Note to readers: The following transcript of a
conversation among political leaders -- one imagines the room was bugged --
was placed through our mail slot yesterday by a group calling itself the
Bush-Liberation Front. We can't verify the authenticity of the organization
or the document, but, in a curious sort of way, it passes the smell test.
See what you think.
TURD BLOSSOM: I told you, it works like a charm every time. Of course,
it requires a fairly dumbed-down populace to help make it work. But having
that built-in base of die-hard conservatives, a good many of them
fundamentalist Christians who believe and do whatever we tell them, makes it
THE GROPINATOR: I can vouch for that. I mean, look at the trouble I
was in. Got caught red-handed making sexual moves on a good many attractive
young ladies, and my Democrat opponents were calling for me to drop out of
the race as a sexual predator, insensitive to women. But I used the ultimate
spin moves I learned from you, Karl, as well as how a good many
televangelists wormed their way out of their scandals. My base stayed with
me, no problem.
TURD BLOSSOM: You were always a quick learner, Arnold, I can tell you
that. You know the drill. First, you issue a vague, generic apology that
admits to nothing specific, but makes you seem like you're taking
responsibility for your actions. You know, something like: "If I have
offended anybody by my poor behavior, I sincerely apologize. It certainly
wasn't my intent....blah, blah, blah."
Then you bring out the stealth solution that hasn't failed us yet: You say
you're going to set up an investigatory panel to check into all these
allegations -- it's just a vague promise, with nobody named to the probe,
and always in the future tense. The usual result of you promising to
investigate yourself -- what we in the trade call "the O. J. Dodge" -- is
that somehow the air in the bad-press balloon escapes and the issue
disappears from the front pages and TV newscasts. Later, after the election,
your supposed investigation simply disappears -- after all, the people
elected you, scandal or no scandal -- or a spokesman announces that you've
THE PREZ: I have an additional way to take the pressure off me. I can
always get our GOP lapdogs in Congress to set up an "official investigation"
that will do nothing but clear me and shift the blame somewhere else --
maybe to Bill Clinton or at least to Democrats in general, or, if we're not
that lucky, we throw a low-level flunky overboard to take the rap. You're
right: Doing any or all of these approaches deflates the issue in the media,
the public is fooled into believing there really are going to be deep,
serious investigations into what went wrong, and meanwhile, we escape
untouched. Is this a great country, or what?
UNCLE DICK: If things get too hot and you wind up being sued in court,
you simply follow Uncle Dick's Postpone Rulebook, as I like to call it.
That's what I did with my supposed "secret energy panel" brouhaha. You work
the issue all the way through the courts for years, delaying, delaying until
some appeals court or other, with judges you appointed, finds in your favor.
Go fuck yourself, you liberal pansies!-- I love saying that. God, this
country is wonderful!
TURD BLOSSOM: It was a bit trickier with the Katrina fallout, I must
admit. We took some really nasty hits on that one, mainly because
conservative Republicans and rightwing media joined in to bash us on our
lack of timely compassion for the victims of the New Orleans flood. Once we
all returned from our vacations, we ratcheted up our team and came up with
solutions. Trouble was, we were fighting those horrifying TV images the
public had seen for nearly a week on how FEMA and the White House were late
and botched the situation royally. We found we had to go from Plan B to Plan
C really quickly.
For Plan B, first we sent the Prez to the area for photo ops -- of course,
not in downtown New Orleans; couldn't risk photos of poor black people
yelling at him. So we did the next best thing: We got the Prez with some
pickaninnies and their mommas -- put his arm around them, got the girls
laughing, expressing his compassion, that sort of media stuff. Then, we made
sure no major food items got distributed until the Prez arrived, thus making
him a man of action who gets things done. When all that didn't really defuse
our bad image, we went to Plan C.
We dispersed the flood victims all over the country, thus guaranteeing that
the fairly tight black community in New Orleans was no more -- they wouldn't
be able to organize protests anywhere en masse. Then we announced that we
were going to give those lazy welfare bastards $2000 vouchers per family, to
buy essentials -- booze or crack, most likely. Expensive, but we looked
generous, caring, warm -- anything to counter those pictures of dead bodies
floating in the streets while Brown at FEMA, and we in the White House, were
spinning our wheels trying to figure out how to gear up. (Later, of course,
you can always cancel giveaways.)
Then we sent out the emergency spin points to our radio talk-show friends,
freepers and conservative pundits, blaming the New Orleans Dem mayor and the
Dem governor of Louisiana, and reminding our folks to talk always about the
anarchy and violence that ensued in the neighborhoods of Those People. The
son of Willie Horton, I like to call the move. We also found a way to work
Bill Clinton into the equation: We blamed him for the faulty levees.
THE GROPINATOR: Worked like a charm, Karl. The visual images changed
from rotting dead bodies to U.S. soldiers distributing supplies. The talk
shifted from Bush and FEMA to frothing Democrats playing the Blame Game.
Didn't matter if it wasn't true or only half true (with us owning the other
half of the responsibility); the idea was to get the Prez off the hot seat
by pounding our version of events a hundred times a day. As Rush reminds us,
you keep doing that long enough, hard enough, and sooner or later it becomes
the truth. I'm still governor, aren't I? It works, Karl, just like you
TURD BLOSSOM: Need I remind you guys that your approval numbers are
way low? Were it not for our tech-savvy friends out there, we couldn't win
an election for dogcatcher right now, and neither could you, Arnold.
Somewhere between election day 2004 and now, the public seems to have
figured out something. Our job is to make them forget the facts, and alter
those negative feelings and images; we need to frighten the hell out of
them, make them dependent on us as the authority figures who can make them
feel better, and regain our old momentum. If it takes cracking some heads,
or rounding up critical types for 're-education' in summer camps, we'll do
UNCLE DICK: Hey, your mention of "camps" just reminded me that you
three guys have something interesting in common. You all had relatives with
ties to the Third Reich. Karl, your grandfather, a high-up Party man, helped
plan the Birkenau death camp; your father, Arnold, volunteered for the Nazi
S.A. in Austria and worked his way fairly high up in the officer corps; and
your industrialist great-grandfather, Mr. President, helped finance the Nazi
Party from here in America, and your grandfather carried on the tradition --
actually, to the point where the U.S. government shut down his German
money-laundering operation in 1942. I'm really impressed with how you guys
managed to spin your way out of all that.
TURD BLOSSOM: Those Nazis were cruel, inhuman butchers.
THE GROPINATOR: Yes, they were.
THE PREZ: Yep.
TURD BLOSSOM: Still, despite all that, they were masters of societal
manipulation, propaganda and knew how to cleverly destroy their opponents
politically. I've done my research and my reading, and have found much that
is useful for my work. We got rid of the cruelty and anti-Semitism (well,
not quite: Arabs are Semites), and kept what was useful from their effective
methods. Madison Avenue has worked that side of the street for years, why
UNCLE DICK: My two favorites always have been their use of the Big Lie
Technique and their aggressive policy of "preventive war" -- attacking a
potential enemy in advance of any real threat. Nothing like the old
favorites. I don't have your Third Reich connections, but we
neo-conservatives consider ourselves to be carrying out the muscular,
aggressive theories and policies of Leo Strauss -- also Ariel Sharon's
favorite philosopher, even if he was German.
THE GROPINATOR: I guess my dad was a Straussian, without knowing it:
He always liked confronting potential critics threateningly; he loved to
watch them cower in the face of overwhelming power. Who knows? Maybe that's
why I went into bodybuilding and adventure movies. It's so American! I love
how you guys took the concept of "blitzkrieg" and morphed it into
"shock&awe," or "preventive" war into "pre-emptive" war. Classic.
THE PREZ: And we're still in Iraq, as we speak. Works every time.
TURD BLOSSOM: Did you like what I did with the huge "W" banners at the
election-night celebration? Nothing overt, but just enough borrowed from the
'36 Nuremberg Rally to make a subliminal impact. Damn, but those guys knew
how to do ritual on a grand scale, how to build emotion-inducing stage sets
and flags and banners, and how hungry ordinary citizens are to be part of
something bigger and nastier and more successful than themselves. Outright
masters! Where's Leni Riefenstahl now that we need her?
UNCLE DICK: Then you should love what we're doing in the post-Katrina
Gulf States, especially in New Orleans. It's like a grand rehearsal in case,
down the line, we need to use FEMA to round up our enemies, disarm them of
their guns, move them around the country to what Karl here calls our own
free-housing compounds. I mean, there could be a rebellion in the streets if
and when we bomb or invade another Mideast country, or if impeachment looks
like a real possibility and we have to get creative. We need to be prepared.
THE PREZ: "Free-housing compounds." I love that one, Turd Blossom!
TURD BLOSSOM: Glad someone appreciates my sense of humor; thank you,
Mr. President. On the other hand, I thought Michael Brown was the perfect
patsy to follow our future orders as head of FEMA; but the guy was so
clueless, he blew it big time in New Orleans and dug a huge political hole
for us to climb out of. But we'll do it -- with him at the bottom of that
hole; he's so dumb, he didn't even know why we were asking for his
I just hope I have enough time left before that reckless Patrick Fitzgerald
guy lowers the indictment boom on us. That turncoat! But I think I can fix
that too; "national security" requires he back off. I think he's getting the
message. The Boy Genius rides again.
But we're going to have to do a lot of education and spinning to conceal the
true nature of FEMA. Most people think of it as the nation's disaster
agency. But as more and more attention gets focused on it, there's the risk
of its other aspects getting out -- that its more covert function is that of
an invisible government, an enforcement agency beholden to the President
that is above and outside the law. All the more reason to restrict press
access to information and photos in New Orleans and environs. Time to move
on, get our nominees onto the Supreme Court, no looking backwards, no Blame
Game -- mainly 'cause we'd get blamed for sure.
UNCLE DICK: What we need right now is for something happening in the
world that would focus the public's attention elsewhere. Are the Israelis
about to bomb the Iran nuke reactor yet? Any hints of an impending al-Qaida
attack in the U.S.? Golden Gate Bridge? Sears Tower? More anthrax mail?
TURD BLOSSOM: I think I'll go re-read the chapter on the Reichstag