Dear American Workers,
Many joke, making comparisons to the young adult novel trilogy The Hunter Games being similar to life in America. At no point were any of those jokes meant to take on a living breathing reality in American culture, but instead the novels served as a far fetched commentary on what could happen on a long enough timeline if the powers that be went too far. That timeline just became increasingly shorter and at a rate that would make the Flash seem like a slow moving turtle superhero. For American politics there are no superheroes. Only game players and unlike The Hunger Games, the gamekeepers are not a singular mastermind behind it all, but instead a series of masterminds all working like a master clock ticking away at the democracy of our country. American politics has always been a bumpy road, but for the Caucus of 2016, those bumps on the road to nomination and election just got a little more like a rollercoaster of funhouse horrors and unexpected sandpits. Caucus 2016 is the pervert trench coat flasher in the hall of crazy mirrors. Which got me thinking. Just how did we end up here? What on Earth lead to this crazy train of politics with its seemingly made up rules that cater to whomever the ones with the most money want in charge. Do the players even know they are in the game? Is this really our Founding Fathers fault and great design for our country? If it was, isn’t that antiquated and needing a severe update since the date of inception versus now looks nothing alike, rending this caucus business useless?
The first confusing web that completely blows my mind is the fact that there are two sets of rules that determine who is going to be the top candidate in the running for the highest job vacancy in the land, President of The United States. One set of rules governs the Republican Party and a second set of rules governs the Democratic Party. Notice no other party is even taken into consideration and yes there are other parties and candidates, but they seem to just be for show and although they give speeches to say they are vying for the seat of president, they are just raising awareness and funds for that awareness. The Green Party is such a party and The Libertarian Party is a more widely familiar example of this. The chances of any of these secondary parties making it to the conventions in the summer before election to compete is almost zero. Similar to any American worker applying for employment with a company, because no matter how qualified a worker may be they will never even get an interview if they have factors that rule them out. Some of those facts are all over a workers resume. Employers look at a few things to make an immediate judgement about them to eliminate them from the 100’s of resumes they have to filter through. Such things are: The individuals name, their address, where did they go to school, where did they work. Some might say, well what is wrong with that? The problem with this is it is a filter through judgements such as: what is the race, religion, color, background, of this person, are they wealthy, poor, black, white, Chinese, did they go to a poor school, did they have a too ethnic sounding name, do they live in a poor neighborhood. Yes, all of these are the unspoken truths about the hiring process that aren’t just used against a presidential candidate, but the American Workers as well. Fact.
Have you noticed the similarities between this process so far and the process we Americans go through to get a job ourselves? I know I have. We all may come from different backgrounds and have different supports to get us to where we want to go and presentation is everything, but if I don’t have a professional resume, maybe a connection or two or even the skill set to woo an employer I lessen my chances drastically of getting the job I know I am qualified and capable of doing. We are all in an American Caucus. We just don’t have Super Pac’s to fund our job searching. How great would that be? We could get unlimited funds as long as we kiss the right ass to get us the jobs we want. Oh wait, that’s unfair to those that don’t have that and I may be pushing someone aside for me to get the job when I could have so many others and they are only qualified for that one or two. It is unfair that I did that, but I’m not supposed to care and keep it moving, right? Well guess what? It happens everyday in America all the way up to the top job in the land. Super Pacs give candidates an advantage and bought seat at the table of people being interviewed while pushing aside others who are just as great and just as qualified, who are perfect for the job, but don’t have the means and access that others do and they lose. They end up in secondary parties fighting their whole lives for causes they feel were so important they would live, breath, and sleep these causes and pushed them to even try for the top job of president so they could make real changes for those causes. People you and I have never even heard of. People like you and me who know damn well we were perfect for such and such job but never even got a call back or an interview because we didn’t some sort of super pac or friend on the inside, or a professionally done resume, or lived in the right neighborhood, or maybe had an unprofessional Twitter rant one day and blew our chances to bits. Yes, all of this happens. All of this. Employers look at your social media, where you live and judge you on that and even your name and what it may convey. Barrack Hussein Obama might have been pushed aside and overlooked if he didn’t already have a public image that he got by earning a law degree and getting a job on the Senate floor because he made friends. His name would have had his resume in the shredder. Our American Caucus system is a larger spectrum example of all of this. We are making judgements about them based upon where they lived, where they worked, their names, their histories, their social media comments, public and private speeches, and so much more. Think of all of those candidates we don’t even know the names of for a minute.
Now with all this being said, lets look at these two separate rules that the parties are going by. The Republican Party requires a caucus that has their candidates (who declare belonging to their party) reach 1237 votes from delegates. The delegates are supposed to give their vote to the candidates based upon the votes that come in from the people. Supposed to I say. They are supposed to see what the people want and then give that vote to that candidate.
Since the inception of our American Government, the word caucus itself has been attributed to those early forefathers, such as John Adams, but can also be traced as far back as the mother land of England. So the who, when, where, why is a little blurry, but what I am more interested in is how the modern concept and application of the caucus has turned into a job interview that seems to replicate itself in corporate America for the sake of interviewing individuals for our bill paying jobs. Just how did we go from a Help Wanted sing in a store front window or a friend of a friend knows of a job opening to the seeming caucused job interview process that plays out on our daily news cycle for the highest job in the land?
In a nation of job availability fluctuation, how someone lands a job is interesting. The process of perfected resume’s of varying options, presentation, appearance, completed applications, call backs, head hunters for hire, even the word font used on everything is important. Getting a job can be a daunting process. We all see what a presidential candidate goes through and we all sit around thinking how hard that all is, exhausting, expensive, the traveling, the press releases, the hired people to help them, etc, etc, etc, but how is this any different than any other individual job seeker? The only difference is the scale in which this is measured. Individuals don’t spend millions, hours on television, or hire 100’s of people, but we do spend an enormous amount of time, effort, travel, acting professional in front of those looking to hire someone qualified and even countless hours online and on social media seeking networking connections on Linked In, Twitter, Facebook, and so on. Essentially, we are all caucusing for ourselves just to pay the bills or find some resemblance of happiness and be paid for it. Hopefully. Some are doing all this for apprenticeships, fellowships, internships and so on just to eventually get a paid gig. I won’t even go into freelancers. The whole process is absolutely no different than what any of our presidential candidates are going through. The stress alone could kill a horse.
The solution, you ask? On the list of things that are beyond individual control, but need to happen is a complete overhaul of the political system. The caucus system has to go. The two party system is not sustainable and only individuals who are wanting the job should be asking for the American people’s hiring of them for that position. Why can’t everyone just campaign for the job and do so all the way down to the date of election day in November? So what if there are more choices than two on the ballot. Are Americans afraid of having to research a candidate and hire the most qualified? Maybe, but that shouldn’t be a qualifier for a caucused two party system. Also on the list but also beyond individual control is a complete overhaul of corporate America’s hiring system. Too many companies have hiring managers or retention specialists, as they are often called, who do a whole lot of nothing. They process resumes and go to job fairs and so on and so forth, but honestly the system is not conducive to a healthy working relationship between hiring qualified candidates and just hiring warm bodies. Corporations need to offer better benefits and better pay to bring in people who can work without worry about their lives falling apart outside of their work hours. The tables have switched between the hiring and the hired. Companies and corporations need to be caucusing for the people to be hired. They conduct themselves, often unprofessionally and filled with empty promises of call backs, second interviews, better benefits to come, some that go away before employee’s get in the door and so on. The whole process is upside down. How well would it work out if the President of the United States walked into office on the first day and found out that they didn’t get benefits as outlined on the White House website and their company mission statement was just a suggestion? It wouldn’t work at all and the president would be rectifying the problem immediately. We aren’t employee’s doing this? The employee’s all out number the higher up’s in management and sometimes you see the questioning of this process when workers walk out and strike against the company broken infrastructure. Most recent example, Verizon Workers Striking. Workers have more power than the system alludes to. Getting hired and into a position often requires effort that equals caucusing for president, but in the end the system will not change from the outside. Getting hired for a job or president with people who are willing to take on the reins over the horses that drive our economy, politics, laws, systems, corporations, commerce, and so on is what is within our control and needs to happen. We are the ones that can make effective, long lasting, system change that will improve the quality of life for millions of Americans in a way that will make todays system seem like a snag in the history towards progression and equality. Too PollyAnna for you? Then you aren’t cut out for this type of challenge to get in and change things from the inside out. That is okay. Just don’t stand in the way of those trying to fight for the change we all need and the change our children’s future needs. Let those that want to and can change the broken system that is crushing our American hearts do so without resistance from you, because the resistance that comes from the system itself is enough.