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Bill Kristol's Road Show

The NeoCon Travel Agency is Open for Business

by JP SOTTILE

How would you like to spend a week in an exotic locale with “The Boss”?

No, not that “Boss,” the other “Boss”—as in the Bruce Springsteen of Neo-Con crooners, the silver-tongued frontman of the rockin’-shockin’-awe-inspiring band that gave America and the world some of the greatest hits on Iraq. Folks, put your hands together for Bill “The Boss” Kristol.

That’s right, America. If you’re planning early for the upcoming holiday season, the travel bugs over at the Weekly Standard invite you to “…study with the boss in Jerusalem this winter at a weeklong seminar” appealingly titled “The Case for Nationalism.”

And what a dream vacation it will be, with up to three daily seminars featuring the historical and political stylings of a man touted by the week’s host—The Tikvah Advanced Institutes—as “one of the leading public intellectuals in America.”

Really, who better to re-mix and remake the idea of nationalism than DJ Kristol?

Although one hundred and fifty years of jingoism, racialism, ethnic cleansing, genocide and the attendant civilian carnage of modern, total warfare have eliminated nationalism from the playlists of many disillusioned deejays, DJ Kristol (a.k.a The Boss, a.k.a. the Artist Formerly Known as Prince Machiavelli) will take the stage of history this coming December 8th through the 12th to make the case that nationalism really isn’t the tired song-and-dance of a bygone era. By juxtaposing the post-national cosmopolitanism of Europe with the hard nationalism of Israel, American attendees should expect a predictable answer to the seminar’s question: “Does American power serve the interests of world order?”

With Jerusalem’s simmering, nationalistic strife and the ethnic divisions of the Israeli Occupation serving as the ideal backdrop, Kristol will ask the other question on the tip of everybody’s tongue: “Do Americans believe in their own exceptionalism, or do they seek to become a nation among the nations?” Of course, we all know the words to that song. No doubt the crowd will gleefully sing along with the “Other Boss” when he belts out one of the Neo-Cons’ all-time greatest hits—Born to Run (Away From Serving In The Wars We Are Advocating).

But wait, there’s more.

The travel agents at the Weekly Standard have other exciting destinations for more budget-minded travelers who’d like to stay a bit closer to home. How about “a weeklong study of the Iraq War” in New York City led by none other than Iraq War architect Paul Wolfowitz? Beginning this October 27th let Paul be your guide through the minefield of decisions that led to the destruction of a sovereign nation under false pretenses. He’ll be accompanied by his loveable sidekick and convicted felon, Lewis “Scooter” Libby, as attendees fly by the human catastrophe left behind in Iraq to a safe redoubt where they can rest assured than no one in American politics or governance has the cojones to bring him or his band of Neo-Cons to justice for the crime of this young century.

Not for you? Don’t fret, the Weekly Standard’s travel agency is here to help.

They know that times are tough for the working and middle classes. Obama’s “Recovery” has done wonders for Wall Street, but the folks on Main Street still struggle to make ends meet. That’s why Bill “The Boss” Kristol and Frederick Kagan (younger brother of Project for a New American Century co-founder Robert Kagan, brother-in-law to Victoria “F*ck the EU” Nuland, and son of Donald Kagan—the founder of the Kagan Brothers Band) have come up with a bargain travel alternative for those who cannot afford to take a vacation on their own. Bill and Fred’s Excellent Adventure Travel is featuring an all-expenses paid trip to Iraq!

Their new brochure in the Weekly Standard proposes a whirlwind itinerary for “special operators” and “perhaps regular U.S. military units” along the path from Baghdad all the way to the Syrian border. This exciting chance is a once in a lifetime…well…twice in a lifetime…or…maybe for some troops it could end up being a fifth or sixth in a lifetime opportunity to see a real, live nation in free-fall.

Of course, Kristol and Kagan go to great lengths to point out that this is a limited time offer. Act now, before their nightmare of wider Iranian intervention or, even worse, cooperation with the United States renders their personally re-drawn map of the Middle East irrelevant. Nothing is worse for a travel agent or touring band than a map that doesn’t fit their itinerary.

And don’t worry if the last trip to Iraq wasn’t all caviar wishes and champagne dreams—unless, of course, you held stock in Halliburton, or had a piece of the $138 billion private contractors made off the Neo-Cons’ greatest hit, or invested on any of the top ten defense contractors making bank off of Kristol’s beloved American Exceptionalism. And if you still have a little buyer’s remorse from the Neo-Cons’ last great getaway offer, Kristol and Kagan want you to know that “…now is not the time to re-litigate either the decision to invade Iraq in 2003 or the decision to withdraw from it in 2011.”

No, now is the time to make plans, hop on a plane and see the world the Neo-Cons remade. And if you don’t like their map, their itinerary or you sympathize with the plight of the people they’ve displaced with their armchair approach to American foreign policy, maybe you need to take that trip to Jerusalem and get right with your inner nationalist.

Maybe that’s the Neo-Con solution to a lagging economy? Nationalism is a long-term employment program for the working and middle classes with a special travel benefit…as roadies for Bill “The Boss” Kristol and the K Street Band as they plan yet another leg of their tiresome world tour.

JP Sottile is a freelance journalist, published historian, radio co-host and documentary filmmaker (The Warning, 2008). His credits include a stint on the Newshour news desk, C-SPAN, and as newsmagazine producer for ABC affiliate WJLA in Washington. His weekly show, Inside the Headlines w/ The Newsvandal, co-hosted by James Moore, airs every Friday on KRUU-FM in Fairfield, Iowa. He blogs under the pseudonym “the Newsvandal“.