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The following is an actual transcript from a recent episode of a fictional television talk show. Any resemblance to actual characters or shows is yet another indication of the devolution of American culture.
HARDCASE: Good evening, I’m Chris Hardcase, and you’re watching Curveball. Revolution in the Arab world, unrest in the Middle East, a debt crisis in Washington and a meltdown in Japan. We’re mired in two wars with no end in sight. For most Presidents that would be overwhelming, but for Barack Obama (Hardcase’s leg begins to jitter. He pounds at it helplessly) that’s barely enough to hold his interest. Instead, he’s apparently channeling his inner Bush, and has launched a third war, this time in Libya. With me in the studio tonight are German Foreign Minister Gerhard Hunchenfalke, French Ambassador Maurice Richard and retired Army General Clark Westley. But first, we go to Kim Collagen reporting live from our Los Angeles Studios. Go ahead, Kim.
COLLAGEN: Thank you Chris. I’m reporting live from our Los Angeles Studios.
HARDCASE: That’s right, Kim, what do you have for us?
COLLAGEN: (Suspiciously) What do you mean, “What do I have for you?”
HARDCASE: (Sighing wearily and muttering to himself) What I mean, Kim, is you interrupted my introduction with what you claim is breaking news. All I’m asking is, what’s your breaking news?
COLLAGEN: Oh, I get it. Sorry. (Glancing at her notes). Chris, Charlie Sheen just announced that the nuclear meltdown in Japan has affected his Tiger Blood. He claims that he can climb up the outside of buildings, and he is a tough fighter.
HARDCASE: Kim, I didn’t get that last part. Did you say he is tough?
COLLAGEN: Is he tough? Listen, bud. He’s got radioactive blood!
HARDCASE: Uh, thanks, Kim. But back to tonight’s topic. The United States, in compliance with instructions from NATO, the United Nations and the Arab League, has agreed to help enforce a no-fly zone in order to prevent Libyan Dictator Moammar Qgaddaffy from killing innocent civilians. This week Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has been meeting with her European counterparts to come up with strategies to force Khadaffe from office. This raises some questions. How big is the no-fly zone? How many missiles and planes will it take to enforce it? Who’s in charge? Has there ever been a greater President than Obama? Why’s my leg shaking? And finally, isn’t this all Bush’s fault? Let’s start with Gerhard Hunchenfalke. Isn’t this all Bush’s fault?
HUNCHENFALKE: Vell, Chris. Of course it is Bush’s fault. Isn’t effrytink? But ze bigger kvestion is, vat do ve do mit dis Chadhafi character?
HARDCASE: Good question. What do we do? General?
WESTLEY: What do we do? That’s absurb. I’ve never heard such a ridiculous thing. Hunchenfalke is delusional. Look, Chris, when I headed up NATO back in the, what was it? Seventies? No, nineties. We had this chap Milosovic to deal with. He was killing a lot of his own people, too, but we didn’t race into any kind of no-fly zone.
HARDCASE: You didn’t? But I thought we–
WESTLEY: Right you are, Chris. But the point is, we didn’t rush into things. We waited until he killed a lot of people first. And then we bombed the Chinese Embassy. Of course, that was when we pretty much ran the show. Now, thanks to Bush’s unilateralism, the United States no longer enjoys the prestige it once had. Now we have to do whatever the Arab League and the United Nations tell us to. I’m sure if Obama had his way, we’d still be mulling over our options.
HARDCASE: Good point, Clark. But what are our options? What if Qadafi doesn’t leave? What do we do then? What if the rebels can’t beat him without more of our help? Isn’t there a danger of mission creep?
HUNCHENFALKE: Jah, I sink I can handle ziss von. As you know, Chris, ve Chermans vere opposed to ziss action. Ve believe zat var is unhealthy fur children und other liffing sings. But, now ve haff gone down ziss rode, so ve muss face ze strudel, as ve Chermans say.
HARDCASE: So what will you do if Chqkaddaffy doesn’t leave?
HUNCHENFALKE: Vell, in zat case, ve vill shut down more of our nuclear reactors.
HARDCASE: (Perplexed) And how will that help?
HUNCHENFALKE: Like ziss, Chris. Ve all know these reactors are dangerous, jah. Und ziss Khadhafi, he iss dangerous, too. Zo, it makes perfect sense.
RICHARD: Ah oui, eet makes pairfect sense, eef you are a cowardly Kraut, but not for we French. We don’t believe in sitting around like some sniveling leetle, uh, how you say, door mouse. Eef zere ees a crisis we French, we act. You Germans and Americans, you are so timid, non? You run around and say, “Oh zees ees terrible. Look at ze dictateur keel his own people. Won’t somebody do sumsing?” Well, fear not, my Big Mac eating surrender monkeys, ze French people are here. We will lead. Just geet in line and follow.
HARDCASE: Thank God for the French. Well, that’s all the time we have tonight. Join us tomorrow when Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and former NPR CEO Vivian Schiller join us to discuss “Can America Survive Without Cowboy Poetry?”