Both par­ties lost their way

Cecil Whig - - OPINION -

FROM: MATT BEERS ELK­TON

With less than 100 days un­til the Gen­eral Elec­tion, vot­ers will soon de­cide the fu­ture of Amer­ica.

The rise of Don­ald Trump and the cult-like fol­low­ing of Bernie San­ders has both par­ties, and their sup­port­ers, ques­tion­ing what they stand for. But how did the two ma­jor po­lit­i­cal par­ties morph into some­thing that past party stal­warts are un­able to rec­og­nize? For decades po­lit­i­cal lead­ers have been es­pous­ing plat­forms, and pro­mot­ing poli­cies that rally the base and ex­cite donors. Party di­rec­tion is dic­tated not by new ideas, but by poll­sters and po­lit­i­cal op­er­a­tives seek­ing to gain power for their party. This has re­sulted in politi­cians from both sides of the aisle be­com­ing blindly al­le­giant to party ob­jec­tives, in­stead of fight­ing for con­stituents.

While the ma­jor par­ties have bank­rupt the gov­ern­ment, di­vided the coun­try, and halted progress, one party still has the dis­tinc­tion of tak­ing a stance not on is­sues, but on prin­ci­ples. The Lib­er­tar­ian Party takes a prin­ci­ple as sim­ple as the ben­e­fit of mu­tual ex­change, which states that two con­sent­ing peo­ple have the free­dom to ex­change goods and ser­vices freely, and uses rea­son to ap­ply that prin­ci­ple to top­ics as var­ied as taxes, pro­hi­bi­tion or in­ter­na­tional trade.

In less than 100 days we must ask our­selves whether we want to elect peo­ple who stand on prin­ci­ples, or do we con­tinue to elect party politi­cians who will con­tinue to take us down the same de­struc­tive path?

Matt Beers is the Lib­er­tar­ian can­di­date for Congress in the First Con­gres­sional District.

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