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TOUR DE FARCE
By David Podvin
Following George W. Bush’s speech to the United Nations General Assembly,
there was a television panel discussion in which the awestruck participants
expressed their gratitude for being privileged to witness such incomparable
brilliance. The Bush performance, each panelist eagerly agreed, was a “tour de
force”. I watched until my nausea threshold was exceeded, which occurred
at the precise moment when one of the deep thinkers explained that the decision
to bomb innocent civilians without any documented provocation reveals Bush to be
a “great peacemaker”.
I could have sworn that I heard Lewis Carroll laughing somewhere in the
background. Up really is down, and black really is white, if you are decent
enough to believe it is so.
The Bush speech was an explanation of how Saddam Hussein is so evil that only
a degenerate could ever possibly support him, a point that I intend to emphasize
during my upcoming campaign to remove Ronald Reagan’s name from Washington
National Airport. Bush failed to explicitly spell out why we are going to kill
Iraqis when it was Saudis who terrorized America, but he provided a hint:
“In 1993, Iraq attempted to assassinate the Emir of Kuwait and a former
The regime in Indonesia has massacred many more East Timorans than Hussein
has killed Kurds.
The regime in Sudan has slaughtered two million people, many more than
Hussein is reported to have killed.
The regime in China has also murdered many more people than has Hussein.
But no one except Hussein has tried to kill Poppy Bush. More importantly, no
one except Hussein is sitting on a vast reservoir of oil that can be easily
stolen in the name of freedom and justice. Iraq is therefore nominated to be the
location of the next war to promote peace, part of the ongoing effort by Bush to
loot as much of the world’s treasure as possible on behalf of the corporate
interests that financed his seizure of the White House.
The first evidence that Bush’s public pronouncements about Iraq are a
subterfuge surfaced last year when W invoked the name of Adolf Hitler. There are
few people who have maliciously destroyed as many innocent human lives as
Hitler, and Saddam Hussein isn’t one of them. Hussein is a sadistic bully, but
there is an all-important logistical difference between him and Hitler: The
German military-industrial complex was so powerful that it conquered Europe and
threatened to take over the world; the Iraqi military-sheep herding complex is
so feeble that it has been unable to entirely subdue the Kurds. In the minds of
conservatives, this distinction is excessively subtle.
The current litany of complaints against Hussein could be used to justify
overthrowing many – if not most – of the governments in the world, including
our own. The most legitimate Bush rationale for toppling the Iraqi dictator is
that Hussein did not gain power through an honest vote of his own people.
Apparently, what happened is that there were some election night irregularities
engineered by Hussein’s younger brother, Jeb…
There is going to be a military assault on Iraq, even if Condoleezza Rice -
the National Security advisor, not the oil tanker – must be assigned to
manufacture photographic evidence proving Saddam personally croaked Mother
Theresa. When you blatantly govern in a way that disenfranchises the vast
majority of Americans so that your corporate contributors don’t have to share
the nation’s wealth with the unwashed masses, diversionary tactics become a
constant necessity. The war machine is now whipping the majority of the American
people into a blind frenzy, which really isn’t very hard to do. In the face of
hysterical nationalism, logic and reason have been rendered subversive. Bush
discovered that al Qaida was too elusive to make a good enemy, so he’s found a
stationary target. Many defenseless people will die, but life is a series of
trade-offs. A crushing military victory should be just the tonic to boost those
sagging approval ratings before they drop back below fifty percent.
It remains to be seen which country, after Iraq, will be the next to get the
Rodney King treatment. There is one incredibly exciting possibility. Bush has
said that the Iraqi government must be eliminated because it has acted in
defiance of the expressed will of the United Nations. Intriguingly, the
government of Vietnam is still in noncompliance with several U.N. resolutions.
The sense of nostalgia should be overwhelming when the American military soon
returns to the Mekong Delta; every true patriot can already see the light at the
end of the tunnel.
Mae West once said that the problem with a good memory is that it will drive
you insane. Most Americans are too mentally robust to remember they were told by
Reagan during the 1980’s that we had to support Hussein (and his nuclear
program) because - if Iraq were to be conquered - the hostile factions within
the country would break up into warring little states. As a result, our sworn
enemy Iran would become the unchallenged power in the region. Even after Saddam
used chemical weapons against the Kurds, Reagan continued to back him, as did
Dick Cheney and Colin Powell and Donald Rumsfeld. Now, Bush is determined to do
what the Gipper said would be a tragic mistake, and the very same people who
passionately supported the Reagan policy (and accused those who disagreed of
being disloyal) are now passionately supporting the diametrically opposite Bush
policy (and accusing those who disagree of being disloyal).
Somewhere, Lewis Carroll is still laughing.
Unfortunately, countless children are about to lose their lives so that
another Bush family score can be settled and another resource-rich country can
be plundered. Inevitably, there will also be numerous fatalities among Iraqi
fetuses. Bush and his pious “pro-life” brethren have infinite devotion to
the sanctity of the unborn - at home and abroad - right up until the disposable
little bastards get in the way of going to war. The head of one anti-choice
organization has blessed the attack on Iraq, saying all God-fearing people know
the difference between murdering babies through abortion and the inevitable
collateral damage that takes the lives of enemy combatant embryos.
It is a crazy, fucked up world in which we live. Inarticulate fools are
lionized by corporate media fluffers for having nonexistent wisdom. Truth is
something to be simultaneously exalted and avoided at all costs. What’s right
or wrong is always subservient to what’s expedient, and anyone who notices is
unpatriotic. Religious people tell us humans are special because we have souls
that distinguish us from animals, and then they insist that we behave like
sheep. Worst of all, this tidal wave of psychosis is presented deadpan, as
though it were not the absolute height of insanity.
It is insanity. Once again, the madness of crowds is being roiled by
deceivers who always turn out to be far less clever than they imagine themselves
to be. The most powerful country in the history of the world is now
enthusiastically preparing to annihilate countless victims of Saddam Hussein
based upon unsubstantiated allegations from a counterfeit president, all in the
name of peace and love and kindness. Bush first says that he has absolutely no
problem with the Iraqi people, and then he insists we must launch a devastating
all-out attack on them, and the majority of Americans nod in agreement at this
sage logical couplet. It is the epitome of burlesque, except that it will result
in the slaughter of far more innocent people than Osama bin Laden has killed.
However – and it is absolutely essential for our morale that we always
remember this – the people we are about butcher are not Americans, so it
doesn’t count. Back home in the greatest nation on God’s green earth,
victory parades will be held and star spangled banners will be waved by cheering
patriots who (courtesy of the discreet mainstream media) will be blissfully
unaware of the extraordinary carnage that has been committed in their
names. Our deserter-in-chief will be surrealistically hailed as a war hero for
manfully using high tech weaponry to exterminate people who live in huts.
Meanwhile, new schemes will be quietly devised to manufacture and then destroy
the next false incarnation of the Fuehrer.
We are about to experience a glorious victory, the kind where you can swing
from the heels without ever having to worry about getting hit back because you
have chosen your opponent so wisely. In the land of the free and the home of the
brave, the deaths of Iraqi women and children won’t even be mentioned, except
by a few seditious fringe people, and those malcontents had better learn to keep
their mouths shut before they also start reminding Bush of Adolf Hitler.
In Iraq, the survivors will be busy burying civilians who would still be
alive if only their continued existence had been profitable for the members of
the American Petroleum Institute. The Iraqis will be the latest of God’s
children to find out that, scriptural misinterpretations notwithstanding, the
value of human life does not transcend the borders of the United States of
America. They, too, will have learned that anyone who gets in the way of George
W. Bush is first demonized and then destroyed.
The people of Iraq are about to move up in class. For decades, they have been
terrorized by a second rate military operating at the behest of a lawless
unelected warlord who will do anything to retain power. Now, they are going to
be terrorized by a first rate military operating at the behest of a lawless
unelected warlord who will do anything to retain power. We can only hope that
those uneducated peasants are sophisticated enough to appreciate the upgrade.
In the end, George W. Bush will address a joint session of Congress. He will
receive dozens of standing ovations from Republicans and Democrats alike. He
will honor the military for saving so many lives by ending so many lives, thank
the Prince of Peace for inspiring us to eviscerate our enemies, and congratulate
the American people for their heroism in standing up to a Third World country
that spends less on armaments than we spend on pornography. He will also
mispronounce several words and give every outward manifestation of having been
lobotomized, but no one who loves this nation will ever notice. Television
analysts will proclaim with straight faces that this is a sublime moment for God
and country, that goodness has triumphed over badness, that Bush truly is
Alexander the Greatest, and that his speech was a “tour de force”.
And somewhere, Lewis Carroll - master of the absurd - will be laughing harder than ever.
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