This, That and The Other Thing

Yep. Today’s title is from one of my favorite Gilligan’s Island episodes, called The Little Dictator. It’s the one where Nehemiah Persoff plays a South American dictator who, after being overthrown, is exiled to — you guessed it — Gilligan’s Island. He sets himself up as dictator of the island, then after being deposed tries to persuade Gilligan into being his puppet ruler. When Gilligan, in a dream sequence, addresses the people of his country, he asks the former El Presidente what to tell them.

That’s when he’s told the eternal secret of politics: Promise them This, That and The Other Thing.

Which is pretty much what politicians do. Whether it’s getting out of Afghanistan and Iraq, promoting green energy, closing borders, cutting taxes, the promises are all just This, That and The Other Thing. All you need to do is watch Elaine Marshall and Cal Cunningham kissing up to one another now that the Democratic primary’s over. And damn, even with that hypocrisy they’re better than Richard Burr.

And when did it get written that you have to be a crackpot to run for the U.S. House? Or if not that, a dimwit. Or not stand for anything but getting elected – Heath Shuler, I’m talking about you here, in case you didn’t know.

The state level isn’t any better. You know I’m an animal lover, but all the time and attention paid to the animal cruelty law this session has me baffled.

Shouldn’t legislators be figuring out how to pass a budget without firing teachers or emasculating this state’s great university system?

And where is the education leadership on this one? Erskine, I’m calling you out. Don’t let this crap happen to the UNC system!

Gilligan’s dictator dream ends with a really creepy sequence: El Presidente pulling the strings on his Gilligan puppet. The episode ends, of course, with the dictator being reinstated by the Loyalists. The ones hoping to cash in on This, That and The Other Thing. (Of course, he’s deposed again after claiming he met the seven castaways on an uncharted desert isle, meaning he can’t send help to Gilligan, et al. And to answer your question. Mary Ann.)

Will we ever learn? Or must we always be seduced by TTaTOT.

“Democracy gives every man the right to be his own oppressor.” _ James Russell Lowell

“Democracy is the art and science of running the circus from the monkey cage.” _ H.L. Mencken

“Every government is a parliament of whores. The trouble is, in a democracy, the whores are us.” _ P.J. O’Rourke


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