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Mark W. Bradley: You Be The President!

You Be The President!


By Mark W. Bradley

You be the President!

Are you courageous enough?

Are you smart enough?

Are you bold enough?

Then YOU BE THE PRESIDENT!

Say, kids, how many times has this happened to you?

It's noon on a Tuesday, and you're sitting at home playing ''Grand Theft Auto'' on your PlayStation 2. You're just about to throw some more popcorn at your pie-hole, when all of a sudden the phone rings, and it's your probation officer telling you, "Quick, turn on Channel 41, your Mom's ex-boyfriend Rodney's on Jerry Springer again!" So you pull the remote out of a greasy puddle of melted string cheese and barfed-up dog hair, and start surfing past all those totally boring news stations, cause, ya know, your kinda curious to see what effect all those hormone injections are having on Rodney's ability to swing a folding chair.

But you end up stopping on this one channel, cause there's this majorly hot blonde chick on the screen and she's smiling at you with lips so full of collagen they look like the stuffed crust on a Pizza Hut family size. And behind her on the screen is all this flaming shit blowing up in Syrania or Egyptostan or one of those mid-western countries, and these totally mental guys are hopping around in sweaty pajamas, waving AK's over their heads and yodeling and dancing in front of this burning tank, which is actually kinda cool.

But in about three seconds that show's over, and the totally awesome babe is talking about how that monkey-lookin' dude, you know, that president guy, Bush or whatever, is goin' to France to teach em all about civilization and stuff. I'll bet they're in stitches when he leaves...The guy doesn't have a regular comedy show like SpongeBob or anything, he just comes on at different times, but dude, when he is on, he's funnier than "Crank Yankers." One day he'll pretend to bump his head getting out of a helicopter, which is a complete riot, and another time he'll be doing these totally outrageous bike tricks like the guys on "Jackass." But even when he's just talking, man, he cracks you up with his hilarious jokes about doctors wanting to bonk their patients, and guys flying their desks out of the airport. So you're like watching this crazy dude, when all of a sudden it hits you: "Hey, man, I can do shit like that! How come I'm not the president?"

Well, the surprising answer is, with a little help from the Karl Rove Institute for Educational Guidance (KRIEG), you could be the president. Sure you only make it to school a couple of days a month and you haven't quite figured out your multiplication tables yet, and maybe you're not really sure what continent Australia's in, but so what? Should that prevent you from being considered for the most critically important job in the world? Of course not! And if you don't believe us, just take a look at a few of the FAQ's we get here at KRIEG:

Q: I've been turned down for a lot of jobs in the past. My uncle says I'm pretty much unemployable. Why would the Diebold Company want to hire me to be the president?

A: Our specially trained team of advisors here at KRIEG is always on the lookout for presidential talent, no matter how deeply hidden it may reside within your inner psyche. You may feel you have not yet reached your full potential, but trust us, we've started with raw material a lot less promising than you!

Q: I was absent the year we studied government in high school, but my friends tell me I have to be 60-years-old or something before I can be the president. Is that true?

A: Actually, the required age is 35, but I wouldn't worry too much about that if I were you. Since most KRIEG advisers used to work in government themselves, and many maintain close relationships with Senators and Congressmen, getting rules like that changed is not so much a problem anymore. The fact is, we're all willing to work together to expand democracy into even the darkest corners of the globe, and if any part of the Constitution stands in the way of that goal, well, we'll just have to do our best to fix it, won't we?

Q: I was reading your online brochure, and it says that presidents have to be able to read words off a teleprompter with 90% accuracy. I've tried this at home, and the best I've been able to do is 78%. Does this mean I don't qualify as a presidential candidate?

A: Not at all. The 90% goal is a target, and nothing more. Besides, if you can already read words with an accuracy rate in the high seventies, our trainers should be able to get you up to speed in about six months. And if all else fails, we can always hook you up with a wireless mike. With the latest technology in micro-circuitry, those things are no more noticeable than a 12-oz. can of Pepsi duct-taped to the back of your suit coat.

Q: Don't presidents have to know a lot about current events to be able to make tough decisions? Won't my limited education be a handicap in this regard?

A: Frankly, as a prerequisite to serving as Commander-in-Chief of the most overwhelmingly lethal military force the world has ever known, "knowledge", like innate intelligence, is vastly overrated. Will you be routinely called upon to make snap judgments on complex and dangerous issues based on the flimsiest of evidence, with the lives of billions of people hanging in the balance? Of course. Will decisions you make likely affect the very survival of the human species on planet earth? Probably.

But before you get all overwhelmed by the awesome responsibility, remember, it's just a job! If it doesn't work out, your dad can always get you another one. Besides, we here at KRIEG believe you'll be pleasantly surprised to discover just how much aptitude you have for the job of President of the United States! And just to prove it, we've prepared a little sample question from our Presidential Leadership Quiz. Don't do well on tests? Not a problem! In order to simulate actual White House conditions, we've designed the test around a series of simple binary-choice questions. This is because (as our current president understands intuitively) all of life's problems, even the most complicated, have only two possible solutions: one "right", the other "wrong." And remember, binary-choice questions have a built-in advantage for people who like to guess at the truth. In a multiple choice format, the guesser has only a 25% chance of getting the answer correct. In a binary-choice format, that chance is doubled. So, in all cases, you are (theoretically) as likely to be right as you are to be wrong! Are you ready? Here goes:

1. Your Vice-president casually informs you, over lunch, that he was mistaken big-time when he told you last week that a certain militarily-hobbled Third World dictator (who used to be chummy with your dad) was nothing but a sad impotent clown not worthy of your attention. In a startling reversal, he now proceeds to tell you that, within the past 72 hours, massive and irrefutable evidence has emerged that proves, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the megalomaniacal mastermind (no, not him, the foreign one) has compiled enough deadly biological, chemical and nuclear weapons to obliterate the entire Milky Way Galaxy several times over. Even more alarmingly, in two weeks time he plans to deploy a stealth fleet of hypersonic balsa-wood spacecraft capable of reaching the moons of Alpha Centauri in less than seven minutes (or the Pentagon's top-secret Cosmic Alpha-wave Eradication Complex in Warren County, Ohio, in a little over three). In the face of this perplexing dilemma, you should:

A. Prevent the brutal dictator from implementing his diabolical plan by launching a massive and indiscriminant attack against the civilian population of his hapless country, using cruise missiles, 10 ton "daisy cutter bombs" and M1A1 tanks armed with depleted uranium shells to kill or maim about a half-million or so innocent bystanders. That'll teach the evil bastard to mess with the United States of America, by God!

or

B. Turn the sovereignty of the United States over to the United Nations. That's right, do nothing, while the French and the Germans and the rest of those chickenshit atheist foreign hordes of cannibalistic evildoers form an unholy alliance with the homosexual Hollywood liberal elite to destroy the Christian fabric of American democracy.

OK, time's up. What did you decide?

*************

Mark W. Bradley is a history teacher and political satirist in Sacramento, California. He can be contacted at markwbradley@comcast.net

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