WHAT DEMOCRACY LOOKS LIKE

By: Rick Kepler 

Senator Herod Foghorn sat behind his senatorial desk, his aides at his senatorial side, at-the-ready to address his senatorial commands.

“Did the call come in yet?” he inquired of his staff.  “Goddam it, he’s already called the leaders from the other side. I’m the goddam majority leader. He should be calling me,” whined Foghorn.

Mrs. Flatbottom, Foghorn’s chief-of-staff, comforted the Senator. “Don’t worry, sir. I’m sure you’ll get his call.  He’ll neeD you  because you will get the real leaders from our party to agree to this bill or at least neutralize any opposition and avert the shutdown.”

“The vote on this bill is coming up quickly, Flatbottom. We still have time to furtively insert a few last-second items, if the price is right. Nobody reads these fucking bills anyhow and besides, I need to show him that I can get this “Cramituptheirass bill” passed.

“It’s called a ‘Cromnibus’ bill, sir,” weakly whispered Smithers, Flatbottom’s nephew and senatorial aide.

“Shut the fuck up, Smithers. Don’t ever correct a United States Senator. While I’m waiting for his call, Flatbottom, who should I see first out of all those vultures in the anteroom with their last-minute demands?”

“Well, sir, waiting outside are the three CEOs of our country’s largest weapons manufacturers and they each have a couple five-star generals with them; then there’s a slew of Wall Street lobbyists that you’ve grown to love and admire, and they wrote most of the language in the bill; there’s also the CEO of the trucking industry, the CEO of UPS, the Crotch brothers, and in a separate room I put the major Union leaders and the Nuns-on-a-Bus.  I didn’t think it proper to have them in the same anteroom with the others.”

“So you stuck them in the janitor’s closet. Good move, Flatbottom.  Let’s start with the fucking warmongers.”

And into the Senator’s office strode three corpulent, short-dicked CEOs of the weapons industry, and each had two five-star generals literally trailing on a leash behind him.  The CEOs made the generals squat down on Foghorn’s large senatorial rug. “Sit, generals.  You know who your daddy will be after you retire with your large government pension and come to work for us. Sit still while we straighten out Foghorn,” commanded the most corpulent one to the six squatting generals.

Short-dick number one continued, “Now, listen here, Foghorn.  We better be getting at least two-thirds of this $1.1 trillion piss pot. It’s important to our bottom line, I mean, national defense.  If you can’t deliver that to us, then I’m sure that crazy teabagger who challenged you last time will get all our citizens-united money when you’re up for re-election.  Then again we just might move that empty-headed freak show from Alaska into your state to run against you. There’s a huge white-trash vote in your state that would go for her.”

“Now boys, relax. No need to threaten. Have some bourbon and make sure the generals don’t shit on my carpet like they did the last time you were here.”

“Fuck your bourbon, Foghorn, just play ball and we’ll make sure your carpet stays clean. Now, do we get the 66% or not?”

“Gentlemen, I’ll do everything I can to see that you will be rewarded.  Hell, we’re already bombing eight Muslim countries, building bases and stirring up shit all over the African continent, as well as pivoting the empire throughout Asia to contain China.  Goddam, we’re making gazillions for you guys blowing up dark-skinned people and building weapons we don’t need. What else do you fucking want!?”

“Russia, Foghorn! We want that fucking Cossacks head on a spike! Fuck your sanctions, and your deal with the Saudis to flood the planet with oil in order to hurt their economy, we want to bomb the fuck out of those Ruskies. We want to show the world we don’t discriminate on the basis of color when we blow people up.”

Mrs. Flatbottom stuck her head inside the door. “Sir, there’s a call that just came in that you should take.” The arms dealers exited with their generals in tow, but not before tossing Foghorn his envelope.

“Flatbottom, while I take this call, have the janitor get in here and clean the generals’ turds off my senatorial carpet. I will not be intimidated by their shit! They’ll get 60%  and not a cent more!”

Foghorn hurriedly rushed to the phone only to be disappointed when he realized the call was not from ‘him’, but was only the Pope.

“Senator Foghorn, bless you my son,” gently spoke the Pope.

“What do you want Francis, I ain’t got all day.”

“I was just thinking of all the poverty and pain that the majority of your citizens are experiencing since the economic meltdown caused by the greed of Wall Street, and I was just hoping you would……

“Pope….Pope….I’m sorry, bad connection…..hello, Francis….hello…Damn, lost the call,” said Foghorn  before he pressed his finger on the button that cut off the Pope’s call.

“Flatbottom, start screening those calls better. I ain’t got time for that dago’s fucking cries for the poor.”

“He’s from Argentina, sir. Not Italy,” sheepishly stated Smithers.

“Smithers, what did I tell you about correcting a United States Senator? Flatbottom, forget the janitor, your fucking nephew can clean up that pile of shit the generals left on my carpet. Now, send in the Wall Streeters.”

Twenty of Wall Street’s finest dressed, beautifully coiffed, sweet-smelling sharks marched into Foghorn’s office, each one carrying a diamond encrusted briefcase full of cold, hard American cash.

“What can I do for you boys,” Foghorn sputtered in his most obsequious manner.

“You know what we need, you soon-to-be minority leader,” exclaimed the sharks as they continuously circled around Foghorn’s desk. “Get rid of that fucking Frank-Dodd provision and put the American people back on the hook for our gambling losses.”

“Depends,” snapped Foghorn. “If he calls me, it’ll get done. If not, well…”

Flatbottom yelled into the Senator’s office, “Sir, this may be the call.”

“Sorry boys, gotta take this call,” and the still circling boys from Wall Street left behind their briefcases and exited.

Excitedly Foghorn lifted the receiver, only to hear, “Foghorn, this is the President.”

“You gotta be shittin me,” absent-mindedly and dejectedly whispered Foghorn into the phone. Then in a clear voice, “Yes, Mr. President, what can I do for you?” as he rolled his disappointed eyes at Mrs. Flatbottom.

“Foghorn, I wouldn’t shit a little turd like you. We need this bill passed, Foghorn. I don’t care what you stick in it as long as we give the appearance that we’re fighting for the middle class while we reward the only people who really matter anymore: ‘His’ people. Understand Foghorn? My ability to have my own foundation and raise more money than that skirt-chasing hillbilly from Arkansas after I leave office depends on it.”

Just then Flatabottom stuck her head in the door and signaled to Foghorn that a new incoming call could be ‘the’ call for which he was waiting.

The President was continuing the conversation when he heard, “Hello, Mr. President, Sir, I can’t hear….hello….Flatbottom, what’s wrong with this phone….Hello, Mr. President….hello….click.

“Go have some lame-duck soup, Prez. I got an important call to take,” laughed Foghorn excitedly, as he hung up on the President and switched over to the new incoming call.

All of a sudden the sound of celestial music filled Foghorn’s office, and the phone took on a golden glow.  “Senator Foghorn,” boomed a mellifluous voice, “this is God. I need to talk to you about this bill that you have dubbed the ‘cramituptheirass’ bill. I need you to think about all my children…..

“God…hello God…..can somebody get in here and fix this damn phone…Hello, God are you still there…hello”….click.

“For chrissakes, Flatbottom, who’s screening these damn calls, your idiot nephew? And how did he know what I dubbed this bill?”

“He’s God, sir,” innocently stated Smithers.

“Shut the fuck up, Smithers, and go get something to clean this shit off my senatorial carpet.  Flatbottom, no more calles unless it’s him. Send in the next asshole.”

“Senator Foghorn, as head of the trucking industry, I need you to support overturning that goddam 70-hour rule for truck drivers and restore it back to 82 hours. Now, I know that the current bill was debated for years, and, yes, a few thousand people got wiped out by those overworked dumb-fuck drivers who fell asleep at the wheel, and it’s too bad about those kids on that Special Olympic bus that got incinerated by a truck driver in his 80th hour of straight driving, but goddam Senator, do you know how much my bonus was cut since that rule came into effect!?”

Foghorn became pensive. “I hear Big Pharma is working on an amphetamine that will keep those fuckers wide awake, and the side effects won’t be known for years. We in Congress average a long 80 hours, well, a year, but still I’m sympathetic to your lack of bonus. Consider it done, give your donation to Flatbottom, tell her to send in the UPS guy, and truck on outta here!”

Into the office wearing his cute little brown shorts and matching brown shirt entered the CEO of UPS. “Foghorn, I owe the Teamsters around $2 billion for their fucking pension plan and if you don’t want to see your wife’s Amazon orders smashed every time we deliver her stuff to your house, then just stick a line in that huge ass bill that says we don’t owe those fuckers anything. Nobody will notice, and your wife’s shit will be delivered in perfect condition.”

“How about you just deliver a big fucking check right here on my senatorial desk? I’ll deliver for you, and you deliver your ass out of my office.”

“Flatbottom, add this check to the legalized bribery folder, and send in Tweedle-dee and Tweedle-dum.”

In strode the Crotch brothers with their list of demands that Foghorn looked over. “Listen, you two shitbirds,” began Foghorn, “I’m not going to add to this bill your demands that all Unions are illegal, every Muslim is a terrorist, all teenage black girls are to be sterilized, all Native American casinos are to be run by white people, and any person of Mexican ancestry cannot vote. Your compatriots across the aisle are working on those items, but here’s the best I can do for you two shitwads in this bill.  How about we gut the EPA, slash Pell grants so we can continue dumbing down the American public, have the IRS only investigate the little people for tax fraud, make sure no new monies go for renewable energy, and as icing on the cake, just for you two old fogies and your dipshit friends at Fox we’ll make the old-fashioned light bulb mandatory.

That’s all you’re gonna get. Give your check to Flatbottom and get the fuck out of my office!”

“We’ll settle for that now,” and out of Foghorn’s office skipped Tweedle-dee and Tweedle-dum, as they headed straight for state legislatures to try to implement their bucket list.

“Oh, why hasn’t he called me!?” wailed Foghorn.

Flatbottom stuck her head in, “Sir, you still have the Union leaders and the Nuns-on-the-Bus waiting in the closet. Shall I send them in?”

“Give the Union guys ink pens with my senatorial signature, and send them on their way.  They’ll tell their members that they were happy as flies on shit that they got access to my, well, closet, and then they’ll tell their members to work harder to elect people who care about working people…..you know, us,” at which Foghorn, Flatbottom, and the entire staff all laughed uproariously.  “Those Union guys are like beaten dogs. You can legislatively kick the shit out of them or completely ignore them and they still stay loyal to our party. As far as the Nuns-on-the-Bus, tell those do-gooders….” and before he continued the phone rang.

Foghorn, Flatbottom, Smithers and the other aides quickly gathered in the Senator’s office and stood very still as they sensed this may be ‘the’ call.

This time Foghorn took the call, hit the speaker button and the voice on the other end began:

“Senator Froghorn.  This is Jay Z. Diamond. Get me off speaker and clear the fucking room out, you idiot!”

“Yes sir, Mr. Diamond. Everyone get the fuck out of my office.!!  They left, sir.  Did you like how I supported your position and removed everyone so we could have a private chat, sir?  I want you to know that I will support any position you wish me to take, sir. I won’t care if that position is missionary, butt-in-air, reverse cowgirl, or whatever. I’ve been waiting all day for your call, sir. Just know I’m there at your service, sir.”

“Just shut up and listen, Toadhorn.  First, I want those trade deals fast- tracked and passed.  My people worked long and hard writing those new corporate trade rules.  We no longer wish to be bothered with your antiquated national laws. Get on board the new supranational bullet train, Fogless, or get run over by it.  We’re creating a new structure that transcends the nation state. The last president from your party and the present one support it, so you better too.”

“Will I have a role in this brave new world, sir? fawningly asked Foghorn.

“Fuck no! Quit whining and don’t interrupt me again.  Secondly, I want those private-sector Union pensioners to take it up the ass.  Repeal that 1974 law that protects their pensions from being cut. Just think what that will lead to, Foghead.  We’ll fuck 10 million pensioners, and the other hundred million dumbfuck workers won’t shed a tear. ‘Wah! I ain’t got a pension, so fuck them,’ they’ll whine.  When the Unions don’t do shit about this robbery of their pensioners, in one fell swoop we’ll next go after the public sector pensions when our boys on the other side of the aisle manufacture the next threat of a government shutdown. It’s like that Niemoller shit, Frogbreath.  First they came for the private sector pensions and I did nothing. Then they came…..yada, yada, yada, too fuckin bad! After we fuck those public sector –pensioners, I’ll wager the Unions just sit there with their thumbs up their fat asses.  For us though, Froglips, it’s like the story of the old bull and the young bull.  The young bull looks down at the pasture of cows and says to the old bull, ‘Let’s run down there and fuck that beautiful cow,’ and the old bull says, ‘Let’s walk down there and fuck them all.’  We’re the old bulls and I’m saying we fuck em all.  Do you get it, Froggy?  We set the table by fucking the private and public sector pensioners. Then we deliver the knockout blow and fuck all the retirees when we go after the crown jewel, the holy grail of our desires, Social Security.  Christ, I’m getting hard just thinking about it, Foreskin.”

“I got hard just thinking about getting a call from you, sir,” quipped Foghorn.

“Listen up, Frogface.  The third thing I want is a tenfold increase in the amount of money I can give to either party.  Froggy boy, you know I own a stable of horses, so this increase will be the cherry on top of the citizens-united sundae. It will enable me to own an even bigger stable of Senators than I do horses.  On my fireplace mantle in my Hampton mansion I have a bobble-head replica of every House member I own. Over 250 of em and counting. Come on over sometime and I’ll show it to you.  Just use the backdoor when you come. The front door is only for my people.”

“I’ll be glad to be your backdoor man, sir,” enthusiastically exclaimed Foghorn.

“One last thing, Fogdick, I want all those billion dollar fines we got for our illegal activities paid for by the taxpayers.  Slip that in this bill and…..”

The phone call went dead because the Nuns-on-the-Bus rushed past the aides and into Foghorn’s office, ripped the phone from the desk, bolted the door, and surrounded Foghorn.

Sister Angelique spoke. “Here’s the deal, Senator.  You, the president and leaders of your party and your conspirators from across the aisle are holding the American people’s government hostage.  You are using this manufactured crisis to reward the rich by taking from hard-working Americans, who are just trying to play by the rules and raise their families.  We won’t be silent witnesses to this crime.  We will not leave your office until you renounce this bill, give most of the $1.1 trillion to creating jobs through rebuilding our infrastructure, restore and add to the money you cut for poor mothers and their children in WIC, restore the nutrition program you removed from this bill, restore the Pell grant monies, restore the 70 –hour rule for truckers, add money for renewable energy, remove the tenfold increase for rich donors, and leave alone the pensions of the men and women who worked hard their whole lives to have a secure retirement.  In Jesus’ eyes it would only be fair that since you bailed out the super-rich bankers, why not bail out the pensioners?  The cost of that would not come close to what you gave the banks.

Oh, and one last thing, put those money-changers back on the hook for their own losses they incur gambling with the people’s money.”

“Goddam, Sisters!” screamed Foghorn, “You have no idea what you have just done.”

CRACK!, right over the knuckles of the Senator exploded the ruler of Sister Gabrielle.

“Senator, do not use the Lord’s name in vain,” the Sister kindly admonished.

“Jesus Christ, that hurt,” whimpered Foghorn.

SMACK!, crashed down the ruler of Sister Theresa across his knuckles.

“Stop. You’re torturing me!” screamed Foghorn. “We don’t torture in this country.”

CRACK!, came Sister Dominique’s ruler.  “Senator, that one is for lying about our country not using torture.”

SMACK!, “And that one is for hanging up on God,” joined in Sister Simone.

“All right, already!” cried Foghorn, sticking his scraped knuckles under his desk.  “Sisters, do you know what you’ve done!  That was Jay Z. Diamond on the phone when you came busting into my office and ripping the phone off my desk. I’m sure he’s calling the President at this moment telling him I hung up on him. By law the President is ordering a drone strike on my office for hanging up on Mr. Diamond!  It’s in the Patriot Act.  Section 666:  Anyone who knowingly hangs up on Jay Z Diamond is subject to immediate termination, with extreme prejudice! Damn, we shouldn’t have let Diamond’s people write their own anti-terrorist laws into the Patriot Act, and I should have read the damn thing!

Oh, the horror, the terrible irony.  To think I voted for the Patriot Act and supported the President’s right to drone strike American citizens on American soil.  Sisters, there’s no time to waste.  If we get out of my office now we might escape the drone strike.”

The Nuns-on-the-Bus could tell for once Foghorn was telling the truth, and they hightailed it out of the office as the Senator’s aides joined them in their mad dash to safety.  Foghorn, however, chose to first grab a couple of the briefcases left by Diamond’s people and as he headed toward his door he slipped and fell on the pile of shit that still lay on his senatorial carpet.  It was reported that his last words were, “Smithers, you fuckhead!”

The next day the President answered his presidential phone.  It was Jay Z Diamond. “Hey dog, thanks for getting that bill passed.  Too bad Froggle,  or whatever his name was, didn’t make it out of his office in time, but we didn’t need his vote anyway.  Can’t we arrest those damn Sisters and make them pay for the damage to the Senator’s office?!”

“Let it rest Mr. Diamond,” responded the President.  “You got everything you wanted except paying for your fines.  We’ll fix that in the next manufactured crisis.  As for Foghorn, well, we honored his memory by naming his last bill the ‘Cramituptheirass’ bill.  Ain’t it great, Jay Z, the way democracy works?”

 

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