President Dodgeball

May 16, 2008

Lately, I’ve seen the word elitism and elitist bandied about as though they were four-letter words (and the really bad ones, too!). It seems that these words, when in reference to potential leaders, are very bad, indeed. Both words derive from the root word elite and damned if I didn’t think elite was something good.

A quick Google search reveals an endless number of businesses that proudly boast of being elite. The Elite Lighting Company of Montebello, California proclaims that they are “No. 1 in Recessed Lighting.”

The Elite Model Agency crows of being the most prestigious modeling agency in the world and, as models are a good thing, it seems elite ones would be better.

When there’s trouble abroad, it’s not mediocre Army Rangers which are sent in but, rather, elite Army Rangers.

Yet, in our leaders, it seems far preferable to have someone just like us. In other words, the average American, I’m lead to believe, would rather have the person that delivered their pizza representing them on the global stage than someone who might be considered “elite.”

It makes me think of Joe, one of my label reps at the record store where I once worked. Another rep astutely dubbed him “Dodgeball,” reasoning that he certainly had been the bull’s eye for all during the childhood game.

Something tells me that dodgeball was, as it had been for Joe, integral to the childhood of Dubya. There’s no doubt that in this ritual of youth Dubya, with that self-satisfied smirk, was either a prime target, or, as an insecure half-wit with no discernible talents, was the ringleader, marshaling other insecure half-wits to inflict pain on the unpopular kid (or, perhaps, the kid with oil reserves).

I realized that, in this desire to shun the elite, we have spent the past eight years with President Dodgeball occupying the Oval Office.

To my surprise, I actually have a song with dodgeball in the title.

Tywanna Jo Baskette – Dodgeball

Drugstore – El President

Psychedelic Furs – President Gas

Randy Newman – Mr. President (Have Pity On The Working Man)