Sunday, January 6, 2008

Political Saints, A Venerable Vetting Process

When President Clinton first came to office back in 1992, Newsweek had a front cover with him depicted as Saint George, fighting the dragon. The caption read, "Can He Save Washington?"

It is interesting to note that the general populace is not terribly comfortable with Presidential candidates believing too much in Jesus, because they apparently want the candidate to Be Jesus, or at least in God's Top Ten.

As I considered the field, the process of picking a President is not unlike that of naming a Saint.

Saints go through a vetting process whereby their biography is studied and analyzed for consistency, reverent nature of their faith, miracles, revelations to the world and devotion to Christ. Likewise, voters examine and chose candidates for their policies, past political successes, adherence to the orthodoxy of their political party, ability to raise money and garner followers, and ability to convey to the masses, the depth of their devotion.

Saints progress through stages of candidacy, venerable, blessed, Saint. In politics, you have the candidate, nominee, President.

The two major differences seem to be that in politics, we only crucify the losers, and Saints don't get to be elected Saints until after they've died. Perhaps this second option is something the American Electoral College should consider.

Dead presidents aren't likely to be swayed by fancy dinners or powerful lobbyists. They aren't going to be lying under oath, well, maybe laying down on the job, as they will not merely be a lame duck but a dead one on day one of taking the oath of office. Vice Presidential candidates should be near death, not merely a heartbeat away, but a heart attack from achieving the most powerful office in America. Dick Cheney --not close enough, think Gerald Ford before he died type level of political dead. We need to edge as close to Lazarus as possible in our second choice. Like Michael Dukakis.

Oh sure, there's that tiny problem of determining what the dead leader of the free world would want to enact as policy. W.W.T.D.P.D? What would the Dead President do?

That's when we get to consult the prior Dead Presidents. How? Well, according to the Movies, there's that magnificent book of the Presidents, which knows all. Maybe we should just consult it and then go to the Lincoln memorial and ask Abe. I'm sure he'll come to life if our situation is dire enough, or at least, point at the secret door behind which, all of America's troubles can be explained and made to go away.

After all, all we want from our leaders is a person without political sin, able to heal all past wounds of the nation, create a robust economy with a budget surplus, pristine successful academic schools. We also would like chickens or tofu substitutes for those vegans out there, in every pot, free good universal health care, guaranteed retirement income, Gaia like conditions, fair and free trade that ensures human rights and labor practices are sustainable across the world, and an end to hunger, violence, evil, greed, destruction, death, pain, suffering, war and drugs, crime and obesity. Good roads, cheap cable, fast internet, fair and balanced news coverage, clean streets, inoffensive art, benign courts that met out justice, empty prisons, safe homes and neighborhoods, peace, love, a cure for aids, cancer, low taxes, a prohibition on stupid Hollywood sequels, a return of the family hour on television, guaranteed decent end of the year bonuses and golden parachutes for everyone, a housing market boom, lower gas prices, pomp, circumstance, nobility, memorable sound bites and a transparent administration that has zero corruption, a winning personality and good TV looks would finish off a perfect political platform that All of America could get behind.

It's not like we're asking these folks to walk on water.


suburbancorrespondent said...


Larramie said...

Saints? Maybe someone on the order of Moses who moved water!

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