Jon Stewart For President? (2004)

Dear Fellow Citizen,

When America votes on November 2nd, I ask you to consider supporting Jon Stewart of The Daily Show for President. Yes, I realize that may sound absurd. After all:

•    His entire career is based on spinning half-truths into engaging but pointless stories which advance his image while ridiculing his targets.

•    He has shown little interest — and less ability — in truly tackling the hard issues of social unity, fiscal responsibility, and political accountability facing the U.S.

•    In fact, his only real qualification is that he looks good in a suit, knows how to work a crowd, and can attract money from rich sponsors.

Hmm. Which means he differs from real politicians how?

By being honest about making things up. By even-handedly highlighting the hypocrisy and inconsistency of both the Right and the Left. By openly criticizing the media for failing their duty to make the important interesting. Most of all, by his abiding conviction (carefully hidden beneath crude humor and self-mockery) that politicians and journalists should ultimately serve the public interest, not their own.

A vote for Jon is a vote for the politics of common sense, the radical idea that elected officials – and those who cover them – should be promoting creative solutions which actually improve choices for all citizens. Things those of us in the broad middle would probably agree on, if we could get past the self-serving *#!%$ which passes for informed debate on our airwaves. Like:

•    Economic systems which recognize the need for change and private initiative, yet also the importance of compassion and community

•    Taxation tailored to the realities of the 21st-century global marketplace, not the power of special-interest groups

•    Teachers who are rewarded for helping kids succeed, not merely conforming to mediocrity

•    Health care accessible to all Americans, but neither run by the government nor hostage to the whims of employers

•    Government that is open and accountable to the many, not just the few

Sound too good to be true? Why? Aren’t these goals something you, and most of the people you know, could get behind? Then help Jon send the message that we’re tired of partisan bickering and content-free speeches, and we just want leaders who will do their frickin’ job already!

I realize some of you live in swing states where you probably want to help elect the lesser of two evils. But if like me you’re in the other forty, or one of the 100 million Americans who simply never bother, why not vote for Jon’s vision of democracy? Let’s give him a bigger stick to beat the drum of reform.

Either way, please get involved. Sign our petition, and forward it to others. Become part of the so-called “radical middle.” Buy Jon’s best-selling “America the Book” and rediscover democracy. Write your editor or broadcaster, and ask why *they* don’t have thoughtful yet entertaining commentary which helps you make better decisions. Learn to laugh at your own hypocrisy, and cultivate a friendship or two across the aisle. Vote for politicians who care more about improving the debate than winning it any cost. Even run for office yourself, if you think you can do better.

Yeah, this is a joke. But so is much of what passes for serious politics today.

At least this is funny. Or is it?


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