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Thursday, 8 May 2008

image for A foreigners guide to the U.S. Election process - Part 1 Nomination The ceremonial act of 'voting'

The United States of America was formed in 1776 after the British gave up arguing and went home. Since then the citizens of the United States have created an electoral process that is the envy of dictatorships and banana republics all over the world.

The first stage to becoming President is having lots of money. The second stage is called 'winning the nomination'. Here is how it works

There are two parties, Red and Blue. At birth you decide with your own free will and with all the available intellectual arguments at hand, whether you wish to be Red or Blue. To help you remember, the Blue party have an Elephant as its mascot (Rush Limbaugh) and the Reds have a Donkey (John Kerry) as its mascot.

The Elephants favour ideas like killing all foreigners (except Saudis), re-introducing slavery and tax-cuts for hard-working billionaires whilst the Donkeys like ideas such as talking, having a nice cup of tea and whining until you get what you want. All of this is largely irrelevant as the voters just have to pick the animal they like best - Elephant or Donkey.

To become President you must win the support of your party throughout the country ('winning the nomination), then defeat the nominee from the other party.

It is important to note at this stage that there are only two parties. Although America is often described as 'the melting pot' and contains a huge spectrum of people with wildly differing agendas and beliefs, it is expected that every citizen is either a Donkey or an Elephant follower. This is democracy and should not be criticised*

To win the support of your party you go through a process called 'Pandering'. This involves visiting each state and pretending you are actually from there by following widely known stereotypes. Whilst Pandering, each nominee also takes the time to listen and understand the arguments of their opponents then throws a large amount of their own faeces at them. Throwing and dodging faeces is called 'Debating.'

These debates are often televised and are mediated by hard-hitting, professional journalists like Carrot Top, Jessica Simpson and the girl that won Pop Idol. The TV networks may also employ friends of a particular nominee in order to 'showbias.'

'Showbias' is an important tradition in any election. Each television network selects whether it is a Donkey or an Elephant. It is then permitted to assist their favoured nominee by throwing faeces at their viewers. This is the act of Showbias which goes back to the founding of Fox News in 1996 and continues to this very day.

On election day, voters go into small booths and press buttons on machines which are pre-programmed to choose the correct nominee. Often there are stories of voters being unable to vote due to misinformation or their names not appearing on electoral rolls, however this is largely irrelevant as it is the makers of the voting machines along with the television networks who decides the winner. The act of voting itself is merely a traditional ceremony and carries little significance.

It is important that this nomination process goes on for as long as possible in order for the News channels to have something to focus on other than news. After a few months of this 'voting' the TV networks announce who their contenders are to go forward to battle it out for President.

And that is how the nomination process works. Next week we will discover how you become President.

*Patriot Act may apply.

The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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