A university is just a group of buildings gathered around a library. ~Shelby Foote

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Get On The Chuck Wagon!

Your attention! Your attention, please! Ladies and Germs, gentle mutants of all ages, races, colors and political ideologies! Introducing the official, one and only, accept noooooooo substitutes, Libertarian Librarian candidate for President in '08! Here he is...

Misterrrr... Charles Barkley! [Wild applause and chanting! Chuckie! Chuckie!]

10 GREAT reasons to vote for Barkley over any empty suit the donkeys or elephants attempt to foist upon us:
10) Barkley is not part of the mainstream political arena.
9) Barkley is not a lawyer.
8) Barkley is an independent political thinker, as these quotes illustrate.
7) Barkley already has a political philosophy, "I want to help poor people, Bob. Somehow, I'm going to help poor people."
6) Barkley is both irreverent and on the money: "I hope a lot of these young kids look at [Dwayne Wade], who went to college. Everybody is in such a hurry. Hey, the money is not going anywhere... and if you go to the right college, you can get paid there... Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, Tennessee."
5) He's electable-- black people love him, women love him, and white guys who wish they could dunk love him.
4) He does not pull his punches: "I got two pet peeves: If you watch American Idol, or you're one of those doofuses who dress up as Star Wars and sleep outside, you're a stone-cold loser."
3) He's a centrist: voted for Clinton and he voted for Bush.
2) He's telegenic, charismatic and thinks quickly on his feet.
1) He already has name recognition, has a built in base, and would likely really peeve a large portion of the established political bureaucracy. Which can only be to the good.

So, there it is. I am withholding formal endorsement of a Barkley Presidential bid until I have an opportunity to fully vet the candidate, and to get feedback from you guys, but I have a good feeling about it. We can sell Barkley to others, convince them that its better to vote for a guy that actually cares and will deal honestly with them than to vote for the empty suits and power-hungry twits that the political establishment has been feeding us for years.
You do know that Barkley is a self-advertised Republican? He’s even threatened to run for Governor of Alabama on the Republican ticket. And was warmly welcomed by the Alabama GOP (this was a few years ago).

But that quibble aside, I heartily embrace this suggestion. There is one possible problem though. I read today where Shaquille O’Neal has earned a MBA from the University of Phoenix. He also stated his intention to earn a Doctorate.

Here’s the problem; once Barkley is elected president, that would leave a wide-open door for Doctor O’Neal to be elected. And I don’t know about you, but a guy who thinks the Parthenon is a club in Greece may be just too scary to be president.

But at least Shaq’s grades at LSU were better than John Kerry’s.
John Kerry went to LSU? Huh, who knew? Sorry, I'm feeling giddy after my Luciannelanche.
Nick, I think this is an inspired approach. I am willing to head up the Minnesota chapter of "Sir Charles for President," as long as I get a cushy cabinet post when he gets elected.
will vote for Charles when he learns to pronouce "principal" in a dignified manner.
while Barkley is smart, witty, and charismatic..... and while your 10 reasons sound good...does he have any real applicable knowledge???? when I have watched him, which is often, i am struck by his lack of actual knowledge to go with his apparent intelligence. You will have a ton a trouble getting people to vote for an uneducated man with basketball as his claim to fame.... I am a BIG Barkely fan and i am as anti-establishment as anyone...and I wouldn't vote for Chuck... good luck with that.
Why is Rod looking for a president with knowledge? Don't you know that the secret is to get someone who won't screw things up. And the easiest way to not screw things up is to not do anything.
We'd vote for Zaphod Beeblebrox if we could, but since he's not real, we'll vote for Sir Charles, who is almost real.

You've sworn not to vote for a Republican or a Democrat. You've railed about the shortsightedness of many who call themselves liberal or conservative.

And yet you pooh-pooh any option I throw out there. Tags is better than anybody running on one of the major party tickets. You ridiculed the choice. Sir Charles is FAR better than anyone running on one of the major party tickets. He d/n have enough "knowledge."

Dude, that's why the President has advisors, a staff and a Cabinet. If you really want an alternative candidate, but don't like Chuckie, who would YOU nominate? It's early enough for me to change the LL candidate. But I like Barkley. I think he could be a contender.

So your alternative better be a good one.
One other thing. Please note that Troy, a self-professed liberal on many issues is on board. Note also that John, one of the obviously most conservative posters on this site is on board.

The Chuck Wagon reaches across ideological lines and appeals to a wide range of individuals. Get on the Chuck Wagon before you get run over!
You have given me 2 choices out of ~250 million Americans.... I don't think the "N" is high enough to conclude that I am hard to please on this one yet. giving me Troy's backing as a reason to jump in..... you must remember I once watched Troy eat an entire plate of Prime Rib fat...I'm talkin' a large full plate...and that is AFTER eating a 32 ounce prime rib himself....so while I consider Troy to be top notch (potential top 100 movie quote) and all that kind of experience is difficult to expunge.

I currently don't have a candidate for you.... I will think about it soon... I promise... but my idea is more to build a candidate that is actually qualified, build a rep and aim at making a real impact in 2012... to throw up Chuck and try to have him make an impact next election is not realistic in my mind... you need to cut through the two party fear and the country is at the peak of two party fear right now... an unqualified guy like chuck just can not do that.

You're dead wrong. No offense, but you are. Now is precisely the RIGHT time to do this. The last two elections have left a huge percentage of the country dissatisfied and with a bad taste in their mouth.

It is possible that something like a Hillary/Frist match up in '08 could make that dissatisfaction even greater, but I think it's more likely to go the other way. NOW is the time to get this moving. We have three years to sell Barkley, and in large measure he comes prepackaged. That is not a bad thing, quite the contrary. Everyone I've mentioned this too except Greg has at least been intrigued by the idea. Even you are intrigued by the idea, it's just that you're trying to pitch too perfect a game.

Sometimes you just throw a good pitch and count on your defense, luck, and the general inadquacy of your opposition. Barkley is not perfect, but he is smart, he is charismatic, he is willing to Speak Truth to Power, and I think the country will embrace him.

Think about it. "Creating" someone who more closely fits our ideals is great-- only who's ideals? Yours? Mine? Troy's? John's? TC's? Not happenin'. Can't happen.

And I would say this: Barkley is as qualified as he needs to be. Why? Because he is an achiever and a leader. He works hard, and he learns fast. And he has character and a core of resolve.

Remember also-- whoever the "third party" person is, he needs to be able to actually influence Congress to be effective. For that to happen, it may be more important for the candidate to be loved and supported by the people than it is that he or she have extensive governing experience. Indeed, at this stage in our country's history, I think extensive governing experience may actually be a bad thing.

Come on Rod-- be the Chair of the Northeastern Chuck Wagon Brigade.
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