6 January 2001

Elegant (by Comparison)

Even Nixon was a smoother criminal. Justice Scalia has countered with the precedent that the American people have never had right of suffrage in an American election. It being necessary for any free and democratic society to bail out Savings and Loans, the tax burden ought now to be shifted to the electoral college, the supreme court, and a Simi Valley concert hall filled with Frank Sinatra fans. When, in an unprecedented television appearance of a candidate during an election, Rutherford B. Hayes explains that, reliable exit polls notwithstanding, he is going to win the state of Florida, I find myself wanting to change the channel to Nader's speech, but my landlord, at the other end of the bar, refuses to concede the remote control. The ghost of Trotsky keeps trying to tell me that this evidence of a division among the bourgeoisie clearly signals that conditions are ideal for a proletariat revolution, but 20,000 jobless former GM employees, unable to decipher question 2 out of 100 on the State of California's application for foodstamps, think it's just politics as usual. To those who think in terms of gush and bore, I plead "but I wanted the October Surprise, not Chevy Chase as Gerald Ford. Couldn't we at least have a coup with a little class?" Jimmy Carter's speech on campaign financing reform is drowned out by a formation of 2-million-dollar Tomahawk cruise missiles en route to Baghdad, seeking an opportunity to defend themselves against anthrax, a lilting Santoor, autonomy, journalism, a thrown bottle, a speck of dust, or a blowjob someone had the audacity to try to avoid talking about on TV, still sticky from all the duct tape used to repair the Asian financial crisis. He glances at the teleprompter trying to remember whether he's the liar or the dumb guy. If you are a non-citizen applying for Medi-Cal and you are not (a) LPR, (b) an amnesty alien with a valid and current I-688, or (c) PRUCOL (an alien permanently residing in the U.S., under the color of law), please do not fill in the shaded box for "Birthplace." The contradictions between slavery and wage labor were of necessity replaced by the contradictions between labor and capital: the Republican revolution. From the Wormley House Hotel to the Bohemian Grove, where the justice's son's boss is the lawyer for the plaintiff, the justice's wife the plaintiff's employee, the secretary of state the campaign chairman, and the father is the brother is the son. Excuse me, but your oil platform is standing on my foot. When Newt Gingrich gets his own radio show, we will come to understand the necessity to read between the lines of riot troops, so let's tune the radio to static and chant together: "The first step is admitting you have a problem." The second step is refusing to cede the election to a higher power. "You liberals are just nuts about Chomsky," the waitress says, popping her gum, but you don't look up.

Newspoetry at Spineless Books