Cancelling The Apocalypse

It is here, dear reader, that I derail this blog once more in the name of politics and to share a thought that occurred to me just the other day.


I'll start with something fairly simple - America: you baffle me.

I mean, on the surface, I think I get the principle. But in practice, I'm not so sure. Of course, post-Brexit, I feel we Brits have somewhat lost the right to use the 'holier-than-thou' smugness card, so it is with some degree of reverence and foreboding that I present to you my thoughts.

Trump is a twat. I mean a complete buffoon. He is the US version of Boris Johnson - full of rhetoric and a self-serving agenda but sadly devoid of any actual plan to get there.

Hilary is corrupt. Oh, she plays the game much better than most of those around her, but it really does feel like she's in the pocket of people you don't really want the leader of the free world to be in.

In short, they're both really quite bad choices for president. Which is a shame as, barring a frankly ridiculous scenario, one of them is going to be voted in.

And this is where the bafflement starts. It all comes down to the 22nd Amendment. This states that no-one can be president for more than 10 years. Although a relatively recent development (ratified as it was in 1951), it stems from a considerably earlier principle - America doesn't want a monarchy. That is, America doesn't want the same person in charge for too long.

At the start, this was an entirely voluntary thing - presidents would step down after their second term with only a handful going on to try and secure a third*. Usually by then, fatigue has set in and the population are looking for a fresher face anyway.

As to why America doesn't want a monarchy, you only have to look to their formation and relationship with Britain. It's fair to say that, under our monarchy - however ceremonial - they got the short end of the stick.

It's also why the most contentious of Amendments exists - good ol' number 2. The right to bear arms.

See, if the unimaginable happens and the US finds itself staring at a leader that has somehow managed to repeal the 22nd Amendment and install themselves as dictator-for-life, they'll have a fully armed militia able to march straight to the capital and depose the chap.

Again, given the circumstances of the country's conception, a completely understandable and reasonable thing to enshrine into law.

And this is where my thought kicked in.

Are you familiar with the theory that states you should never go food shopping whilst you are hungry? Let me tell you, I have had plenty of first-hand experience of this. What happens is that, yes, you will definitely buy the food you need, but you'll also end up picking up an awful lot of snacks and other stuff that seem like a really good idea at the time but end up going to waste and costing an awful lot more than you had planned for.

Well, I put it to you that a country shouldn't write its basic laws shortly after fighting a brutal war of independence**.

But that's what they've got - a lot of laws and amendments that make sense given the context of the country's foundation but that can seem a little... outdated perhaps?

Anyway, to return to the immediate issue, I propose this - the 28th Amendment - which states that the 22nd Amendment shall be upheld except in the circumstances whereby either of the nominated successors are complete asshats.

* Or fourth, Mr Roosevelt
** Although, ironically enough, that's exactly when you're going to need a set of laws in order to prevent anarchy.

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