At least seventeen notable figures in the Republican Party have listened to that little voice inside that whispers, “You’re really the genius of this age,” and declared themselves candidates for the presidency. This raises the problem for the rest of us of how to sort through this batch of aspirants—like pawing through a pile of figs to find the edible and discard the intolerably rotten.
The thought of so many suited men (and one woman!) on stage at once for a debate is literally sickening. If each one gets a two-minute introduction, that’s more than a half hour of your life gone. Imagine how, while one talks, the other sixteen will squirm—wanting to stick an elbow into someone or poke a rival in the eye but forced to pretend to decorum. Or, even worse, picture their painted grins, as they try to appear “likeable” for the cameras.
No one can stomach that. Fox announced plans to limit its debate to ten contestants, but no one likes this idea. The elite candidates don’t want to spend an evening dodging Chris Christie’s spittle, while the minor candidates threaten to stage alternate debates at the same time—in their living rooms with their families, assuming it’s not sewing club night.
We at Stoneslide have devised a program that can accommodate all Republican candidates—without causing widespread nausea among American voters—and is sure to help viewers quickly evaluate which of these men (and one woman!) is the truest Republican.
The evening begins with candidates entering through a cutout modeled on a life-sized tracing of Ronald Reagan. Anyone who can’t make himself or herself fit through this image, no matter what contortions it takes, will be disqualified.
In the first round of competition, pallets holding printouts of the complete United States Code are wheeled out in front of each candidate. They are given axes and told to hack away at regulation and red tape for two minutes. Viewers can judge the candidates based on effectiveness, fervency, or just the resemblance of their strokes to those of Abe Lincoln in his days as a railroad worker.
The candidates may be tired at this point, but this is what real conservatives live for, so they should be pumped up, too. The rhythmic beat of a dance song fills the hall. A twenty-foot high effigy is wheeled onto the stage. It has the face of Jesus, with a clean haircut reminiscent of Reagan’s. Its broad and muscular shoulders should remind you of George Washington, and it wears one of Alexander Hamilton’s dinner jackets. It has cufflinks that were a gift from David Koch. The candidates must dance and genuflect themselves to demonstrate their fealty to this image, which represents the very foundation of American greatness. One can mouth fake words of piety, but you can’t fake a groove.
Next comes an important discussion of immigration policy. The candidates will be presented with a colored gradient representing the range of human skin colors, from white through beige, café au lait, brown, and ebony. Each candidate will place a marker demonstrating at which tint he (or she) would no longer allow people to enter the country.
The segue to foreign policy will feel entirely natural at this point. Candidates are shown unlabeled maps of six strategically important countries—China, Russia, Iran, Syria, Nigeria, and Brazil. Instead of being asked to name the countries or who happens to lead each one, the candidates will be presented with a choice of a pistol, shotgun, or flamethrower. Their decisions about which countries to attack, as well as which weapons to use, will be telling.
Next is the Cold Cash Clean and Jerk. Candidates squat and then lift large bundles of hundred-dollar bills over their heads to display their ability to transfer wealth upward to the job creators who need it.
The final event is intended to show what the candidates will do in their first day in office. Each selects a small token representing a problem facing the nation—sluggish economic growth, federal debt, terrorism, etc. The candidate is then blindfolded and must attempt to place the token on a large photograph of President Obama. It’s called Pin the Blame on Obama. (But, don’t worry, the tokens are actually affixed using magnets, minimizing the chances a candidate will injure himself [or herself].)
We believe sometimes actions do speak louder than words, and viewers will leave this competition with a much better understanding of the candidates than could be achieved through any verbal debate.