Time for My Second Presidential Campaign

Many years ago, to test the gullibility of colleagues and readers, I started the rumor that I was being considered as a possible Presidential candidate.  No one I know could be that gullible?  Think again, one prominent libertarian-leaning conservative called to find out if it was true.  Obviously, he was sounding me out for a cabinet appointment.

A few years later, I printed a piece, which I explicitly attributed to a dream, in which I was being dragged to the Hague to be put on trial for complicity in Slobodan Milosevic's genocidal policies in Kosovo.  Again, who would believe it?  My then boss, to begin with.  "Is this true?" he asked with obvious joy at the possibility of getting rid of an irritant.  The one thing one can learn well from rabbis is to answer one question with another:  "What do you think?" I asked.  "I think it's a great fund-raising opportunity."

I have always found the idea of running for any office preposterous, and, like most good Americans--note the adjective--my first response on meeting a politician is to distrust his integrity and despise his ambition.  When I was a junior in high school, someone nominated me for Junior Class Treasurer (or something).  I told the faculty advisor to student government that I utterly rejected the honor, but she told me I had no choice except to run.  So, on the day the candidates made speeches, I went up on the stage and told my fellow-students what, surely, most of them knew already, that student government was a farce, that the officers had no power whatsoever, that in general the people who sought offices in student government were just sucking up to the teachers.  I concluded, "Please do not vote for me!"  Curiously, I came within a few votes of winning.

I was famous in Mt Pleasant, South Carolina,  for about a year, and when some months later, after deciding to skip my senior year, I was a freshman in college, more than one of student wanted to know was I the guy who ran for office by telling people not to vote for him.  Don't tell me I haven't achieved anything in 75 inglorious years!

So now, I have decided I must have been wrong.  Bush II, Obama, and Biden have convinced me that in America, anyone, Hell, anything can become President, so I  am contemplating throwing my hat in the ring, and, assuming Biden will be around to run for a second term,  I have already come up with a campaign slogan.  "Give Youth a Chance--Vote for the Younger Man."

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Thomas Fleming

Thomas Fleming is president of the Fleming Foundation. He is the author of six books, including The Morality of Everyday Life and The Politics of Human Nature, as well as many articles and columns for newspapers, magazines,and learned journals. He holds a Ph.D. in Classics from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and a B.A. in Greek from the College of Charleston. He served as editor of Chronicles: a Magazine of American Culture from 1984 to 2015 and president of The Rockford Institute from 1997-2014. In a previous life he taught classics at several colleges and served as a school headmaster in South Carolina

9 Responses

  1. Jacob Johnson says:

    I wonder how the Hickock vs Harris debate will go.

  2. Vince Cornell says:

    If you’re looking for a Secretary of the Navy, I’m happy to volunteer, but only if I get permission to fire at least ninety percent of the Admirals and Senior Executives.

  3. Allen Wilson says:

    I’ll volunteer to be your VP. I’ll easily convince everyone that I’m much too crazy to have my finger on the button, then they will be afraid to assassinate you.

  4. James E. Easton says:

    How about “Not Just Another Pretty Face!” for a slogan?

  5. Avatar photo Thomas Fleming says:

    Mr. Cornell, you are my first choice as Navy Secretary. Mr. Wilson, you’re on, if Wild Bill turns me down. He’s been rather quiet lately. I’m happy to see that Mr Johnson recognized the statue, located in a town whose other claim to fame is a bar where they serve the biggest ham sandwiches in the entire universe.

  6. Harry Colin says:

    I’m all in and ready to humbly serve in any capacity. Defeating Basement Joe next time – assuming his food tasters are competent and prevent a Harris Administration – will be difficult. He’s trying hard to secure his donor base. I understand that across the border in Pennsylvania they erected giant video screens in all the cemeteries so his most fervent supporters could watch the inauguration.

  7. Robert Reavis says:

    Dear Tom,
    You of course have my support regardless of your platform — Marxism, Catholicism, Libertarianism, Capitalism, Americanism Maoism, Realism —- but in case my friends ask why I am supporting you, would you mind to suggest a few of your cabinet picks and what federal agencies you will close and what agencies you would leave open for the time being ?

  8. Robert Reavis says:

    Will you require that congressmen add a gun to the current requirement of wearing masks while congress is in session so as to better reflect and reveal to voters the real work of the Senate and House in our time ?

  9. Avatar photo Thomas Fleming says:

    First off, I should state that I have invited my friend in the picture to be my running mate. Some cynics will say, “Hickock’s dead, buried in Deadwood.” They may well be right, but this is a country where you can impeach a President who has already left office. We no longer put arbitrary obstacles in the way of democratic equality. His presence, fully armed, presiding over the Senate should be sufficient guarantee of my enthusiasm for the 2nd Amendment. So far as I’m concerned, the sooner the members of Congress start shooting it out, the better.

    If I can drop the serious tone and tell a story, Philip LaFollette, when his father Robert was being assailed for opposing US entrance into WW I, carried a gun onto the floor of the Senate, just in case one of the war-mongering Yankees decided to rush Fighting Bob. Now that’s our kind of pacifist!

    I’ve thought about Srdja as Secretary of State. Walter Williams has died, so I can’t put him in at Treasury–or can I? (See above.) I’ll have to consult with my staff and get back to you on the rest of my cabinet picks, but just remember. I stand foursquare with the people.