Saturday, June 16, 2012

A Liberal Alternative to Term Limitations

Many people have at least the loose sense that there is a lot of dead wood in Congress; and various solutions have been proposed from time to time.  After all, some people reason, our Founding Fathers did not expect that there would arise individuals making a lifetime career out of serving as Senators and Representatives.  Or state officials, for that matter.  One solution sometimes offered from one side of the aisle is that of term limitations; however the prospect of these term limitations looks less rosy once one has become an officeholder and used to the perks that go with the job! 

Voting the rascals out is a hard proposition, as incumbents usually have a hugh advantage in getting campaign contributions.  And waiting them out is a long-term proposition, unless we were to adopt the drastic methods of the French in 1793-1795!  But wait, we're the most powerful nation in the world, and still the land of opportunity and imagination: surely we can come up with a creative way to eliminate this Congressional constipation?

While term limitations is usually championed by Conservatives not holding office; maybe the Liberal office-seekers can steal their thunder by proposing a Liberal alternative to reducing the dead wood on our Ship of State!

Here's a possibility: develop a massive make-work program for former Members of Congress and other blights on the public scene!  We have a liberal tradition of throwing money at a problem to see if it works.

How can this be implemented?  Well, there's college president positions for some.  In many cases, it's not as if most college presidents are that important in the day-to-day running of a university: deans and vice-presidents do that routinely.  But especially the President's Administrative Assistant (and the Dean's, for that matter)!  Therefore, it wouldn't hurt to have another figurehead.

For less important ones, they can be given a beach dive in some off-shore island, such as those currently being developed by cruise ship lines.  There they can drink, carouse with the beach crowd, coin money, and be out of Washington.  Or for some with more plebian tastes, let them be sheriffs for a dry county.  This is win-win, in my way of seeing it.

But what about the ones with pretensions of grandeur?  Well, we could pesuade some native people that those more difficult-to-place politicians could serve as a god and tribal grandfather (with a little U.S. foreign aid assistance).  There's a precedence for this: the natives of Vanuatu regard Prince Philip as a god (the offspring of the brother of Jon Frum and a mountain spirit); and tried to purchase him.  The affable Prince was given a traditional pig-killing club, a nal-nal, which he obligingly posed wielding it.  He got to wear a dapper morning suit; whereas his male admirers habitually go around wearing penis sheaths!

Wouldn't this serve as a solution for the Newt Gingrich problem?   Who knows, he might find his place in the sun!   And get a lot of sun, at that.  [Memo: Sunscreen for the Newtster.]

And we can find some other gullible natives willing to adopt Howard Dean or Harry Reid as gods, too?

Just tell Howardor Harry that they get the nal-nal, and the penis sheath is optional.   Most politicians would be delighted.  As for the natives, this is their lucky day.  If there's anything that liberals are good at, it's give away programs!  One bodacious pile of cargo coming up!

This would not work with Rush Limbaugh: He would expect to fill in for the big God.  And she would not be amused in the least.

I guess one possible specific means of implementing this program is to do like the Ancient Greeks did.  Periodically hold elections where every one votes for one person on a shard of pottery (ὄστρακα ostraka).*  He or she who gets the most votes goes into this golden parachute of exile.  The Athenians gave them a ten-year term of exile. 

*Our word ostracism comes from the Greek word for pottery shards.

Nal-nal, for the well-equipped god.


Clarissa said...

What pray tell is a penis sheath?

Atomic Dog said...

Ten years is not long enough for Harry Reid or Keith Olbermann.

Elvis Wearing a Bra on His Head said...

Now that sounds like a civilized way to get rid of nincompoops. Throw in a few state politicians, too?
Great dig at Rush.

Mike said...

I had to look up penis sheath. It seems some groups still use the koteka.

Duckbutt said...

This is a very creative way of dealing with National Annoyances. Good post!

Anonymous said...

Ex-Congresspersons has university presidents will only screw up higher ed like they have our government.

The Bastard King of England said...

Irony aside, this could be a solution of sorts.

Bilbo said...

An excellent idea ... I'm sure there are lots of positions out there that would benefit from the accumulated skills of our former elected reprehensives. Except for Rush Limbaugh, of course, for our solar system already has one giant flaming ball of hot gas, and ol' Sol doesn't need the competition. The penis sheaths are another matter ... most of the folks we're talking about are such big dicks that it would be difficult to find sheaths of an appropriate size. But these are small issues ... good post!!

Anonymous said...

Totally strange idea.