Friday, July 24, 2015

Practical Jokes & Political Jokers

The main reason I hate practical jokes is because they aren’t funny. It’s bad enough that their sole purpose is to humiliate someone by making him the brunt of the nastiness. But then, for good measure, he has to pretend he enjoyed it more than anyone, lest he be regarded as being a bad sport and lacking a sense of humor.

That is pretty much how I regard the election and re-election of Barack Obama. He’s a very bad joke perpetrated by 70 million lunkheads and if the rest of us don’t pretend to be happy about it, we’re labeled racists.

As some of you know, I welcomed Donald Trump into the race, not because I wanted to see him elected, but because every election should have a gadfly who can afford to utter some uncomfortable truths, mainly because it won’t cost him the election. But I keep hearing rumors that if he doesn’t garner the GOP nomination, Trump would consider running as a third party candidate. Rumors, he hasn’t seen fit to deny. As anyone, including Hillary Clinton understands, it’s only the Republicans who ever splinter their party. You can bet that even the most avid supporters of Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden will unite in voting for Hillary in 2016.

But when it comes to those who carry the banner for Rand Paul and Rick Santorum, there are no such guarantees they will rally around the Republican nominee. So if Trump decides that his ego can’t accept being passed over in favor of Walker, Perry, Fiorina or even Bush, and insists on running as a third party candidate, I will hate him even more than I hate Hillary.

America really doesn’t need another Ross Perot paving the way for a third Clinton presidency.

Knowing that I don’t watch late night TV talk shows, a friend sent me a Conan O’Brien line I wish I’d written: “Did it surprise anyone that the country that invented the philosophy major just went broke?”

The single purpose of the BDS (boycott, divest, sanctions) movement now gathering steam on our college campuses is to isolate and dehumanize Israel. Under the pretense that Israel is oppressing the Palestinians -- those wonderful people who voted to be governed by the terrorist group Hamas -- college professors and their young charges are doing the dirty work for the Jew-haters in the Middle East.

Conservative parents should determine if their offspring are taking part in this campaign. If that’s the case, they should try to talk sense to them. If that doesn’t work, cut off their allowances. If even that fails, have them abducted and reprogrammed the way parents used to do in the 80s and 90s when so many young airheads fell under the influence of cult leaders.

I can’t begin to imagine how heartbreaking it must be for parents -- particularly Jewish conservatives -- to discover that their children are proud to join forces with the anti-Semites. It’s bad enough raising liberals without having the kids wind up being nothing more than what various Kremlin leaders dismissed over the years as “useful idiots.”

The worst thing about these idiots is that they often have the notoriety required to inspire others to join their misbegotten movement. Some of the better known inhabitants of the open-air asylum have included H.G. Wells, George Bernard Shaw, Walter Duranty, Paul Robeson, Dalton Trumbo, Henry Wallace, Alger Hiss, Lillian Hellman, Kim Philby, Guy Burgess, Donald Maclean, Edward Snowden and Pope Francis. The moral of their sad story is that education lacking wisdom or even the vestige of common sense is as useless as a top hat on a rooster.

Recently a reader passed along a political quiz consisting of a series of questions on everything from taxes and social issues to the defense budget and ObamaCare. Once you took the quiz, which consisted of about 30 multiple choice answers, you were told with which of the presidential contenders you were most closely aligned.

After answering all the questions, I was informed that I agreed with Marco Rubio 95% of the time. So far as the others went, Cruz and I saw eye to eye 89% of the time, Walker 80% of the time, Bush 79%, all the way down to Bernie Sanders at 30%. I thought it was possible that Rubio and I were, politically speaking, Siamese twins. After all, I can’t pretend I was aware of Rubio’s position on all these various issues. Heck, until I took the quiz, I wasn’t even sure how I felt about some of them.

Still, I am enough of a skeptic to question just about everything sent my way. So, as a test, I then passed the quiz along to my wife and a dozen friends. Eight of them got back to me. And would you believe that every single one of them wound up being most closely aligned with Marco Rubio? In fact, 95% turned out to be the magic number.

Although I had to admit I thought it was cleverly carried off, it has led me to harbor second thoughts about Florida’s junior senator. It struck me as the sort of cheap trick I have come to expect of Democrats.

Another of my readers, Dr. Richard Stiso, let me know that if he could ask Hillary Clinton one question, it would be the same one put to her husband in 1992: namely, whether she wears boxers or briefs.

The media is amazed -- so easy to amaze the media -- that Bernie Sanders is drawing enormous crowds, the largest of any contender. Perhaps it’s because the media knows even less about history than they do about current events, but they’d do well to recall that in 1948, another hero of the Left, a former vice-president named Henry Wallace, drew tremendous crowds. Wallace, a mouthpiece for the Soviet Union, drew even larger crowds than either Harry Truman or Tom Dewey, but on Election Day, he ran fourth, trailing even segregationist Strom Thurmond (D, SC).

In the end, Truman won with 24 million popular votes and 303 electoral votes, Dewey garnered 22 million and 189, Senator Thurmond received 1,168,134 votes and even 39 electoral votes. In the meantime, Wallace, the crowd favorite, collected a measly 1,157,057 votes and not a single electoral vote.

Finally, an ancient Chinese philosopher-once observed: “It is when you see a mosquito landing on your testicles that you realize there is always a way to solve problems without resorting to violence.”

However, it was a great American sage, yours truly, who observed: “Violence should be met with even greater violence. Otherwise, they win and you lose. And so far as mosquitoes are concerned, a great many problems could be avoided if men, politicians in particular, would just learn to keep their pants on.”

©2015 Burt Prelutsky. Comments?