No, not literally (yeow, there’s an image I don’t need). Harris had some wonderful commentary in Newsweek on the Republican VP candidate. Of particular worth is the following comment regarding “elitism” in US politics:
Ask yourself: how has “elitism” become a bad word in American politics? There is simply no other walk of life in which extraordinary talent and rigorous training are denigrated. We want elite pilots to fly our planes, elite troops to undertake our most critical missions, elite athletes to represent us in competition and elite scientists to devote the most productive years of their lives to curing our diseases. And yet, when it comes time to vest people with even greater responsibilities, we consider it a virtue to shun any and all standards of excellence. When it comes to choosing the people whose thoughts and actions will decide the fates of millions, then we suddenly want someone just like us, someone fit to have a beer with, someone down-to-earth–in fact, almost anyone, provided that he or she doesn’t seem too intelligent or well educated.
I never understood how people could see the “just a plain guy” image as a positive in situations such as this. I would never want a presidential candidate whose idea of a good time is having a beer with me. I want someone who would be stultifyingly bored by the concept. I certainly don’t want someone who’s just like the average citizen. I want someone who is way, way, way smarter than the average citizen. Otherwise, we might as well use a lottery system for the presidency. Are people really so threatened by the intelligence of others that they’d gladly forfeit their future for immediate emotional comfort?