Sometimes, when I’m out walking Mrs. Wigglebottom, I come up with such stunningly brilliant ideas that I can’t believe I’ve not yet been crowned supreme ruler of the world.
Here’s what occurred to me this morning.
Congress. It’s full of out-of-touch ghouls and political insiders and beltway politics. In a perfect world, we might be elected to Congress through means similar to how one is summoned for jury duty. But as it is now, people go to Washington and back home to their local districts and live myopically, but they’re making decisions for all of us.
The rest of us. With rising gas prices, it’s going to be harder for ordinary folks to afford to travel.
The State Capitol. Most state legislatures are not constantly in session and so many state capitols are empty most of the time.
Oprah. She’s moving into public housing to see for herself what’s going on.
Professional Sports. They regularly have exhibition games and, occasionally, real games at places other than their home stadiums. Mexico, Japan, Russia–professional sports teams get around in order to provide their fans an opportunity to see them up close.
Theme Parks. Someone in theme park land has some system for figuring out where to put theme parks so that they are close to enough people to support the parks, but far enough from each other.
See where I’m going?
Congress should hit the road. Pick up the whole legislative body and play some away games. No, obviously, they couldn’t go to all 50 states or they’d spend more time traveling than they would legislating–though that might not be a bad thing–but they could take a hint from the theme park industry and pick places that draw on large populations.
If they met in Nashville for a few weeks, citizens could easily come from all over the mid-South–Kentucky, Tennessee, northern Mississippi, northern Alabama, Northern Georgia, the western Carolinas and western Virginia; the lower Midwest–southern Illinois, southern Indiana, southern Ohio, eastern Missouri; and whatever the hell region Arkansas is.
Think of the boon for democracy that would be, for folks to have the opportunity to see how the government works. Think of the boon for local economies. And, we have those capitol buildings that stand empty most of the time, so there’d be a place to hold it.
It’d be great.
Also, I was thinking how awesome it would be to then host a big dinner for Congress, invite them over to the apartment, let Tom DeLay spend some quality time on the couch cowering from the dog. Hell, I bet you $100 they’d find that crackhead who’s been wandering the railroad tracks, breaking into people’s houses and robbing them right quick if I were going to have 535 members of Congress hanging out between the railroad tracks and the interstate.
I’d ask Bill Frist to stand in the kitchen and explain to the cats why he thought it was okay for him to adopt kittens from shelters in order to kill them.
And I’d get up on the chair at various times throughout the evening and toast Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who seems imbued with such smarts, common sense, and plain-spokenness that I can’t believe she’s really in Congress.