I just love election years. Never have so many done so little for so much money. (Isn't it a shame that the gravy train passed us by?)
As taxpayers, what can we expect? No, wait a minute, what should we expect?
We should expect to be represented in our government system of checks and balances. Voters elect people to represent them in Washington (or Albany). The concept is great; unfortunately it was bastardized from the git-go.
Now, with "Super PAC" money, politicians have created an election process that is one sparkplug short of the "Keystone Cops."
The problem is that we as taxpayers have allowed this all to happen.
Truly it is our fault.
If we want to get control back into the hands of people I would like to suggest a write-in campaign to elect Mickey Mouse.
Mr. Mouse is "squeaky" clean.
The fact that he rarely wears designer shoes attests to his humble beginnings with Walt Disney. Mickey was born in a garage.
The Southern Baptists will love the fact that he has been faithful to his girlfriend, Minnie, for umpteen years.
The fact that he can take his own and dish it out with "Black Bart," shows that he stands up for the rights of others.
His choice of Goofy as vice president demonstrates that he doesn't take himself too seriously, but it would be a step up as far as vice presidents go.
We understand that Scrooge McDuck will be secretary of the Treasury. We can only hope that he lives up to his name and remembers where the money is coming from.
There are those people who will say that voting for Mr. Mouse will be throwing their votes away. I say no!
If enough voters chose Mr. Mouse, it would warn politicians that we mean business and cannot be taken for granted anymore.
The thing of it is that there are many, many people out there in the readership of The Daily Star who could do the job as well as or better than the politician of today.
(Aside: The money paid to a politician would be a big jump in salary for most of these people.)
Let's run Sam Pollak's name up the flagpole and see who salutes, or if you have a suggestion for an alternate candidate, get in touch with me.
I do not want to be disrespectful of Mr. Pollak, but all I want to do is show that there isn't anything magical to being an elected official.
Even you could do it.
What would happen if Mickey got elected? Obviously we would have to have another election, but maybe this time someone other than the slate of ho-hum candidates would want to run.
We need to do two things.
We must set a limit on the number of terms that a candidate can be elected, and we need to put a limit on how much money can be spent to get a candidate elected.
This should be simple but it is not.
The real issue of an election is getting the best person to represent ALL THE PEOPLE. I have put this in large letters because most politicians think getting re-elected is the first priority.
Unfortunately they spend all their time on getting re-elected and the ones who suffer are the people they were supposed to represent.
Anyone who runs for an office should be able to expect an even playing field. All candidates have the same amount of money to run a campaign. This includes advertising, staffing and transportation costs.
It shouldn't take a rocket scientist to figure out how to do this.
With a little bit of trust and gumption we should be able to have "cracker barrel sessions" where candidates can answer real questions from real people.
We need to demand a concept of accountability.
I think that anyone who runs for re-election should be mandated to list all the campaign promises he or she made or alluded to in the campaign.
They then should list the ones they accomplished from that list. Too often we are promised "the moon," and all we get is the "cheese," and to top it off, that's rancid also.
We've had a do-nothing government for years. Politicians are spending most of their time pointing fingers so nothing gets done. When will it stop?
It will stop when you and I have had enough. Until then we can only dream of the day when Mickey Mouse is elected.
Sam, if you are contemplating making a move into politics, you have one vote already.
Until then, remember the tune:
"M-I-C-K-E-Y ('Y' because we like you) M-O-U-S-E."
It starts to make a lot of sense, as time goes by.
Henry Geerken is a three-time NYSUT award-winner writing humorous articles addressing retiree and senior citizen concerns. Geerken also writes for Sail-World, World Cruising Newsletter, regarding his many humorous sailing episodes through the years. He can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. 'Senior Scene' columns can be found at www.thedailystar.com/seniorscene.
I just love election years. Never have so many done so little for so much money. (Isn't it a shame that the gravy train passed us by?)
Why did you serve?
Numerous local residents have spent time in service to our country in the military. Some joined out of a duty to our county, others were pressed into service through the draft, still others wanted to take advantage of the G.I. Bill. In honor of their service and Armed Forces Day on Saturday, we asked our readers why they served and what they took away from their service.Continued ...
Fitness key during pregnancy
Women have been having babies since well before time has been recorded by humans.Continued ...
Beyond the stacks: Local libraries offer everything from history to technology
The local libraries within the Four County Library System still make information available to their patrons in the traditional way -- books. They are also storehouses of local history: old photos, newspapers, genealogy records, diaries and letters.Continued ...
Romantic times at Fenimore
When one thinks of the romantic, usually one ponders wistfully the early days of a courtship and marriage.Continued ...
Prom fashions bright, blingy, different
Prom night can be one of the biggest events of a high school student's life. It is the last bash before college for many, and the memories are often recorded. That is why prom fashion is so important to high school seniors.Continued ...
- Why did you serve?
- Around The Arts
Local programs help children's creativity grow
I am not a stage mom. But, the other day I ended up in the middle of a discussion with a stage dad who, for many years, has designated a great deal of his time and resources to support his teenage sonâ€™s performing career. The cry of the stage parent: chauffeuring from one rehearsal to the next, scouting costumes, building sets, selling tickets and program ads, and, of course, sitting in the audience for the entire production run. Then, without a breath, off to the next one!Continued ...
An artist label can be placed on many types of people
"You are such an artist."Continued ...
Dip your toe in the art world through Pinterest
I am a magazine ripper. I always have been. I have shoesboxes and file folders filled with decorating ideas, recipes and other miscellaneous projects. No matter how hard I've tried, I can never seem to organize or tame the scraps of inspiration floating around my house.Continued ...
Arts encompasses so much more than visual, performing, musical things
This column was due when I was in the throes of our season at The Glimmerglass Festival, when all we are thinking about is the arts -- how to make people more aware of the arts, to engage in the arts. And -- what exactly do "the arts" entail?Continued ...
School may be out, but there's lots to do to keep kids busy
By June Dzialo Now that school's out for the summer, my daughter is proclaiming that we are, "the most boring family on Earth."Continued ...
- Local programs help children's creativity grow
- Music Beat
Music Industry Tips About Professional Musicians
Musicians know that every performance they play is an audition for their next engagement.Continued ...
Practice really does make perfect for professionals
Shortly after I was hired at the age of 25 to work in the Music Department at State University College at Oneonta, I played a concert for members of this community. At the end of the concert, a young audience member said to me, â€œHow many years have you been playing the cello and do you still have to practice?â€�Continued ...
Stepping on the flag, and other memories
If we are to be defined all our lives by our high school mascots, then I suppose I am a Viking. But I'm also a Panther, having transferred schools after my freshman year.Continued ...
From SUNY Oneonta to CBS Sports
Some people say the music business is failing, but I don’t agree with that point of view. Neither does Joseph Miller.Continued ...
- 12 Music Industry Tips from Joseph Miller
- Music Industry Tips About Professional Musicians
- Parenting Imperfect
I'm relieved it's not just me
For the last few years, I've been convinced that I'm just harder on things than other people are.Continued ...
A tactical error in the handoff
My kids are lucky enough to have half of their grandparents within a three-hour drive.Continued ...
A potentially quiet afternoon interrupted by a dog and a balloon
The kids spent most of Martin Luther King Jr. Day bickering.Continued ...
The dog is a getting to be an expert at training
This sentence took 20 minutes to type.Continued ...
Bad things can happen when trends are no longer trendy
When I was a kid, it used to drive me bonkers that my mom didn't know anything about the most important things in my world. She had no idea what a friendship pin was or how you'd make one. She couldn't name any good band, i.e., the ones a pre-teen would listen to like Duran Duran or Wham. And she didn't find Robert Downey Jr. nearly as dreamy as I did.Continued ...
- I'm relieved it's not just me
- Senior scene
Looking Back: A sad ending for adorable, sweet Taffy-toes
Another unwanted drop-off? Yes and so I must write this.Continued ...
As Time Goes By: Dealing with side effect of pills can really be a pain
At age 76, I find myself incontinent. Actually the problem started well before that date but now it has gone beyond "a problem," to "holy smoke the dam broke."Continued ...
- From the Office: Try spring cleaning, organizing for stress release
Looking Back: Take your time, think ahead before making decisions
A lifetime may seem forever for some, especially when we were young and couldn't wait to grow up and get to do all things we saw the adults do. Come to think of it, perhaps that wasn't too good.Continued ...
As Time Goes By: Getting sick in the southern sun
I went and did it - I have heard about southern hospitality so much that I thought I would see if it extended to the hospitals as well.Continued ...
- Looking Back: A sad ending for adorable, sweet Taffy-toes
- Tech, GP
Thankful hard-disk shortage is about over, and counting my blessings
Well, I'm almost ready to let out a cheer.Continued ...
Businesses need backups for their computer people, systems
In the interest of full disclosure, I want to let you know that I have taken a new position, professionally. I recently joined Eastman Associates, a local general contractor, to do its IT work, as well as taking care of some other functions of the business.Continued ...
Windows 8 seems to be made for the good of Microsoft, not the user
By Bruce Endries The software company everybody loves to hate, Microsoft, recently released what it calls a "consumer preview" of their next operating system, Windows 8.Continued ...
The Granite State got it right on software purchases
Believe it or not, I have found a bright spot in the political landscape, amid all the vitriolic partisan fighting.Continued ...
Visit a construction site and you'll probably find an iPad
It was just about two years ago now, that the iPad came out, and I wrote a column about it. At that time, I went out on a limb and said that thought it was a product which would fill certain niches very well, but that it wasn't very likely to fill in for what is normally considered a computer.Continued ...
- Thankful hard-disk shortage is about over, and counting my blessings
- Teen Talk
On the Go: Patriotism doesn't mean keeping status quo
I've been labeled many things, but when anti-American and unpatriotic came into the picture recently I was surprised. I know I have some controversial opinions, but since when does that equate to not loving America? I'm a born and raised American kid, and I love America.Continued ...
Luhrmann brings Gatsby new life
Sure, you would think that being a college student and having finals rapidly approaching would equate to my growing anticipation for the summer and being done with my first year of college.Continued ...
Teenhood Today: Only you can determine your impact
The question I am most often asked is, "What do you want to do with your life?"Continued ...
A Word of Advice: Just do something
If you're not going upward, the only direction you can go is down. To stagnate is to surrender; to do nothing for yourself; to give up on a better day completely. If we sit around feeling good enough in all aspects of life, or just too lazy to fix them, well, as Albert Einstein put it, "Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."Continued ...
On the Go: Life is like the Cliff Walk
Over spring break, my family and I spent time in Newport, R.I. While we were there, we walked a path known as the Cliff Walk. This walk is nestled between some Newport mansions and some cliffs overlooking the ocean. While we were walking, my sister and I noticed how this path was a perfect metaphor for life and the journey it is.Continued ...
- On the Go: Patriotism doesn't mean keeping status quo