A Cat Who Would Be Mayor
(& the One Who Already Is)
The biggest political bombshell of last week was, of course, the revelations that a candidate to a major elective position may not be completely er, invested in the majority of those he’d potentially serve. Secretly recorded footage of him showed a previously unknown, and utterly unkind, side of him.
We’re talking of Tuxedo Stan, as you’ve probably guessed it, the candidate to mayor of Halifax, Canada, who turns out to be… a cat. The news about his candidacy may have come as a shock to everyone but to residents of Talkeetna, Alaska, who for the past 15 years, have had a cat named Stubbs as mayor.
Without making too much of the joke, to the point of running it to the ground, and yet, doing exactly that, let’s get the overarching argument about the current failure of our (human) politics out of the way. And since we’re at it, let’s add also the overheated, and deranged, argument that it’s time to do away with our system altogether.
It’s usually at this point that advocates of such overbaked theory jump at the wayward conclusion that no matter what we do, in the end, we’re bound to elect a clown to high office. And supposedly we’d be doing far better just letting the inmates run the asylum. Or, as in these cases, our own pets.
We’ll let it slide how self-fulfilling such a prescription to disaster can be, from the part of those who propose it. It’s quite boring, really, in its predictability, to see how those who, otherwise would be soundly defeated in the polls by even a piece of furniture, would try to up their chances by crying foul.
Despite being sure that the good people of Hallifax or Talkeetna have their reasons, we surely don’t subscribe to such solution. Even a school-age kid could learn and do some good, if given a chance, compared to the present alternative: granting unelected and non-identified parties the power to making decisions affecting the majority. All conveniently hidden behind a beloved creature, who couldn’t care less about it, to be perfectly clear.
That being said, the fact that the current mayor and the potential one are both cats, though, changes everything. Colltales readers know well how hopelessly biased we are about the issue. As a recent ‘scientific’ study has confirmed, felines, who in fact, rule the Internet, seem particularly well suited to demands of tasks of high complexity. Running a small town does qualify as such.
ONE-ISSUE PARTY PLATFORM
Stan, the three-year old candidate, seems to have reluctantly emerged to the forefront of Halifax’s politics out of public discontentment about the way members of his species have been treated lately. His Tuxedo Party proclaims to aim at improving the welfare of felines ‘because neglect isn’t working.’
Not surprisingly, Stan has managed to pick up the endorsement than no other than the Internet’s most popular cat, chosen in a recent festival: Henri, the French existentialist, who broods ‘désolé’ about the current state of world affairs. More than anyone else, he’s shown an uncanny ability to portray the hopelessness of it all, and yet, he’d vote for his fellow feline.
But alas, Stan is far from having a fair shot at winning, at least for now. His pesky competitors, professional politicians, wasted no time dismissing his campaign. Then again, who knows and who cares who Stan’s up against? At this moment, all you ever heard of Hallifax this year is that there’s a cat running for mayor there. Yay.
FIFTEEN YEARS IN OFFICE
Stan may take a page from Mayor Stubbs‘s playbook, if he’s to go all the way to the top. A candidate who was written-in to run for mayor a decade and a half ago, out of public disgust with the local politician class, he seems to be doing something rather well. There hasn’t been a serious challenge to his reelection ever since.
It helps that Talkeetna has ‘only’ 900 residents, but boy, wouldn’t some elected officials we know kill to have even a fraction of those votes. Again, we can’t think of any other candidate who would’ve done so much for the town’s image and tourism industry. People come from afar to have a glimpse of the yellowish feline.
THE FRIVOLOUS & THE MESSIANIC
In this presidential election year, Americans have been treated to a virtually insurmountable amount of political expedience, self-serving platforms, callous appropriation of legitimate public expectations, double talk, tergiversation, and voodoo politics to make anyone run away. Or vote for a pet to office.
Even in instances when a mayor did accomplish something in the name of a large constituency, say, enforcing a limited ban on some proven obesity-inducing beverages, he may have done it to the cost and despite of years of hard-won democratic processes. And that can’t possibly be justified, in the strict letter of the law.
It’s got considerably worst at the national level, and nothing seems to indicate it’ll get any better. Take, for instance, the obscene amounts being spent in the presidential campaigns, and all attempts being made to prevent large segments of the population to exercise their constitutional right to vote, just to have an idea of how bad it is.
A DAY TO HEAR YOUR VOICE
In this context, when one looks at Stan or Stubbs and their proverbial, and inscrutable, facial expressions of serenity and, well, ‘really, we do not care that much,’ it may make sense, for just a little bit, the fact they’re even in the news, lately.
We don’t buy it, of course. And for a presidential candidate to be caught on record calling half of the population lazy bums, that still makes the blood of anyone with a pulse in America to boil at no end. Electing a pet to public office most definitely can not be the solution.
Still, as we said, we’re biased. These past few months have been a particularly tough stretch for working families and political idealists of all stripes. So when a chance comes our way to link the overall issue of modern politics with the tongue-in-cheek fact that it is, after all, Caturday, we’re glad that we still have the gumption to get the ball rolling.
Today is also Global Frackdown, an opportunity for people all over the world to organize and form a united front against this costly and highly dangerous way of natural gas extraction. As with the myth of ‘clean coal,’ it’s another hollow promise of a cheap alternative source of energy, that turns out to be neither cheap nor alternative. Get involved and have a great weekend.