Get out to vote and demand a new kind of politics

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November 4, 2013
By: Paul Ostrow
Paul Ostrow

Politics is not a game.  It is not about labels and slogans and fancy mailings.  It should not be – must not be – about Super PACs and serving the political and economic elite.

At its best, in the words of Paul Wellstone, politics is about improving the lives of people.  At its best, politics puts people first, our neighborhoods first and our kids first.  At its best, politics promotes transparency and accountability in campaigns and in governing.

That is why it is so important to vote tomorrow.

In the interests of full disclosure I am the campaign chair for Stephanie Woodruff and she will have my enthusiastic support.  But whoever you vote for tomorrow, don’t accept the dated rules of conventional politics that do not serve us well.   Ranked Choice Voting allows you to vote your hopes not your fears.  Ranked Choice Voting allows you to vote for the best candidate not the candidate with the most money or the most big name endorsements. 

Have you seen the movie “Moneyball?”  Billy Beane is the general manager of the small market Oakland A’s.  They don’t have the money like the Yankees and the Red Sox.  They invest in players with potential that everyone else has given up on.  The baseball insiders think he is crazy and the he will never win.  Funny thing happens.  The A’s win 21 games in a row and win the pennant.

No – politics is not a game.  But politics needs a game changer.  Status quo politics gave us the Vikings stadium.  Status quo politics resulted in Minneapolis getting a D- in transparency from US Public Interest Group.  Status quo politics squanders our most treasured asset – the civic participation of our citizens and our neighborhoods.

Let’s do ourselves proud tomorrow.  And whoever wins,  let’s demand a new kind of politics and a new kind of public service. 

Paul Ostrow
Windom Park
Former City Council president