When the winners are losers: Don Blankenship lost his bid to become a Senate candidate from West Virginia (thank goodness), but it's still worthwhile to read the compelling argument from Jay Cost that the nature of the primary electorate too often risks giving unelectable nincompoops the nominations to run in general elections.
A primary-election/general-election system is a fully honorable and decent way to run a democracy -- IF people vote in the primaries. The problem for the US today is that people (backwardly) think being an independent voter requires sitting out the primaries. No matter how much people resent joining parties, the only way to get good general elections is to have broad-based primary elections.
The only way to get good general elections is to have broad participation in primary elections. When sane people step out of the process at the top of the funnel, they end up disgusted with what comes out at the bottom. We really need for sensible centrist voters to get just as mad about stopping the wingnuts as the wingnuts get mad about advancing their pet issues.
Every interested independent should pick a party and vote in a primary. You can re-register as "independent" the next day.