Q: You’re running for Governor of Connecticut as a Common Cents candidate, but you’re wearing a Harley Davidson campaign pin? What’s going on here?
A: We’ve taken a page from Nascar. You know how they put their advertisements on pretty much everything a television camera fondles – cars, their clothes and, for all I know, they wear little tattoos of Pepsi cans on their ankles? We’ve adopted that process.
Q: Here’s a first: You’ve sold out to Harley Davidson before your election to office?
A: We haven’t got that far yet in our negotiations with them. We’re trying to corrupt them, but it seems impossible.
Q: How come we haven’t heard about you?
A: We’re campaigning on a reduced budget. Like Blanche DuBois and Alan Schlesinger, the Republican nominee for the U.S. Senate, we’ve found it necessary to throw ourselves on the kindness of strangers. Thanks for the interview.
Q: Aren’t you afraid that no one will take your campaign seriously?
A: Not at all. In Connecticut, most people don’t take campaigns seriously, possibly because incumbents almost always are voted back into office. Gerrymandered districts have a lot to do with the high rate of return, which is why our campaign favors forming districts that do not divide towns. It would force redistricting. We are in favor of strengthening municipal governments as against state governments.
Q: Sort of a back-to-1775 movement.
A: Well, 1775 had a lot to recommend it. That was the year before 1776. We aren’t Luddites. We don’t plan to deprive anyone of their iPods or reintroduce slavery or anything of that sort. On with it, you know…
Q: That’s the question: On with what? What’s your program.
A: Keep what works, chuck what doesn’t. That’s about it.
Q: Okay, what doesn’t work?
A: State government, for one thing. We want to get rid of it, or at least reduce it to tolerable proportions. Urban schools – get rid of them. Find out where the fathers and mothers of Yale and Harvard candidates send their pampered children to school – you can be sure it’s not one of the non-performing centers of urban mis-education in Connecticut – and send the kids there…
Q: Let me interrupt your Common Cents for a minute and ask the obvious question: Wouldn’t it be simpler, more commonsensical, to get rid of municipal governments. After all, Connecticut is a small state.
A: Never… we’re for the little guy. The smallest unit of government, said G.K. Chesterton, is the best. He was talking to an American reporter from a hotel in New Hampshire, I think, when he said, “This hotel would make a fine Republic.” As a general rule, we’re for the small, practical, efficient thing and against the complex, theoretical, wasteful thing. That’s as much political theory as we can stand. In any contest of strength, we side first with the family, then the municipal government, then the state, then, if you must, the federal government.
Q: Less is more, eh?
A: No, less can never be more than less. But less of a bad thing would be a good thing, no? We in Connecticut have been operating on the principle that more of a bad thing is a good thing. For instance, I think it’s been established that the family in our urban centers is broke and much in need of fixing. Broken families in cities leave young males without direction at the mercy of the merciless street. Whatever the solution to this problem may be, it cannot be earlier intervention by an urban public school system that for years has been incapable of producing literate and mathematically proficient young scholars. We know that failing public schools cannot take the place of fathers missing in action in our urban centers, and the answer to that problem cannot be more and earlier failing urban education. More of a bad thing is not a good thing, see?
Q: Got it. Good luck to you.
A: Want a Harley Davidson pin?
Q: No-can-do. The wife drives an Indian Chief Vintage.
A: Ah, see -- more of a good thing!