The Horror, The Horror


You run out of things to say after awhile. Anything new, anyway. That thing you’re thinking of saying, you already said it, what, two years ago? Three?

“Donald Trump spent the weekend at one of his resorts after Puerto Rico’s infrastructure was devastated.” We said that almost three years ago. Iowa’s been dark all week. Trump went golfing again.

Here’s something new we can say: It’s not just Brown people any more.

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Say Anything

That political candidates may promise things they can’t deliver is not, shall we say, unusual. The Wall has not been built; Mexico has not paid for it. Promises are made, offices are won, and then, the story goes, reality is faced.

The story doesn’t end there. The moon may have been promised and only a butte ascended, but still, y’know, progress, and subsequent campaigns focus on maintaining and improving the status quo. The bacon has been brought home; more is on the way. Stay the course. You know what you’re getting, and god knows what will happen to you, your daughters, and your dog if My Esteemed Opponent takes the wheel.

That’s the story, the story we know, the story we’ve been living for generations.

It’s not the story this time.

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Commander Chaos

He can’t do that, they said.

There are laws against that sort of thing. There are rules. It says so right there. You’re silly for worrying about it.

And yet, we’re worried anyway. Not because a President can, on his own authority, delay an election, but everything he can do short of that.

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Suddenly, This Summer

Covid deaths in the United States will surpass 150,000 today or tomorrow. At the rate they’re going — and increasing — we will be well past 200,000 by election day.

One hundred days from now.

“How did you go bankrupt?” reads the famous Hemingway quote. “Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly.”

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The Values We Profess

The hypocrisy of America’s Founding Fathers — let’s go with the traditional gendered version here — is self-evident. All men weren’t created equal. The rights they were born with were totally alienable, especially at birth. Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness — “property” in the original Lockean — were only conditionally available.

Yet those are the words they wrote, and signed their names below, large enough for the King to see it, in one case.

Those are the ideals of our nation, however much our nation has failed them in the centuries since. And some of us are damnfool enough to take them seriously.

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Sorry, Charlie

We think it was Carlin’s. Or it might have been Robert Klein’s. Or maybe it was just low-hanging fruit, waiting to be plucked.

The premise of Charlie the Tuna — see, you know where this is going already — was that he was desperate to be chosen. Dying, even. He wanted to be good enough, make the team. Charlie didn’t want to be left behind.

But good enough for what? To be eaten, of course. That was unspoken in the commercials, which made it ripe for comedy. Just what is going on here? An anthropomorphic tuna with a deathwish?

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The Narcissist in Winter

You may have heard that he made a couple of appearances this weekend.

Or maybe you didn’t. You can read the reports, but usually we don’t have to wait for the news to hear what he said. Everybody’s talking about him anyway.

But not Friday night, and not Saturday night, either. Statue garden? Barely a ripple. New race war? Save it for the Analysis columns.

For the first time since he descended the Escalator to Hell, Donald Trump was being ignored.

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