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Jimmy Carter, Osama bin Laden and modern culture.

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Misery Loves Company

Jimmy Carter, Osama bin Laden and modern culture.

First the good news:  Presidential-Wannabe-For-Life Jimmy Carter swears he’s THAT CLOSE to really honestly almost nailing down a sort-of mideast peace deal provided Hamas agrees to collective lobotomies and Israel figures, "defensible borders — who needs ’em?"

But — admit it:  anytime you hear that name, you don’t think Nobel Prize.  Or even Habitat for Humanity.  No, what you think is the word Carter raised from obscurity as he sat there in his smug little sweater in front of the crackling fire:  malaise.  And boy do we have that in spades. 

With apologies to Nat King Cole, this is already shaping up as a Lazy Crazy Malaisy kind of summer of our discontent.  Mercy!  We’ve got gas prices that are like — food prices.  The Chinese sell us poisonous products made with slave labor while bailing us out of the financial hole we’re in from buying Saudi oil.  We’re up to our crevasses in illegally-huddled masses and every single remaining presidential contender seems to think our border is sort of penciled in.  We want to maintain our rugged individualism while enjoying cradle to grave security in a fiscally prudent manner which we’ll put on the gross national credit card. 

We also want drive-through nickle beer night, and we want to lose weight by eating Haagen Daz. To which our candidates say, fine, we’ll promise you that and more. We can’t balance our budget, fix social security, or educate our children well enough to handle either of those problems which we’re dumping smack dab in their laps.  And all the while we idly watch American Idol. 

You want a reality show for these times?  How about putting old white guys (a bad minority group if ever there was one) in an arena with lions and letting viewers email in who gets to live ‘til the next show?  Ryan Seacrest should MC and Simon Cowell provides color commentary.  If the road to hell is paved with good intentions, we demand an 8-lane highway, and a handcart to take us there. 

Is that what’s not floating your boat, bunky?  Is that why your fundamental fortitude is flaccid and demanding the viagra of a vital solution?  Well look alive, lift up your head and shout, "AT LEAST WE’RE NOT AL-QAEDA!"

That’s right.  At least we’re not spelunking over at terror central, jockeying for a corner cave with a good view of Osama’s dialysis equipment.  For all of our problems, far too many of them self-made, at least we’re only sorry schmoes, and not the dysfunctional dweebs who’re GETTING THE SNOT KICKED OUT OF THEM BY SORRY SCHMOES. 

Think about it.  Here we are, a self-absorbed disfunctional passle of pathetic whiners  who need a serious butt-kicking if only we had candidates who could find ours with both hands and a road map.  And yet — AND YET, we still manage to cream those cancerous cretins at every turn.  Their finances are in disarray.  They haven’t mounted a serious attack against us in years.  Iraqi Sunni’s, for pete’s sake, are regularly ratting them out  to the Great (not just the Pretty Good) Satan.  What are they going to do?  Hang no-surge strips?  Wait for an upturn in the virgin futures market?

As you sit there, concerned about paying for that second jacuzzi, stop to have a moment of empathy for those with real problems.  If you’re Osama Bin Laden, can you count on the board of directors to keep you on as CEO?  Are you going to wind up having to oursource terror to the Tamil Tigers?  The Cryps and Bloods?  William Ayers?  The Berkeley City Council? 

There has to be a severe morale problem there in Tora Boredom.  And if they can tear themselves away from the Home Shopping Network, Al Qaeda has to watch a little CNN or MSNBC and wonder.  How?  How can this be happening?  Americans are looking to people such as Obama, Clinton and McCain to lead them in an existential war?  Is it because some reporters and pols keep saying “Osama” when they mean to say “Obama”?  How is it that Americans can get their news from Keith Olbermann and still be winning?  Osama and his merry band must watch our political commercials because there’s simply no way to avoid them.  They know the last time the White House phone rang at 3 am was when the Marines were calling in from their landing in Afghanistan.  (Which wasn’t good news for the al-Q crew). 

It’s even money that “Doctor” Zawahiri is writing Prozac and Seconol prescriptions for himself and Usama.  But can they get Prozac?  How about aspirin?  How about Preparation H?  Does their prescription drug program ensure delivery no matter how many Navy SEALs are, um, interfering?

Well maybe, just maybe, we could help.  That liberal impulse to find the good in the lowest scum on earth might well be put to work here.  I see Sally Struthers, walking through the Pakistani-Afghani border region, exhorting us to give "just the dollar a day which could let you sponsor little Muhammad, and provide him a decent meal, a magazine of AK-47 ammo, and a pair of shoes which can actually explode." 

If they’re short of money, maybe Osama should consider 2 words:  naming rights.  Can you say "Chick-Filet Infidel Bowl?"  How about "Johnson and Johnson Jihad"?  You could print the logos on the explosive vests. 

Say, have you considered a listing under MySpace or Facebook?  How about a recruiting video on YouTube? 

Or, if all else fails, consider a convenient loan.  Surely the Quran can’t be THAT inflexible about a little interest rate.  If you’re not conversant with the notion, check your TV listings for something called "Deal or No Deal". 

Otherwise, there could actually arise the unthinkable among the fanatic faithful:  A spiritual crisis.  If Allah isn’t answering their prayers, where can they turn for a sympathetic spiritual adviser?  Hey, I think I know one who’s available, as soon as he finishes his current American tour.

Written By

Jim Bohannon is a host with Westwood One Radio whose "Jim Bohannon Show" and "America in the Morning" are heard on over 500 radio stations nationwide. He's a member of the Radio Hall of Fame. www.jimbotalk.net

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