The Fly Catcher

The world of politics in the presidential selection process is based on one thing: to get nominated. It is not about liking or not liking an individual today. It is about electing a candidate for the General Election in November 2016.

If you sit back and see all of the amateur psychologists examine and vomit their blatherings via social media and television, one would see a wonderful circus that is a quad-annual function in the Republic. ‘Gather, gather, gather around folks’ the ringmaster is saying, ‘and see the funny man in the flopped-over hat.’ And all of us look front and center to see the funny man in the flopped-over hat saying something that will shock us to gain maximum attention to himself, for days and days to come.

‘And over here you have’, the ringmaster continues, ‘the Governor from Tasmania, North Dakota’. We quickly look over and see that he is not distinctive from many of the others. ‘And in this ring’, the ringmaster states in an attempt to get our attention focused on someone other than the funny man in the flopped-over hat, ‘the learned medicine man’. The learned medicine man intones something about something while the ringmaster pushes us, yet again, to see the local hero and finally our attention is shifted away from the funny man in the flopped-over hat. The crowd roars their approval as, after all, he is the local…the one they know and one they are fond of.

For days that follow, discussion is focused on cutting the field down, shifting the participants according to someone’s whims and ways in order to focus on issues.

Issues? Are issues to be discussed this early in the political circus that has come to town? Issues?

Not so fast with such high and mighty goals. In the weeks to come, there will be more horseplay with barbs thrown by the desperate to hopefully hook the attention away from the failings of each candidate. The field will be narrowed to a couple of people who will now test the waters of the primaries. The first of course, is a closed circuit. But the real show will begin in New Hampshire. Then it will move from State to State and into Super Tuesdays after Super Tuesdays. Then on to the convention.

In the meantime, segments of proposed issues, with a lot of one-liners and glib comments to gain the attention of the press, will be thrown about like hot dog wrappers at a ballpark, pushed along with the currents of wind. And of course, there will be arrows fired in the general direction of the supposed opposition candidate. But all of this is for one reason…to get the Party’s nomination. They are all focusing on being nominated, not elected.

So don’t be too early to rush to judgement, especially on individual participants who are just thinking about ratings. After all, they are ‘Fly Catchers’, attempting to bring in as many people as possible to get them aboard their sticky bandwagon to the future. They know that it is all about numbers. And the more numbers they attract by the time they get to the party’s convention, the better the opportunity to sway the electorate to buy into their abilities to win the general election. Brash? Decidedly. Bold? Perhaps. Attention-getting? Absolutely.

Today, it is not about harmonizing. It is about solo time…singing their own song. For the funny man in the flopped-over hat, it is about getting people to watch. After all, in the first debate of the year, nearly 24 million viewers tuned into a cable channel to find out what the funny man in the flopped-over hat was saying. This wasn’t about getting any party to move ahead. It wasn’t about unification. It was about the funny man in the flopped-over hat catching flies.

The more you talk about his floppiness, the more flies he is catching.

That in a nutshell (after all, this is circus-time) is what political campaigns are all about.

‘And in this ring…’

On The Road To Wonderland

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