LEAR: And my poor fool is hang'd! No, no, no life! Why should a dog, a horse, a rat, have life, And thou no breath at all? Thou'lt come no more, Never, never, never, never, never! King Lear, Act V, Scene III
The real tragedy of Carlin's death hit me when I realized his greatest performance was still ahead of him. Now it's been lost forever. Only a week ago, America's Court Jester -- the Man Who Never Bought The Bullshit -- was chosen to receive this year's Mark Twain Award. Twain would have approved, I'm sure. Carlin was every bit as insightful as Twain and even more inciteful than Menken.
I was looking forward to the Kennedy Center's Mark Twain Awards this year with glee. The president attends. The honoree performs. Everyone laughs. But this time, everyone wouldn't be laughing because the joke would be on them. It's hard to explain how daring and confrontational Carlin's humor was to people who grew up with the world already transformed by his wit. The best I can do is describe what I think Carlin's performance would have been like: Imagine Colbert showing up to speak at the Correspondent's Dinner with a baseball bat...
Only this time the tables would be turned. Carlin, not Bush, would be the guest of honor. Adding insult to injury, Bush would have nowhere to hide. He would have no excuse to avoid the bloodbath. He would have been trapped in a way Congress nor Fitzgerald could ever have arranged. He would have been forced to sit there and take the full brunt of Carlin's attack and the Secret Service would have been powerless to stop it.
Carlin was the closest thing we had to America's Court Jester. He was no fool, but he was a brilliant Fool nonetheless. His most recent stuff was very dark, indeed. But we live in dark times. And George knew that. It made him angry. Gone was the old wry humor, poking fun at the establishment...questioning the fundamentals everyone took for granted...."Hey Father, if God can do anything... can God make a rock so big even he couldn't move it?" Gone was the surgical precision of a master wordsmith dissecting the language, the constitution, and laying them bare for all to see like in The "Seven Words You Can't Say on TV," a work so brilliant it has even been cited in the Supreme Court.
"A word to the wise and a cudgel for the obtuse" could easily have described his final work. George was swinging a big club. He knew where the soft spots were and he knew where the pressure points were. But he was still swinging a big club because he didn't care about waking people up. He wanted to bring the whole f*cking thing down.
I was so looking forward to him swinging that cudgel at the Kennedy Center. What a way to send George, the lesser, packing... worse than vilified, worse than despised.... mocked mercilessly by the Master himself. But damned if Dubya doesn't lead a charmed life. George, The Fool, is dead and now the smirking fool will dodge this bullet too.
I can't write anymore, it's too damn depressing. I'll let George take us out with the bit he could have done at the Kennedy Center. It's from his final tour. The lights go down, the Fool comes on stage to thunderous applause and then... :
Politicians have traditionally hidden behind three things: The Flag, The Bible, and Children. "No Child Left Behind. No Child Left Behind." Oh, really? Well, it wasn't long ago you were talking about giving kids a Head Start. Head Start.... Left Behind....someone's losing f*cking ground here.As an addendum.... I got this warning when I submitted this for publishing:
There's a reason for this. There's a reason for this. There's a reason education sucks and there's a reason it will never, ever, ever, be fixed. It's never going to get any better. Don't look for it. Be happy with what you got. BECAUSE THE OWNERS OF THIS COUNTRY DON'T WANT THAT. I'm talking about the real owners. The big, wealthy business interests that control everything and make all the important decisions.
Forget the politicians. They're irrelevant. The politicians are put there to give you the idea that you have freedom of choice. You don't. You have no choice. You have owners. They own you. They own everything. They own all the important land. They own and control the corporations. They've long since bought and paid for the Senate, the Congress, the state houses, the city halls. They've got the judges in their back pockets. They own all the big media companies so they control just about all of the news and information you get to hear. They got you by the balls!
They spend billions of dollars every year lobbying. Lobbying to get what they want. Well, we know what they want. They want more for themselves and less for everybody else. But I'll tell you what they don't want. They don't want a population of citizens capable of critical thinking. They don't well-informed, well-educated people capable of critical thinking. They're not interested in that. That doesn't help them. That's against their interest. That's right.
You know something? They don't want people who are smart enough sitting around the kitchen table to figure out they're getting fucked by a system that threw them overboard thirty f*cking years ago. They don't want that. You know what they want? They want obedient workers. Obedient workers. People who are just smart enough to run the machines and do the paper work, and just dumb enough to passively accept all these increasingly shittier jobs with the lower pay, the longer hours, the reduced benefits, the end of overtime and the vanishing pension that disappears the minute you go to collect it.
And now they're coming for your Social Security money. They want your f*cking retirement money. They want it back, so they can give it to their criminal friends on Wall Street. And you know something? They'll get it. They'll get it all from you sooner or later. Because they own this f*cking place. It's a big club... and you ain't in it. You and I are not in the big club. By the way, it's the same big club they use to beat you over the head with all day long when they tell you what to believe. All day long, beating you over the head in their media telling you what to believe, what to think and what to buy.
The table is tilted folks. The game is rigged. And nobody seems to notice. Nobody seems to care. Good, honest, hard working people. Blue collar, white collar, doesn't matter what color shirt you have on. Good honest hard working people continue... these are people of modest means... continue to elect these rich cocksuckers who don't give a f*ck about them. They don't give a f*ck about you. They don't give a f*ck about you. They don't care about you. At all. At all. At all. And nobody seems to notice. And nobody seems to care.
That's what the owners count on, the fact that Americans will remain wilfully ignorant about the big red, white and blue dick that is being shoved up their ass every day. Because the owners know the truth. It's called the American Dream because you have to be asleep to believe it.
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Well, I think in all due deference to Carlin, what the f*ck... go with the original text.
Editor's Note: OEN does not censor words, but did develop a list of words that may be offensive to others. We provide this time out message to give authors a chance to rethink their use of certain words. What the f*ck, use the word. Long live the fool.