Tuesday, April 12, 2011

"What Democracy Means to Me"

I was going through my old humor file this morning in search of bloggable material when I found this wonderful piece originally performed - according to my notes - by Johnny Carson on September 11, 1991. Here is his wonderful soliloquy titled, "What Democracy Means to Me" ...

"To me, democracy means placing trust in the little guy, giving the fruits of nationhood to those who built the nation.

"Democracy means anyone can grow up to be president, and anyone who doesn't grow up can be vice president.

"Democracy is people of all races, colors, and creeds united by a single dream: to get rich and move to the suburbs ... away from people of all races, colors, and creeds.

"Democracy is having time set aside to worship -- 18 years if you're Jim Bakker*.

"Democracy is buying a big house you can't afford with money you don't have to impress people you wish were dead. And, unlike communism, democracy does not mean having just one ineffective political party; it means having two ineffective political parties.

"Democracy means freedom of sexual choice between any two consenting adults; Utopia means freedom of choice between three or more consenting adults. But I digress.

"Democracy is welcoming people from other lands, and giving them something to hold onto -- usually a mop or a leaf blower. It means that with proper timing and scrupulous bookkeeping, anyone can die owing the government a huge amount of money.

"Democracy means a thriving heartland with rolling fields of Alfalfa, Buckwheat, Spanky, and Wheezer**.

"Democracy means our elected officials bow to the will of the people, but more often they bow to the big butts of campaign contributors.

"Yes, democracy means fighting every day for what you deserve, and fighting even harder to keep other weaker people from getting what they deserve.

"Democracy means never having the Secret Police show up at your door. Of course, it also means never having the cable guy show up at your door. It's a tradeoff. Democracy means free television, not good television, but free.

"Democracy is being able to pick up the phone and, within a minute, be talking to anyone in the country, and, within two minutes, be interrupted by call waiting.

"Democracy means no taxation without representation, and God knows, we've just about had the hell represented out of us. It means the freedom to bear arms so you can blow the "o" out of any rural stop sign you want.

"And finally, democracy is the eagle on the back of a dollar bill, with 13 arrows in one claw, 13 leaves on a branch, 13 tail feathers, and 13 stars over its head--this signifies that when the white man came to this country, it was bad luck for the Indians, bad luck for the trees, bad luck for the wildlife, and lights out for the American eagle.

"I thank you."

Johnny Carson was a smart and funny guy. I miss him.

Today, think about what Democracy means to you. Or what the Republicans say it means to you, since ... after all ... they absolutely know what the American people want. The wealthy and well-connected American people, anyhow. You could also think about what it means to Democrats, except that they aren't organized enough to know themselves.


Have a good day. More thoughts tomorrow.


** For those of you not old enough to remember, those were some of the members of "Our Gang."



Mike said...

I'd like to digress. I think about digressing all the time. But I digress.

allenwoodhaven said...

Johnny Carson, a true gentleman and comic genius. It's too bad they don't make them like him anymore. Thanks for the reminder and the laughs!

KathyA said...

I miss him, too.