[Rizzn’s Note: I was writing a letter to Joel explaining my choice for president this year, decided to look up some keywords from my letter, and I found an article written in November of 1999 saying what I’ve been saying much more elequently.]
Ric Flair for President
I don’t follow professional wrestling. But like so many other Americans, I get the distinct feeling that professional wrestling is somehow following me. With all the fanfare surrounding the election of former professional wrestler, Jessie “The Body” Ventura, as Governor of the state of Minnesota, I couldn’t help but wonder what the United States would be like if it were governed by well-tanned hulks in flamboyant ski masks and star-studded Evel Knievel capes.
As a start, someone like wrestling icon Ric Flair should be elected President. Anyone who can withstand twenty-plus years of ultraviolet radiation and an ocean of peroxide could easily swim among the most vicious political sharks that Capital Hill can muster. It goes without saying that the State of the Union addresses would certainly be far more interesting. The nation would be riveted to its television screens as Flair teeters atop the executive podium, neck veins pulsating, threatening Congress with everything from flying knee drops to scorpion death locks. At the conclusion of his speech, he would repeatedly smash the teleprompter with a folding chair and then swiftly exit the Senate chamber under the escort of scantily clad, surgically enhanced “wrestler babes.” Now that’s government in action!
I am of the opinion that wrestlers would handle the press far better than your average, run-of-the-mill politician. I mean, what do you do with a politician who answers charges of corruption with, “I’m gonna bust your face.”, “Whose gonna do anything about it?”, and my personal favorite, “Oh, yeah?” – all with the vocal raspiness of Rod Stewart suffering from a particularly nasty case of laryngitis.
Wrestlers would also make more interesting senators and representatives. Back in the good old days, members of Congress would handily whack one another about the head with canes, throw various assortments of blunt objects, and initiate duels to the death over matters as trivial as whether or not Mormon men in Utah should be the only ones in the country lucky enough to have more than one wife. All we ever get now are boring press conferences and endless hearings where scarcely a toupee is disheveled. Let’s be honest with ourselves – we would all enjoy seeing Barney Frank inflict a whirling missile drop kick on someone like, say, Trent Lott every once in awhile.
Most government bureaucrats are simply too clean cut to fulfill the responsibilities of the jobs to which they have been assigned (with the possible exception of Janet Reno, who would probably be the Women’s World Wrestling Champion were it not for her recent stint as Attorney General). And speaking of the Attorney General, I can easily envision someone along the lines of Sting (the wrestler, not the musician, of course!) performing the all important duties of this office with both vigor and enthusiasm. Sting looks like the Gold’s Gym version of Kiss, and would make any mafia kingpin seriously reconsider his chosen career path. Let’s face it, when the prosecutor is more frightening than the man on trial, you’ve got a government that is, quite unequivocally, in the business of kicking some serious felonious butt.
The professional wrestler is probably best qualified for the role of foreign dignitary. There is nothing like a good figure four leg lock or spinning body slam to convince ambassadors from uncooperative dictatorial regimes that we mean business. Furthermore, all international dignitaries would be required to develop a “ring persona” and don outlandish costumes before our representatives would agree to discuss matters of diplomatic importance. You simply can’t top tight speedos and rubber wrestling boots for placing everyone on a level negotiating field.
Last, but certainly not least, professional wrestling possesses perhaps the best possible solution to seemingly irreconcilable international conflicts – tag-team, no-holds-barred power matches. Wars could be waged in the ring rather than on battlefields, and victory would go to the team that shouted the loudest, sweated the most, and broke more chairs over the backs of their opponents. That’s the problem with diplomatic disputes these days – they are all done in private. Weren’t we all born with the inalienable right to pay $18.00 a head to see Madeleine Albright put a no-release head lock on Fidel Castro?
I suppose a good argument could be made for borrowing certain elements from other sports (such as boxing, for example) to further enhance the operation of our governmental machine. Why not? I’m flexible. How different the Kennedy-Khrushchev talks might have been had a white-shirted, bow tie wearing announcer kicked off the event with a resounding, “Let’s get ready to rumble!”
Jessie Ventura may not be the best governor Minnesota has ever had, and Ric Flair will likely never enjoy a presidential cat nap in the Oval Office. But I still can’t help but wonder how far our government really is from formally adopting the professional wrestling philosophy. I have my eyes peeled in anxious anticipation of Al Gore challenging George Bush to a round or two in the proverbial “Ring of Death.”
I guess that what American politics needs more than anything is the ability to laugh at itself. Wrestlers seem to be quite adept in this area. After all, I think that it would be refreshing to hear a government official facing staggering inflationary figures scream the ever-familiar, yet comforting exclamation, “You’re goin’ down, baby!”
[Rizzn’s Note: I found this article on a KTVU site that was written back in April. It explains things in a bit more like I do.]
Prof. Wrestling: Why Ric Flair Should Be President
Nature Boy Should Occupy Oval Office
Already, his voice is starting to crack a little at the tail end of his trademark “WOOO!,” and the famous Flair strut is starting to look very similar to the gait of the old guy in the plaid pants in front of me in the cereal aisle, checking out the All-Bran while I try to snag the last box of Cap’n Crunch.
Now what could Flair do? Obviously his sales talents are without question. For years now, he’s managed to sell us on the idea that a guy with the build of a bowler can actually be a viable force in a wre
stling ring. He’s managed to convince us that his hairline really has stayed where it is for all these years without intensive enhancement. And, recently, he’s managed to convince us that he actually still gives a rip about what goes on in the ring, in spite of the fact that his years of work have left him with enough money to buy and sell the musclebound palookas that fill out the Evolution stable.
And fashion sense! This man could teach the Queer Eye guys a thing or two. Gone are the days of the fur-trimmed robes and satiny trunks. The Flair of today is strictly a Haband man, with some snappy Bass loafers thrown in for good measure. His shirts, while still sporting overly generous ’70s-style lapels, are well-cut and manage to camouflage his ever-decaying physique very well.
And, let’s face it, the man can talk. I maintain that’s the only reason he’s still in the Evolution gang. Triple-H is nobody’s orator, Randy Orton can’t open his mouth without sniveling; and I’m not even really sure Batista is capable of shaping human words. Flair is the mouthpiece, the taunter and the “brains” of the bunch. If this were 25 years ago, Bobby Heenan (Bless The Brain!) would be filling the same role.
As far as ethics go … well, nobody who’s spent as many years as Flair has in the squared circle is going to have much trouble with any ethical dilemmas. When you’ve spent that many years engaging in high theater, “flexible” viewpoints are no great challenge.
So, ladies and gentlemen, given that the current slate of candidates is about as inspiring as a plate of toast, I humbly propose and offer ….
Ric Flair For President
Now that’s rocking the vote, you MTV dweebs!
What do you think, is Flair fair fare for the Oval Office? Slap together an e-mail and tell the Professor what you think.
By the way, thanks for all the e-mails so far. Let’s give a cheap pop to the top ten cities that have done their homework and sent the Professor a note:
San Antonio, Texas.
Des Moines, Iowa.
(Note to San Antonio: if you can write a better column, bring it on!)
Until class meets again, keep hold of that tag rope!