Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Experience Democracy Inaction

The American Coaster Enthusiasts are currently in the midst of their elections for executive officers. As a helpful public service, ARN&R weighs in with analysis of this important time for coaster enthusiasts. Some of you may complain that this information is not all that timely, since ballots must be postmarked by July 15th. "Why have you just now given us your opinion, when as many as five or six people have already returned their ballots and as many as six or seven more will only have two days to ponder who to vote for before sending theirs in?" you may well ask. Well, don't blame us. Some of us, namely the author of this article, just received our f**king ballot yesterday, not that this should be a huge surprise, considering that our membership renewal form arrived well after our membership had expired last year and our ACE News and Rollercoaster! issues frequently appear approximately three decades after the claimed publication date. Anyway, here's a breakdown of the ACE offices up for grabs this year, largely based on the official candidate platforms sent out by ACE:

President

In what can only be regarded as completely stunning news, it has been announced that Jason Pytka, candidate for President of the American Coaster Enthusiasts, has dropped out of the race. According to some sources, this was actually shocking news some time ago, but since, as was already mentioned, this reporter received his ballot yesterday, some of us are freshly shocked as late as today.

If you couldn't tell, we're being a little sarcastic. Pytka gave us one of the greatest belly laughs of our entire lives with his election platform. The main gist of the opening paragraph of said platform was to state that Pytka would be competing against Carole Sanderson merely because it's a bad idea for anyone to be able to run opposed in a democratic election. He then promptly encouraged everyone to vote for Sanderson and announced his intention to withdraw from the race. Um...if you're in a race because you don't want someone running unopposed, and then you say just to vote for the other person because they're fine and that, by the way, you don't want the job and you're going to drop out, isn't the other person still running unopposed?????

Just wondering.

Of course, Pytka's clearly-stated ambition not to be ACE President failed to dissuade him from taking up a good 6,341 pages (okay, we're exaggerating; it's more like 5,310) detailing exactly what policies and ideas he'd like to see ACE implement, were he actually to run for office, which he isn't. Amongst the acres of text were such hoot-worthy concepts as higher reimbursement for ACE officials and the hallucinatory belief that ACE will have 100,000 members and Congressional lobbyists within a decade or two.

Of course, it might not have been the best election strategy for his opponent...er, former opponent...er, the person he was encouraging people to vote for all along...to mention in her election platform how ACE, during her presidential tenure, lost its management company without notice and dealt with unprecedented membership misbehavior and safety issues.

Vice President

Unlike Carole Sanderson, Mark Cole has been running unopposed for the entire election, not having to deal with a pesky fake opposition. With that in mind, we're pretty sure he's got this baby wrapped up, unless the number of smart-ass enthusiasts sending in votes for "Bill the Cat" or "My Butt" actually exceeds the number who check off real candidates.

Secretary

It doesn't take a huge leap of mental prowess to guess our opinion on this one. As stated in our Breaking News already, Jeffrey Seifert fails to mention in his 2004 election platform that he doesn't care what the opinion of ordinary ACE members is. As the public belittling of ordinary ACE members has been a large part of Seifert's past term, it seems puzzling that he fails to include information on how much he intends to use his position to disparage and badger the opinions of his constituency in the future. He also fails to mention his generally surly and combative attitude toward the ACE membership.

We don't know much about Debbie Sykes, except what she lists in her election platform. Yes, it's "true" that "she" likes "to" use "scare quotes" a little "too" often in her candidate "platform," but since she hasn't used an ACE post to demean the ACE membership in an official capacity, she's got our vote. Unless we go for Bill the Cat.

Treasurer

One must read subtext in this particular election. For instance, one might read the platform of Jason Burkett and think, "well, he supports families being able to attend coaster conventions...that's not bad." But then one might wish to remember that Burkett is also known as Rastus O'Ginga, who believes "homosexuality is a defect," and then one might begin to wonder just what sort of crazed, paranoid, homophobic policies he might implement while in office.

No, better to vote for the other candidate, perhaps. Bill the Cat it is.

Just kidding. Jerry Willard, we meant.

NRCMA Board of Directors

Oh, good grief. Just vote for Ueberroth and Munch and don't worry about it, alright? You've got one ACE founder and one who's been there almost as long, and they've actually done plenty of hard work for the club and for coaster enthusiasm for many years. Plus they don't go online to tell other club members their opinions are unimportant and stupid or anything, like certain people.

Also, Richard Munch is just a really strong, tall guy who could probably snap us like a twig if he wanted, so he's got our endorsement!

--JCK