No News is Good News

There are so many scandals swirling around Washington, D.C. it sometimes almost seems like there might be some minor consequences from a few of them possibly, at some point. Maybe. So far, nothing. I thrust the trembling finger-bone of blame at the Washington press corps, that aptly-named body that lies on a slab (this is a brilliant double entendre, or ‘twice tenderized’, if you prefer to eschew French, in which ‘corps’ and ‘body’ suggest a cadaver, and ‘lies on a slab’ refers to a newspaper full of falsehoods; thought I’d just point this out rather than have such a witty line go completely unappreciated by you cloth-headed dolts). It is this sniveling pack of milk-livered sycophants, gelt-gelded golems of galimatias, that have led us to this pass – – a press pass, if I may. Unless the news media can be persuaded to do their goddamn jobs, it’s bottoms up for Bonzo, and the rest of us, too. We need reporting, and we need it now.

If any of these so-called journalists (anagram: insular jot) would please venture the relatively modest career risk it entails to take a shot at the side of one of these barnloads of scandal in return for the potential upside of saving humanity from a thousand years of darkness that will make the 13th Century look like a weekend in the Hamptons, it would be my pleasure to reciprocate with a bank check for $100, if that helps any. I’ll put a word in with the Pulitzer folks, too, if that’s an incentive. We need someone to break one of these stories, pronto. Reminder: the latest scandal is Watergategate (I thought of that myself, very pleased, thank you) , and the potential bag will be something like 30 corrupt persons in high office, probably including Porter ‘Night Porter’ Goss, head of the CIA until about an hour ago when he suddenly stuffed a few things in a portmanteau and shinned down the drainpipe to greener pastures. But there are many others, and if you don’t mind a little plagiarism, there are plenty of reputable bloggers out there that have already gone out on a limb and done all the handy legwork on what’s afoot.

List ye, O nogoodnik nescient nanocephalous nugatory nabobs of natter: Alger Hiss is everywhere, there’s a plenitude of pumpkins. Donald Rumsfeld’s dissembling about those WMDs, remember that? Donald Death just gave a Q & A in Atlanta during which he got called out on one of his lies, stood there thunderstruck and gobsmacked because he was caught dead to rights with a lie right in his teeth, and all you did was report there were hecklers present. How about that whole Valerie Plame thing? You remember, the scandal that has got Karl Rove hiding behind the draperies in the Gannon Bedroom at the White House? Report on it, for Chrissakes, and not just to say he’s had a slight change of job description. Mention why that is. How about-O Lord, I am overcome, give me some scandals in list form:

Memogate (an oldie but goodie, look it up), Energy Taskforcegate, Yellowcakegate, Plamegate, Abramoffgate, Gannongate, any one of about 380 Halliburtongates, the Bush/Enron connection, or KennyboyLayGate, Hammergate (“DeLay not; swift the flight of fortune’s greatest favors”, as Seneca said), Taiwangate (Deputy Assistant Secretary Donald Keyser passes documents to Taiwan, no story here apparently), Phone Jamming On Election Night In New Hampshiregate (two dozen calls to the White House during this little illegal operation, maybe just birthday greetings to the First Lady, but shouldn’t someone investigate it?) UNgate (we wiretapped the United Nations, probably mistaking the organization for an ordinary American citizen), Wiretapping Ordinary American Citizensgate (this ‘gate’ suffix is dreadful but I’m stuck with it now, bear with me), Fristgate (insider trading), Cheney Shooting Somebody In The Headgate, Katrinagate (New Orleans is still a nigrescent nightmare), let us not forget Iraqgate, by which I mean the entire clusterfuck, from Abu Ghraib to Zarqawi, The President Is Above The Lawgate, Gasgate (demand is down, prices are up, nothing to see here, folks, move along), Irangate, and how about GAAAAAARRRRRGHHH SPLETCH SPURT SPURT SPURT Jesus Christ, my head just exploded.

Right, mop off the keyboard and enough of scandals. Maybe there are just too many of them. If Clinton, that prurient pork-swordsman, had sodomized ten thousand interns, perhaps the weasels of the press couldn’t have kept up with it all and they would have abandoned the whole thing. Maybe that is Bush’s genius: there are so many juicy flies swarming around the filth-caked nostrils of the dying wildebeest of his presidency that a journalist hardly knows which one to swat first. But in the name of Old Hob, please choose one and swat it. It really is time to stop playing at journalists and start doing the actual work.

If you’re still all that fond of Bush, or your salary-paying management suggests Bush might not like an honest exploration of the steaming open sores appearing like moon-craters all over the feculent backside of his government, let us remember that it was Bush Himself that suggested he desired an honest administration. I quote the great man from October of the year 2000: “In my administration”, said Bush, “We will ask not only what is legal, but what is right, not what the lawyers allow, but what the public deserves.”

I suppose Bush delivered:. The public has gotten exactly what it deserves. But at the very least, I’d like it to make the news.

BEN TRIPP, author of Square in the Nuts, is a hack in many mediums. He may be reached at



Ben Tripp is America’s leading pseudo-intellectual. His most recent book is The Fifth House of the Heart.