I never thought that I’d find myself agreeing with James George Janos on anything. Janos, better known by his stage name, Jesse Ventura, former professional wrestler and former governor of Minnesota (1999-2003), unexpectedly defeated both the Republican and Democratic parties in the 1998 gubernatorial election. Although he ran as the candidate for the Reform Party, he broke with that organization a year after he took office, declaring himself to be “independent.”
Last week on CNN, he reaffirmed his disgust with both major political parties, referring to them as “gangs.” Previously, he also decried the formation of a third party, saying “it will likewise have to corrupt itself. If you already have a two-headed monster, why would you need three?” Ventura claims that he remains independent and, in the event that he runs for political office again (possibly for president of the United States in 2016), he would not run with any political party. And, he would choose Serius XM radio host Howard Stern as his running mate. That choice, alone, loses my vote.
After watching the machinations in Washington, D.C., the past few weeks, I’m inclined to agree with Ventura that our political parties are acting like gangs fighting over territory. The fate of the nation and its people seem to count less than putting a check mark in a party’s win column.
Moreover, what once passed for political dialogue has devolved to childish finger pointing. “The government was shut down by the Democrats.” “No. The shutdown was caused by the Republicans.” “Unh-uh.” “Yeah, ‘cuz I said so.” ...