The Perfect Man

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader sees on the news wire today that (so to be former) Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-TN) is going to pass on running for President in 2008. He says he’ll return to his medical practice.

Your Maximum Leader can’t say as though he is crying bitter tears of disappointment at this little bit of news. Indeed, he hardly cares. You see, your Maximum Leader was pretty damned confident that if Frist has decided to stay in the race he would have been so badly shellaced by the time the primaries ended in New Hampshire that Senator Frist would be running home to Tennessee (and his millions) like a spanked schoolgirl.

As you can tell, your Maximum Leader was not a big Bill Frist fan…

Indeed, your Maximum Leader had gone on the record (no not accessible because your Maximum Leader hasn’t figured out how to unlock his archives) as saying that the most difficult choices in a 2008 Presidential contest (for him at least) would have been an Allen (R-VA) vs. Warner (D-VA) one. Well… That isn’t going to happen. George Allen has (regrettably) been sent back to Albemarle (from whence he hailed in VA) by voters who didn’t care for his cowboy boots, chew, and support of President Bush. (And, as Chris Matthews and others remind us, there was that whole “word” thingie.) Mark Warner woke up one day and realized that he didn’t want to subject himself, his family, his friends, his pets, and his bank account to try and climb the greasiest pole of American politics. So, an all Virginia contest isn’t going to happen.

All in all, your Maximum Leader isn’t (yet at least) excited by anyone who is looking to run for President in 2008. Frankly, he would commend himself to some sort of professional help if he was all that excited about someone. It is, afterall, only November of 2006. We have a full year for people to start running. Then another year of primaries and conventions culminating in the grand slugfest that is the presidential election. Why should your Maximum Leader be excited now. He worked up a little anticipation over his hypothetical “all Virginia” contest; and look where it got him. Nowhere!

So… If you Maximum Leader were drawing up a “perfect” presidential candidate what would that candidate by like… Let’s imagine…

1) On Iraq. The perfect candidate would say to people “Look, we can bicker all we want about how we got where we are. None of that helps advance our national interests or brings one American back to his family. So everyone can just shut their friggin pie-holes with all the ‘who decieved who’ and ‘was it worh it’ crap.” Then after the various pundits and talking heads finished lifting their chins off the floor the perfect candidate would say, “We’re going to finish this thing the only way possible. We are going to force the issue with the Iraqis themselves. If they can’t live together in a unified Iraq; then they are going to have to divide up the country. Shia get a part. Kurds get a part. Sunnis get a part. We’ll help you make a time table and start to draw the lines of debarcation. If the Sunnis get no oil. Boo hoo. Too bad. Serves you right for supporting Saddam all those decades. Get your co-religionist friends to help you out. Once you’re all divided up and fully armed. Well… We’re outta there.”

Of course, the perfect candidate doesn’t actually have to have the plan articulated above. But the candidate must speak plainly and clearly. Let people know what is going on in his mind and what will be the course of action.

1b) The Global War on Terror. The perfect candidate would say, “Listen up out there. I’ve got no problem with beefing up our special forces and the CIA and all the other secret groups that go out and find terrorists where ever they are. I’ve also got no problem with when our people find a terrorist we kill them. Figure one shot. One head shot. Front or back - it don’t make no difference to the bullet. We’ll hunt you down. We’ll bribe your governments. We’ll bug your houses, internets, and places of worship. We’ll come after you every way possible. And when we find you we’ll bring you to justice. It just so happens that the only justice we seem to have handy now comes on the receiving end of a .45 slug. Sorry ’bout that.”

2) Taxes. The perfect candidate will say that a flat-tax on income will be a focus of their administration. The pretty good candidate might actually say we need to simplify the tax code and make sure that everyone pays something; even if it is only $100. Everyone pays taxes. A simplified tax code would be somewhat progresive. This is to say that for people earning under $25,000/annum the rate might be 1%. For the $25,001 to $50,000 range the rate is 10%. For $50,001 to $100,000 the rate is 15%. And over $100,000 the rate caps at 20%. That is it. End of story. Now your Maximum Leader didn’t actually research these figures - he just made them up. But he likes the idea in general. In fact he would prefer a true flat tax for everyone. The last revenue neutral number he seems to remember reading about was something like 17%. But he doesn’t care if the tax plan is revenue neutral. In fact he’d prefer it wasn’t. He’d prefer if it was revenue negative. Which leads to…

3) Fiscal Discipline. The perfect candidate will be a “fiscal conservative.” Much to your Maximum Leader’s chagrin (and Ronald Reagan’s) the time from the 1980s through the present day show that revenue reductions to the Federal Government are in no way connected to the amount of money the Congress chooses to spend. We’ve all heard of earmarks and every other pork project under the sun. The perfect candidate will work towards a line-item veto for the President or will work to stymie every single bill coming out of the Congress until our legislature can reform itself. If the perfect candidate isn’t willing to stymie every single bill coming out of the Congress, perhaps he could just start appointing Special Prosecutors to investigate every single financial “irregularity” of every single Congressman’s and Senator’s election committee. This latter course could serve many ends. It could cause many elected legislators to straighten up and fly right. It might cause many legislators to resign. It might convict and send to jail many legislators. And finally, it would employ lots and lots of lawyers - which would make the Lawyers Lobby happy.

Seriously, your Maximum Leader’s youthful dreams of seeing the Department of Education eliminated and replaced with block-grants to the states is never going to happen. But, if you look around you can cut spending. Every organization cn do it. It takes willpower. Willpower that must come from the top and pushed down everyone’s throat.

4) Social Security/Medicare. The perfect candidate would say “Lookit. We’ve got a huge crisis looming. But baby-boomers are too selfish to admit that they are going to bankrupt us all, and our children, and our children’s children because they want to retire at 65 and have it all paid for by the .7 workers for each retiree. We’ve got to seriously examine means-testing benefits. We’ve got to look at encouraging savings. We’ve got to seriously examine raising the retirement age. Oh yeah… By the way… “Seriously examine” is code for “change the way we do it now right away so we don’t wind up with some Chinese Communist owing our arse.”

Of course, that bit might be wishful thinking.

5) Guns. The perfect candidate will say every household should have at least one.

6) Abortion. The perfect candidate will say that the case law seems pretty settled on this. If the Supreme Court changes the case law, then it becomes a matter for state goverment and he’d suggest you deal with it there.

7) Flag burning. The perfect candidate will laugh at the commentator who asks what his position is on a flag burning amendment. His only comment will be “Whoa! Stop it. You’re killin’ me over here with all that crazy talk. Whew! I was afraid we’d talk about real issues here tonight! I should have worked on my stand up routine ’cause you are really warming up the crowd for me…”

The perfect candidate should just shad’dap about other things. Focus on the big-ticket items and avoid the other ones. We get distracted by bickering on minutae. Focus on the big items - or just a big item frankly - and put the others aside until you’ve reached the first goal.

You’re Maximum Leader would like to see a fiscally conservative, fairly-hawkish on National Security, slightly right-of-center on the social issues candidate run. He’s not sure that there is such a beastie out there. But if there was he’d get your Maximum Leader’s vote.

Carry on.

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