The Greens are the best hope today in the US for advancing a progressive, sane, legal and ethical agenda. Voting for the Green Party has a tangible goal and benefit, a benchmark to strive for: 5% of the vote.
David Cobb, a Green Party leader, laid out the Party's 2012 election strategy:
a) Receive 5% of the popular vote to qualify for 2016 FEC matching funds
b) Qualify (or maintain) state ballot lines wherever possible
c) Assist local candidates earn media, attract volunteers and GET ELECTED
d) Convince voters to join the Green Party (register Green where possible, and to actively participate in local GP efforts)
This is a strategy to build over the long term. That is the best that conscientious Americans can hope for today. Build over the long term by simply registering Green Party and encouraging your circles to do the same. It doesn't cost you a dime, and it doesn't affect any election at all, but it is a strong symbolic act that builds the party one citizen at a time. It also sends an unequivocal message that delegitimizes the mainstream corporate parties. Without legitimacy, they are far easier targets.
We all know America has a completely fucked-up electoral system. Voting Green Party is one sane, rational response to this abominable situation, which makes logical sense and remains one of the few legal remedies to a government out of control and acting beyond the Constitution and rule of law generally.
The plutocrats and their lackeys in office will not restrain themselves. They don't have to. The only real solution is to replace their functionaries in a populist, democratic upsurge.
The Occupy Movement can send a clear message, in language politicians understand, by registering Green Party and showing up on Election Day to disturb the entrenched powers. They may not win, but they will move the ball just a little bit farther down the field. If one is willing to risk arrest, hypothermia, beatings and tear gas -- why not risk a tick on a ballot line? Or a registration form to add your voice to the Green Party's rolls?
Occupiers should know that Jill Stein and her vice-presidential nominee Cheri Honkala were arrested outside the second Obama/Romney debate and treated like common criminals. Greens have been placed on "no-fly lists" and harassed for opposing the sham democracy entrenched in Washington DC. They are probably under FBI surveillance as well.
The goal of achieving 5% of the popular vote for the Green Party and Jill Stein is tangible and achievable. Most people in the United States live in uncontested states. As the corporate/fascist news harps on about "swing states," most Americans do not live in these states. What about them? What about their votes?
If you live in a state such as California, which is not a "swing state" but firmly in Obama's column, then casting a vote for Romney or Obama is the definition of a "wasted vote." Your vote will not and cannot affect anything. Contrarily, a vote for the Green Party may push that party over the 5% threshold allowing it to qualify for millions of dollars in Federal Election Commission matching funds in the next election cycle. These millions can be used to wake up a much more significant portion of the populace. This scenario is what Democrats fear the most, and they resort to absurd anti-democratic arguments to try and coerce voters into voting for their war criminal in chief.
Earl Ofari Hutchison has warned of the "Naderizing" of Obama and called out "Nader apologists" to atone for their alleged sins and to vote his way. Discarding the actual theft of Florida in 2000 by Jeb Bush and company, which Greg Palast covered for BBC but the US news pointedly ignored, Hutchinson lies about how and why the 2000 election went to Bush. Hutchinson blatantly attempts to delegitimize the existence of third parties in a recent undemocratic and blinded piece of propaganda that should disgust almost every American.
Further disgust should register as a man of integrity, Ralph Nader, who fought for consumer safety and accountability in government for decades, is scapegoated while the documented disenfranchisement of "up to 91,000 voters" from the Florida voting rolls in 2000 is ignored as if it never happened. Further, the counting of the 2000 ballots was illegally stopped in a kangaroo court ruling that effectively ended American democracy. The problems of the US voting system are now so flagrant that Palast counted up "5,220,576 legitimate votes and voters tossed out of the count" in the last presidential election, 2008.