Consultations With Padre Kino

I have decided to become a drunk and live under a bench, maybe in a radiation suit. It only makes sense. The times are dire. Dark shapes twist in the international fog. The US, in the hands of puzzled children of low moral character, flaps about like a damp rag in a high wind. Anything could happen.

I figure to enjoy it since I can’t stop it. It would all seem more amusing and less dark, I thought, if I weren’t immoderately sober. To this end I walked to the Oxxo, which is a Mexican Seven-Eleven, and bought a bottle of Padre Kino red.

Maybe I should have bought two bottles.

There is much to cause worry. The strange little man in the White House is leering at Iran in his customary state of martial priapism. Not good. (Wild thought: Someone ought to give Iran nuclear weapons, so he won’t attack it.) Anyway, wee Bush, not having enough army for his current wars, wants to start a bigger and shinier one.

Somebody explain it to me. I have limited geostrategic grasp. Perhaps he believes that by spreading unwinnability over several wars, he will reduce it in each. Victory through distributed defeat.

I keep reading that Herr Bush may use “bunker buster” nukes in Iran. To the inordinately dim, this has a comforting sound. You know, a little itsy-bitsy, teeny-weeny, perhaps yellow polka-dot nukelet goes way down in the earth and, fooomp! blows up the evil bunker, hardly rattling the windows above. Actually an earth-penetrator doesn’t penetrate beyond a few feet, all of which turn into fallout.

The Padre Kino isn’t working. None of this makes any sense, even after half a bottle. I may have to go IV. The president’s virtuous plan to spread democracy like bird flu goes apace. Ain’t nobody heah ceptin’ us missionaries. The rascal is imposing democracy right and left, though mostly left as it turns out.

It is working. Well, it is having an effect. In Venezuela democracy brought about Hugo Chavez, who hates the United States. In Bolivia it produced Evo Morales, who hates the United States. In Iran it empowered Ahmawhatsispelling, who hates the United States. So does the elected government in Iraq. In Palestine Mr. Bush’s righteousness elected Hamas, which hates the United States, perhaps as much as does the Muslim Brotherhood, which keeps getting more elected in Egypt.

There’s nothing like democracy, I say. There’s nothing like brains either, but they seem to be in short supply. I mean, if you force elections in countries where everybody hates you, after doing things that make sure that everyone hates you…?

I think I’ll call Oxxo and tell them to put another bottle on hold. Maybe they have a layaway plan.

See, this whole mess is a splendid contest between a Titan and a pygmy, the pygmy being very well armed and the Titan being very smart. High drama and all. Made for television. The pygmy used New York as a pretext to conquer the Middle East and get the oil. Bin Laden used New York to sucker the pygmy into a losing war that would leave the United States defanged and broken. One of them has guessed wrong. We’ll know which before long.

I still don’t get it. Maybe psilocybin would help. It doesn’t make you understand anything, but makes everything else equally confusing so that nothing stands out. These days, it’s the best you can hope for.

What jolly things are the rest of the presidential children doing? The vice president has shot someone while duck hunting, and apparently while drunk. Only wounded him, though. I grew up in a country where fifteen-year-old boys regularly hunted. Nobody ever shot anybody. I am not sure that a clown who cannot be trusted with hunting arms really ought to exert influence over intercontinental missiles. The only consolation is that he would be likely to miss.

Next I see that Mr. Rumsfeld, the secretary of alleged defense, has said “We’ve got Chavez in Venezuela with a lot of oil money. He’s a person who was elected legally, just as Adolf Hitler was elected legally, and then consolidated power, and now is, of course, working closely with Fidel Castro and Mr. Morales and others. It concerns me."

Mr. Rumsfeld concerns me. The assertion that Hitler is working with Castro and Evo Morales does have its appeal. It implies that Adolf really did take an immortality drug and move to Argentina. Is this something NSA hasn’t told us? Maybe Mr. Rumsfeld wasn’t paying attention during grade-school English classes. Hitler of course was never elected legally but appointed Chancellor by Hindenburg in 1933, never having gotten more than 37% of the vote. I knew this in high school. Why doesn’t the Secretary of Defense? Reassuring, that. Pig ignorant and pugnacious.

I note that Mr. Bush was elected legally, unless of course he wasn’t, and consolidates power. Fast. I do not think that he will work with Castro and Morales, though. He couldn’t remember them long enough.

And of course there is Kind Of Leezer Rice, the Secretary of State. Being non-male and non-white, she is slightly more sacred than God, if only in that she is allowed on federal property.

She is said to “speak Russian fluently.” Is there any evidence that she speaks it at all? Where are the publications to document her purportedly coruscating intelligence? produces only The Soviet Union & the Czechoslovak Army 1948-1983, noted for its poor grasp of historical fact.

I asked an academic friend about this, and he responded, “I checked a couple of computer databases for scholarly articles by Dr. Rice and couldn’t find any. My suspicions were further aroused by the fact that of all the adoring articles I found about Dr. Rice (including her official curriculum vitae on the White House web site), none listed any scholarly publications apart from the aforementioned book.” Oh.

The world is reeling slightly. Doubtless a gravitational anomaly. What if Bush doesn’t leave when his term ends? He would say he had to remain to protect us from terror. The nation abounds in fools, as Australia does in rabbits. Who would do anything about a coup—or, pardon me, “emergency measure”? And what?

Who’s in charge of this choo-choo train? A witless draft-dodger, an inept duck-hunter, an historical illiterate, and an overrated twofer. I’m going to hide.

The great fallacy of childhood is the belief that grownups must know what they are doing. There is no evidence for this in the historical record. You would do better by grabbing a government at random from the denizens of a rural high school. Democracy brings us twerps, psychopaths, ambitious ciphers, short men, and well-born drones. They are what they are. They can’t change any more than a leper can change his spots. I need some really strong drugs or someone to hit me on the head with a rubber mallet. Opium is the religion of the masses. Let us pray.

Fred Reed is author of Nekkid in Austin: Drop Your Inner Child Down a Well.