Friday, November 23, 2012

CLEARING THE DESK

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by Burt Prelutsky

Every so often, I find myself being buried in memos I have jotted down. It is then that I decide it’s time to unburden myself, lest my wife walks into my office one day and finds our dog frantically trying to dig me out.

To begin with, in the aftermath of the election, I found myself thinking that, as hopeless as things look, if Germany, Japan and Italy, could all recover from the mess that Hitler, Hirohito and Mussolini, got them into, it’s just possible that we will ultimately be able to survive Obama. But I sure wish we didn’t have to wait four years to find out.

I was also reminded of something I believe Winston Churchill once said: “The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with a typical voter.”

In Metamorphosis, a novella Franz Kafka wrote nearly a century ago, his protagonist, Gregor Samsa, wakes up one morning to find he’s been transformed into an ungeheuron Ungeziefer, which, literally translated, is a monstrous vermin, but is generally taken to be a cockroach. I can’t help thinking that in a modern version, it would be great to have a cockroach wake up in the White House and be magically transformed into a human being.

I think the reason that Democrats get away with so much cheating at election time is that they have managed to turn it into joke material. Although voting is one of the most sacred duties Americans have, we have all grown accustomed to joshing about people in Chicago voting early and often and about dead people casting ballots. We all know that it has become habitual for Democrats such as Al Franken, when finding themselves in tough elections, to suddenly have boxes of uncounted Democratic ballots showing up in closets, church basements and the trunks of ’87 Buicks.

In a way, it’s like all the jokes we used to hear about Siberia when the brutal Soviet Union, the left-winger’s weird notion of Paradise, was using it as a frozen burial ground for political dissidents. Nobody, you must have noticed, ever made comparable jokes about Auschwitz and Buchenwald.

We’re all much better off when we confine ourselves to making fun of liberals. For instance, it was recently discovered by 48 year old ditz Janeane Garofalo that she’d been married for the past 20 years to TV producer Rob Cohen. As she tells it: “We got married drunk in Vegas at a drive-through chapel while sitting in a cab. We thought you had to go down to the courthouse and sign papers and stuff, so who knew? But apparently now that Rob is getting married for real, his lawyer dug up something.”

Perhaps what he dug up was an article I wrote a few years ago in which I made fun of a number of show biz marriages, including hers!

Keep in mind this is a middle-aged woman who has devoted a good part of her life to calling conservatives stupid. I guess when you get to a certain age and are still saying things like “sign papers and stuff,” you have formally declared your intention of remaining a perpetual teenager, no matter what it says on your birth certificate, on your marriage license or in your mirror.

If the folks at Columbia who hand out Pulitzer Prizes were actually in the business of recognizing journalistic excellence -- and not merely out to make the NY Times, in the face of diminished readership and revenue, feel good about itself -- they would recognize Fox News for its singular coverage of the Benghazi massacre and the subsequent cover-up, a political scandal that dwarfs Tea Pot Dome, Iran-Contra and Watergate.

Speaking of Benghazi, I can’t recall a time when military brass has been quite this tarnished. In addition to Generals David Petraeus and John Allen, we have recently seen 4-star General William (“Kip”) Ward lose two stars for squandering hundreds of thousands of our tax dollars treating himself and his relatives to travel on military jets and luxurious hotel accommodations; and Brig. General Jeffrey Sinclair stands a mighty fine chance of winding up in Leavenworth for raping and sodomizing women in the military and for turning a blind eye to troops under his command in Afghanistan doing the same.

Although I have great respect for the grunts who do the fighting and dying in far-off places, I have pretty much of a jaundiced eye when it comes to generals. This is especially so in the case of those who have risen in the ranks since the days when Jimmy Carter was the commander-in-chief. I have come to see them as people who would have been typical politicians had they elected to remain civilians. The way I see it, unless you die in action or come home with missing body parts, you’re not entitled to assume you command the moral high ground and you’re certainly not entitled to sport more medals than Idi Amin.

Finally, I have to confess that I have never understood the LGBT alliance. I really can’t imagine why any self-respecting lesbian or gay person would want to align him or herself with bisexuals, who half the time are consorting with the enemy, and the transgender crowd, those poor muddled souls who can’t even figure out which bathroom to use.
©2012 Burt Prelutsky. Comments? BurtPrelutsky@aol.com.

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