We’ve debated pop star photos, hamburgers, hand-to-hand combat, aging rock stars. Let’s lower the bar and talk politics.
Meo: All right Tim, we’ve debated pop star photos, hamburgers, hand-to-hand combat, aging rock stars. Let’s lower the bar and talk politics. Who should be Barack Obama’s running mate? Does it matter?
Malcolm: Well, the rule with picking a running mate is it should be someone from an area where you may not have strong support. And it should be someone who isn’t exactly carrying the same ethos. I thought New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson would’ve made a nice choice for Obama, but he’s not even in the running. U.S. Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., seems like the right guy now. I gotta say, it’s a tough one.
Meo: I say he should pick someone with the same star appeal, but with similar political experience. What’s Master P doing these days? Nothing, right? Lil’ Wayne? Maybe too busy mumbling his next record-breaking hit. Jason Giambi’s mustache has lost interest in baseball. Maybe it’s ready for a leap into politics. Oh, I know ... Ernest Borgnine. He has way too much time on his hands.
Malcolm: Yeah, that’s a great idea, picking someone with no political experience whatsoever to help lead the country. Look, this isn’t “American Idol.” You’ve seen in these last seven years just how much power a vice president can possess. Scary, huh? Well go ahead, have a guy that goes “uuuuhhhh” tell Obama how to deal with the health-care crisis.
Meo: They’ve got about as much experience as Obama, so what’s the difference? Obama could pick another guy in a suit, or even a woman in a pants suit, but that’s all he or she would be, no matter their religion, heritage or philosophy. Politicians have two goals: (1) get elected, (2) get re-elected. Politics is the process of working harder to KEEP a job, then to DO a job. Sure, we could get all uppity, but in the end, some dude in a suit will take the oath and move us further along the path to ruin. Why not have a little fun along the way?
Malcolm: Because that’s giving into our cynical nature. Why bother having an election? Why bother having a president? Let’s toss the Executive Branch! But wait — there go some checks and balances. Shoot, best to get rid of the Legislative Branch, too. And you know, since that really unbalances things, let’s just throw out the Judicial Branch. I guess we don’t need the Constitution then. Out that goes. So now what? Anarchy? Bloodsport? Cannibalism and Darwinism? Sounds like your kind of world. Let’s get rid of systems, of organization, of progress. Makes sense to me.
Meo: To paraphrase Jack Nicholson’s Joker: “This government needs an enema.” It’s time to start over. Politicians were never meant to be professionals. Judges were never meant to legislate from the bench. Governments — federal, state, local — were never meant to turn a profit, to tax their citizens, to be the self-perpetuating cycles of waste and gluttony they’ve become.
Malcolm: Start over? It’s ridiculous. You’re ridiculous. You can’t start over, but you can change things. And you can do it with the younger generations. They need to know the truth about government, so they can be the leaders who we’re supposed to have in this country. We sensible people know universal health care, a stronger education system, less reliance on foreign lands and less environmental impact are the answers to a stronger America. We know there are nations out there that follow that example. All we need is the right people, and in time, with hope, we can have that. But you have to want to change. You have to make it happen. You can’t blow it up, start over, sell off the country’s basis of operation. That’s the coward’s way out. There’s promise in tomorrow, but we need to work hard today.
Tim Malcolm is The Bulletin’s custom publications editor. He wonders if the Democratic National Convention will have a Dippin’ Dots stand. John Meo is The Bulletin’s design editor. He has no interest in paying for anyone’s health insurance but his own, and even that makes him cringe.