NB: Some folks may be wondering why I have not been posting here of late. This is largely due to the fact that my name is being circulated for a possible legislative appointment, and I was reluctant to write anything which would stink of shameless politicking. However, there are some stupidities so offensive as to demand comment.
A throwaway comment by Steven Seagal that he thinks it might be fun to run for Governor of Arizona has inspired much gnashing of teeth and rending of garments among your Facebook friends. Even ostensibly serious journalists like Jim Nintzel have been chasing the story, giving the bloated action movie hack more ink than any of the actual candidates have received.
It was not until yesterday that a reporter, apparently embarrassed by a Facebook post from one of her former colleagues, made the ten minutes or so of phone calls and internet surfing necessary to find that Seagal does not meet the residency requirements for the office and is not even registered to vote in Arizona. The fact that Seagal is ineligible to run was not addressed in the pages of The Arizona Republic, but on the reporter’s Twitter feed. Keep in mind that the non-story had already been running for a few days at this point.
Also, no one seems to have noticed that Seagal is doing absolutely nothing to organize a campaign, a necessity at this point in the process. American Idol runner-up Clay Aiken may be annoying, but the fact that he has actually been talking to campaign professionals in preparation for a possible run for Congress shows that he is serious and thoughtful in this regard. Seagal, in contrast, is, in the words of the philosopher, merely farting in the wind.
Seagal’s candidacy is fake, and an obvious attempt by an attention starved used up action actor to get some publicity. While it is sad that a gullible media is willing to accommodate him, it is downright pathetic that so many people who consider themselves well-informed and sophisticated are pulling their hair out over this, but are blissfully unaware of the actual race for Governor which will be shaping up over the next few months.
So far, the field of candidates on the Republican side includes a blowhard geezer who thinks entirely in stale FOX News talking points and a CEO who thinks that the Rio Grande runs somewhere immediately south of Phoenix. Both of these candidates are scarier than Seagal, since one of them could actually be our next Governor.
Meanwhile, the only Democrat running has been dismissed by supposedly serious people as being too thoughtful, well informed and intelligent for public office.
We like to complain about the state of our politics in Arizona. We criticize our elected officials as buffoons and often question how anybody could have put such a motley horde in office without realizing that the blame falls on us, our friends, our family, and our neighbors. Seagal is being taken seriously because we do not take our politics seriously. This is the real problem. We are getting exactly what we deserve.