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Pirate Party demonstrators at a rally in Stockholm, Sweden on June 3, 2006.  (Source: Marcus Andersson)
Early predictions of America's newest political optimistic

Citing the state of Utah’s “strong history of political diversity and technological progress,” the Pirate Party of the United States has officially opened its doors for signatures in the state of Utah. The Utah branch, known officially as The Pirate Party of Utah, has until February 2008 to collect the 2000 signatures it needs for official recognition.

Ray Jenson, interim Administrator for the Pirate Party of Utah, says, “This is a big step forward for our party. Utah is a perfect place to start. With the right people, we actually stand a chance at turning around the civil liberties situation.”

In an e-mail correspondence with DailyTech, Jenson revealed that while The Pirate Party of Utah does not wish to be overconfident, at the current rate it expects to meet the minimum signature requirement sometime in mid-November. Note that these estimates represent actual, legally useful signatures -- not site registrations, which number substantially higher. Website registrations cannot be counted officially -- in fact, according to Jenson, the “register” link is only for “forum registration, and has nothing to do with [the] party.”

Aaccording to its web site, the Pirate Party of the U.S. was founded in July 2006, and seeks to change United States laws that govern over copyright, privacy and network neutrality. “The Pirate Party wants to return copyright law to its original purpose: to promote distribution of works as rapidly and widespread as possible,” states one section of on copyright issues; “we wish to rescind the many, mostly harmful, copyright acts that have been passed since the Copyright Act of 1790. In our view, America got it right the first time.”

Despite the name, The Pirate Party does notcondone the stealing of copyrighted works: “We've chosen to adopt the Pirate name so as to pay homage to the creative artists of the past, or as they would now be known, Pirates, thieves, and copyright infringers. We do not support nor condone any unlawful distribution of copyrighted works.”

The Pirate Party of the U.S. is representative of a larger international movement, says spokesman Andrew Norton, and Pirate Parties in various forms exist in Sweden, France, the Netherlands, Germany and others. Originating in Sweden, The Pirate Party or Piratpartiet, has met considerable success since its founding on January 1, 2006. In just 36 hours, Piratpartiet gathered 4,725 signatures, 2,275 over the 2,000 minimum signatures needed to gain official recognition. In the Swedish General Election of 2006, the party captured almost 35,000 votes, making them the 10th largest party out of the 40 parties participating.

Plans are already in the works for the party’s first rally, however the details have not finalized. “We'll issue a press release as the details are finalized,” says Jenson.

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RE: shame
By Ringold on 8/17/2007 12:18:26 AM , Rating: 2
America, as it happens, was able to experiment with the no-party system in what actually provides a very relevant example.

The Confederate States of America was technically mono-party, I guess; all Democrat. When everyone is the same party, though, the end result is the same.

I read from it in a book from college (Civil War and Reconstruction -- best history class I ever had) I loaned out and never got back, so not sure where to pull up a reference. At any rate, it was utter chaos. Every individual attempted to be his own party, stand on his own platform, and push his own agenda. Ego's clashed and even simple bills were held up. Coalitions were extremely difficult to form and were quite fragile. It was actually amazing how ineffectual it made the Confederate congress and a large amount of blame for losing the war can be attributed to their inability to pass timely legislation in anything resembling a clean manner.

Now, if you look at the two parties, you'll see they really aren't all that static. Since the Civil War they've entirely switched ideological places, with the Democrats becoming the Northern big-government liberals and the Republicans the southern small-government conservatives. Both have transformed markedly even over the past 20 to 30 years on a wide range of things and both are pretty responsive to large shifts in opinion amongst their base.

Both parties also have their sub-groups. Republican's have outright libertarians (they by no means have a lock on them, but the libertarian position is impossible to reconcile with the present Democratic platform, making the Republican's the lesser of two great evils), the Reagan and Goldwater-style conservatives of old, a religious portion, the business class in general, and a new freak bread of big-government conservatives which, frankly, should be ejected if I had my way. The Democrats have the blue dog conservative's, a rapidly diminishing number of moderates (they tried to take Lieberman behind the Pennsylvania shed and execute him for his bipartisanship), the anti-war crowd, the anti-free trade crowd, and generally big-hearted souls that would like in good faith to help the poor at home and abroad, as well as socialists who, like libertarians, would rather have a socialist party but aren't so lucky. All these groups in both parties can, and do, exert influence on the larger political body.

The only thing that troubles me is their tendency to occasionally do what they want despite what American's say they want. Like this immigration thing; just watch. They'll pass the same pieces of legislation one piece at a time in unrelated bills in Congress for some of it and other parts will be implemented on the State, County and City levels.

That, too, can be fixed if people awoke from their slumber. I give them credit enough for the immigration thing though; I was surprised, and a local House Rep (not my own, but one of Orlando's) I was able to talk to I think was shocked.

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