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Ideas to guide those want to help with our nation’s transition to its next life.

Every so often this year I remind myself, “Wait, you have a campaign to run. No one will vote for you, if you do not volunteer.” That is how it works in professional and civic organizations, which die slowly by the dozens for want of volunteer leadership. That is how it ought to work for a dying nation as well. We want people to care for it while it undergoes this painful and prolonged transition to its next life.

Plus, as journalists remind us repeatedly now August has arrived, we have less than a hundred days to go now. You can tell our writers of record cannot wait for this pandemic saturated campaign to end, especially as public opinion now appears to favor their candidate. Any new leader, they suggest, must be better than our current leadership. We will see. Dying nations do not need leadership so much as a caretaker. I suppose Joe Biden qualifies. He does look like one.

As my online day-and-time counter tells me, we have only eighty-six and a half days until the big day, November 3. That is 2,076 hours, if anyone cares. Each hour spent is an hour lost, by deathbed calculations. Attending physician asks, “How many hours until our patient expires?” Assistant: “Hard to say…” Physician: “Well, tell our patient he’s our new president. See if that revives him.”

So here is my program for the country. Since all of the planks in the platform require no effort on my part, I will not collect any pay for my time in the White House. In fact, I do not believe I will go to the White House, as it is way hard to quarantine there, with so many staff hanging about the West Wing, and Secret Service bodyguards close by every time you want to step out for exercise and fresh air.

Thus I believe I’ll stay home here in Westwood, to work remotely. I have worked remotely since March, and do not see good reason to change that now. Moreover, if you want to remove rot from Washington, move the seat of government out of the city. Property values may decline, but that would not be so terrible for people who want to move to the district.

We need to focus on opportunities for change. How can we prepare our country’s soul for its new body? These proposals help. Nine of them are purely passive: all they require is that we stop doing something. Given inertia, ceasing an activity requires effort, too, but we need not dwell on that at the moment. Some proposals require changes in tax laws, which always require effort. Our tenth proposal requires sustained effort from numerous people, but directly addresses processes of expiration and decay we can no longer ignore, or wish out of existence.

All of these proposals address practices and agencies under direct control of our federal government. As federal policies and priorities change, so perhaps will state and local practices.

  1. End torture, and all mistreatment of prisoners. That includes solitary confinement.
  2. End domestic surveillance of all types.
  3. Disband domestic police forces. Policing is a local activity.
  4. End foreign wars, and all military actions overseas.
  5. End tariffs, duties, and taxation of foreign goods and services.
  6. Welcome immigrants for a new start in the United States.
  7. Make narcotic drugs and other medications legal. Do not restrict their distribution.
  8. Remove taxes and regulations that hamper freedom in the labor market.
  9. Remove regulations and incentives that restrict access to health care.
  10. Convene representatives from each state for a second constitutional convention.

We will have more on the tenth proposal in another post, though I have already written on the subject in Revolution on the Ground. We must act with celerity on this front, to complete the convention’s business no later than 2026. Let us be ready for our two hundred and fiftieth birthday.

Three other points for our agenda, three more things we want to do: (1) consider how incremental change might occur in any of these areas; (2) anticipate financial consequences of these changes; (3) to enlist support, place these changes in context, both historical and political.