Is there no end to the prowess of His Serene Highness, the Emperor Barack Hussein Obama II, Lord of the Flies, Protector of the Holy Cities of Honolulu and Chicago, and by the Grace of Gaia the 44th president of the United States? Whether it’s swatting a pesky fly at the White House, bowling a near-perfect 37 during the campaign, or shooting some pick-up hoops in between charming various foreign leaders out of their socks, it seems there’s nothing the Dear Leader and Teacher can’t do.
Why, just the other night at the All-Star Game in St. Louis, the former bench-warming basketball player at the Punahou School donned a ChiSox jacket, muscled up on the mound, and soft-tossed a throw that must have gone all of 59 feet and no inches. What made the feat even more amazing was that BHO was pitching not to a catcher standing behind home plate wielding one of those great big easy-to-hit mitts, but to Albert Pujols, wearing an ordinary first baseman’s glove and standing right on the plate. Topping it all off was Obama’s rapturous ode to “Kaminsky Field” in his interview with Bob Costas, which ought to put to rest once and for all those scurrilous rumors that BO2 doesn’t know much about his country of origin. Take that, you birth-certificate nutters!
Yes, the former Barry Soetoro is everybody’s All-American. Which may be one of the reasons Obama selected Sonia Sotomayor, the former standout linebacker at Cardinal Spellman High School in the Bronx, to replace the elfin David Souter on the Supreme Court. Like Barry, la Sonia is diversity made flesh, sailing along on the affirmative-action track from a prestigious Catholic high school to Princeton and Yale to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals and, soon enough, to SCOTUS. It doesn’t matter that she’s revealed her command of the English language to be, well, a little shaky, referring in her hearings to “eminent” death, the “vagrancies” of life, and the importance of a “story” of knowledge. Why should a justice have to know that stuff? What’s important is this wise Latina is a kind of female version of Barry himself, as we’ll all find out when the first Monday in October rolls around. You can’t beat a compelling personal story of knowledge.
All of this hectic activity — not to mention running up a trillion-dollar deficit and nationalizing health care — comes at the end of yet another installment of Barry’s own private production of Entourage, wherein he takes the wife and kids and the mother-in-law along on one of his monthly if-this-is-Tuesday-it-must-be-Belgium diplomatic missions/speaking engagements/shopping trips. Never mind that the latest European vacation turned a little sour: Watching those two arrogant Russkies treat our POTUS as if he were a field hand in Gone With the Wind really got my patriotic blood boiling, until I remembered that, like Germany and the USSR during the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, we’re both on the same side now. And I could only imagine how uncomfortable the Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s foremost disciple must have felt as he encountered Pope B-16 at the Vatican; thank Gaia that Michelle didn’t feel the need to show off her muscles during the papal audience.
So when my agent got a call from a major studio the other day, asking whether I was available to tackle an updated version of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s Evita, you can bet I jumped at the chance. The pitch was a snap: Evita was about a woman of no particular talents except her ability to seduce powerful men as she rose from community streetwalker to First Lady of Argentina. The turning point in the story comes when Evita goes on a “Rainbow Tour” to Europe. She starts off great, wowing ’em in Spain, but the air slowly goes out of her bubble when her teleprompter breaks in Italy and they compare her to Mussolini; France turns up its collective nose at her, and by the time she gets to England . . .
Act One. “Barry,” a mysterious Community Organizer with multiple names and an indistinct past, suddenly appears in Chicago. His consummate mastery of the brown-nosing techniques he learned at Harvard (where the “Obamamometer” was invented to measure the audacity of taupe) quickly wins him the patronage of American patriots/guys in the neighborhood like William Ayers and his lovely wife, Bernardine Dohrn. True romance kicks in when “Hussein” (as he’s now calling himself) meets former Chicago Tribune journalist David Axelrod; the chemistry between Big Ambition and Big Media is instantaneous and in short order, Hussein rises to state senator, U.S. senator, and, miraculously, president. The highlight of Act One comes in Berlin, just before the election, when the high-flying, adored Hussein serenades thousands of rapturous Berliners with Weint nicht für mich, Berlintina.
Act Two. Tragedy strikes when Hussein’s beloved teleprompter dies of consumption due to the shocking lack of national health care. Bravely vowing to fight on, a grief-stricken Hussein redoubles his efforts as Toastmaster to the World, giving speech after speech in which he decries the sins of his country and offers up imaginative versions of recent history designed to flatter his listeners and ring the Obamamometer. But the Law of Diminishing Returns, passed by the evil Rethuglicans under a revivified Newt Gingrich while Hussein was out of town, slowly starts to drag him down, and no matter how many times he quotes himself approvingly, sticks his nose in the air, juts his jaw, and bounces a pitch to home plate, the magic is gone. Visionary programs such as health care and cap-and-trade both come a cropper in the Senate, the poll numbers keep dropping, and even one last great speech, Don’t Cry for Me, Amerikkka, is broadcast live only on Fox News, where Charles Krauthammer makes fun of it. It’s a sad ending, no doubt about it. But what memories we have!
I’ve stipulated in my contract that I want my father, the sainted “Che” Kahane, to play the “Che” character in the movie; he can’t sing, but the rest of the role is perfect for him. I’m not quite sure about the title, but for the moment I’m going with And the Money Kept Rolling In (and Out). Or maybe: Over the Rainbow: This Time, It’s Personal.
– Like half the op-ed writers at the New York Times, David Kahane never met a political situation he couldn’t turn into a cheap pop-cultural allegory. You can suggest further subjects at firstname.lastname@example.org or be his friend on Facebook. Goodnight, and thank you.