Friends & Colleagues
Over the past few weeks, there has been an exceptional demand on my time imposed by a summons that I received from the Census Bureau. It informed me that as a native born United States citizen over the age of 35, I was officially obliged to serve my country by either 1) acting as juror in the Travis County Traffic Court, or 2) running for President. I chose the latter as more fun and less time-consuming.
Setting up an ‘exploratory committee’ has proven unexpectedly onerous since most experienced trail guides already have signed on with other candidates. Then there is the matter of a campaign slogan. “A Frappuccino in every cup” appealed to me but then I discovered that the copyright belong to Howard Schultz. I thought of catchy alternatives: “A Transgender On Every Committee” or ‘Break The Glass Ceiling NOW!” Somehow, though, they lacked the punch to stir voters – nothing like “Change You Can Believe In.” (Obama really had a way with words). Still, I felt the urge to persevere – encouraged by a look at the competition. At least I know better than did the Senator from Newark, New Jersey who responded to a question from a Swiss newspaper reporter with a few words in Puerto Rican dialect. Swiss-Americans may be a thin base, yet a base to build on nonetheless.
In the end, though, I abandoned this fanciful project of self-reinvention. The final straw was CNN’s rejection of my appeal for them to organize a Town Hall Meeting where I could introduce myself to America. So the idea now is relegated to the dustbin of blasted dreams. In compensation for this dereliction, I have chosen to render service by inscribing Ten Commandments for those brave enough to enter the ring.
- I am the Constitution, who brought you out of bondage to King George III. You shall have no other serments before ME
- You shall not make yourself a craven American image composed of Bigotry and Fear
- Honor Peace & Tranquility by refraining from announcing your candidacy before the first day of the election year
- You shall not take the name of the Constitution in vain by swearing that your sole reason for seeking the Presidency is love of America
- Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall campaign, on the seventh day you shall maintain silence under Heaven and devote yourself to reflection
- You shall not murder the American language by speaking in sound bites
- You shall not commit adultery by consorting with enemies of your constituents
- You shall not steal the nomination by scheduling any of the first 5 primaries in a state that does not host a major league sports franchise.
- You shall not bear false witness against your opponents by slander or willful misrepresentation
- You shall not covet your opponent’s donors; nor his/her emails; nor his/her speech writers; nor his/her cosmetic surgery, nor his/her Oxbridge degree, nor his/her intern’s ass”
- All “try-outs” before billionaires must be video-taped and made public
- Reveal at least one ‘skeleton’ in your closet before the IOWA caucuses
- Pledge to forsake golf as a pastime – except if played at a public course on Saturday morning
- Ban all reference to immediate family except as a warning to voters of their constituting a potential distraction/disruption in the conduct of public business
- Explain the bipartisan consensus on the regular practice of stripping the Social Security Trust fund of its surpluses to cover current imbalances in the general budget
- Explain how you would ensure that troops in combat have access to gluten-free meals
- Pledge to reject all salutation as “Mr. President” and replace it with “Sir”
- Eliminate anyone who makes a big deal of being the first member of some demographic group sniffing at the door of the Oval Office
- Agree that all debates be scheduled at times when the strongest TV competition is reruns of “Lassie Finds A Home”