Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Have it Zimbabwe,the Dead Presidents Show

Maureen Dowd
Kathleen Parker

If you want to see scary Democracy in action, look no further than the remarkable scene that has happened in Zimbabwe, where inflation has gone up by over 2 million percent... Robert Mugabe has been forced to share governing with Morgan Tsvangirai, who won in an election last March. In a ceremony that I wish I had attended, both men had to give the oath of office to each other... so the government may last in uneasy truce until Mr Mugabe rips out the heart of his opponent and has it for lunch...

Well, I blew my prediction on the Israeli election being over swiftly. Both major parties are claiming a victory, as the Washington Post reports: "Voters appeared to give Livni's Kadima party, which favors negotiations with the Palestinians, a slight and unexpected edge over Netanyahu's Likud party, which has been critical of peace talks, according to nearly complete returns and exit polls.

But the overall shift in Israel's parliament, the Knesset, was sharply to the right. That could make it difficult for Livni to build the coalition she would need to govern, particularly if she intends to pursue U.S.-backed talks aimed at creating a Palestinian state.

Both candidates claimed victory, and the political jockeying was expected to intensify in the coming days. It will fall to President Shimon Peres to decide who gets first crack at forming a government -- a tricky task in Israel's fractious political culture. Traditionally, the president chooses the party that receives the most seats in the 120-member parliament, but he is not obligated to do so. Peres will now consult with all the parties to determine who has the best chance of creating a stable government."

There have been rumblings that now we have officially stopped torturing our incarcerated guests, we should also bring the Bush administration to trial for human rights abuses. Create a Truth Commission with subpoena powers and invite former executive branchers to a therapy session, filmed for our enjoyment. This was done in South Africa after apartheid, and in Argentina they made a musical which ended up as a vehicle for Madonna...

But I have a better idea, one which we can make lots of money at: a Reality Show! Yes, let's invite former politicians to a house where they live together, filmed for our enjoyment. Just think, Dick Cheney drunk and falling out of his wheelchair; Bill Clinton chasing Sarah Palin all around the house trying to get her into the hot tub. George Bush out back clearing brush again, while Larry Craig won't come out of the stalls. Throw in a couple of DC Madams, Jack Abramoff or a Scott McClellan, the pure hijinks of 3 AM phone calls, and we have a stellar first season. Invite a couple of CIA torturers for the opening show, and you'll be snorting water out your nose...

Late night jokes:

"Good news and bad news from FEMA. The bad news is FEMA says some of the disaster relief food they have may contain salmonella-tainted peanut butter. The good news is that since it's FEMA, it will be years before it gets to anybody." --Jay Leno

"Oh, here's a bad sign. In Hawaii, a billion dollar Navy warship has run aground. They can't get it unstuck. Its name? The U.S.S. Economy." --Jay Leno

"And the jobless rate has jumped to 7.6 percent, the worst since 1974, and economists are now worried this could lead to a resurgence of disco." --Jay Leno

"I tell you, the economy is in bad shape. In fact, the economy is so bad, President Barack Obama's new slogan is 'Spare Change You Can Believe In.'" --Jay Leno

"The economy is so bad, New York Yankee slugger Alex Rodriguez had to switch from steroids to Flintstone vitamins." --Jay Leno

"And an elderly man in Boynton Beach, Florida, was arrested after he called 911 to report that the Burger King he was standing in had just run out of lemonade. It is so sad to see what's happened to John McCain since the election." --Jay Leno

"Anybody here in New York for the Westminster Kennel Club dog show? Some unfortunate news. A Jack Russell Terrier had to drop out because of tax problems." --David Letterman

"Things are winding down here on the 'Late Night' show. Only 10 shows left, including tonight. A lot has changed since I started the show. When we came on the air back in 1993, the Federal debt was $4 trillion. Now, $4 trillion is how much President Obama's Cabinet owes in back taxes." --Conan O'Brien

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