A message for young Americans dreaming of becoming President of the United States; don’t get real life experience, don’t work and never write down your opinion on anything. Those are old school ideas, things of the past when personal success counted and hard work was rewarded. Today it will be a harmful mistake to have any meaningful background in your life if you are heading for a truly successful political career.
How can this be? What about an MBA or a law degree wouldn’t they be helpful in government? If that is your question you have missed the class on morphing a qualified person into a mutant candidate. Don’t confuse qualifications with candidacy. Yes today we have the transformation of what used to be qualified candidates into evil mutations and an empty suit transformed into the voice of and for the people.
The political news of the day centers not around ideas, concepts, philosophy and style of leadership, no today we are served up a buffet of divisive diversion with personal attacks on our candidates. The media provides sharp focus to the pop culture of political campaigns with negativity directed not on the ideas, proposals and platform of a candidate but rather on more irrelevant bias nit picking sound bits of personal destruction. Destruction based on out of context experience, and perception twisted into evil.
Take for example Republican Mitt Romney and his experience as head of the Olympic Committee, Bain Capital and other business ventures. Ask yourself was he successful in what he did? Can Mitt reach goals set before him and overcome challenges to bring about success? Yet he, like Linda McMahon here in Connecticut is demonized for being able to become a success in the world of business. On the other side of the aisle we have Democrat Elizabeth Warren in Massachusetts being attacked for her work as an attorney protecting the likes of the Travelers Insurance Company for legal liability over asbestos. She was a success and provided a worthwhile service for her client but this is not appropriate experience in the pop culture political campaigns of our day.
The list of demonized candidates goes on to provide a repulsive picture of American political campaigns of person destruction. The grand job interview for the position of President of the United States or any other political office has become a media centered circus of sound bites more suitable for school yard bickering than selecting leaders in our society.
For the youth of today we are sending a message that the road to the White House is not the old road of hard work, experience, leadership and ideas. No, today the road is found on their computer, not in Mapquest but in social networking, a path without a clear sharp record of past accomplishments, a road with a record of organizing a community or network of friends is more important than experience and less likely to be attacked and demonized. No it is more important to have spellcheck, a teleprompter and friends behind your network than meaningful experience.
President Obama has not release the usual educational records, when presented with the opportunity to vote on controversial proposals in the past he often abstained and even today the old time press conference is a relic of the past. Today appearances are scripted, audiences are hand-picked and questions are vetted. Today it is all about image and less about substance but that is what entertains the voters and gains their support.
What we have in campaigns today are candidates metamorphosing from leaders into shallow human beings more appropriate for the cover of People Magazine than the office for which they seek. The road to leadership has changed.
Are we headed in the right direction? What do you suppose the next generation will bring to the table?