Saturday, August 13, 2011

Chater Eleven: 235

"The Republican Party has devolved into a small group of wealthy corporatists paying an army of professional liars to lead gullible, frightened people around by the nose."
In a dimly lit study, on the second floor of a sprawling mansion nestled in an exclusive area of West Palm Beach, Florida, at ten minutes to midnight, eastern standard time, on December 31st, 2010, a scene plays out that is one of 235 nearly identical scenarios, happening simultaneously all over the country.

“Is this thing on?  This is why we have engineers to set these things up,” a voice grumbles from behind an immense mahogany desk. “Ah, here we go!”
The computer screen flickers to life and is filled with a rotund face that almost every American would recognize, despite being better known for its work on radio.
“Greetings, America.  My name is Rush Hudson Limbaugh the Third.  Many of you know me from my Radio Program, on which I have been a champion for Conservative politics and Republican politicians for many years. I stand before you tonight because I can no longer, in good conscience, continue to do this.
I want to tell you something, folks: I make Thirty-Five Million dollars a year. I want you to think about that for a moment, because it’s important for you to know. And I want you think about the following: That is one thousand times what the average public school teacher makes, even as I have tried to convince you that their unions are greedy, and that the budget for public schooling is bloated and should be cut.  It is seven hundred times the median income in this country - meaning that I make at least that much more than half of the country.  It is even One Hundred and Forty times what someone just breaking the top two-percent of earners makes. And yet, despite our country's crippling debt – a problem that I truly believe on a deep and personal level that we need to get a hold of – I have persuaded most of you that we should do away with the social programs that many of you and your families depend on for survival, rather than by raising taxes on people like me.
Do I care about Social Security? Why would I? Ask yourselves that.  Why would someone who makes Thirty-Five Million Dollars a year give a damn about a social security check amounting to just a couple of grand a month?  What about health care? Why should I care about National Health care?  When I was hospitalized last year for chest pains – not a heart attack mind you, just pains – I was presented with a bill for Twenty-Thousand Dollars. And I cut them a check without a second thought.  Ask yourselves: Could you do that? Write a check for $20-Grand just like that?  If not, you should wonder why we continue to support a system that saddles all you of with constantly rising out of pocket expenses on top of constantly rising premiums, just to save someone like me a couple million in taxes every year.  That might sound like a lot folks, but I assure you: I’d be doing just fine either way. I doubt that the last thrity years of Reaganomics left most of you in a similar situation.  And as for any of the causes I've campaigned against for the sake of social conservatism?  Gay rights? Abortion rights? Religion? Folks, I’m about as good a Christian as Anton LeVey.  The only reason I give a damn about Christianity is because it’s an easy tool that we on the Right use to connect billionaires like me to every-day working class people like you. To make you think that we have some common interests at stake. If we didn’t have that? There’s no reason you’d listen to us.  So we have it, and we USE it. And make no mistake, folks: It's ALL about the money.
So… Why do I do this? Why do I advocate for these policies? It’s should be obvious by now: Self-Interest.
I could say that I just got out of touch. And many of you could accept that. Many of you would believe it. But it would be a lie. The truth is that I do it because I don’t care about any of you.  I don’t care about your plight. I don’t care about your access to health care, or employment opportunites, your civil liberty or anything else. I just don’t give a damn about it.
And why, you may ask?
Because my ego is surpassed only by my greed, folks. I am paid more than most of you could make in several centuries every year to make sure that the right people get in power and implement the right policies.  And those people and those policies are those that will serve the interests of people like me, and the people who own the corporations that sponsor my show.  I have effectively advocated – for almost a quarter century now – that mainstream America enthusiastically line up behind politicians who have no plans other than to screw them out of money and representation and to make sure that those who have all of the money in power, keep as much of it as possible and will never see any moderation or curtailing of it. I don't NEED any of those social saftey net protections, because I have more money than God and I can do whatever the hell I want.
It’s been a fun ride, it really has.  It’s good work, if you can get it. I won’t pretend otherwise. But I cannot go on, and I now feel compelled to make amends.
So please, I beg you: Please forget everything I’ve ever told you, assuming you believed it because you thought I was advocating for our mutual benefit.  And while I ask for your forgiveness for what I have done with my life and my talent, I ask that you not even consider giving it to me until you have a full and true appreciation of the extent of the lies that I have told, and my motivation for telling them.  Only after you have a true understanding of the depths of my deception, the magnitude of my propagandizing and a full appreciation of the scale of what you have been cheated of, can your forgiveness be of any credit to either of us.
And yet I’m afraid that if you do realize this, your sympathy for me and for my like-minded contemporaries may be non-existent.
So, over the past two weeks, I have been putting my affairs in order.  My money may yet be used to do some actual good, as opposed to just doing good for people like me.  And I would like to leave you all with the following wisdom…”
The bulky figure opens the middle drawer of his desk, drawing two objects from within: An old-style quill and ink pen and a small pocket knife.   Unfolding the blade from the knife, he slowly draws it over his forearm, wincing almost imperceptibly as he does so.  A small pool of blood forms on the left side of the desk from the wound before he lowers his arm. Then, without a word, he proceeds to dip the quill of the ink pen into the crimson puddle and writes a single sentence on a piece of paper, finishing by leaving a single slash mark at the bottom of the page, leaving his statement otherwise unsigned. This was then placed off to the side of the enormous desk.
“Well, folks, that’s that.  These are words of wisdom, and I can only hope that generations to come will learn to live by them. Because the road we’ve been going down can only lead to disaster.  This I’ve known for some time, yet only now have the courage to face up to it, and the will to talk about it.  Once you understand just how destructive I’ve been, I can only hope that what I now offer you as penance for my sins will suffice.”
From beneath the desk, he produces a revolver.  Wearing a look of complete non-expression on his face, he pushes the drum into the open position and places a single.32 caliber bullet into the 11:00 chamber.  Then, closing it and looking a directly into the camera, places the barrel in his mouth.
The camera’s microphone is briefly overloaded by the sound of the discharge and the screen goes almost entirely white with muzzle flash. When the light finally subsides there is a clear view of the once pristine far wall, now marred with blood splatter. In the foreground lay the lifeless mass of the former talk show host, his famous face now barely recognizable.
An hour later, when the recording software finally reaches it memory limit, it stops and proceeds to burn the file onto the DVD in the drive.


  1. Excellent post Eddie.

    Sadly I bet Limbaugh would say it on a bet. And most of his audience wouldn't bat an eyelash.

    The next broadcast would be business as usual.

    Oh sure, there would be a few suicides, hospitalizations and nervous breakdown as the sheep are kicked from their warm cocoon of lies.

  2. You aren't really going to kill 365 people? Try as I might I can't see the twist coming. You've got me waiting in suspense.

  3. Well... "I'M" not going to kill ANYONE. This is just a story. ;)

    Man... I seriously don't know how/if I can respond to this, other than to say that the next chapter is posting in just a few minutes and it should answer your question, but might also leave you with a few others.

    I've written more of a response to your comment, several in fact, but right now, it might just be better to leave it that. I can't really say anything without either giving away spoilers or looking like I'm trying to bias the interpretation, which I do not want to do.

    Anyway, next chapter is posting now! :)