Friday, Apr 12th

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You are here Editorials Alex Baer Fables for a Modern Age

Fables for a Modern Age

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There came a sturm und drang-y time in the nation when the old myths, tales, and dreams no longer applied for 99 percent of the people.

And so, the great mass of people gnashed their remaining teeth and cried out for help, pleading and beseeching into all corners of the land, seeking a new champion to set things right -- to have new stories constructed, which would then help the People survive their overly restrained and heavily-regulated lives at the hands of a cruel and unjust emperor, called the President.

And so, the people went straight to the well which was poisoning them, which was Unrestrained, Celebratory, Cutthroat Capitalism, and drew from that well a well-dunked champion who had arcane knowledge of chants and spells, and who also had some tips on how best to drink from the well's wooden bucket without anyone catching on, or having to pay the evil emperor for the right to do so.

First, the tale was created that no rich person should have to pay to drink from the well, even though the well was to be maintained and kept in healthful order, for all people to use as necessary for daily sustenance.

The tale became so popular with the People, that it wasn't long before the People's Champion -- Donald The Self-Trumpeting Orange, after the order of the since-faded John of Boehner, The Weepy Orange -- expanded this story.

Soon, the new tale was seen as absolute truth all over the land, that no person should ever pay to participate in the use of any of the kingdom's roads, or schools, or public buildings, or any other life improvement made for People in the kingdom.  All these things should spring instantly from the lands, for free, and for life everlasting.

Rich people, being such legendary Job Creators, would get a perpetual, free pass to use the kingdom's resources for all eternity.  This pass would extend to intrude far into the resources the people desired to use -- not for profit, but for their sustenance, to remain alive.

The increasing scarcity of resources did not sit well with the People, but they would receive periodic pep talks from The Donald, to tide them over.  The rich were pleased at the state of things, especially when it looked as if there might be a huge row, or a revolution.

It was good the People could be so easily tricked and becalmed with verbiage.

But the People continued to grow restless, first, as their water supplies dwindled and became poisoned, and then, as their eyes cleared to other ills.  The Donald and his kind fought back, bragging how much they had done for the kingdom, but the People looked around, and found they could not remember one valuable thing done or performed in the name of the People nor the kingdom.

"Why are you exporting jobs across the seas, and stashing the money you make here in secret banks off shore, in other kingdoms?" the People finally started to ask.

The Donald, at least, took time to respond, reminding everyone how he was on their side, and how he was a Champion of the People.  He bragged about his accomplishments, making his name larger, and putting it on things he did not own, all across the land.  He boasted how much money he had been smart enough to make, and not share, with the People or with the kingdom.

He bragged how anyone could do what he had done, if only they had tried hard enough to lift themselves up by their own ragged footwear.

(The People had no idea that their fathers and families would have to first give them at least a million gold coins as a gift first, before the magic spell could ever work.)

The People became depressed and despairing when these magic chants and brags did not work for them.  They suspected the fault was in themselves, that they were doing it all wrong.

While the People were busy trying, The Donald was busy setting up the grist for specialized diploma mills, to help transfer more of the remaining fortunes of the poor, and almost-poor, up and in to the pockets of the increasingly rich.

When the People objected, The Donald reminded the crowd how much he had in common with them, and how much it really was, that many of them no longer had in common with one another.

This ploy worked like a charm -- the People were kept busy fighting one another while The Donald continued to loot the land and villages.  Before long, The Donald could not keep quiet his long-simmering secret:  It took money to loot the lands, as the expression went, and The Donald had moved all of his rightfully stolen money out of reach of the evil emperor's men.

So, for the tenth -- or was it twentieth? -- time, The Donald stuck his creditors with the bills, hoping that they would fill their empty pockets from their own right pockets... unless The Donald, and his kind, could get to those pockets first!

(It was a great scheme to hide behind -- even better than the Second Amendment's rights protecting hunters from having to kill bunny rabbits and deer with anything less than light anti-tank weapons.)

But, the People were getting hit from rich people on all sides, with all sorts of schemes, and no one could understand why it was, for the very first time, the People were not getting ahead, despite working every bit as hard as their parents and grandparents had done.

The Donald had answers for this as well, straight from the high castles and think-tanks of the sub-kingdoms of Republica, TeaPartia, Libtaria, and EnArrEhhEeeYa:  It was, simply put, everyone else's fault but his own.  It was, in fact, a failure on the People to demand redress from the evil emperor -- who, by the way, was not even born in the kingdom itself!  He was not even one of the People!  How dare he!

Before long, and through a series of spellbinding lies and rants to the People, which listed all their many faults, and their only hope of solutions through one path alone, The People, being ignorant and unclear, and panicky, jumped from the frying pan into their own home-and-forest fires, making The Donald emperor of the land.

It was either that, or succumb to the numbing fears The Donald invoked of all the possible dragons surrounding the People, which always threatened their every move, and their every breath.  These were the Dragons of Distant Looking Glasses.  They were dragons which only The Donald -- no other! -- could keep at bay, and help keep safe and free the People.

There was a brief moment of jubilation, at The Donald's coronation, until The Donald pulled off his costumed head and hair, revealing himself as the biggest dragon of them all!  (Just with really little hands.)

Only then did the People realize what they had done  -- they had fallen for lies, acted in their own worst possible interests, and had instead placed a thinly-disguised, bittersweet-yammering dragon upon the kingdom's throne.

The People realized they had been Brexitted through and through.  The People knew it was only a matter of time before the serious looting, pillaging, and the unending human sacrifices would begin to The Donald The Self-Trumpeting Orange, or, as he now preferred to be known, Donald The Most Magnificent Red of Them All.

Soon, he and his ally, Vladimir the Shirtless, would cleave the world in two, making things radically simpler than ever before:  The People had nothing, while Donnie and Vlad had piles and piles of, well -- piles.

(One might hope, after all.)

It may make no sense, but it's what bittersweet-yammering dragons like to do, especially to People who don't know any better -- those who follow fakey fears and feelings over real freedoms and facts.

You can always tell a dragon:  Most dragons like their prey to be none too bright. They love telling people what they can do for the dragon class. Dragons are also crazy about free rides, and can't wait to tell you how wonderful they are.  Dragon-spotting classes have become very popular lately.

* * *

(If there is a moral to this story, or to anything else in life, it is to find yourself a dragon who works on facts -- and always, always, make sure your dragons are fully vetted, and are checked really well for fake-looking skin and really bad wigs.)

Today's Bonus:

Here's a little pick-me-up from the always-excellent Slim Gaillard, just in case Mr. You-Know-Who gets a shot at The Big Button:



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