Wednesday, February 11, 2004


"Well, your favorite candidate for President of the US just dropped out of the race."

Raven turns his head away from the TV screen.

I said he was the best of a bum litter, Rave. Wesley Clark. Too bad he's out of the race, but I hope he ends up on the ticket. He's the only one with the common sense and organizational skills to clean up the mess the Bush Gang has created. Especially in Iraq.

"Clearly a Herculean task."

Yeah, right up there with cleaning the Augean stables. Look what the petrocriminals have done in Iraq: created anarchy. In the past 24 hours alone at least 100 people have been killed in car bombings.

"Not to mention the ongoing inferno of Afghanistan."

I'm sure the CIA operatives are happy there. They've got their opium trade back up to where it was before the Taliban closed that caper down.

"Making themselves the first priority target in the process."

And look at the chaos here in Caracas. The opposition is agitating for another coup attempt--with US financial backing, of course. On Sunday President Chavez denounced the continuing flow of NED (National Endowment for Democracy, haha!) dollars to opposition groups. Documents declassified under the US Freedom of Informaction Act show that after the failed coup in April of 2002 (staged with somewhere between 1 and 3 million dollars from the NED) the money has continuing pouring in to those same folks, and is scheduled to continue at least through September of 2004. The hysterically conflictive atmosphere that's driving me to the plane for Mexico tomorrow morning has the Bush Gang's oily fingerprints all over it.

"It's too goofy for me. I guess they want to try another coup because the polls all show that even if there were a referendum and a new election, Chavez would win with more than 50% of the vote."

We're not talking about rational people, Rave. The Bush Gang includes such luminaries as Alfred E. Bush, Mad Dog Cheney, Death's Head Rumsfeld, Rasputin Rove, Wile E. Wolfewitz and, as cheerleaders, Uncle Tom Powell and Aunt Jemima Rice. And the oligarchy here is so inbred--doubtless because of being terrified of sharing human rights with their fellow citizens--that they can't have 2 brain cells to rub together.

"And your species is at the top of the food chain. Evolution is ironic, isn't it?"

Sure is, guy. We need a revolution within evolution or all the species--except maybe cockroaches--are going to be history.

"Bummer. What have I done to deserve this?"

Don't take it personally, Birdy Boy. You may have put the sun and the stars and the moon in the sky, but you didn't create the atom bomb.

"Thankfully, that's one trick they can't blame on me. Didn't Einstein say if he had known they were going to build a bomb he would have been a watchmaker in Switzerland?"

Probably. J. Robert Oppenheimer, director of the Manhattan Project said, as the test bomb exploded over Trinity, New Mexico: "I have become death".

Raven is peering intently at the TV screen again.

"Hey, why do they keep calling that guy, Howard Dean, John?"

Beats me. Maybe it's another way the media has cooked up to discredit him. Especially since he asks the hard questions. I think John Dean did time for the Watergate caper. Anyway, he was one of Nixon's gang.

"NIxon! Now there's a good candidate."

He's dead, Rave. And he was a Republican anyway.

"Too bad. I liked that they called him Tricky Dick."

Rave, you're impossibly egocentric today. Pretty soon you'll be printing up bumperstickers.

"'Clean a sticky wicket with Tricky' has sort of a nice ring to it. Besides, if dead people can vote--and they seem to be model citizens in that regard--they should be ablt to run for office. And be elected, too."

I suppose they would do less damage.

"I think we've figured it out: the recipe for peace in the world!"

Right. Dead presidents. Thanks, Rave.

Monday, February 09, 2004


Well, that's it, Rave. We're booked for Mexico City on Thursday.

"You mean you're booked. I'm the Invisible Flyer."

Whatever. I'm sure you'll be happy to see your buddies again.

"Yeah. I'll get to have a social life. Instead of hanging around here watching TV news and you wasting away to nothing."

I never knew depression was a way to weight loss. Probably it isn't. Probably it's being on the Saturn line. I won't have to pack most of my clothes, but it's not worth it to lose weight suffering.

"Suffering in stereo, too. Polarization in the public sphere, hysteria, name-calling, death threats, conspiracies. And that's just here in Caracas. On TV the same stuff is on cable, but with different countries' names attached to it: Iraq, Pakistan, Israel, the US, the UK, etc. Makes my head ache."

Gee, Rave, I'm sorry I got you into this. Can birds take aspirin?

"I don't think so--pills are dosed by body weight. But you what probably would beat back my headache for awhile?"

(I had to ask.)

"A little stroll through the sushi bar at the Hilton might just do the trick."

You know I'm allergic to fish.

"Order carrot tempura or something. That'll keep you busy while I'm chasing Salmon upstream. Anything but be here listening to some Archie Bunker lookalike talking about playing in a rock band with John Kerry, back when dinosaurs were top dog on the planet."

I think Archie was on something else. Playing somebody's father.

"Okay, okay. Are we heading for the Hilton or not?"

Sure. The Bourgeois Bird will get the Salmon. Considering the Bolivar went to 2,800 to the dollar on the black market this morning, maybe I'll be able to pay the check.

"Or you could leave them your clothes...."