November 11, 2005

All Politics Is Yokel

As is generally well known among the three or four percent of Americans who vote, most states in these here United States recently had local elections. These horrid events are surprisingly akin to elections for student politics at the local community college—except even fewer people care.

We, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” would love to say that, as a group of farsighted intellectuals, we have nothing to do with such low-end political matters. After all, the fellow running for your local dogcatcher position isn’t terribly likely to have deeply-held beliefs regarding American foreign policy. He isn’t likely to expatiate on the cardinal import of the Anglo-American alliance. We would love to announce, then, such quotidian politicking is assuredly beneath us.

But, alas, we’d be lying. Recently, one of the junior editors here at “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly”—let’s just call him “Chip”—received a telephone call from a family friend. Said friend exhorted “Chip” to do her a solid, and lend a hand with a political campaign. Said friend’s old pal was running for Local Flak, or some such, and required a selfless chucklehead to clutch a sign at the polls, whilst sporting a T-shirt on which was emblazoned the candidate’s name.

In a moment of great weakness, “Chip” agreed. Boy, he’ll never forgive himself for that.

A few days later, “Chip” received another telephone call (at home, of course, since the staff can’t take personal calls at Hatemonger’s Headquarters), this time from the campaign manager of the hopeful Local Flak. After pouring on the whole “We Thank You So Much for Your Selflessness” routine, he informed “Chip” that he was to hold a sign in two shifts: 7:00am to 9:00am, and 5:00pm-7:00pm.

Well, gee, thought “Chip,” this is going to be lots and lots of fun. At least “Chip” won’t have to wake up early. And this isn’t going to ruin the day.

To make matters worse, of course, to this day “Chip” knows absolutely nothing about this candidate’s policies. He could be a Stalinist, for all “Chip” knows. He could favor the forcing of widowers to smack grapefruits over their heads. We doubt it, but it is within the realm of possibility, if your realm of possibility is rather wide.

But then “Chip” figured: It’s only local politics, so what’s the harm done? A couple of grapefruits? Even if this fellow is a Stalinist, he can’t kill that many people in such a small county. If there’s going to be a gulag, it might as well be confined to district eight.

Just to be on the safe side, “Chip” took a gander at one of this guy’s campaign brochures, in order to ensure that he would not waste his day plumping for the world’s next two-bit Benito Mussolini.

This, we must say, was the real shock. Thanks to this politician’s nebulous, bromidic sloganeering, it was downright impossible to determine his views on anything. Apparently, he’s for fiscal responsibility. Well, isn’t that just peachy; “Chip” and the crack young staff are fans of that too.

In addition, it turns out that our candidate likes America. Boy: It’s as if this guy is a perfect match for “Chip’s” politics. “Chip” likes America too! What a coincidence.

As of this writing, dear reader, we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” haven’t a clue whether “Chip’s” man has won the coveted position of Local Flak. Perhaps “Chip’s” miserable tenure at the polls earned his man victory in a squeaker.

But we collectively doubt it. And, quite frankly, we’re not sure it matters: Either way, the A-Train is still running.

Posted at November 11, 2005 12:01 AM | TrackBack