He’s polling at 8% or better for President of the United States in Iowa, Minnesota, and North Carolina, despite the fact that he doesn’t actually exist and that the young man behind his candidacy is 20 years short of constitutional eligibility for the office.
He’s Deez Nuts, also known as Brady Olson of Wallingford, Iowa. And as silly as the whole thing sounds, the points he’s trying to make seem pretty serious and worthy of our consideration.
Those points, according to an email interview Olson gave to Rolling Stone?
“Half trying to break the two-party system, half frustration with the front-runners. … I really didn’t want to see Clinton, Bush, or Trump in the White House, so I guess I’m just trying to put up a fight. … I side more with the Libertarian Party.”
I don’t know about you, but that’s certainly a platform I can get behind.
Over the next 14 months, we’re going to hear a lot of stuff and nonsense from a set of “major party” candidates the average American would likely fail to distinguish from one another based solely on neutral descriptions of their issues positions.
And then, unfortunately, a minority of us are going to hand one of these clones the keys to the White House (for reference purposes, about 22% of Americans voted for Barack Obama in 2012 — about 78% of Americans chose not to vote, weren’t allowed to vote, or voted for someone else).
Then we’ll settle into the recurring four-year doldrum — some of us blaming the new president for everything bad that happens, some crediting the new president with responsibility for everything good that happens, most of us wondering if it’s really a good idea for this man or woman to have access to nuclear missile launch codes.
A vote for Deez Nuts is a vote for “none of the above.” It’s a vote for the proposition that nobody who really wants the office should be allowed anywhere near that office.
Unfortunately, it’s a vote you won’t be allowed to cast, except perhaps in some states where write-in votes for fictional candidates are counted.
Deez Nuts is a serious candidate cast in a fictional, satirical mold. The “major party” alternatives are bad jokes, editorial cartoon characters drawn as serious choices. And the system that dictates victory for one of the latter is their common punch line.
Thomas L. Knapp is director and senior news analyst at the William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism (thegarrisoncenter.org). He lives and works in north central Florida.
- “Whose Nuts? Deez Nuts! (Who’s Nuts?),” by Thomas L. Knapp, Ventura County, California Citizens Journal, 08/23/15
- “Whose nuts? Deez Nuts! (Who’s nuts?),” by Thomas L. Knapp, Davenport, Iowa Quad-City Times, 08/24/15
- “Whose nuts? Deez Nuts! (Who’s nuts?),” by Thomas L. Knapp, Muscatine, Iowa Journal, 08/24/15
- “Whose nuts? Deez Nuts! (Who’s nuts?),” by Thomas L. Knapp, Richmond, Virginia Legacy, p. 6, 08/26/15