I always tremble like a hamster duct taped to a roto-tiller when George Bush struts into the spotlight on the world stage as he did this week when addressing the UN. The same feeling I get when San Francisco Giants closer Armando Benitez takes the mound in a save situation. It's a cover-your-eyes and peek-through-your-fingers sort of thing. A breath-holding whispered-prayers kind of time. Exciting, but not in what you call your good way. In a sweaty way.
Especially now, after six years of being a reluctant part of the studio audience laugh track for his sit-com: we've seen his work, we know too much. So many things could screw up. What if the teleprompter goes awry and he tries to exercise his ad lib skills? Could he drag us into a war by mistake? Again? Suppose the first ADHD POTUS succumbs to the urge to wander around the General Assembly and begins to apply unrequested back rubs to female heads of state? Can a country be prosecuted for sexual harassment?
What if a second Red Bull encourages him to attempt to pronounce Iranian President Achmadinejad's name? In front of people? And what about his safety: aren't we exposing him to unnecessary risk? Say he gets the munchies, pops some pretzels and starts choking. Again. Mightn't the UN EMTs remember previously forgotten appointments once they discover the identity of their prone blue patient?
Or god forbid, he'll start to lecture the international community on the subtle intricacies of the "moral high ground" which apparently means speaking from the taller pile of dead enemy bodies. Or even worse, fleshes out his "compassionate torture" concept. Explain how America would never torture people. We just don't want to rule it out. How what we utilize is properly called "enhanced interrogation techniques." So those car battery cables attached to that man's nipples... isn't torture, just "portable energy amplification."
I'm sure getting branded "the devil" by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez in New York was easy duty compared to a week of being branded "torture king" by renegade conservatives in DC. Besides, we all know the President isn't the devil. Cheney is. The President is one of his eager little helpers. Like Renfield to Dracula. Kevin J. O'Connor in "The Mummy." The Nazi helping monkey in "Raiders of the Lost Ark."
It's obvious the President assumed his retroactive military tribunal reform bill was going to be a slam dunk from a step ladder, but was confronted, not by obstructionist Democrats who regularly quiver in their frilly underwear when not sitting down to pee, but by three Republican Senators, who claim, that if this bill passes, hold for it... our troops will be endangered.
You got to love the irony of the President having that phrase batted back into his face. And waving the oversized racquet is John McCain himself, whose graduate degree in the subject trumps the President's skimming of the course description in the syllabus. We're talking about someone who has lived through torture. And no, I'm not talking about the 2000 Republican primary in South Carolina. Mister President, please leave the torture business to people with some experience in it. Karl Rove, Howie Mandel and the UN translators of Hugo Chavez's speech.
Comic, writer, actor, radio talk show host, moral high ground casualty, Will Durst, in answer to the question "Deal, or No Deal," says "no deal."
Catch Durst in radio talk show host mode on Keeping it Real With Will & Willie. Monday through Friday. 7- 10am. PDT. On KQKE. 960 AM. The QUAKE. San Francisco. Or listen long distance @ quakeradio.com.
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Will Durst is America's premier political comedian. He writes "comedy for people who read, or know someone who does." For more on Will, visit his web site.