Ron (portrayed by Nick Offerman), is the head of the Parks Department of the fictional town Pawnee, Indiana. As the audience was introduced to Ron, he said:
"Iíve been quite open about this around the office: I donít want this parks department to build any parks, because I donít believe in government. I think that all government is a waste of taxpayer money. My dream is to have the park system privatized and run entirely for profit by corporations, like Chuck E. Cheese. They have an impeccable business model. I would rather work for Chuck E. Cheese."
Whoa! Someone who is as cynical of government as me. Although I happen to feel that not all of government is a waste (we need the military for defense), I quickly grew to enjoy the character of Ron. It was quite refreshing to see a character on Tv who did not espouse liberal or progressive viewpoints.
In subsequent episodes, it was revealed that Ron is, in fact, a libertarian. He is given enough screen time, and is frequently promoting libertarian themes, thusly the show is satisfying enough for me that I have bought both the first and second season on DVD. Witnessing Ron's no-nonsense, personal-freedom-first attitude, which sometimes foils government growth, is incredibly delicious. In an episode in which the government was going to start restricting what kind of food could be sold on public land, Ron said:
"The whole point of this country is if you want to eat garbage, balloon up to 600 pounds and die of a heart attack at 43, you can. You are free to do so. To me, that is beautiful."
In a recent episode, Ron had to substitute as the host of an art show sponsored by the government. He started the show thusly:
"Welcome to 'Visions of Nature.' This room has several paintings in it, some are big some are small. People did them and they are here now. After this is over, they'll be hung in government buildings. Why the government is involved in an art show is beyond me. I also think it's pointless for a human to paint scenes of nature when they could just go outside and stand in it."
It wasn't until I watched last week's episode, Road Trip, that I realized that I have a man crush on Ron Swanson. In the episode, a young girl comes to the Parks Department to interview a government employee. At the time, Ron is the only employee present, so he asks the girl to wait until someone else arrives. No one does, and Ron grants the girl the chance to interview him when he finds out that the subject of the interview is "Why government matters."
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As he stole and ate the girls lunch to demonstrate how the government takes taxes by force, my man crush was realized. His cellphone ringtone is the sound of a shotgun cocking and shooting, he hates government regulations, he doesn't understand vegetarians, he loathes citizens who rely on the government. Ron Swanson is quite possibly my favorite fictional character. And if my wife would let me, I'd grow a Swanson mustache just to honor the character.
What do you think of Ron Swanson?
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