I’ve been mulling over what kinds of positions will need to be filled in my erstwhile administration.
For example, someone needs to fill the post of Minister of Solutions. A difficult problem needs an inventive solution. Take for instance the issue of cars driving by in the middle of the night blasting loud music. As a supervillain, I’d normally solve this by hiring snipers to shoot out the subwoofers of those cars, but the illustrious Randall Munroe had a better idea. Training local wildlife to do the job is exactly the kind of awesomeness I need to harness. On a good day I like to think I can be as nefariously great as Hat Guy, but I’m no rocket scientist. People like this are the kinds of fine minds I need to wipe out the mosquito, although I’m pleased to know that some people are already working on that. (If they ever manage it before I do, I’ll just move on to lice, fleas, ticks, and bedbugs.)
The only spot I’ve filled so far is the Ministry of Compliance, the foreign policy arm of my operation. World domination isn’t actually a goal, just the leeway to accomplish lofty goals that aren’t lame. For this position I’ve already picked the most terrifying person I know: my younger sister. Seriously, don’t screw with her; all nations will fall in line. I trust her to hire her own henchmen, the kind of people who don’t really have to go around doing violence because they know how to be scary when the need arises and reasonable the rest of the time. I’ve always liked Teddy Roosevelt’s Big Stick policy, except if anyone got out of line the “speak softly” part would go right out the window.
But what other top-level positions will I need?
Well, there’s the Ministry of Product Resurrection, which would focus on restoring things to the world that we have lost. That would include the entire line of Hostess products (although that may happen on its own). The old Keebler fudge cookies need to come back—not E.L. Fudge, but the kind that were a cakey chocolatey cookie with a swirly pattern and a fudgy center, and came in a blue bag before their formula was changed and they were brought back as a “classic” kind that didn’t taste right anymore. Several shampoos and soaps I used to use would be made to switch back to their old formulations before they pumped up the fragrance by 3000%. McDonald’s will have to bring back McDonaldland cookies, not just in Happy Meals but for anyone to buy, like they used to. My wife will have several requirements as well, because every time she falls in love with a product it gets discontinued, and I won’t stand for that. If there’s no profit in making any of those I’ll just have my own factories produce them on an as-needed basis—perhaps as seasonal products, which would drive up demand. I’m not averse to resurrecting other brands of merit, whether I liked them or not, for the sake of being a good neighbor.
Then there’s the Ministry of Television. I want to funnel the profits of my empire into running a network, airing the kinds of shows I like (and some that other people will like but I won’t like as much, because it’s just good sense). They’ll have 26-episode seasons because that’s the way it’s supposed to be. 13-episode stuff we can save for summer programming, and I will not tolerate a 7-episode season of anything. There also won’t be any of this stupid “hiatus” or “fall finale” crap. (That’s right, ABC, I’m pointing at you.) There will be a sports network too, because ESPN is run by clowns and the ones who can’t hack it there probably end up working for NBC Sports, an organization so inept that they’re one bad vote away from becoming a branch of the government.
I might need a movie studio, for similar reasons. And if Disney doesn’t fix Star Wars and give us back the original cut (with only the broken special effects fixed, no other significant changes), then they’ll need a good talking-to (see also Ministry of Compliance) and someone to take over the job. But the movie thing should be separate, because this kind of media merging just wouldn’t work well. So I guess that’s a Minister of Film that I’ll have to hire, too.
The Ministry of the Hunt will be in charge of determining who’s behind all the spam on the Internet, viruses, crap like that, and organizing the bounties to be paid for them. I expect this branch to be very popular.
I don’t think there’s any need for a Ministry of Music. What ails the industry can be fixed by several of the aforementioned departments. And I don’t really care if people enjoy music I hate or even if it’s popular and lucrative, as long as I never have to hear it. Yes, even Nicki Minaj can stay famous. But folk music will be banned from TV commercials; you’re welcome.
The Ministry of Mockery will heap hardcore, stinging derision on stupid ideas like E15 gasoline, red light cameras, crazy restrictions on what can be done in school lunches, and the notion that the Segway was ever going to replace the car. (What was that guy thinking? Has he not heard of snow, rain, smog, velocity, passengers, cargo, towing, or sitting down?)
We’ll need a Ministry of Awesome. I don’t know what it’ll do yet, but it had better live up to its name.
What’s left? Well, I’m not sure yet. Long-term planning for this stuff is such a difficult prospect, and there’s a lot of bacon to go through before any of this reaches fruition. I won’t be wanting a propaganda operation, because I expect my policies to be embraced enthusiastically by most people of good sense, and anyway organized propaganda is just creepy. (A pretty good rule of thumb in life is to ask What Would Hitler Do, and then do the opposite.) A lot of the usual positions for supervillains just won’t apply because I’m not gonna be a world-wrecking jerk; where’s the fun in that anyway?