Do we have any other choice?

Than going back and forth between the Republicans and the Democrats? I don’t want either party running the country. I’m a retired federal employee and I just went to buy some protein chips and it is $30 for 12 small bags. A representative example of the rise in the cost of food which you never hear Trump or anyone else talk about. I’m 75 and I have no idea how some poor smuck with a family feeds, clothes, and provides a roof over the heads of their family. I know the voting public is not interested in voting for anyone who shows the slightest hint of intelligence but rather some boob using their 30 word vocabulary to lie and tell them whatever the latest poll says they want and wear a ball cap with a stupid logo. thank GOD there is a term limit. At which point I hope Trump reaps the consequences of what he has sown. And I fear that could take a violent form. (remember Bulgaria). It my last name was Trump I would be prepared to leave this country right after the election. If the voters undergo an enlightenment and he is forced to leave sooner, I say good riddance. This time we should go for an intelligent, experienced, ethical, moral, kind person; and someone with some experience and god-dammed common sense who actually cares about this country. Not the loser we are now stuck with. I have lived in a lot of other countries and seen places that are run by people like him . That is why I am so sad my children will be left with the consequences of his ego-fired stupidity.

Three years ago, you were rah-rah for Donald Trump. So did you vote for him or for the “intelligent, experienced, ethical, moral, kind person” who was running against him? Because we did have a choice and too many people in too many places voted for him instead of the much more qualified Hillary Clinton and now we’re stuck with a man who insults and alienates allies while cozying up to dictators like Kim-Jong Un and Vladimir Putin.

Remember that Putin specifically said that he preferred Trump. What does that tell you? Because Putin’s interests and my interests as an American do not coincide.

How do you sleep at night knowing you are the reason he is in the Whitehouse? Prices are gonna go higher, better start buying now.

Don’t blame me, I voted for Kodos.

You should try the Soylent Green protein chips, I hear they’re much tastier than Red or Yellow. But as usual, I’m a bit confused. What price do you think protein chips should be, and how are the two major political parties directly responsible for their price?

I find Simply Protein chips online at $24/12. $2 for a snack doesn’t seem that out of the ballpark, unless you’re comparing it to something entirely different like potato chips or Doritos.

You can make your own protein chips for a fraction of the cost.

So if I’m understanding the situation, we have a fellow who’s always disliked the Democrats, but who now has noticed that Trump is a skidmark on the underwear of humanity and has become disaffected with the Republicans as well. Also, protein chips.

My answer to the OP is there is another option: don’t vote at all. It’s a legitimate option, and if you feel you can’t possibly vote for democrats, I’d be okay with you just not voting against them.

But regarding an actual third option to vote for, a viable third party in America, that’s never going to happen. If you simply must vote your options are the Democrats and the Republicans. That’s all the choice you have.

That’s what I don’t understand; many people seemed to dislike Hillary Clinton because they didn’t like her personality, so instead they voted for the unqualified clown on the Republican ticket? And the complaints about her personality seemed to center around things that would be desirable in a man. In short, much of the opposition amounted to sexism. She was supremely qualified for the job, more so than many of the men who were actually elected to the office.

Keep in mind that the two main third party candidates were actually worse than Trump. No one in their right mind can honestly say they think that Gary Johnson or Jill Stein were qualified for the presidency. In fact, they got even odder as the campaign went on.

Everyone wants a 3rd party, but they want it to be tailored exactly to their specifications. Adulting sucks at time, but just as no one has a perfect house, spouse/partner, job, or anything else, there is no magical unicorn political party.

Poor people don’t buy fancy-pants snacks like protein chips. They buy potato chips.

Instead of whining about how bad-off you are, you should be grateful that (A), you have enough money to afford things like that; and (B), that you have a pension. A lot of people don’t have either one of those things, and very few people have both.

Nope. No other choices. Sorry.

Well, I don’t like to say “never,” but the Democratic and Republican parties have tremendous structural advantages, by dint of having dominated politics and offices at all levels of the country for over a century.

It’s technically untrue that we don’t have other options in current elections – the Libertarian and Green Parties regularly have candidates for various races (including for president), as do many smaller parties, but they’re all tiny, fringe parties when compared to the Democrats and Republicans. There are probably specific local or even state offices where third-party candidates are competitive (perhaps even victorious), but for presidential elections, a vote for anyone other than the Democrat or the Republican is either quixotic, and / or effectively acts as a spoiler vote – there were many accusations that the presence of Green Party candidates on the ballot cost Al Gore and Hillary Clinton their elections.

There are a lot of Americans who consider themselves moderates and / or independents, but they almost undoubtedly fall across a range in the political spectrum, with some more closely allying with Democratic candidates, and others with Republicans. I don’t believe that there’s a single, large group of “unaligned” voters to whom a single, new political party could effectively appeal.

We’ve had discussions here on the SDMB to the effect that, if a viable third party were to emerge in the US, what it would have to do is start at the grassroots level, and start building a base by winning local and state elections, before being able to challenge on the national stage.

I’ll try this!

In education and animal training, there’s a concept called “scaffolding”. You can’t train someone to do something complicated all at once; you have to break it down to a small first step, then a small second step, and so on. For instance, suppose you want to train a dog to flip a light switch. You could wait for him to do it and then give him a treat, but you’ll be waiting a very long time. Instead, you start by giving him a treat whenever he goes over to that corner of the room on command. Once he’s got that down, you start giving him a treat whenever he goes over to that corner of the room and then jumps. Once he’s doing that, you start rewarding him only when his jump puts him in contact with the switch plate, and finally you only reward him when he actually flips the switch.

If you’re waiting for a political party that’ll do everything exactly right, you’ll be waiting a very long time. You have to start by voting for the party that’s closer to what you want, and keep doing it, until the things they’re doing right that the other party isn’t become standard, and what everyone does. Then you wait for new splits to arise, and vote for whichever side of the new split is what you see as the right one, and eventually, you’ll end up molding politics into what it should be. You don’t do it by waiting for a party that’s already perfect, and you certainly don’t do it by rewarding the dog whenever he poops on the carpet.

Not that I disagree with very much of what you said, but this is not why we don’t have any viable third party in the US. The dirty little secret is that the National Democratic Party (or GOP, your choice) would rather see 4 more years of Trump (or, the GOP would rather have seen Hillary elected, and for another term, yet) than to see a viable third party emerge. The national parties are that far out of touch with the people. IMHO, that is what is broken with our political system. Each of the two parties are so interested in self-preservation that what is best for Americans is no longer a prime concern of either of them.

We don’t have a viable third party because the way our system is set up (first-past-the-post voting and so on) makes a two party system basically inevitable.

Even if both the Republicans and Democrats disintegrated at the same time, without major changes to the system all that would happen is that after a while you’d end up with a two party system with a* different *pair of parties.

Where are you two getting this? Nowhere in the OP does he say who he voted for or which party he has supported at what time. He just says we have two choices and they both suck.

That is a gross oversimplification. Many people preferred the Republican platform regardless of the who the candidate was. Many people were so pissed off by ACA that they were going to vote Republican regardless of who the candidate was. Many people thought that Hillary is arrogant and lacks integrity. If you say that is personality and shouldn’t matter, then it’s hard to criticize Trump. (FTR I voted for Hillary but had to hold my nose.)

I got it by looking at the second post in the thread, which points out (with a cite!) that contradancer was dancing arm in arm with Trump three years ago. That puts his OP in a different light - it only offers complaints about Trump, because the OP has recently become disaffected with Trump (because he’s shit), but the OP still rejects the idea of voting Democrat out of hand without giving specific reasons, presumably because he would never consider voting Democrat ever.

So yeah - what I’m seeing here is a lifelong Republican voter who has been with them through thick and thin, only now under Trump the thin got so thin it snapped. Now he doesn’t like the Republicans anymore and there are no other options.

I’m waiting for the grown-ups to get back home. Until then American politics is just a contest to see who’s better at wrecking the house and chugging beer.