Friday, January 28, 2005
Who gives a crap about dead Marines? A play in one act.
The scene: the Oval Office. Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld sit on opposite sides of a coffee table, involved in a game of Risk. Both are clearly struggling for control of the Middle East, while the entire Indonesian region is bare -- neither of them seems interested in having anything to do with it.
A television is quietly on in the corner, showing President Bush giving a news conference. Neither Cheney nor Rumsfeld seem all that interested in the conference, only occasionally glancing at it, then turning back to the board.
Several minutes later, Bush bounds back into the room, smiling.
BUSH: All right. Let's go, Don, pay up, you wanker. You know you can't top that.
RUMSFELD: Yeah, yeah, I guess you're right. Damn.
CHENEY: Um, what's going on here? What are you talking about?
BUSH: Me and Don-boy here had us a bet as to who could not give a bigger damn about all them dead U.S. troops over there in Eye-rack, and get away with it. And, ya gotta admit, Don, there's no way you can beat that press conference. Yee ha! Loser.
CHENEY: What do you mean? What did you just do?
BUSH: Weren't you even watching, Dick? I made it through my whole speech without so much as mentioning all those stiffs. And I could have got away with it totally if that asshole reporter hadn't asked me about it after. Big-time asshole. But that's OK, I blew him off with a bunch of high-falutin', sympathy-sounding rubbish, you know, "We're always sorrowed when one of our brave troops dies," that sort of crap. Anyway, you get the idea. Pay up, Donnie.
RUMSFELD: Yeah, all right, you got me there. I mean, all I had going for me was not even bothering to sign all those condolence forms personally, until some other asshole reporter found out about it and whined. I'll bet it was that bitch Helen Thomas. Man, what a pain in the ass she is. But I'm still not convinced you won this one. I mean, that was just a press conference. I'm the one who sent all those troops over there without even giving them any decent armor for their fucking Humvees! And all those "stop-loss" orders? Come on, George, there's no way you can top that.
BUSH: Can't top that? CAN'T TOP THAT? You gotta be shitting me, Donnie. Who's managed to avoid attending even one goddamned funeral for any of those poor bastards? Can't top that, my ass.
CHENEY: Hang on. Don't I get to play? Jesus Christ, I mean, it was my company that ripped off the troops and overcharged for their food, for crying out loud. That should count for something!
RUMSFELD: He's right, George. And there was the time ol' Dick's company overcharged the Army for gas.
CHENEY: Damn right! If there's a contest, I want in. You want callous fucking indifference? Hell, I invented that shit.
There are several seconds of silence in the room as all of them try to figure out how to pick the winner, until ...
RUMSFELD: You know, George, sooner or later, somebody's gonna catch on to the fact that we don't give a rat's ass about what happens to all those grunts. Things could get a mite uncomfortable then.
BUSH: Ah, dontcha worry about it, Donnie. I got it all figured out.
CHENEY: Yeah? And how would you deal with it, George?
BUSH: No sweat. I'll just blame it on Canada.
All three of them burst into laughter. Fade to black ...
UPDATE: Hmmm ... apparently, Dick doesn't give a rat's ass for any of their dead soldiers, either.