I hereby announce my candidacy for President of the United States of America.
As I have limited financial resources, my campaign staff will consist of one person -- myself. Campaign headquarters will be this blog.
I feel that as the only candidate who refuses all contributions from everyone (no, no, please, keep your money), I am the only candidate beholden to no special interest. And therefore, the only honest one.
Here are my positions on all the hot button issues of the day.
Gay marriage: As long it doesn't hurt me or cost me any money, let the gays do what they want. They'll find out soon enough that there's no better institution than marriage to take the gaiety out of being gay.
The current war: In the old days they used to subject prisoners to hard labor, which often consisted of going to quarries and breaking rocks with picks. So why have we sentenced our country to an equally futile labor on that worthless pile of rocks known as Afghanistan? Because we want their warm water ports? Osama is dead, long live the Taliban. And if the Taliban decides to invade us, next time we can just pay them back with nukes -- without setting foot there. Afghanistan is such a desolate place already, I doubt anyone will notice anyway. "Nation building" is just a euphemism for "nation destabilizing."
Bases abroad: Let Japan, Germany, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, and every other country pay for their own defense. The only reason we should have troops over there is if we decide to invade them.
Foreign aid: We should consider it when, and only when, our own budget is balanced. At that point, we should have a national referendum to see how it should be allocated.
Illegal immigration. Build a tall fence along our southern border, electrify it, and post armed guards every hundred yards. Shoot anyone who comes within firing range. Just kidding. Here's my real plan: American citizenship will be open to anyone who has either a million dollars (unless he's a criminal) or an IQ over 115 (we need to start catching up with the Chinese, and now). Otherwise, try your luck elsewhere.
Tax reform. A lot of people seem to feel that the only way to simplify the tax code is to flatten it. (Why?) Eliminate all the loopholes, including the mortgage interest deduction and the charitable deduction, and keep it graduated. In fact, the graduation should extend through income levels of $500K, 1MM, 2MM, and 5MM a year. Obama's labeling of couples making 250K a year as "millionaires and billionaires" is wrong. But the idea that someone making five million a year is going to lose his ambition because he is netting slightly less is also ridiculous: if anything, with less money, he should work harder. Then, with no loopholes, you should be able to lower the overall rates, which would be the greatest stimulus of all. My heart refuses to bleed for someone who can't buy a sixth house.
ObamaCare attacked the spiraling cost of health care by adding more people to the insurance rolls, which only increases costs. We need to attack the problem at its root, by driving costs down. This means less insurance, not more. People should be given incentives not to visit the doctor as often (think higher co-pays) and be given incentives for a healthy lifestyle. We don't need more sick people visiting more doctors, we need more healthy people.
College loans: since college is a waste of time and money for most people anyway, let's not throw any more money down that drain. There are certainly cheaper ways of proving you're smart, like acing the SATs and then not going to college. Whom would you rather hire: someone who got 800's and had the wisdom not to attend college, or someone who got 650's and then partied on his father's dime for four years?
The inheritance tax: Keep it. For those who would abolish it: sorry, but you can't take it with you. Once you're dead, you give up your rights as an American citizen. (All those who would like those rights back are welcome to vote for my opponents.) No one earned the money that their parents worked for.
Energy: If solar and wind power can prove their economic feasibility, fine. Otherwise, convert to natural gas. We have a 200 year supply of it. So people should be allowed to frack wherever they want, as long as they return the land to a pristine state afterward. In order to insure that they do so, all fossil fuel companies will pay into a fund which will go towards that end. And the government is not allowed to "borrow" from this fund the way it has from Social Security. It's high time we got our fracking energy independence -- if you'll pardon my language.
The Chinese have already declared a trade war on us with their piracy of intellectual material, their purposeful stifling of the yuan, their lax pollution laws, and their government-sponsored attempts to undercut certain US industries (like the solar industry). We can either continue to pretend that they haven't declared war, or respond with a tariff. I say the latter. If they respond by no longer buying our bonds, fine; under my administration we will no longer be running a deficit anyway. And if they want to sell the bonds they own, fine. It will merely depress the value of their own holdings and drive up interest rates in general, which is fine with me: I'm as tired as everyone else of getting less than one percent on my money market funds.
Lobbying: all campaign contributions will cease immediately. Our politicians have been bought and paid for by special interests for far too long. All campaigns should be publicly financed, and every candidate who has 20% or more support will get an equal chance to be heard. (I have not quite breached that level so far, so will have to content myself with this blog -- for now.) The idea that not being able to spend hundreds of millions on air time abrogates one's free speech is ludicrous. We need honest legislators, not prostitutes.
Affirmative action will no longer be race-based, but will be economically-based. A poor kid from the ghetto should get a leg up over a white middle class kid, but a poor white kid from Appalachia should likewise get a leg up over a middle class black kid. The only thing our current affirmative action policy affirms is that our diversity is not our strength.
Abortion should be available to anyone who wants it, free of charge from the government. This will be one of the best investments the government ever made. There are only so many resources, and kids are too important to be just an accidental byproduct of screwing. (A worthwhile life begins not at conception, but at birth when you have two parents who love you.) If you find abortion morally objectionable, then don't get one.
Welfare should be available to everybody who agrees to have Norplant implanted under her skin (and the equivalent drug for males) and who's willing to work for it. The only exceptions to this rule are the blind, the crippled, the infirm, and the retarded, along with those under 18 and over 65. People already on the dole shouldn't be popping more kids with their only plan of support being more welfare.
Yes, the cute little slogans at the end of some of the paragraphs are ridiculous oversimplifications. None, however, are quite as unsubstantive as "hope and change."