It is unfortunate that of the several presidential candidates set to be on the ballot this November, only two are allowed to participate in the prime-time, televised debates. The United States is a democratic nation after all and as such should it not require of its media fair, equal, and unbiased coverage of candidates running for its most crucial public office? Instead, in addition to our airwaves being clogged by ads from the two bipartisan candidates with campaign funding bloated enough to finance such frequent assaults on our subconscious, we are only presented with two. The televised presidential debate is a forum which we are taught to greatly respect, which students are given extra credit to watch, which is discussed by millions in the following days, on which many voters base their decision. The current form of the presidential debate is not up to par with the respect it gets.
With a little research into the recent history of the televised debates, it becomes quite clear that this exclusion of candidates is no accident. Here is a link that sheds a lot of light on the topic:
Suffice it to say that the debates used to be under the control of a group of non-partisan citizens called the League of Women Voters, but in 1988 was usurped by a newly established group under the name Commission on Presidential Debates. Unlike the previous group, the CPD is run by bipartisan politicians and lobbyists. It serves to further only the two participating party's agendas. Does this sort of organization fit in a democracy?
Lucky for us, we live in the age of information, and lucky for us, web space is not nearly as costly as television and radio space. This puts us in a position to take the time to become informed about more than two candidates, their policies, what they believe the direction of the country should be, how to handle the current financial issues, etc. That would be democratic. I suppose the first step is to see whose on the ballot. Wouldn't it be nice if the mainstream media could even give us that much? Well, sample ballots are on the way. There's still time...
Videos from Green Party's candidate, Cynthia McKinney: http://www.youtube.com/user/RunCynthiaRun
Videos from Independent Nominee, Ralph Nader
Videos from Libertarian Nominee, Bob Barr
there's more candidates still .....