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“The 2020 presidential campaign is already upon us.
Scarcely hours after the titanic drubbing Democrats delivered to President Trump’s GOP in the 2018 midterm elections, the 2020 presidential campaign began in deeply unwelcome earnest. CNN gave us a new power ranking (which they had been doing since July!) of what is expected to be a large and diverse Democratic field. Reporters chased rumors about potential Democratic candidates Beto O’Rourke and Michael Bloomberg. Rarely did anyone in the media step back and ask, “Hey what the hell is going on? This is not what sane people do.”
It doesn’t have to be this way. America’s presidential campaigns are interminable, a slow-burning misery that we inflict knowingly on ourselves despite no constitutional or logical reason for doing so. Like a shared delusion, we all believe this infinity circus to be necessary even though it quite obviously is not. It feels like it’s getting worse every cycle, and only the political parties themselves can stop it.
It should come as no surprise that no other advanced democracy on Earth spends 18 months out of a 48-month presidential term picking its next national executive. For instance, former Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt announced on May 27, 2015 that national elections would be held on June 18 of that same year, barely three weeks later. Yes, Denmark is a small country, but if three weeks are enough time for electioneering in what is probably the world’s premier democracy, it should give us pause about the amount of time we devote to ours. In the U.K., Prime Minister Theresa May announced elections on April 18, 2017 to be held less than two months later. Somehow the islanders kept electoral calm and carried on.”
JJ Editor's Picks
"Not even what one might think of as the most basic tenet of any religion, a belief in the existence of God, is a prerequisite: Agnosticism is a key principle of at least one major school of Hindu philosophy."
"The presidency of any particular incumbent is relatively short... but the precedential consequences of impeaching a president without complying with the specific provisions of the Constitution “as it was written” are enduring."
"After news that a judge allegedly provided sexual favors to Bar Association president Efi Nave in exchange for her appointment, several politicians said in their responses that the Judicial Selection Committee needed to be the “Holy of Holies.”"
"Two new documentaries take on Billy McFarland and his disastrous music festival... the secret villain of this story all along: the subtle menace of social media marketing."
"Eating out, ordering in. Throw in a bagel here, a coffee there, and it all adds up. "It's definitely a challenge for people my age to save on food.""
"Popular music is shrinking. From 2013 to 2018, the average song on the Billboard Hot 100 fell from 3 minutes and 50 seconds to about 3 minutes and 30 seconds. "
"Here in the good old U.S. of A, the third annual Women's March planned for Jan. 19 is in serious trouble, thanks to irreconcilable political disagreements."
"Nature, however, with its endless cycles of death and rebirth, fascinated her. Walking in the woods, she developed a method that has become the hallmark of her poetry, taking notice simply of whatever happens to present itself."
"Modern parents haven’t stopped playing favorites; they’ve just stopped doing it openly. Though few parents today will admit they have a favorite child, studies indicate that about two-thirds of parents do."
"The first science-based diet that tackles both the poor food eaten by billions of people and averts global environmental catastrophe has been devised."
"Sphen and Magic looked like they would make great, diligent, careful egg-warming parents. They made the biggest nest, and they sat on it constantly."
"How YMHAs, followed by synagogue-centers, and finally JCCs have tried—in different ways—to balance Judaism and Jewishness, by bringing Jews together in intellectual, spiritual, and physical pursuits"