The Edge of Blight,

Saturday, May 06, 2006 at 03:03 PM

Another episode of America's very own Dope Opera, "The Edge of Blight"

We begin today's episode as the president announces the resignation of a CIA chief he appointed not that long ago.  As he speaks, the president looks sideways, at the departing chief.  What is that in his eyes before he quickly lowers and turns his gaze?  Disgust?  Envy? Sorrow?

Fade to Black

New scene--In a far away office, investigators for the government are arranged haphazardly around a large conference table.  At one end of the table stands an easel with a huge multicolored chart.  The chart has a purple caption: Cunningham Investigation, ongoing.  It lists the names of more than 50 elected officials, appointed officials, and agency underlings.  The camera zooms slowly, ominously in toward the board, and it becomes obvious that it is boring directly in to frame a single name.  In seconds, the name of the departing CIA official.

Fade to Black

New scene--In a room that looks suspiciously like the oval office, a man who looks suspiciously like the president is talking on the phone.  As the sound comes up, we hear the man speaking to himself, with his hand covering the transmitter on the phone: "F'ing Weyrich, F'ing Dobson, F'ing Goss, F'ing Libby, F'ing Abramoff, F'ing Cunningham, F'ing DeLay, F'ing Cheney, F'ing..."

The muttering stops suddenly and the man uncovers the telephone transmitter.  "Yes, Paul," he says into the phone, "I know your lemmings don't like moral transgressions, I understand, I understand, I know they're already upset about those gambling casinos, the mafia hit on the gambling boat guy, the charitable corporations laundering money....I do know that Paul, I..."

The man rolls his eyes and covers up the transmitter again.  "F'ing Rumsfeld, F'ing Lott, F'ing Powell, whole F'ing military..."

He uncovers the phone transmitter again.  "Well I can't help that Paul, I can't help that.  You're big on Free Congress, why don't you try freeing the damn president for F'ing once.....Yes I know, Paul, I shouldn't have said...."

As he places his hand over the transmitter once again, we

Fade to black

New scene--An angry man stands at a gas pump, nozzle in hand and inserted into the gas line of his 4-whell drive vehicle.  Veins stand out on his head as he stares at the pump where the price numbers are rolling up rapidly.  The camera pans down to his hand holding the nozzle.  His knuckles are white from gripping the nozzle so tightly.

We pan back to the man's face, which is now sweating.  His eyes dart around the area surrounding the pumps, where many people with similar looks continue to stare at the price numbers rolling on their own pumps.

"F'ing president," the man mutters, "F'ing government, F'ing country."

As the camera pulls back, rising above the pumps,  the many vehicles  and the pumpers become smaller, less and less distinguishable.  Background sound becomes more prominent, rising to drown out the man's individual voice.  "F'ing fovernment, F'ing country, F'ing government, F'ing country"  growing louder and louder until we get absolute silence as the screen

Fades to black

New scene--A recording studio.  A man in a suit is being catered to and prepped for his on-air appearance.  It is obvious from the fawning that he is the host of a show which will soon go on the air.  He has a blocky face, dark hair, small dark eyes, the overall look of a thug who has been forced to wear a suit.

A younger man with a file folder in hand is telling him things about the show, how long to airtime, which guest will be first, what topics to avoid.

"The first guy, he doesn't want to talk about the CIA.  He says to tell the audience in your intro that it's too early to make sense of the resignation, so you aren't going to talk about it."

"What about the war," the host says.  "I can ask him how he things the recent improvement in that context is likely to affect the price of gas."

"Nooo," the young man says, looking at the floor.  "We just got a news flash on the war.  Tonight's not a good night to bring that up.  You'll find out why on the news later tonight.  And anyway, he says that gas prices aren't a great topic."

"Jesus," the host says, staring at the back of his head by way of a hand-held mirror.  "Get that lick down behind my ear.  Looks like I've got one horn coming up.  We have to talk about something.  He's the president's chief F'ing advisor, right?"

"Yeah, but he wanted me to tell you not to really bring that up too much, or male a point of it."

"What?  Why the F not?  That's why he's on the show!"

"I know, but he says that putting too much focus on that right now might get some tough questions on the call-in segment."

"Christ," the host says, running his hand over the patch of hair that has been oiled into submission.  "what a bunch of F'ing pansies.  You think Adolf would've let little shit like this move him off message.  Heil no!"

"Easy," the younger man says, looking around furtively.  "Knock off the Heils.  You never know who has a recorder, or an open mike."
"Yeah, right.  Okay, what the hell does this guy want to talk about?  What can I mention?"

"Well, he says there's a new book out about how liberals were hoping for a 9/11, and a another book on how Bill Clinton had Sammy Davis Jr. killed.  Either topic's okay with him."

Fade to black

New scene--A room full of ordinary people.  Maybe 100 of them.  They're all milling about aimlessly, individually.  No one is talking to anyone else.  Some mutter to themselves.  Every now and then, one brushes against another and glares of hatred are exchanged.  Fists are formed and shaken at each other.  Occasionally, in the background and unobtrusively, someone raises their middle finger toward the camera.  Slowly the camera begins to zoom in, toward a middle-aged man with swarthy skin, indeterminate race, average height.  As the camera rolls forward we see less and less of his face, the mouth begins to fill the screen, then does fill the screen, suddenly stopping at that point.

The mouth is a sneer and the lower lip pulls backward slightly as the jaw opens a bit.  The lower lip rests just below and behind the front teeth.  With the sound magnified, the man says:


Fade to black.

White letters begin to pop onto the black screen as though they were bullet holes.