Sunday, November 06, 2005

Inside the White House Ethics Class

Once in a while, my White House poetry group leaves behind quite a mess.  Yoga mats, dropped pens, and scraps of paper get strewn across the floor.  Once I found a note from the President to the Secretary of State telling her that he had to go to the bathroom really really bad.  That was an odd day in many ways because the Secretary sat throughout the session in her black leather coat and high boots right in front of the President while everyone else was complaining that it was too hot in there.  Another time, Dick Cheney had made spit wads out of his angiogram results and was shooting them at Donald Rumsfeld then taunting him with “How are those smart bombs doing lately Donnie?”

Richard Perle threw a paper airplane one day that bore the following, “I can’t believe the government paid 15 million dollars each for these in a no-bid contract and all I got was this lousy t-shirt!”

It’s usually not that bad though.  The group’s been a bit off since Scooter got indicted and Harriet Miers had to come back to the White House to help the president pick his next nominee for the Supreme Court.  Last week, I was cleaning up when I came across a set of materials from another class that apparently meets just after my poetry group.  Anyway, I phoned my friend and patron at the White House, Karl Rove to see what was up.

CL:  Karl I think I found something that might be yours.

KR:  I know nothing, I see nothing, I hear nothing.

CL:  Colonel Klink might not need to know about this.

KR:  Please, please, don’t tell the Colonel.  I have children.

CL:  Are you guys taking another class in the White House basement?

KR:  Who wants to know about the ethics class?

CL:  You know Colonel Klink’s father Otto Klemperer’s recording of the Pastoral is still the best recording of Beethoven’s Sixth?  What’s with this Hogan’s Heroes thing anyway?

KR:  Alberto Gonzales was in ethics class yesterday and did an oral report about how Guantanomo was really just like Stalag 13.  He even quoted Michelle Malkin a bunch of times and you know she’s really smart and says the Japanese internment wasn’t such a bad thing either.  Maybe they’ll make a sitcom about Tule Lake one of these days.  

CL:  Does the attorney general know who killed Bob Crane?  

KR:  I know nothink, I see nothink….
(I think the Deputy Chief of Staff would be much better liked by Blue staters if he’d let them see a bit more of his offbeat sense of humor.  You know he was joking when he said that liberals just wanted to arrest people and seek therapy after 9/11.  The liberal press never shared his punchline which was “We just invade a completely different country and let the guy go instead.”)

CL:  Are you telling me that even things like Bob Crane lead back to the party?  

KR:  I know nothink….I hear nothink….If the Contras sold drugs, I didn’t buy any of them and I’ve never even bought postage stamps in Ohio.  

CL:  Anyway, I found what I think is your multiple choice quiz from your ethics class?

KR:  Why do you think it’s mine?

CL:  Well, on question 3 it says “Your opponent beats you in a debate.  What do you do?”
  1. Congratulate him or her and say that you are glad to have had the chance to discuss the issues publicly and directly

  2. Bring a black box to the next one so you can be coached on the answers.

  3. Refuse to debate again and hire people to accuse him of  not really deserving his medals.

  4. Say that your job is really really hard and that you don’t have time to take any real security precautions.

  5. Run lots of ads with you praying with a little girl who’s asking you about 9/11.

KR:  I remember that question.  I think it had a trick answer or something.

CL:  Well, this one says “None of the above, threaten his wife and kids to send him a message.”

KR:  What makes you think I wrote that?

CL:  How about question 6 “Torture is….”

  1. immoral for any law abiding country.

  2. Okay, as long as you do it in a different country and don’t tell anyone about it.

  3. We didn’t actually flush a Koran down a toilet we just threatened to.

  4. Something you never admit to.

  5. A necessary tool in the war against terror and high taxes.
This one says, “None of the above, threaten his wife and kids to send him a message.”

KR:  Is my name written on the quiz anywhere?  Have you had it fingerprinted?

CL:  Here’s question 11 “If a faith based initiative actually tortures children, you should….”

  1. Take away its license regardless of its religious connections and the fact that they helped support Bill Clemens campaign for governor.

  2. You should seek to do away with licensing requirements in Texas.

  3. Reward them with a seat on a state commission.

  4. Look the other way.

  5. Get more sympathetic judges.

Again, this one says “None of the above, threaten the wife and kids or the mother to send a message.”

KR:  There’s no direct proof that I ever did anything like that.

CL:  How about question 21, “Enron was….”

a)A corporate scandal that destroyed the 1.3 billion dollars of savings for ordinary employees yet allowed high level executives to sell off 1.2 billion dollars in stock while regular employees had their 401Ks frozen.
b)A good place to find a Secretary of the Army.
c)I do not know Ken Lay and he supported Anne Richards once.
d)A reason to reform corporate accounting practices.
  1. As a single entity, the largest corporate donor to the Bush-Cheney campaign in 2000.

This one says “I held a hundred and thirteen thousand dollars in Enron stock myself. We should find out who the wives and children are of anyone who wrote articles about the company and threaten them.”

KR:  No one can show that I sold my stock in the company based on inside information.

CL:  You’re sure this wasn’t your copy of the quiz?

KR:  Ask Scott Mcllelan.  Besides, I can’t comment on anything until that investigation is complete except to say that the president has complete confidence in me.

CL:  Here’s number 24, “You are running against a war hero in the South Carolina primary and someone does a fake push poll that falsely raises questions about your oppenent’s wife and adopted child.  What do you do?”

  1. Apologize and repudiate anyone who had anything to do with the poll.

  2. Celebrate victory.

  3. Brainwash your opponent somehow.

  4. Do it again.

  5. Insist that you would never do such a thing and challenge anyone to show the paper trail.

This time it says”McCain-Feingold that you *#$*$*#”

KR:  I have a very good relationship with the Senator from Arizona. Have you asked Dick Cheney or Mary Matalin if this was their quiz?

CL:  Actually, it’s in the president’s handwriting, the same as the bathroom note he wrote to the Secretary of State.  Since you’re confirming that it wasn’t you, I guess that means….

KR:  You know I’d never threaten anyone’s wife and family directly.

CL:  How are you doing in the class?

KR:  Just fine, I’m really enjoying having a chance to teach.  I guarantee that no staffer will be left behind.

I’m personally pleased that the president is making sure that all of his staff gets this ethics refresher class.  It’s clear that what happened with Scooter Libby was totally out of character for the rest of the White House.  I’m certain that this ethics class will get them right back to the ethical standard they maintained before that little WMD misunderstanding.    


At 11/07/2005 01:59:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's the portrait in the attic of Karl & his "leprosies of sin" that I long to see outed.


At 11/07/2005 09:09:00 AM, Blogger Chancelucky said...

I don't think it's a portrait of Karl in Karl's case, it's more like a picture of Roy Cohn.

At 11/10/2005 03:56:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Porbably a Janus of Karl and Roy.

At 11/10/2005 08:14:00 AM, Blogger Chancelucky said...

The real Karl Rove is a genuinely frightening person. The one Chancelucky talks to is meant to allow you to see him without having to look at him directly and turn to stone.


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