“I’m so bored. I hate my life.” - Britney Spears

Das Langweilige ist interessant geworden, weil das Interessante angefangen hat langweilig zu werden. – Thomas Mann

"Never for money/always for love" - The Talking Heads

Monday, February 06, 2006


Yes – LI was hasty, yesterday, roundly condemning this administration. Today, we have to eat our words, because the Bush administration released a budget that is obviously a highly literate satire, on the order of Dead Souls or A Modest Proposal. Just as we were attacking Bush for boldness, he comes up with this truly postmodern classic, which can be enjoyed by the whole family.

There is, for instance, the halving of the deficit, which is achieved by pretending hundreds of billions of dollars just aren’t being spent. This in itself is a terrific satiric swipe at Enron’s accounting methods, which, by being adopted wholesale by the government, are exposed in all their ridiculousness.

Then there is the 6 percent increase for the military and the 3 percent decrease for education. Let’s see, the six percent raise is, what – 10 million per terrorist? 30? I don’t know, and it doesn’t matter anyway, as we all know that the war on terrorism is a wink wink job. The real battle is to get as much cash in the pockets of the defense industry as possible. And that education, so funny, so delicious. As somebody said, not long ago, we need to produce the best scientists and mathematicians to meet the challenges of the future – not! This made LI laugh until we had to change our clothes. It’s a bit of Lenny Bruce humor, a fuck you, America, but all in good fun.

Global warming? Addiction to oil? Future hurricanes? What me worry? There are priorities and then there are priorities. In the aftermath of Katrina, cutting the budget of the corps of engineers by some ten percent represents pure genius. The administration has always had a sharp eye for real time TV satire. Their version of it is to throw so much money at the wealthy that they go, literally, hog wild and do the darnedest, most unbelievable things – steal from poor Iraqis, cheat the government on defense ware for those laughable losers, the American soldier, and … and this is crème de la crème – load their own pockets as they ‘stabilize’ wages for their workers. Bye bye pensions is the motto of the kreative krewe known simply to the administration as the Pioneers. Sure, it isn’t pretty, but – just as in real tv – there are lessons to be learned among the laughs. Continuing this comedy feat and fiesta, the budget is loaded with tax breaks for the wealthy that will make your eyes water with laughter. An administration that has played one of the great practical jokes of all times – the medicare bill that forbids the government from dickering with the big pharma for lower prices, thus criminalizing efficiency – isn’t quite up to its old standard, but this budget tries in every way.

You’ll laugh. You’ll cry. You’ll wonder how the locust became king! Like an alternate reality, like the confederacy winning the Civil war and rammng its small bore, pathological ideas down our throat, this budget season looks to be as spicy as anything we’ve ever seen.

The best part is coming up, as “earmarks are good” Boehner and his merry men dig in.

And the way the newspapers report this thing – pulling a face as serious as Buster Keaton’s as they report one lie after another – is also a tickle.

We loved this from the NYT:

“The plan includes $50 billion for covering the cost of military operations in Iraq or Afghanistan into the next fiscal year, although administration officials said last week that requests would be submitted soon for supplemental spending for the current year for the wars and for the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
The budget office released a new estimate saying that the deficit for the current fiscal year would be $423 billion, a record high, up from its midyear estimate of $341 billion. The new budget projects the deficit to fall to $354 billion in the 2007 fiscal year, and to $183 billion in 2010.”

What was it that the old Cold Warriors used to say about Pravda? I think they said something about it printing government lies, and being an example of totalitarianism, and yada yada yada. My how we used to laugh when the Soviet Union would say something one day and something totally contradictory the next day, and their official newspapers would just put it out there without blinking. My that Soviet Union was a corker.

No comments: