Other Pages On


Last updated: Oct 1st, 2011

Political Trade:

A political trade is a form of political compromise in which one party agrees to give in to another party on a specific issue, and in exchange, the other party agrees to give in to the first party on one issue. Political trades are viewed by the mainstream as a natural or inevitable part of politics, and they are often seen as a good thing; this is reflected by the use of the word "compromise" which has a positive connotation. I use the word "trade" because it is more neutral and also more specific...a political trade is a direct "You get X, I get Y" deal, which is often just one particular type of compromise.

My stance on these trades is very different from the mainstream; although sometimes these trades can result in good outcomes, there are numerous downsides to this practice, which this page explains in depth.

Political trades, as I will argue below, are one of the worst and most damaging forms of such compromise. Furthermore, there are many cases in which compromise is not necessary and is not even beneficial. In the United States of America, political trades have become a common ingredient in the passage of large packages of legislation, and have resulted in numerous negative outcomes.

Drawbacks to Political Trades:

Avoiding Political Trades:

The culture of political trades can be overcome and replaced by a more constructive culture. The first and most important step in this process is to recognize that political trading is not the best form of compromise.

Compromise without trades:

Voting and moving forward:

Compromise is not always necessary in a democracy, and in fact, is often a worse outcome than a simple vote. In a democracy, it is inevitable that some issues will be put to a vote and will pass or fail by a narrow majority. While these issues are controversial and will undoubtedly leave large numbers of people unsatisfied, these outcomes are not necessarily any more damaging or undemocratic than the outcomes of complex political deals and trades.

When issues are voted on individually, the worst outcome is generally one that slightly less than half the population disagrees with. When political trades come into the picture, the outcome can be much worse: not only is it possible for more than half the population to be dissatisfied with the outcome, but the political process can become inefficient, the political environment can become hostile, and the resulting large packages of legislation can be burdensome and poorly-designed, and voting records become obscured.

Take a stance against political trades:

For this reason, I take a stance against political trades out of principle. This stance is reflected in the Cazort.net political platform. The alternative to political trades is building consensus and voting on individual issues.

If you want to help advance this issue, please help by: sharing this page with others, talking about this issue with your friends, writing about this issue yourself, voicing your views on political trades to your representatives. If you wish to support Cazort.net as a whole, please consider following us on twitter or liking our facebook page...both of which can be found in the right sidebar. Thank you!

Comments are moderated. Follow Cazort.net's comment policy for your comment to be approved.

blog comments powered by Disqus