching small donor contributions six to one and equip other resources to all candidates who demonstrate broad public support and agree not to use or coordinate with dirty money in politics. Alternatively, we can set up a system of Democracy Vouchers like those adopted in Seattle. Billionaires and corporations could still spend as much as they want, subject to full disclosure and a 200% tax that allows all candidates to compete on a level battlefield.
Establish a full-time, unicameral legislature with 60 representatives, who would each be paid $110,000 a year, prohibited from receiving additional earned income and subject to strict conflict of interest rules. Evaluate local government consolidation, such as unifying police and other law enforcement services in a centralized administration to eliminate excess administration and duplication of services. Create a statewide system of free public schools for every child from the age of three to a college degree.
Require corporations to obtain specific permission from shareholders prior to making any spending to influence legislation, elections, or public opinion and impose a 200% tax on such expenditures, which would fund Fair & Clean Elections. Require full disclosure of funding sources for all political communications. Impose criminal penalties on corporations that make factual misrepresentations in any communications intended to influence legislation, elections, or public opinion concerning government policy.
Resign to Run
Stop politicians from using one elected office as a stepping stone to another, wasting your tax dollars and failing to do their job. Any elected official should be required to resign if he or she wants to seek election to another job.
No ‘pre-election’ pay hike
No elected official should be entitled to a change in salary unless an election has transpired after the compensation has been set for the job. Salaries for a full-time legislator, as proposed, could be set every ten years at three times the median per capita income for New Jersey, as determined by the U.S. Department of Commerce.
No Double Dipping
Public officials should be barred from holding two or more jobs at taxpayer expense. Our current political establishment is rife with corruption and conflicted interests because politicians are looking out for themselves instead of us.
Career politicians have forgotten that public service is an honor and a privilege. It’s time to stop lifetime tenure by making elections competitive and setting limits on the time anyone can hold an elected position.
Stop Rigging Ballots
Prohibit candidates from ‘bracketing’ or otherwise giving anyone an unfair advantage with respect to ballot position. Every American is entitled to equal protection of the law, so candidates picked by party bosses should not get preferential treatment in primaries.
An election with only one candidate denies voters a choice, and since many districts are rigged to give one party an unfair advantage,there must be alternative choices on the primary election ballot. Government officials should be required to better inform the public of opportunities to seek election and within three days of any petition filing deadline, unopposed candidates may be provided challengers selected by an ad hoc committee of citizens selected at random for this purpose. Candidates drafted by committee will be supplied resources sufficient to inform voters about their platforms and themselves. Every American is entitled to a choice of candidates in primaries, because without it they have no alternative.