Saturday, January 19, 2008

(01.19.08) Recommends:

Replacing Negative Campaigning With Dueling.

So two more caucuses were decided today. Or, one caucus and one primary. There's a difference in there somewhere, but we still haven't figured it out.

Anyway. What happens next is each candidate spins the results; e.g., Barack Obama lost to Hillary Clinton in Nevada, but has announced that he received more national
delegates in Nevada than Mrs. Clinton. Nobody is actually sure whether he's right or not, because nobody actually knows how these primary/caucus things work. We only know they were invented by Al Gore.

Anyway again. What happens after the spinning is the candidates go back to either flat out attacks on the other side, or thinly-veiled attacks on the other side. Sometimes the candidates themselves do the attacking. Sometimes other people do the attacking on behalf of the candidates.

Wait. Let's back up. The "attacking" is only verbal, metaphorical. And that, we believe, is just lazy. As such, we propose: dueling. Seriously, think about this. The candidates do all this huffing and puffing, they express outrage! at the attacks and indignation! at the attacks. They say attacks ruin! politics and the people! are ready for change! Sometimes they even start press conferences denouncing negative ads by playing a negative ad that they say will never be shown.

It's really all ridiculous and high school. Therefore, if the candidates want us to believe that they actually believe in what they're saying, they can prove it to us by agreeing to pick up a gun, walking in opposite directions between five and ten paces, and then turning around and firing! The one left standing, we'll back up and vote for. The other one: s/he's dead and therefore ineligible for office [1].

If it was good enough for Aaron Burr and Alexander Hamilton, it should be good enough for this year's crops of candidates.

[1] Of course, this technically isn't true. John Ashcroft lost the 2000 U.S. Senate election in Missouri to Mel Carnahan, who was dead at the time. We're willing to overlook technicalities if it will make political dueling fashionable again.

No comments: