What if Julia Roberts had run for governor of California? Or Sean Penn? How about the Crocodile Hunter? OK, he's Australian. But there's Vanna White - Wheel of Fortune letter-turner extraordinaire and author of the legendary Vanna Speaks. How about Madonna?
What's the point? The point is, action hero and closed book Arnold Schwarzenegger won a race in which porn publisher Larry Flynt and Diff'rent Strokes giant Gary Coleman finished seventh and eighth, respectively.
The point is, it looks as if California voters simply don't believe anything.
Of course, many do. But it's painfully obvious that many don't - and that too many others don't apply their beliefs to politics.
Perhaps the main problem is that many voters, in the Golden State and elsewhere, have bought the tired notion that politics is boring. So they tune out - until a celebrity, or something else flashy, catches their attention.
Is that any way to run the greatest nation on Earth?
Politics isn't boring. Politics is about what we believe. How could what you believe possibly be boring, especially to you?
Voters need to get in touch with what they believe in. What is the role of government? What should its priorities be? What stands should one take on abortion, the war on terror, crime and punishment, relations with other governments? Which taxes need changing, or eliminating?
Then they need to apply those beliefs. Which party best represents their views? Which candidates?
If voters don't think these things through, then all they've got at election time is a beauty pageant - which, in politics anyway, can make for some pretty ugly results.
Gov.-elect Schwarzenegger may do just fine. No aspersions toward him. Nonetheless, Arnold, we hardly know ye. After his dodging most serious journalists and all but one debate, voters had precious little to go on, other than his biceps and his muscular body of work.
Thus, his election - and the presence of so many silly and trivial candidates on the ballot with him - is a sign of a serious problem in this country.
Folks need to decide what they believe.
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