Mortaljive: The Rest is Silence

There is no still point in all the Universe, and that is the rock upon which I stand

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

It's Quite Simple, Really...

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A pretty woman speaks with the children, some of whom play with toys on the floor.

Alright, alright, settle down, settle down. Now, do you know why all of you have are here today?


No, not snacks. Anyone?

“Mom is at the store?”

She might be—Donald, sit down. No, we are here to talk about what the word “treason” means. Does anyone here know what “treason” means?


No, George, but good try. Anyone else?

“Treason is the boy hit me.”

Good, Dick, very good, that’s kind of like treason. Treason is when you betray—you hurt—your country by doing something very bad. Sometimes treason is done by someone whose job is to help the country, not hurt it, and that’s some of the worst treason of all.

“No it isn’t.”

Yes, Karl.

(looks at floor)

Go ahead, Karl, explain your answer.

“I saw a girl at the water fountain and she spit.”

Karl, I said that treason is when you hurt your country by doing something very bad—betraying your country—and you said it isn’t. What did you mean?

“Poopy butt.”


"He said poopy butt!"

Good Donald, but I'm talking to Karl now. Karl...

“I don’t like Mr. Wilson?”

Okay, that’s a start. Why don’t you like Mr. Wilson?

“He goes away.”


“He goes away and when he comes back he says something stupid. Well, fuck him. Fuck him and all of his goddamn snooty elitist…”

Karl. You’re mad at Mr. Wilson?

“He is a booger mouth.”

Condi, I was talking to Karl. Please don’t interrupt.

“Kiss my...”

Condi, you’ve been told twice today. Once more and I will call your parents. Do you understand?

“Condi touched her butt hole.”

George. Do not talk that way. Now, Karl, you didn’t like what Mr. Wilson did and you were mad, weren’t you?

(sucking sound)

And then you and Scooter…

“He’s not here.”

That’s okay. You and Scooter and Dick and some of the other children conspired to out a covert operative as part of a plan to punish someone whose professional legitimacy threatened your version of the reasons to go to war, isn’t that right?

“My knobby hurts.”

George, stop pulling at it. Now listen very, very carefully, all of you: we live in a Republic, and what holds this Republic together is respect for law…Karl, stop giggling. We are a team who may disagree about how to play but must agree to the rules of what’s allowed and what isn’t when we do play.

“I threw the ball and hit him.”

Very good, Dick. Yes you did.

“And then I kicked him and I clutched my chest in horror.”

Did your stent come out again?

“No, it’s okay (sighs).”

I’m almost done. We can’t just break the rules and put the group at risk because we want to. And we can’t ask others to abide by rules if we just flout them whenever it serves our purposes.

“We could for a little while.”

Yes, Karl, but it was wrong, and now the whole administration is in trouble, because where you sought to harm another you harmed yourselves. Do you see?

“I made a Hershey bar!”

No, George, you didn’t.

“Who are those big men?”

Those are police officers. Play time is over, I fear. Put the toys back and gather up your notebooks, papers and books. You will leave with the officers, and you can never come back here. Dick, stop clutching at your chest.

“You sure are pretty. I never knew the Statue of Liberty was so pretty!”

I’m a lot of things, George. A lot of things.

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