One-Party Statism and Third Party Activism

At the American Spectator, Daniel Flynn draws attention to the string of corrupt Speakers of the House in the Massachusetts state government. Flynn notes, "A cognitive dissonance persists in which Bay State voters talk good government but continually elect rogues." Of course, the same could be said of voters across the Union, and across the political spectrum. In Flynn's view, the problem with Massachusetts is that, for all intents and purposes, it is a one-party state. "The check on political shenanigans that competitive elections bestow upon other states just isn't present in Massachusetts." The state House is currently composed of 143 Democrats and 16 Republicans, while its state Senate has 35 Democrats and 5 Republicans. As could be expected from a conservative publication, the implication of Flynn's piece is that Massachusetts voters would be better served by a stronger state Republican Party. Yet, hurdles to such growth are fostered by the state party's apparatus itself. However, as I suggested in a post on Duverger's law and the one-party state, there is no reason beyond lack of imagination to assume that the ideal two-party state is one controlled by Democrats and Republicans, especially in a state as liberal as Massachusetts. Left-wing and moderate third party activists should be hard at work in the commonwealth, chipping away at the Democratic base from both the left and the right, while aiming at further eroding the Republican toe-hold in the state government.


derek said...

Ask anyone who is a resident of Mass and they will tell you what a mess things are. Their taxes are some of the highest in the country and the return on that, in my opinion and some MA residents I know, is low.

The roads for one are a mess. Much of the Mass road system is far out of date. Granted in a big city like Boston, it's hard to change much. The roads that exist could be better maintained. The there is the infamous money pit, the Big Dig.

Unemployment slightly under the national average at 8%. Ok education system. High crime rate, drugs, etc.

You can make more than what you can in Maine, but the cost of living is so much higher it's not really worth it. Unless you are making the big bucks, then it doesn't really matter.

I am basing my opinion on Cape Anne, North shore, and down around Boston. I don't have much knowledge of Mass outside those areas.

d. eris said...

That is more or less in line with much of what many of my friends from Mass (self described "Mass-holes"!) say as well. I am most familiar with the big dig fiasco.