I think I’ve figured a way to save our country from ruin: We should elect a new president every year.
The stock market always goes up before a presidential election, right? That means all recessions will be limited to a half-dozen months and the good times will roll every summer and fall. And you’ll never again hear the word “deficit.” Has Congress ever raised taxes or cut services in an election year?
And all those out-of-work Americans? Well, they might not have jobs, but they’ll at least have something to do. They can spend their empty days campaigning for the latest empty-headed candidate. After all, what makes a campaign go? Greasy politicians and greasy pizza … so at least they’ll get some empty calories to go along with all those hollow promises.
Maybe someone will figure out a way to put little bunks in the voting booths so all those poll workers would have a place to sleep. Heck, half of America is sleeping in a garage or a cardboard box as it is, so why not make those booths serve double duty.
And somebody will get work installing the Oval Office’s new revolving doors.
Congress—that unmovable mass of goo that works as well as Maynard G. Krebs (if you’re under 60, Google it)—doesn’t do anything anyway and this new rotating-regime scheme will probably keep them from passing the few pork-ridden bits of legislation they do manage to belch up.
This way, Sarah Palin, Ron Paul ... even that Bachmann person might get a chance to stand at a podium with that eagle logo on it and make some cowboy quote about how they planned a secret mission to send a drone missile up the rear end of a terrorist during his birthday party in the mountains of Pakistan.
And talking about the global ramifications, our enemies wouldn't know who it is they should be burning in effigy. Our friends—make that “friend” because I’m pretty sure it’s down to England at this point—would only have to suffer through a trigger-happy-smoke-'em-out foreign policy for a few months.
Best of all, China wouldn’t know who to bill.
In simpler times, we elected one guy for a decade, and Franklin Delano Roosevelt was good enough for the country. But that's when fireside chats were the information superhighway … with a school-zone speed limit.
These days, everyone is hyper and moving at hyperspace speed. The latest news is minutes late. Yesterday's news is already in the history books—well, online versions, anyway—which download neatly onto your laptop, digital reader or iPad.
(“iPad,” by the way, was always my answer when asked, “How do you handle your expense account?”)
Look, presidential campaigns are already endless—the Republicans started the latest one sometime between the time Obama lowered his right hand and the first strains of “Hail to the Chief” kicked in. So why not speed up the electoral process and give a whole conga line of bozos a 12-month shot at running the show? Just think: We could’ve had Obama, two Bushes and a guy who had a fondness for cigars and plump women ... all come and gone in less than five years.
The presidency would be like the weather in the Midwest: If you don’t like it, wait a few minutes and it’ll change.
And the ramifications go way beyond the obvious political benefits.
No baby will go unloved, what with all the candidates slobbering all over them.
It could mean the end of those god-awful showbiz buzz shows—Hollywood actors will be too busy at liberal fund-rasiers to find time to show up on TMZ—and that alone would become a front-runner for presidential accomplishment of the 21st century.
Michael Moore couldn't shoot an unflattering documentary and get it through production in time to embarrass a sitting president. Rush Limbaugh wouldn't have time for the intensive i-dotting, t-crossing fact-checking that he requires on all of his stories.
Best of all, with this kind of turnover, someday your kid will grow up to be president.
About this column: John Weyler has lived in Orange County for almost 50 years. His weekly regional columns offer his unique, and often irreverent, take on life in the O.C.