Protracted Thoughts on the October 27, 2014 Issue of The New Yorker

The cover this week is spot on,
“Fun and Games in Congress” the artist
titled it, with quite the cast of characters:
The Hatter is there (yes, still quite mad), dispensing
copies of the Constitution which Bozo
proceeds to deface and the Jester, motley fool
that he is, stamps with a “NO” while wielding
his gavel. Batman’s Joker is in the house
and playing with a stacked deck, the white collar
criminal looks good in his orange and black stripes
while Rich Uncle Pennybags kicks back with a big cigar.
The lady is quite astute in the art of snake charming,
knowing the real trick is to pull their fangs
before you play them a tune.
Yes, it is all fun and games until…until you read
what is inside.

Not being from, or even an infrequent visitor to,
New York, I skip over the Goings On About Town
and land in the Talk Of The Town, where one
contributor is naive enough to believe
our representative woes could be solved
by voting in a more diverse crowd,
as if women or blacks or hispanics or asians
would be less susceptible to the corruption
of power and money than the current
ensemble of rich white men.

Continuing with the political theme…Jeffrey
Tobin goes into great (incessant, protracted,
never-ending) detail on the subject on appointing
judges, which, it turns out, is perhaps the most
important aspect of politics, and one the voting public
understands the least. Oh, but the politician
understands, control of the judiciary through
the lifetime appointment of judges extends
the reach and power of the Party, and, after all,
being right is not so important when you have enough
votes to validate (rubber-stamp) your actions.

Abortion, too, gets an article. We can never miss
a chance to inject the subject into the debate,
especially just before an election. The information
is bland in presentation, and there is really
nothing new to argue, the inanities
and hypocrisies of those presenting the arguments
on both sides are enough to make one wish
for a vacuum tube to be inserted into your skull.

Ebola, of course, must get an article, mustn’t stray
from the mainstream. The dissertation attempts
to humanize the epidemic in a very scientific way,
because it is critically important for us to understand
the dimensions of an ebola particle and how it
compares to the size of a human hair. Unfortunately,
the only thing I can think about while reading
the article is to wonder if the Harvard genomics
scientist always wears the low cut top with the knee-high
leather boots and really tight jeans to work,
or only on days when a photographer from
the New Yorker is going to be there?

There was some good news amidst
the miasma: Billy Joel said he needs
to get to know more poets.

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Filed under Poetry

Some of what I write is true, some is fiction; most is merely possibility.

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