I’m going to say the same thing that I said seven years ago: I refuse to vote for Hillary Clinton. Even if Senator Barack Obama hadn’t been the most electrifying man in political entertainment, I would still have chosen him over Mrs. Clinton because I just cannot bring myself to help put us on that path. I’m not talking about how she embodies the sell-out, bought and paid for representation of the multinational corporations and special interests, or the fact that she’s a woman; almost everybody else in national politics is just as bad, and I couldn’t care less about the ramifications of her reproductive system. The fact is that since 1989, two families have held the highest office. Right now, that’s twenty of twenty-six years. Should Hillary be elected president, that will mean that those same families will have been running the executive office for (at least) twenty-four of thirty years, or 80% of the past three decades. To be fair, through 2008, the Bushes and Clintons had controlled the office 100% of the time, but a run of possibly twenty-eight years between two budding dynasties was just too much for me to stomach. Just so no one accuses me of playing favorites, I’m also proud to declare that I won’t be voting for Jeb Bush either.
It’s bad enough that we’ve been reduced to a two-party system, I cannot accept that we’re freefalling toward a two-family system. And from there, all it takes is some social mingling, and we’ve got the beginnings of an empire. Sure, it seems unlikely that people today would accept the totalitarian rule of a single family whose power passes down through heredity, dispensing with the antiquated notion of democratic participation, a system which is widely regarded with disdain and apathy. I mean, we’ve got a couple of brothers who seem intent on using their vast wealth to control the country, but they’re so well shrouded in the shadows which only unlimited wealth and power can buy, that people do their best to simply ignore what little evidence has come to light. But we prefer to think that our officials are elected, and a straight-up power grab reminiscent of the republic which we’ve tried to emulate is still a little far off from being socially acceptable. But I can see how it might be done.
First, you limit public options down to two. Then, you field candidates from two families, alternating them every couple of election cycles. Each of these presidents will be popular with their voter base, at least until the end. From there it’s only a matter of time until those two families begin consolidating power. In the outside world, the War on Terror seems to drag on without end. We continue to give up liberties in our attempt to hold those who might seek to do us harm at bay. Politics have become more of a distraction than ever before, with scandal after scandal shoving actual news deep into the disappearing newspapers, and mentioned almost never in the twenty-four news channels’ broadcasts. Meanwhile, we’re running out of resources, and because of the myth of the job creator, those in economic power continue to run roughshod over both environment and ex-employees. We’re soon out of water, the weather patterns having made the United States a nation of climatological extremes, and the party of deniers has finally accepted that there is some sort of problem, but there is nothing to be done, as we are past the point of no return. On the bright side, Florida finally sinks into the sea, and we are no longer bound to its insanity. The union of two families finally comes to pass, and the product of that union ascends to sit upon his golden throne, ruling over the American Empire as it falls from major player status to a dimming third-world power.
Okay, I’m willing to admit that I may be overreacting. It could just be that I have spent my entire life watching the country which I love embark upon a quest to make itself irrelevant. If I was the type who believed that the End of Days was not only inevitable, but just around the corner, I probably wouldn’t be as worried as I am. I mean, what’s the worst that can happen? The apocalypse comes a little early. I cannot bear the dumbing-down of everything, nor the flailing of religious fantasy as it seeks to drive us back toward the last time it was relevant. I hear constant cries for a return to a more theocratic rule, never mind that the last time it was thrust upon us, it took the courage of band of heretics to drag us out of those dark ages and push us toward the light. In a time when we could feed the world, drive up the standard of living and the quality of life, we fall back upon the superstitions of millennia long gone, and incite the world to war.
It’s time to put a stop to this. It’s time to look toward hard-earned knowledge to guide us into wisdom instead of flipping through antiquities to find something to justify our prejudices. Or maybe we should go the other way, and embrace something more ridiculous. Let’s put an actual cartoon up for an election. I hereby announce the candidacy of Ranger Bob for President in the 2016 election. He ran in 2000, but we wound up with a different deranged type of cowboy instead. I think that the time has finally come for us to formally usher in the Age of Insanity. Let’s cast aside enlightenment for edicts from the past. Let’s toss out reason in favor of fervent faith. Corporations will always do the right thing because otherwise they’d soon be out of business. The rich create the jobs, and not the workers who spend their hard-earned cash. The poor are just lazy, and hard work will always result in unbridled success. We’re not responsible for climate change. Voter fraud! And corporations are people, despite the fact that Texas hasn’t ever executed one.
When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.–Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.
He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.
In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.
Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.
We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.