I suppose you've all heard about the recall election in California. Well, I might as well come out and say it: I like the idea.
Yes, I like this recall election. I think it's a good thing. I think Americans should recall their elected officials more often.
Now, a lot of political pundits would disagree with me. Those who study elections, those who are in the know, are decrying this whole deal as a waste of time that encourages political nonsense and cripples those who need to make decisions. They say it's undemocratic. They are wrong.
If a man seizes control (however legitimately) of a state, and then proceeds to make bad decisions and drive that state's economy into the ground... how is it "democratic" to force the citizens to chafe under his rule until its predetermined time limit?
In my mind, democracy has one chief purpose: to limit the power of government. The marking of a ballot does not send a message to the powers that be, it only forces them to switch seats at regular intervals. Any man, sitting in a place of power for more than, say, ten years, becomes a king. A king is concerned with the preservation of his reign first and the well-being of his subjects second. That is how human psychology works. Power, as they say, corrupts.
So, then, a recall election is merely the reverse side of democracy. The Californians hired Gray Davis, they paid his salary, and now they are firing him. You have to let these punks know who's really in control. The governor works for the people, not vice versa.
Of course a Democratic governor would run up a huge deficit. That's what Democrats do. But that's a completely different rant.
Personally, my money's on Arnold. I mean, he's getting all this free publicity. Everyone but Arnold and Gray is a joke, which is really too bad because Gary Coleman has a lot of good ideas. Seriously.
That's another thing I like-- the multiple candidates. True, most of them are running for publicity's sake, and most entertain no real hopes of being elected... I think it would be a great start for a movie if both Schwarzennegger and Davis are somehow incapacitated, and the state of California is forced to elect Gallagher.
I do like the whole multiple candidates thing, though. I think the two-party system is one of America's greatest weaknesses. There are more than two viewpoints on any given issue... that's the main reason I started the TQ section. I dislike the idea of two-party politics. It's unnatural and counter-intuitive.
I hope this election makes people stand up and really consider what democracy is all about. I hope to see more third-party candidates in future American elections. I hope that a successful recall will put the fear of God into politicians the world over, and that officials will realize that the job of pleasing their constituents does not end when the election has been won.
Most of all, I hope this is not the end of Gary Coleman's political career. Because if there's one thing America needs right now... or will need in a few years' time... it's a short black President.