Tuesday, November 13, 2007

The Bush-Clinton-Bush-Clinton Thing

Translation from the Hebrew: "We're pretty much going to run things."

CIAO, DUDES. If we have the nerve to contemplate it, there's a very real chance that by the year 2016 the world's oldest democracy will have been presided over by just two families for close to three decades. Is that what we really want? I'm just asking.

If Hillary is nominated in 2008, every U.S. citizen aged 38 and under will be in the position of having never voted in a presidential election without a Bush or a Clinton on the ballot. If Hillary gets elected and reelected (as though there's any "if" involved about what all she'd do to secure a second term), every U.S. citizen under the age of 46 won't have seen a presidential ballot without a Bush or Clinton on it. You'd have to go back to the days of France's Louis-Napoleon-Louis round robin -- or to North Korea -- to find a comparable monopoly of power.

Of course, France had an additional guarantor of continuum during the Louis-Napoleon-Louis era, a weasel named Talleyrand. Thankfully, we don't have to worry about that. Unless you count Yale University.

Does everyone know about Yale? Our nation's oldest second banana? The refuge for three centuries-plus of envious American snobs who couldn't get into Harvard? You know. If you can't be Teddy Roosevelt, be William Howard Taft. If you can't be Franklin Delano Roosevelt, suck eggs. If you can't be John F. Kennedy, be Gerald Ford. If you can't be John Adams and John Quincy Adams, wait for 175 years and be Bill and Hillary instead.

Yale is the tie that binds George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Hillary Clinton. It's the fly in the ointment that guarantees Instapundit won't link to this post either, because Glenn Reynolds went to Yale too.

The thing is, I thought we were a democracy, the country where you could rise from the humblest, not the snottiest, origins to lead your fellow citizens. In particular, I thought the Democrats believed in democracy. But if you subtract Yale, Harvard, and Princeton from the mix, the only remaining Democrat presidents in the twentieth century are Truman, Johnson, and Carter, who account for just 16 years out of a hundred. No wonder their favorite kind of candidate is a Talleyrand-esque francophile plutocrat like John Kerry (Yale '66). Unless it's a tobacco trust-fund baby and senator's son with a gentleman's C from Harvard like Al Gore.

What if we really believed in the American Dream? What if we really believed in the idea of a "man of the people" instead of a scion of the pampered elite? What if, just once, we decided to chuck Yale and Harvard, and Bushes and Clintons, out of our national election process? Bye Hillary. Bye Romney. Bye Obama.

Sorry. I know that's too scary a thought. Especially for Democrats. If there's no elitist aristocrat on the scene, there's no hope at all for the Utopian egalitarian dream.

We can't have that, can we? Hey!. Here's an idea. Maybe the Democrats could convince Prince Harry or Andrew to run for president. They're for the little guy, aren't they? Sure they are.

Baa, baa, baa.

UPDATE. I told you Reynolds wouldn't link here. What I'm delighted to report is his unwitting revelation of the second-banana-ness of Yale in a post about something completely other. It's an example of the phenomenon called false learning -- ostentatious conformity to a rule most people know nothing about but which is then applied erroneously.

THEY TOLD ME THAT IF GEORGE W. BUSH WERE RE-ELECTED, independent filmmakers whose documentaries threatened the established order would be silenced by the minions of the state. And they were right!

But you weren't right about your use of the subjunctive, Glenn. I'm glad you know that it should be used at times. Now, all you have to do is learn how to use it properly.

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