First impression: Heather Wilson should star in her own soap opera. It could be called "As The World Turns ... to Crap." Our Congresswoman is truly a miracle of modern science. We say bravo to the engineers who installed the WilsonBot's automatic tear-duct emptying function. And, thankfully, unlike the previous version of this monster—Tammy Faye Bakker—Wilson does not leak dark fluid from her eye holes during the performance.
Theater of the absurd. It's funny how enlightening a brief encounter with a stranger can be.
It's become a familiar routine. First the terror alert originates somewhere in the halls of the federal government, then it gets filtered to the mainstream media, which passes the information on to the public. The public puts on its collective "Code Orange" game face, while terror alert banners scroll across the 24/7 cable news screens and each network's security experts analyze the latest threat on the talk shows.
After putting it at the bottom of my stack of books to read for over a year, I recently began reading Edmund Morris' wonderful biography, The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt. Once I'd actually turned a few pages, it was hard to put down. Not the least of its pleasures for a contemporary liberal Democrat is the recognition that T.R., a maverick Republican, was warning us 100 years ago about the "unnatural alliance of politics and corporations."
Since the Democrat National Convention in Boston, “Payne's World” readers have had the inside track on the tactical mistakes of the Kerry campaign—and they are legion. A month ago (Aug. 5-11 "Too Conventional"), the following appeared in this column and looks now like it could have been written by Nostradamus.
Dateline: England—A man has admitted to endangering passengers on a 737 flight from Norway by setting fire to a pornographic magazine under his seat. David Mason used a cigarette lighter to ignite torn-out pages from the magazine, which he had purchased earlier. The charges came to light in Lewes Crown Court in southeast England last Tuesday. Prosecutor Roger Booth said stewardesses on the Norwegian national airline Braathens became suspicious when Mason asked if he could burn some paper in the plane's galley oven. They refused and sent him back to his seat. Soon afterwards, two passengers complained of a burning smell. Crew members found Mason had started a small fire under his seat. The blaze was extinguished with water. Booth said that Mason, who was receiving treatment for mental illness, had “been offended” by some of the pictures in the magazine, one of several he had bought. “He said that on the plane he had become overcome, and felt the desire to destroy them there and then,” the prosecutor said. Mason is scheduled to be sentenced next month.