Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Arrogant, Entitlement-Riddled, Undemocratic Stench Of Dynastic Politics

Back to politics already. I haven't had much to say lately, so forgive my sudden plunge back in the shark infested waters of national politics, but this whole Caroline Kennedy thing has me irked. Despite thinking of her exactly...never, before this year, I appreciated that she came out for Obama back in February and persuaded Teddy to endorse him as well. And I'm sure she's done plenty of good in her life. But why, why, should she be considered for appointment to a newly vacant senate seat? If she wants the seat, run for it, just like Hillary did. But to get it as an appointment?

This is nepotistic, dynastic politics taken to an absurd level. It's undemocratic, feels vaguely un-American, and sends a terrible message. I can't for the life of me understand why anyone thinks this is a good idea. 

I mean, okay, I understand that there is a mystique around the Kennedys that sways people, but still...c'mon. I just don't get it. 

Firstly, the clan just doesn't move me. I am just so over the Kennedys and the insufferable Boomer mythology around them, that I can barely stand to hear the name. I get that JFK was a huge figure and that Teddy has been an incredible lawmaker and stalwart liberal voice. But unless one of them is getting their hands dirty as public servants, I don't care about them. (And why would I, right?) Secondly, even if I was moved by their je ne sais quoi, I'd think this is a bad idea. It smacks of the entitlement—no, it is entitlement…in action. There are far more qualified pols (like Nita Lowry for one example) who have been in the trenches busting ass to get shit done. They have paid their dues and they have the legislative experience. Caroline has star power (apparently), but can she legislate? What does she bring to the table other than her family's name and the celebrity that comes along with it?

This is not a sign of a healthy republic and if it weren't for Obama's election, I'd be more worried than irritated. We've just had a once in a generation election—one which restored both a sense of possibility and confidence in the meritocratic ideals that are woven into the fabric of our collective story. Caroline Kennedy's appointment to Hilary's seat would fly in the face of both. It would undercut the raison d'etre of the campaign chosen by the American people, as well as the country's founding ideals. 

Whether Bushes, Kennedys, or any of the other political families out there, a pox on all their houses as long as they keep squeezing other, lesser-known, higher-qualified people out of the process. 

Their arrogance makes me sick.

No comments: