Unless you’ve been on Neptune for the past year or so, you realize this is a presidential election year. Nastiness has reached a new level this year, with each candidate trying to outdo all the others in slimy comments. In fact, one candidate was called a “hideous hermaphroditical character.” No, that didn’t happen this year—although the way things have been going, it’s not unthinkable. That choice bit of vitriol actually came from a member of the campaign team of none other than Thomas Jefferson in a slam against his opponent in 1800, John Adams.
Adams’ son, John Quincy Adams, could be pretty nasty himself. The younger Adams and his handlers went after his opponent, Andrew Jackson, by attacking Jackson’s wife. They called her a “convicted adulteress” and said she was prone to “open and notorious lewdness.”
We don’t really need to put up with this garbage every four years. Why do we need a president anyway? Presidents don’t do anything but play golf and fly around the world, visiting other presidents and attending lavish state dinners. This is not a partisan slam. It applies to all of them. No president has done anything since that potty-mouthed Jefferson bought the Louisiana Purchase. Anybody who gave us Bourbon Street, the French Quarter, and Mardi Gras has to be revered and admired.
Since presidents are basically useless, why don’t we have a king instead? Having a king would be lots more fun than having a dull, do-nothing president. We could have all sorts of grand ceremonies with trumpet flourishes, fancy-dressed guards, a big old golden chariot pulled by the Budweiser Clydesdales, and a made-in-the-U.S.A. version of the Iron Throne from Game of Thrones.
The jewelry owned by Liz Taylor’s estate and by all the stars in Hollywood could be nationalized for the Crown Jewels. The Smithsonian would be happy to donate the Hope Diamond for use by the king on his ring.
In deference to political correctness, let me quickly point out the royal person could be a queen as well as a king.It’s just that “king” is easier to type than “queen” and writing “king or queen” and “he or she” over and over again is a real pain in the computer.
You may have the fear that our king will be evil and do terrible things. For that reason, we’ll have the prerequisite that the king must be good—as in Good King Wenceslaus. You remember Good King Wenceslaus. In the Christmas carol, he looked out “on the Feast of Stephen.” (Or, if you’re a Pogo Possum fan, “on his feets uneven.”)
Here’s a little-known fact for you trivia junkies: Wenceslaus wasn’t even a king. He was a duke. But he was good. And that’s what counts.
When our good king is in place, we won’t have to worry about boring State of the Union addresses or mind-numbing announcements from the president. Instead, the king will occasionally issue a royal proclamation.
Each royal proclamation will be announced live on television at a time when only crappy shows are scheduled (which means most anytime).
One of the first proclamations will be to make failure to pick up after one’s dog a capital offense. The king will have the option of bringing back the guillotine for offenders. That may be a bit drastic but it should probably work.
Next, the king will proclaim that it is a violation of the law for anyone to go through the grocery store express line with more than the 10 items. Violators will be denied the ability to buy groceries—anywhere—for at least a year.
Our king will work on straightening out our language. Words and phrases that are overused, trite, and irritating will be banned from the language. The first to go will be “awesome,” “no problem,” and “absolutely.” That will render 90 percent of all Americans under the age of 35 temporarily mute but they’re young and resilient. They’ll quickly learn new annoying words to overuse.
The king will also ban the phrase “at the end of the day.” This will cripple the vocal cords of TV newscasters, sportscasters, politicians, and self-proclaimed experts on everything.
If you’re inclined to that sort of thing, a dandy drinking game would be to chug a drink every time a TV talking head says “at the end of the day.” You’d be snockered before the first commercial.