The 2008 presidential campaign is shaping up to be a bipartisan letdown of monumental proportions. Can there possibly be a die hard fan base for any of the “front runners” larger than the number of people who can crowd around the back of a pickup truck to share a 12-pack?

No, there can not.

The nominating “system,” such as it is, is poised to deliver a bite in the butt to everyone who honestly gives a damn about the future of our nation. Therefore, I say, our best hope as Americans is that the system gets played, tested, teased to the breaking point by circumstances it was not meant to encompass, much like what happened to the BCS this year when everybody started losing games at the tail end of the season.

The integrity of the existing process depends on the primaries boiling down to a single candidate from each party, each with a substantially larger base of support than any third-party challenger can muster. Then, everything can run its supposedly proper course to deliver us two viable candidates – one Democrat, one Republican – by November.

To completely hose this process, we need spoilers, plural: people who can attract enough public support and shave off enough votes in the general election to whittle support for the Two down to surmountable levels.

We know who one of these ought to be: Lou Dobbs. If the Republicans nominate an open borders guy, Lou will have a huge opening.

Who else might jump in as an independent? I don’t know, but chances are better than 50-50 it would be a fortuitous development.

To shave the Democratic side, we need … anyone. Anyone will do. I don’t immerse myself in the strange world of the Democratic electorate enough to pretend to offer an analysis of the most salient issues by which a front runner is likely to piss off a sufficient number of voters to make a third party candidate viable.

But I do know one thing: A ham sandwich with a billion dollars can give anyone a run for their money.

On that note, I hereby heartily endorse New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg’s nascent candidacy.

Bloomberg aides reached out to people involved in ad-making – including one who had been involved in creating the mayor’s vaunted TV spots – asking about their availability in the coming months, the sources said.

That Bloomberg aides would look to lock up an ad team dovetails with what the mayor has privately told people about how he would spend up to $1 billion of his own fortune on an independent run, which would be played out mostly on the TV airwaves and through direct mail.

Do it, Mr. Bloomberg. The system is broken. Your country needs you to help break it completely.