The Few, The Irreplaceable, The Politicians

Taylor - Lanesville, Indiana
Entered on March 2, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

It appears that American politics have changed, but it wasn’t on the news or in the papers. Back in the day – the 1800s – a frontiersman could run in an election for local, state, or national government, and win. Today this isn’t true. Unfortunately, America has taken a turn for the worse. It takes certain assets to be a politician and not everyone can achieve the “American dream”.

My mom and dad always told me, “You can do anything you want to do, or be anything you want to be.” I think parents need to add another phrase – except a politician. To successfully compete in politics, a candidate needs money, or he or she may no longer be a candidate. A campaign can’t be run on pocket change or the money I found in the sofa last Thursday. Posters, yard signs, and commercials require big money. Candidates for the presidency spend millions – millions most people don’t have in bank accounts.

It seems background means more than issues, opinions, and sometimes false campaign promises these days. Despite the fact that the American public is in self denial over this, a candidate must be Christian to be elected to office. Barack Obama was allegedly a Muslim but joined a Christian church. I wonder why. It was written in the Declaration of Independence that “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” This implies that there is a God. Also stated is that all men are created equal. I don’t think that a homeless man or a felon will be in the election in 2008. A positive background is necessary.

Status speaks for itself. Unless a candidate is incumbent, has held office before, or has someone to “vouch” for him or her, it is unlikely that he or she will be elected. A reputation is a hard thing to build and an easier thing to tear down. A candidate has to be known and remembered for good actions (or bad ones; both get people elected). If a person isn’t incumbent, he or she has to have someone to “vouch” for him or her; a person to give credibility is almost indispensable.

Without the minority who have means to be politicians, I’m not sure what America would do. Without those who have wealth, background, and status, I’m unsure of what this country would become. However, they are here and I salute the great American oligarchy and the few, the irreplaceable, the politicians.