Some people might wonder, "Why so late? The election is less than a month away." Think back to 2008. A scant 24 hours after Barack Obama's election, news channels were already hosting pundits ranting about potential candidates in 2012. Debates about an election that wouldn't occur for four years steadily sizzled on slow news days until finally only two years remained to rant about the eventual primaries. For close to a year and a half an intense degree of focus has been put on this year's presidential campaign. Sure, other stories have stolen the spotlight from time to time (e.g. Casey Anthony, the marriage of Prince William to Catherine Middleton, the NFL and concussions, etc. -- important things) but the focus has always managed to return to the presidency. By now most voters are rolling their eyes at even the smell of political discourse and that's the portion who pay close attention to politics in the first place. The average citizen has most likely entered a Let's-Get-This-Over-With state of mind. So, to cut through the static of campaign rhetoric, I've come charging onto the field: a fresh face to foil the monotony and put life back into the body politic.
But what's my plan? Every candidate is supposed to have one. These two jokers certainly seem to -- http://www.barackobama.com/economy and http://www.mittromney.com/issues . As such, I've devised the following scheme for America. Try and keep up.
1. Fix the Economy.
Technically, at this point in the campaign all I really have to say is, "Trust me, I got this." Part of the reason for that is most people glaze over the second anyone says something like, "Eliminating taxes on dividends would encourage people to buy municipal bonds; and raising taxes on capital gains would prevent shareholders from flipping stocks as well as reduce the lost revenue from the aforementioned tax cut."
Not only do most folks have no idea what I've proposed, but I already hear grumblings through the wi-fi about arrogant intellectual elitism. Voters want to hear hard luck stories about vague anonymous Americans the candidate claims to have met who exemplify the suffering of a particular demographic. It makes more sense for me to say, "I know a man in Niles, Illinois who works two jobs to support his family and still doesn't earn enough to buy groceries. He's spiraling into debt just to feed his children. We, as a nation, can't allow that. That's why I'm going to make sure he can earn a living by creating jobs which raise our standard of living," than to offer a realistic (realistic in this case being code for boring) explanation of what needs to be done. As George Orwell once said, "The average man is not directly interested in politics... he wants the current struggles of the world to be translated into a simple story about individuals."
So I won't tell you about investing in infrastructure in order to create jobs, taxes for the super rich, closing loopholes in the existing tax code, or creating tariffs on foreign products produced for American manufacturers (taxing companies who have shipped jobs overseas by creating tariffs applied to the goods they import). I won't mention things like tax credits for auto manufacturers who produce fuel efficient vehicles which can compete pricewise with the Tata Nano (http://consumerguideauto.howstuffworks.com/2012-tata-nano-america.htm). Or restarting, what I call, Head Above Water Programs like the Federal Writers' Project.
During the New Deal many programs simply kept American's from drowning; and throughout the last four years there's been an insistence from the American people as well as politicians that whatever action is taken should instantly revitalize the economy. We're looking for the perfect solution when we really need to level off then begin a slow climb to recovery. It won't happen overnight no matter how much we want that. So I want to invest in programs which provide jobs for a variety of skills which don't easily find work but exist throughout the United States. People who want to work will apply for them whether they're minimum wage positions picking up trash along the highway or transcribing the oral histories of the elderly at $20 per narrative.
A lot of this will be building off of the successes made so far, but there's still a long way to go.
Barack Obama once said, "A democracy requires accountability, and accountability requires transparency." And I agree with that. However, he failed in some respects to live up to this intention by allowing closed negotiation sessions. I understand that certain aspects of politics can't be made open to the public. For reasons of national security some, perhaps even many, of the president's interactions can't be made available to the general population. That being said, debates over matters such as healthcare reform, in which every American has a vested interest, shouldn't be held behind closed doors.
As president I would be open to dialogue with any party regarding any issue provided those who wished to talk or debate or argue were willing to have all such interactions recorded. All recordings, save those which constitute matters of national security, will be made available to the public. Everything goes on file. And to think it's a strange request is to forget the historical reality and importance of things like the Kennedy and Nixon tapes.
Like the economy a simple anecdote is what really matters here. Telling the story of a sick child, a man crippled on the job, or an elderly woman, all of whom can't afford the care which will turn their lives into a manageable hell rather than the grim slow suffering decay they're already experiencing.
I shouldn't tell you about a plan that will sound like the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare. I should terrify you with insinuations of death boards: panels of doctors roaming the halls of hospitals deciding who deserves proper care and who should be left to die. I certainly shouldn't ask you to make sense of the thing yourself (http://housedocs.house.gov/energycommerce/ppacacon.pdf). That's a duty best left to people who act without political motivation or financially incentivized bias: television pundits and politicians. Senators didn't even read it before voting on the act, so why should you even try to find an objective synopsis before reviling the thing? No, the best plan here is to cherry pick what aspects of the PPACA sound best, while saying the most politically volatile aspects are bullshit I'll discard in one great sweep of my executive branch... regardless of whether I have the votes in Congress to back any action.
4. Same Sex Marriage.
It's here. Get used to it.
5. Foreign Policy.
An interesting thing has been occurring lately. Willard Mitt Romeny proposes smaller government yet at the same time somehow insists the Middle East is under American management; that Barack Obama is the one responsible, if only in part, though still to a significant degree according to Willard, for the violence occurring there as we speak. In essence, the president is to have as minimal authority as possible in the his own country but a powerful hand abroad. This invisible Iron Pimp Hand will wrangle China, reign in Iran, cool the climate in the Middle East, and prevent the economic turmoil in Europe from crossing the pond, but in no way can it dictate healthcare reform or financial regulation in its own country.
Based on this the President of the United States is the political equivalent of a blackhole: somehow massive and small in the same instance.
Foreign Policy is a matter of effective diplomacy. Overall, under my watch, what matters to the United States and its
citizens will come first, but not at the expense of valued relationships past presidents have carefully established over the years.
See how I craftily made a vague noncommittal statement that both sounds good and offends no one? That's how you politrick. Now to threaten Iran and China with some tough talk -- "My Pimp Hand is strong! Test me bitches! Sanctions and guns motherfuckers!" -- mention helping nations aspire to democracy as opposed to policing the globe, and we're done!
Let's be honest. This is the country people flock to when they want to start a better life. It's been that way since before it became the United States of America. And we shouldn't discourage that, especially when a large portion of our economy is tied up in immigrant labor. In addition, as recently as 2010, 28% of all doctorate recipients were non-U.S. citizens (http://www.nsf.gov/statistics/sed/2010/pdf/tab70.pdf). Fortunately, 69.1% wanted to remain in the U.S., though that isn't to say they were allowed.
It isn't just unskilled workers we're relying on here. Computer and engineering jobs are filled by immigrant labor too, and countries like Britain, Australia, Canada, Germany, and France have, in recent years, bent over backward to attract the talent many here refuse to accept for fear of foreign hordes stealing work from hard working Americans. But we need every hard working able body and mind to make this country strong.
We need a smoother immigration path rather than the one that exists. That's why I won't support deportation of anyone other than violent criminals; and I'll work to make sure the valid road to citizenship is more readily known, particularly south of the border. Because seriously, do you think a guy living in Oaxaca is aware of Form N-400, Application for Naturalization? Or if he is where to get one?
Wrapping It All Up
These are the particularly hot button issues facing the country. There are other matters to keep in mind --realities for our soaring elderly population, national security, gun control, and the environment. However, these six points evoke the most passionate responses from voters. Therefore, all other issues can get laid by the wayside or at best, tangentially connected to broader topics i.e. tying the environment to economic concerns. Only the most pressing points deserve attention: how will the economy be strengthened by your mere presence as president; what's in your ipod; can you spin your failure at the debate into a clever quip; etc.
It would be easy to boldly state, "I will fix the economy through a series of actions designed to create jobs and stimulate financial growth in all sectors; adjust taxes to reduce the burden on the middle class and low income earners while inspiring the upper class to invest in America. Along the way I intend to provide affordable healthcare for every
American. In global affairs, the United States will be regarded as a world leader not a follower. My immigration reforms will make people feel free to come to this country and call it their own without fear of being labeled Illegal."
But I wouldn't be saying anything. Plus, it's verbose. All I really have to say is, "I can make America great again." Because until I fail you won't know any better... unless you actually look at what you're being told.