When I was just a young lad, earnestly studying history, economics, science, and politics I witnessed the fall of the Berlin Wall, the reunification of Germany, the liberation of the Eastern Bloc and the subsequent collapse of the Soviet Union. Reflecting on this, I realized why these events were inevitable – communism was always doomed to failure, because while theoretically, it is a good idea, people themselves simply aren’t good enough for it. Oh, sure, if we were all like Jesus of Nazareth, Siddhartha Gautama Buddha, Lao Tzu, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi or Mother Teresa, well then, of course, communism would work just fine, and furthermore, Karl Marx would never have needed to invent it, either: it would just be the natural order of things. The vast majority of us, however, most certainly are not anywhere near as good as those people, and that is the reason why communism now smolders on the ash heap of history. The fault is not what is dreamt of in our philosophy, but in ourselves.
Lately, though, I have been troubled by another, similar concern: are we even good enough for democracy? Or are absolute monarchy, autocracy, despotism and tyranny the only paradigms of civilization of which our base human natures are truly capable? Well, on Saturday, November 12, 2022, I am pleased to report, news arrived in Washington that perhaps we are, in fact, good enough for it, if not by much – the fascist takeover of the United States of America, so eagerly anticipated by the majority of the Republican Party, was ever so narrowly averted by the election of the fiftieth Democrat to the US Senate.
Whether or not the Republicans will have the opportunity to make a nuisance of themselves for the next two years in the House of Representatives is still undecided as I write this. But given the Senate’s absurd power to block or nullify anything and everything that comes out of the House, there is little chance that the ludicrous circus of bogus investigations, baseless impeachments and general atavistic America First grandstanding which can be expected if the Republicans do in fact reach the Magic 218 will have any significant impact on the steady forward progress being made patching up the mess they created (an endeavor which sane members of our society have been diligently pursuing since January of 2021).
To say the MAGA Republicans are disappointed about losing their opportunity to foist themselves and their primitive superstitions, ignorant prejudices, asinine fantasies and dark, unspeakable urges (I will not dignify any of those by referring to them as “ideas”) on the rest of us would be the signal understatement of this admittedly young but still significantly advanced century. They are livid. They are enraged. They are infuriated. They are inflamed, roiled, indignant, ireful, dismayed, rankled, exasperated and sore. They are seething, sizzling, riled, fuming, boiling, bristling, aggravated and apoplectic. They are cheesed off, in a huff, bent out of shape, blue in the face and fit to be tied. Moreover, I must admit, as a mentally stable human being whose society has just narrowly escaped a future under the thumb of their perverse and evil ministrations, I find their antics of mutual recrimination highly amusing.
And none so much as those of their Fearless Leader. Having exercised all the shrewd political acumen of Louis XVI, Donald John Trump has, reportedly, spent every day since last Tuesday in a state of high dungeon reminiscent a certain German Chancellor trapped in his personal fortified bunker in the spring of 1945. There, as it has been recorded in eyewitness accounts of the era, everything that caused the ensuing debacle was somebody else’s fault – the cornered, demented dictator raged about, accusing his generals, his allies, his cronies, his advisors, his party and his political base of incompetence, hubris, selfishness, stupidity, ignorance and betrayal. There is no record, however, that the mad Chancellor ever accused Eva Braun of anything. Could it be that even that guy had more class than Donald John Trump?
Because right about two in the afternoon today, while relaxing at my home in Great Falls, Virginia, I received a telephone call from Mar-a-Lago, a stately old mansion once owned by the Post family, and recently converted into an exceedingly gaudy golf resort.
Tom: Hello, this is Tom Collins.
Voice: Good afternoon. I am Dobrousta Paritise, Slovenian cousin of Melania Trump.
Tom: Of course. With a name like that, who else could you be? What can I do for you, Dobrousta?
Voice: You can call me Dolly. All my friends do.
Tom: Sure Dolly. May I ask how you got my private home number?
Dolly: Melania gave it to me. She told me she got it, years ago, from Rand Paul.
Tom: I must remember to thank him. And may I ask why you are calling?
Dolly: They say in Washington, you are smartest person.
Tom: Which is a lot like being the tallest building in Baltimore.
Dolly: Oh. Where is this Baltimore?
Tom: It’s a city about sixty kilometers north of Washington.
Dolly: I see. And are there many tall buildings there, then?
Tom: No, not particularly.
Dolly: So – you make American joke, then?
Tom: Not so much a joke as a bit of a satirical metaphor, but you may laugh if you wish.
Dolly: I will not laugh, because is not funny. Also, they say you give advice free for first time. Is this true?
Tom: As a matter of fact, it is. As part of my marketing program, I offer free initial consultations. And yes, for… special clients, such as yourself, even from my home on a weekend. How may I help you?
Dolly: So – no charge this time? No bill? No… how you say… invoice?
Tom: No charge, no bill, no invoice. Actually, I wouldn’t even know where to send it, now would I?
Dolly: You might send to Melania. That would not be good. The Donald find out, big trouble.
Tom: No worries. It’s free. No paperwork. Go ahead.
Dolly: Okay then. I tell you about problem of Melania now. She is not happy.
Tom: Oh, really? Golly gosh Jiminy crickets, I couldn’t possibly imagine why. Can you tell me, how come?
Dolly: You know doctor Oz?
Tom: Naturally – everybody who follows politics in American knows who he is by now. Dr. Mehmet Oz is a quack physician with a lot of crackpot ideas who hawks bogus panaceas to gullible idiot fans of Oprah Winfrey and somehow manages to maintain a quasi-legitimate reputation by continuing to qualify for state medical certifications in New York. Donald Trump picked him to run for Senate in Pennsylvania in 2022, despite the fact that Oz lives in New Jersey and votes in Turkish elections. He lost to an equally eccentric Democratic opponent named John Fetterman, a guy who runs around in kicks, shorts and a hoodie, and who, I swear, once they dress him up in a suit for the Senate floor, is going to look just like Lurch from the “Addams Family.”
Dolly: I know nothing of this family or who this Lurch is. Please stick to subject, my time is valuable. Did you know Trump says Melania picked Oz for Pennsylvania Senate election?
Tom: Yes, I heard about that. Didn’t Trump apologize for it the next day?
Dolly: No, Trump apologizes for Melania having to listen to “all of the Fake News and fictional stories” being dumped on her, “by reporters and ‘News’ Organizations who know these stories are not true” on Sean Hannity Fox TV show. That is not apology to Melania for blaming her about picking Oz to run for Senate in Pennsylvania. Is fake apology!
Tom: Well, yeah, that’s about all you can expect from him isn’t it? He would never give anyone a direct, sincere and genuine apology for anything, would he?
Dolly: Melania never said anything about this Dr. Oz person running for Senate in Pennsylvania. She said she liked Dr. Oz’s green coffee beans. They help her keep slim figure.
Tom: No kidding? How did that work?
Dolly: Magic green coffee bean extract help her throw up, that’s all. Never said nothing about Pennsylvania.
Tom: So how long have you known about all this?
Dolly: Melania send for me about six months ago, from Gorenji Suhadol, where my family live. Is small village in country. Melania and me, we go to school together when we are teenagers; want to be fashion models, marry rich man somewhere. She come to America and do lots of modeling, marry Donald Trump. I cannot do this because I am only eight. Melania is eleven.
Dolly: One more that a ten. This is how Melania tells it. She is eleven and she does many modelings with many rich men in America, marries rich man Donald Trump who likes her modeling. I try modeling in Slovenia, but only get infections, no rich man. So I go back to village.
Tom: But now she sent for you?
Dolly: Yes. When she leave, she tell me, “Not going to model for rich Slovenian men anymore. Going to model for rich American men. Very rich men, very big men. America big country, rich country, big deal, Slovenia nothing but a little piece of [expletive] hanging out of Austria’s [expletive].” But now, she is very sad, feel like nobody in America understand her and she need… how you say… a shoulder to cry on.
Tom: Yes, of course, the poor thing; how tragic.
Dolly: So, she slip me this telephone number and say, “Call Tom Collins, ask him what to do.”
Tom: To do about what?
Dolly: Her husband. He is blaming her for his mistakes. There is yelling, screaming, ketchup on wall, ice cream on floor. And she has little boy, Barron.
Tom: Well, not that little, he should be about sixteen by now, but, yeah, I understand. Okay, then, let’s start with the obvious, then. Have the couple considered marriage counseling?
Dolly: I tell this to Melania and she says it is no use, Donald will use all his money to hire someone who always agrees with him, just like he does with everyone else.
Tom: Alright then, has she thought about asking for a divorce?
Dolly: Melania says you cannot ask Donald Trump for anything. He has to decided he wants something you want, then you get it.
Tom: I see. So Melania thinks Donald would leave her only if he perceived that it was something that was his idea and benefited him?
Dolly: Yes, that is it.
Tom: Then the thing to do is to come up with a replacement for Melania that will attract Donald sufficiently for him to want to discard her.
Tom: Yes – another woman who will so beguile him that he will demand a divorce.
Dolly: You think this will work?
Tom: It very well could, if it’s done right. But you’re saying Melania has thought about child custody?
Dolly: She thinks if he becomes President for Life of United States, he will take the boy, but if he is in jail, she will get him, and there is no other way… no other… um… scenario?
Tom: Yes, that’s the right word. However, he might avoid going to prison; that possibility deserves some consideration. If that happens, a judge might have to decide, and custody would be a toss-up. But hey, practically speaking, we’re talking about maybe a year and a half of sole custody by either parent before he’s eighteen and it’s all a moot point.
Dolly: Her baby Barron is never, how you say… mute point. But so, okay, maybe three… scenarios. And you say, all of them should start with Donald finding a replacement and dumping Melania?
Tom: Correct. But that is what she wants, right? She wants to get away from him and have some decent money afterward. And according to what you have told me, that can only happen if Trump thinks the whole thing is his idea.
Dolly: So where can we get Melania replacement?
Tom: Um… How about you?
Dolly: No way. First of all, I am not crazy. And besides, like I said, I am only eight. Replacement must be another eleven, like Melania.
Tom: Okay then, do you know any elevens?
Dolly: Yes, since coming to America I have met… three… maybe four, elevens. But they all are modeling for rich men with more money than Donald Trump.
Tom: Hmm… How about the 2023 Miss Universe Pageant?
Dolly: What about it?
Tom: Well, Melania could… get to know some of the contestants… select a few who she thinks would, you know… appeal to Donald and arrange for some… social functions, shall we say…
Dolly: Wait, wait, I am writing this down…
Tom: Sure. That’s social functions where Donald could meet them.
Dolly: Okay, okay, go on.
Tom: Then, after the pageant is over in January, Melania’s staff could pull some strings behind the scenes and get some of the ones Donald… responded to… during the meet-and-greets… hired to work in the Trump organization at Mar-a-Lago.
Dolly: And then?
Tom: And then, as they say, let nature take its course: Donald gets infatuated with one of them, decides what he needs is a new and more youthful wife, maybe to sell his presidential campaign, for instance, and tells Melania he wants a divorce.
Dolly: And Melania agrees.
Tom: Right. And problem solved, because in order to maintain his image – whether he’s running for president or not, actually – Trump will have to be very generous with Melania. That means plenty of money, certainly, and could even mean she retains custody of Barron.
Dolly: I have not been in America very long, but that does sound like what rich people do here. Okay, I am taking this plan back to Melania.
Tom: Very good. And if it works, what do you think Melania will do after her divorce? Do you suppose she will go back to modeling?
Dolly: I am sure she will not. Melania has told me, that she has done all the modeling for rich men that a girl can stand, and all she wants to do is give her modeling equipment a rest.
Tom: A well deserved one, I’m sure. Anything else I can do for you?
Dolly: No, I am good. Very nice free advice. Thank you.
Tom: Give Melania my best wishes, then.
Dolly: That I will do. Good bye.