By David G. Firestone
Imagine you are an investor, and I come to you with a proposition. I have a company that I want you to invest in. It will cost $300,000,000 to start, and will bring in $400,000 a year. I ask you if you want to invest in my company. What would you say to that? Of course you at least would say no, add in a few profanities, and probably kick me in the groin for asking such a dumb question. It’s an investment that makes no sense to anyone…except people running for President of The United States.
In every Presidential election in my lifetime, the lead candidates have spent hundreds of millions of dollars trying to get a job that guarantees $400,000 a year, over the course of 4 years, for a total of $1,600,000. While most of the money comes from independent donors, the fact is that the amount of money spent trying to win the Presidency is obscene.
This is just one of the reasons why you or I will never run for President. The majority of Americans do not have the financial resources to make a serious run for office. But would we want to run for office? While we might say we do, we really don’t. The majority of us couldn’t handle the demands and restriction that being the President brings us.
Imagine if you accepted a job where you were on duty 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, were you can’t get off duty, even to go on vacation, and can’t go anywhere without extensive planning and security. Now imagine as a part of this job, you will have at least half the country hating you, many people want to kill you, and the majority of coworkers you have to deal with don’t trust you. You also have to accept blame for a lot of stuff that isn’t your fault. On top of all that, the media is watching everything, and I mean EVERYTHING you are doing, looking up your past, interviewing your friends, family, former coworkers, former classmates to find some dirt on you. Now, taking all of that into consideration, would you take the job?
Most of us wouldn’t because it would be too much. For the candidates however, these restrictions aren’t too much. They have worked their whole lives since they were children to become President. They have spent their whole lives becoming politicians, and are able to handle the restrictions. They have the mental toughness to handle the criticisms thrown at them. The have spent their whole careers being on call 24/7/365.
While we give politicians a lot of shit, the majority of us don’t have the skills, resources, and coping mechanisms to handle it. I won’t run for office, and I don’t think many of you should either