America has a political system that should be labelled Two Party Fascism. It it a vigorous form of fascism that offers many improvements for the governing elit over the classic fascism of Benito Mussolini, General Franco, and Adolph Hitler.
In theory third parties and independent candidacies are legal but in reality they are constantly subjected to repressive measures. The winner-take-all election rules are designed to push voters towards choices largely determined by political machines and corporate media sources that are controlled by a well-entrenched elite.
The rule of money at home (through a system of law that prioritizes money over justice) becomes more naked overseas. The current two political parties have exchanged offices periodically for about 150 years now, but foreign policy never changes. The brutal real-estate grab known as the United States of America keeps its foreign troop deployments no matter which party grabs Congress or the Presidency. Troops are redeployed, but never really brought home. The middle class grumbles about paying the taxes for this military machine by getting mad about the crumbs tossed to the poor to keep social peace in the United States.
The corporate press generally won't even cover genuine challengers to the party machines within the parties, much less independent and third-party challengers. Most states make it very difficult for a third party to get ballot status. I have watched third parties do signature drive after signature drive to get ballot status, eating up their precious resources of volunteers and tiny bits of money. Two party machine candidates get free publicity from newspapers, radio and TV, and then they collect and spend vast sums of money to make it seem like there are only two choices available (usually there are only two, often only one).
Congressional districts right down to city council districts have borders drawn to favor incumbents. In most U.S. Congressional districts, even the second fascist party cannot run a viable candidate against the entrenched incumbent.
But fascism is not just a matter of a few men in power giving orders to a few men in trenchcoats. Fascism had widespread popular support in Germany, Italy, Spain, and elsewhere during the 1930's. The majority of Americans are fascists. They get mad if you challenge any of the basic assumptions they have been taught in school, or more likely by watching TV. They fawn over the current media favorite whether it be a McCain or an Obama.
After Al Gore blew the 2000 election, verbal attacks on Green Party members became widespread. Dissent was crushed by a tidal wave of verbal bullying. The Democratic Party launched a wide-spread, well organized campaign to disrupt the Green Party (even as it enabled the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq). One key component of it was having Dennis Kucinich make disastrous runs for the Presidency within the Democratic Party with the sole aim of drawing voters, and in particularly activists, back to the Democratic Party machine.
It is a kinder, gentler, more smothering form of fascism. Remember what Democrats said about George W. Bush back in 2001? How he would arrest all the dissidents and never give up power? People tend to forget their stupid talking points from the past. Republican Presidents have no more real power than Democratic ones. They are part of a system. Tax rates may be adjusted, troops may be redeployed, but the system goes on. Only Democrat Franklin D. Roosevelt managed the more overt fascist trick of becoming President for Life. On the whole, over a century and a half, the Republican Party has been better on civil rights issues and rotation of office than the other party.
Both the Democratic Party and the Republican Party are war crimes organizations. It is true and it is not hard to piece together from the definition of war crimes and a history book. But thinking about that is taboo. "Leftist" Democrats don't allow themselves to think about such taboo subjects any more than Bible-thumping Republican hypocrits.
I'm sticking with the Green Party and you should too. We need to devise Green Party strategies capable of defeating the fascist parties. The only other honest choice for people of conscience in the United States is the revolutionary anarchist movement.