A Tough Job Someone Has to DoWe've kicked off another needlessly prolonged Presidential campaign season with a series of gimmicky, pointless debates. With a candidate field of somewhere between a dozen and 16 million, many Americans are wondering - if America has roughly 350 million people why are these lunkheads the best candidates we can field?
Pundits no longer hold forth on who won and who didn't because it doesn't matter. All of the candidates come off as over-polished morons with the scruples of weasels. Their answers to empty-headed softball questions are fit for nothing other than the gag reels shown nightly on the Daily Show. It's clear that hyperactive PR machines have finally honed their dubious craft to the point where candidates now have all the appeal - and apparently the intelligence - of a box of Tide detergent.
But, at least Tide has the virtue of cleaning your clothes.
The lack of marginally credible candidates has ushered in a voting rate lower than a rigged contest in a war-torn Third World dictatorship. In view of the razor-thin margins in 2000 and 2004, voting promotion groups remind people that "every vote counts more than ever". However, it's not the quantity of votes that count, it's the quality of the candidates and the intelligence of the votes that do.
We've devolved into Hobson's Choice elections where Pat Paulson is as good a choice as any of the top "real" contenders - and he's dead. Make no mistake. Had Al Gore or John Kerry won, their own brands of ineptitude and dubious achievement would have been small only in comparison to the truly world-class, stunning incompetence of the mellonhead who won. Winning is not the same thing as being qualified. In fact, sometimes winning isn't even the same thing as winning.
On the rare occasions when voters admit to voting, non-voters laugh at them as uneducated rubes who don't understand the futility of suffrage. And when their measly vote is stacked alongside a mound of corporate cash, they're not entirely wrong. In our current system, wealth makes right and the meek (and disenfranchised) will inherit the Earth only when the sun begins to rise in the west. It's no wonder cynicism abounds.
Do qualified candidates exist? In a theoretical sense - not unlike the theory that life exists on other planets - there do. How do we find them, an Earthbound SETI-style search perhaps? Once found, how do we encourage them to run? If they run, how can we be assured they won't morph into the same indecisive and conniving con-men so popular already?
The political scene is rife with imponderables like these and I certainly don't know how to fix things. The only thing I can think of is to do what I do now. Pick a poopbag, hold my nose, and cast my vote into the ether to be stolen by someone who can afford private access to voting records and has the technical expertise to change enough votes to put his own crapweasel over the top.
It's a tough job, but someone has to do it.
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Saturday, June 09, 2007