Wily winning: A manual of mutating political philosophy – October 6, 2008
By Joseph Randolph
Yes, the youth vote is more important than any sector of our voter base. It is the most assured block of voters we have and so must accordingly be guarded against defections and any dubious infiltrations by our opponents.Those young people between the ages of 18 and about 23 are a real gold mine for us, because this group is virtually immune from tax responsibility so we can tout all our lavish and budget-busting programs, and the harangue of opponents about costs will mean little to nothing for voters who have scarcely paid for anything yet, beyond a large cup of coffee. Better yet, some colleges of late do not even charge for that; it is all a matter of "social justice" they say. The old fogey notion of justice as something extracted from people is receding; we have turned it around to mean something that gives something to people. That aside, such experience serves to indoctrinate our youth with the notion that everything should cost nothing and can because mother government is picking up the tab. These students may have loans for their education that cause them to notice the real world a bit, but the idea of money due never sinks in until actual payments come due from their wallets, usually after graduation. At this point we may start to lose a few of them as faithful voters—when they must start to pay for the previous plenty—but the way to keep them voting for us is to preach to them their right to an education, which of course means paid for by our beloved government. If no education bills are due after their graduation, thanks to us and another maxim of social justice, then they are just as apt to vote for us as before. Then they will be ready for the next gift from us: sub-prime mortgages, etc.
These young people tend to have few fixed points of reference, so we can lead them astray as we wish, for no elastic band will pull them back from whence they came, because they are prepared to stray from any base camp if enticed sufficiently. Once they see our camp, moreover, their days of wandering are over as they become settled into our world, with little desire to make inquiry about any other.Who, for example, can resist the temptation of a free this and a free that, and all the talk about living in a more humane world grounded in compassion and cooperation and justice rather than competition and conflict and injustice? They will think they have found heaven without the inconvenient event of dying. And they will: our heaven on mother earth they can occupy and all we ask for in return—not their money, someone else's will do just fine—but their vote! We offer them an experiment in politics that sounds as utopian as many youth inevitably tend to be, so they go with us, and not with our heartless and crusty opponents—still cluelessly preaching their stodgy message of personal "responsibility." We of course do not want to convert too many of this hostile group, so as to too substantially lessen their numbers, because they supply the necessary financing for our social experiments. We therefore need an enemy such as them because they serve our purposes, or our purse, if you will. As long as we can continue to steal from them with at least a façade of legality about it, we will continue to do so.
We are further helped by the sort of education our youthful voter can count on these days in most of the colleges. In fact at such colleges education is hardly to be called an education in the old sense of the word, because our fine institutions are for the most part doing a darling job of indoctrinating the youth with our politics, even in some cases without the mask or pretence of actual learning, and so when they come out they are prepared to vote for us, with few questions asked. In fact, the universities are largely absent of irksome questions these days, for our teachers are prepared to give them the answers in front of the questions, and most students are prepared to take what they are given, especially when they see the benefits that right answers offer to the correct individuals. Some—the best—even come away ignorant of the realization that there are any questions at all about the answers we supply from our lecterns. This change in schooling culture from love of knowledge to the demand for obedience has come about because the rabble rousers of old have become the wardens of the new schoolhouse, and with this formidable regime in place little rabble rousing is tolerated anymore. In other words, we are firmly in command of the votes of the youth, because we are in command of the education of our youth. They know what they are told to know, and they have too little experience of the world to know otherwise. They are as prepared to serve us as is the accommodating press, which, by the way, we encourage our brighter youth to enter and thus further contribute to our worthy cause. Though not to belabor this point, remember what our Master taught us: that the point is not to understand the world but to change it. If the Man who could write for the highest degree of the university could see that, then surely we can get others who can barely write—both inside and outside our educational institutions— to glimpse it. Our educational establishments and their protected and pampered professors are to be commended for their superb work. "Carry on," we say to them and their marvelous products.
Because of this agreeable situation, scarcely any heavy exertion is needed to assure that this effortless slice of the voter pie fall our way, for its members are virtually guaranteed to do in the voting booth what we want done and furthermore, to scarcely think about what they are doing as they are doing it. Remember what I told you in the beginning. The problem in our business is boredom because we have so much wrapped up and packaged for us already. By having the formula for success at the ballot box revealed to you, by me, political success is yours.Now is no time to doze, however, with the election looming large and immediately in front of us. The Sky is Falling speech is always good to attract a few more recalcitrant voters and always a good stir. If they don't fall for that, tell them it has already fallen, and our opponents have blinded them to that fact. My favorite is the Cosmic speech, in which we vilify our opponent as from the infernal regions and ourselves as a kind of Prometheus who steals fire from heaven for the benefit of earth. (Prometheus was by the way the mythological character most esteemed by the Master, and thus it is not unbefitting that our current national candidate be a student of a student of the esteemed Lucifer.)
If your political life nevertheless grows too stagnant for you, try your own hand at something original for us, and we might let you use it after we approve it.
We have for you smeared your opponent into the dirt from whence she imagines she came, rather than from our true primate ancestors, but you still cannot ignore her completely, nor assume she will be silent or subdued for long. The ignorant are always prone to speak out of the turn we allow them. Furthermore, these religious quacks are frequently resilient beyond prediction, so expect the unexpected from her. Though she has the look of youthful promise about her, you must persuade your voters that her political and social ideas belong to the gray-headed and past centuries and not to any current mainstream of thought. Certainly she has nothing to offer our youth but the menacing prison of that vaunted institution of the "family" that we have broken down for some decades now, and that "life" nonsense that permits her to bring anything into the world under the delusion that her imagined god loves it too. Furthermore, she has no education we would recognize in our schools, and thus she must be seen as the outsider she is. Her adorers look upon her as someone formidable; we must continue to portray her as a freak.
Joseph Randolph is a writer and academic who lives in Wisconsin.