Our Political Parties Are In Decline, and That’s a Problem

One of my favorite running jokes on the internet is, “You had one job.” It’s a staple of Twitter and YouTube, with images of signs reading, “Turn Left” with an arrow pointing right, or supermarket shelves demarcating where you can buy “Poop Tarts.”

Well, the Iowa Democratic Party rolled out a new line of Poop Tarts this week.

The Iowa Democratic Party may have other responsibilities in non-presidential election years, but it’s only important function every four years is to run the Iowa caucuses. It’s the only time the eyes of the nation are on it, and the eyes of the nation this week saw a screwup of biblical proportions. It was like watching a team put screen doors on a submarine and confidently take it out to sea, even though they’d been warned from the beginning that screen doors are a bad idea.

There’s no point in dwelling on the full scope of the failure—they used a faulty app to count votes that they were told in advance was faulty—and then had to manually recheck the votes. It took longer to recheck than it would have taken if they had used technology that was readily available in the 16th century.

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