Writers from Georgia, New Jersey snare Pundit honors for first half of September

Writers from Georgia, New Jersey snare Pundit honors for first half of September

San Francisco : CA : USA | Sep 20, 2012 at 12:30 PM PDT
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The results from the Sept. 1-15 American Pundit segment are in, with writers from Georgia and New Jersey snaring the honors.

The on-topic portion dealt with a familiar theme this election cycle, “Money in Politics.” Tom Cleveland of Gainesville, Ga., weighed in with Politicians want your money and your vote, but money only wants power, published Sept. 12. Cleveland, a financial management consultant, explains how changes to the banking industry allowed us to get to where we are today. In referencing the Glass-Steagall Act, repealed in 1999, Cleveland observes that “commercial bankers now regard attempts to fix the broken incentive structure as the ‘enemy,’ and enormous political contributions to both parties are one sure way to secure the power to defeat them.”

Cleveland’s winning article is his first for Allvoices. He joined the site Sept. 11 and earns a $250 bonus, promotion from Stringer to Anchor and moves up to the next level of The American Pundit competition. In addition, he is eligible to participate in Allvoices’ Select Media program. We hope to hear a lot more from Cleveland as the contest continues.

The general topic category received some outstanding entries the first half of September, making it one of the hardest periods to judge this year. With the Democratic convention followed by violent turbulence in the Middle East, writers had no shortage of subject matter from which to choose. Several entries could have won, and we encourage those of you who entered but did not win to try again, both in the on-topic categories and with general subject political reports.

When all the contending reports had been read and reread, however, it was long-time Allvoices contributor Redhanded101 who edged out the competition.

With 'One-term proposition' may be only promise President Obama will keep, the Atlantic City, N.J.-based Anchor who joined the site May 23, 2009, takes a sobering look at the state of the U.S. economy and reminds readers that as a candidate, Obama had promised to get things back on track by now, saying he would be a "one-term proposition" if he failed to meet his stated goals. Written in part as a kind of open letter to the president, Redhanded101 puts it in plain English that even the most ardent Obama supporters should have no trouble understanding:

“No speeches or promises can erase the stark reality that millions of Americans must wake up to face each and every day,” he writes. “No fancy slogans or platitudes will suspend you from the sobering fact that today you are out of work or that you may lose your home. This is not looking Forward, this is today.”

Redhanded101, an accountant by trade, will receive a $250 bonus and move into the next round of competition as joins the other bimonthly winners in vying for the Grand Prize of $5,000, to be awarded after the November elections.

For the second half of September, The American Pundit turns its focus to the always-controversial Electoral College, thanks to a recent statement made by a man who knows firsthand how the Electoral College can prevent the person with the most votes from winning the presidency.

Former Vice President Al Gore, who received a half million more popular votes nationwide than eventual President George W. Bush but came up just short in the Electoral College, said in a late August interview on Current TV that even though he continued to support the Electoral College after losing to Bush in 2000, he had changed his mind. What do you think? Here’s the current Writing Assignment, with a deadline of 11:59 p.m. on Sept. 30:

Former Vice President Al Gore recently called for an end to the Electoral College, saying the president should be elected by popular vote because people who do not live in battleground states are "effectively disenfranchised" since candidates focus so much on the swing states. Is the Electoral College needed, or does it impede true democratic representation?

The deadline for this round of entries is 11:59 p.m. on Sept. 30. Two additional $250 winners will be selected from the entrants, with at least one winner picked from entries on the assigned topic. In general, submissions should be at least 400-1,000 words in length.

There's also a new political crossword puzzle at http://www.allvoices.com/crossword—check it out and test your knowledge today!

Stay on top of the campaign with The American Pundit’s unique combination of citizen punditry and citizen journalism at http://www.allvoices.com/election2012. If you like writing about U.S. politics and the 2012 campaign, enter "The American Pundit" competition. Allvoices is awarding four $250 prizes each month between now and November. These monthly winners earn eligibility for the $5,000 grand prize and the $1,000 runner-up prize, to be awarded after the November election. Head to http://www.allvoices.com/write_now to sign up!

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