51. Francis Fox Piven
Even though she’s Canadian (shhhhh), this woman knows more about American voters and non-voters than anyone else in the world. Which is why she wrote the book Why Americans Don’t Vote, then the sequel in 2000, Why Americans Still Don’t Vote. She co-founded Human SERVE (an organization to promote voter registration), the aims of which the Clinton administration backed. She has also taught at multiple colleges and done a lot of work to make resources available to lower classes. Piven gets Americans. She knows why we do or don’t achieve to our full potential, why we’ve become jaded toward politics, and she tries to help us. She’ll steer this country in the right direction by simply employing the theories that she discusses in all her books, encouraging us to question her along the way. After all, her latest book was called Challenging Authority: How Ordinary People Change America.
50. My elementary school principal
Eva McKinney was my favorite principal of all time. Now, maybe I’m biased because my last memory of her is getting the Principal’s Award my senior year (oh yes, I used to be smart AND respectable), but I think that she would do a far better job as president than John McCain. For starters, after opening a brand new elementary school, she knows what students need. The pros and cons of No Child Left Behind would be clear to her, and because she always put the kids first, she would make sure to take a step back and fix education before anything else. We can’t have progress if we’re still using teaching standards that don’t work. John McCain thinks (erroneously, of course) that No Child Left Behind is working. Please, talk to any teacher in your local community and ask for their honest opinion. I doubt it will be a rave review of NCLB. Mrs. McKinney would take care of that mess, first thing. And to my knowledge, she never paid for any of her children or grandchildren to attend events with district funds (http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/10/21/palin.travel.ap/index.html). So there’s that.
49. Brett Favre
Favre knows what it’s like to be THE guy wherever he goes. As quarterback for the Green Bay Packers, he had to deal with being a celebrity everywhere he went. The country is crawling with cheeseheads (which would be useful in actually getting him elected). He’s also dedicated to his public. I mean, remember that Oakland Raiders game he played after his father died? Any other normal quarterback would have taken the night off, but Favre couldn’t let the public down and led his team to victory over the Raiders. Our current president (who is a good pal of McCain’s) has taken more vacation days than any other president. Ever. This would not be the case with Favre. I think that the new president will not only need to be dedicated, but he’ll also need to be super-flexible with his schedule and with his goals to accommodate the constant changes in both our economy and foreign relations. Favre’s a pretty flexible guy. I mean, he’s used to calling plays on the field and changing it up when needed (coughIraqcough). Plus, he got traded to the New York Jets this year after being with the Packers for fifteen years, but is he bitter? No.
Well, not publicly.