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Rated: E · Fiction · Satire · #2122092
Former college instructors discuss Trump, etc. Tell story of "Boy Who Would Be King".

"Who Are Those Guys?"
J.D. Hill

Earlier this week I had lunch with a former colleague of mine who only recently returned to the US after having lived and worked abroad for the better part of the last 25+years. Axel Christensen spent several years teaching secondary school in the USA before traveling abroad to teach university students in many different countries. Axel is known as 'a man of many cultures.'

According to Axel, American expatriates today are no longer as warmly welcomed in the international community as they once were. Apparently, immigration authorities in many countries are making it more difficult for American expats to obtain work visas, preferring passports from other English speaking countries. Axel, like so many other expats, claims the US has lost much of its prestige in the world "Due to the over whelming stupidity of the megalomaniac in the White House. 'Make America Great Again!' What the hell does he mean 'Make America Great Again'? America has always been great! At home, and abroad.
By the way, did you hear the latest? The US Passport is no longer the number one favorite passport to have in the world
. Thanks to the crude-rude idiot ass in the White House!"

No one I know has any doubts about what Axel is thinking. He tells it like it is! Direct, to the point, often hostile! Think of character actor Jerry Stiller playing George Castanza's irate father, ranting and raving about nothing in an episode of 'Seinfeld' and you've got a pretty good idea of what Axel is like. Two peas in a pod, to coin an old clich Come to think of it, Axel's hair and mustache look a lot like Jerry Stiller's.

Axel has been teaching Communication Arts to university students in the international community for the better part of the last 25+ years. Over the years, Axel included in his lessons a brief introduction to American style democracy. He often used word association to teach students how to think, not what to think. He liked using the word 'freedom' to elicit one word responses from his students. More-often- than-not his students' one word response to the word 'freedom' was 'America' or 'democracy.' Since most of his students were from developing countries with newly formed democracies, they were ready to learn more about American style democracy.

Axel's students readily grasped the concepts of rule of law, respect for human rights, freedom of the press, majority rule, minority right to dissent, compulsory education, etc. The idea of accountability, however, remained a mystery. Getting students to understand the importance of accountability in a functioning democracy presented its own set of problems. Axel's students couldn't understand why an elected official in the USA, didn't have to account for what he was doing elsewhere in the world. Now, this is coming from students living in the remotest areas of the African bush. Axel hit me between the eyes with his next comment.

"If Humpty Dumpty Trumpy and his insane-fascist-leaning-right-wing-neo-conservative-born-again- religious-freak-GOPer-base don't want to believe the rest of the world is watching and judging us ... they're hallucinating, and more dysfunctional than I realized. Trumpy and his gang of gutless GOPers sitting on their asses inside the Beltway have a hell of a lot to answer for both here and abroad. Trumpy can't get it through that amber color hair piece glued to his thick skull that most of the rest of the world looks to the USA for moral leadership."

Before I could ask about 'Humpty Dumpty Trumpy' ... Axel got right to the point of our meeting for lunch.

"So, what the hell is going on in this country? Does anyone know what they're doing? Has there ever been so many incompetent asses in the White House in the history of the US? These people are no damn good! Don't voters read, anymore? They just voted into office one of the least informed, least knowledgeable, incompetent dodo to ever sit in the White House. Trumpy even brags about not wanting to read anything in print. "I don't want to know nothing except what I see on Breitbart News and Fox TV."

Whew! How do you respond to that? Best to keep my mouth shut, at least for the moment. But I was curious why Axel kept calling POTUS the familiar 'Trumpy.'

"And Congress is no better. That gang of gutless GOPers don't give a damn about anyone other than a few privileged/elite/well connected/rich types they keep sucking up to for more donations just to keep their butts in office. These same insane right-wing-neo-con-born-again-religious-freaks couldn't care less what Trumpy and his fascist flunkies are doing as-long-as the gutless GOPers can repeal, dismantle, uninstall or defund all progressive policies that have been in place for years. Now, these same gutless GOPers are about to pass a conservative agenda they've been salivating over for years, ever since FDR introduced the New Deal to the American people way back when in the 1930s."

I sipped my beer knowing full well there was an inkling of truth in what Axel was saying. Still, I kept quiet hoping Axel would tire of bashing, or is it dissing, Trump and his administration. I was wrong.

"Just look at all the delusional GOPers lying through their teeth, making up stories to cover their asses after creating some of the worse DC debacles since the reign of notorious GOPer scoundrel, Tricky Dickie Nixon. All this just to stay in power? By the way, why do these insipid conservative GOPers all look like they get their hair cut at Orrin Hatch's barbershop? Talk about cloning!" These are the same conservative clones that voted against stem cell research. Right? What a screwed-up mess!"

I was listening to Axel while looking for the waitress to order another beer. I wanted to ask her if she called POTUS 'Trumpy', too. I do remember my son telling me whenever David Letterman had Trump on late night tv he always called him Trumpy. But that was before Trump was POTUS.

"These are the same guys who are now trying to uninstall all entitlement programs; Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, environment treaties, public education, planned parenthood, healthcare for the elderly, the poor and sick. All progressive programs go into the toilet, posthaste. End of discussion. Why do I feel like I'm watching a day time soap opera called "The Prevaricators," with implausible plot lines, melodramatic characters in unbelievable situations, where lying and politics go hand in hand as if it's normal! Insanity rules the day!"

Axel had a point. But while he was rambling I was kept wondering about Axel calling POTUS 'Trumpy.'

"Trumpy and his gang of gutless GOPers have taken mendacity to unknown heights. Just look at that evil little dork Sessions. Top cop in USA. A hillbilly racist to the core. Kellyanne Conway, the town crier of alternate facts, spinner of tall tales for those willing to listen. Bannon, the bane of the beltway is in the running for the most dangerous man in the world. The Great Manipulator, my ass. This guy's a born-again fascist if there ever was one. Stevie Miller's a sneaky weasel of sleaze with a reform school mentality. Ryan the roach, the overly ambitious speaker of the house with a too tight sphincter. This guy is more concerned about the deficit than he is the health of American citizens. McConnell's not much better. Mac the Knife, also known as Smirk because he never learned to smile. He just smirks. What a creep. Pence, the Sycophant Prince. He can't say yes often enough or loud enough because he's got his nose up Trumpy's behind. Official Ditto in the White House. Ditto Man #2 is Spicer. Before this 'comedy of errors' is over with we're going to need a revolution just to get some sense of normalcy back in the White House."

I started to comment, but Axel was on a roll. Besides, I was curious how Axel had managed to keep-up- to-date with all that's been going on here in the US while he's been abroad for so long? The BBC/CNN must be everywhere these days. Aha, the internet, of course, maybe.

"Tell me this, J.D. Since I've been out of the loop for so long, so-to-speak, has Trump and his want-to- be-in-power-forever gang of gutless GOPers ever been on the 'right' side of a single important issue since day one?" As in our life time."

Again, I tried to answer, but Axel wasn't in a listening mood. I wanted to say it all depends on what you mean by the being 'on the right side,' but thought better of it. There's no stopping Axel when he goes on one of his tirades.

"Did I say issues? I mean frigging messes-s-s-s-s! Will they ever get to the bottom of this Russia scandal crap? Trump can't keep caressing Putin's ass, and get away with it, can he? Do I hear the lyrics from a lost 1930s fascist opera? 'Where there's smoke, there's fire! There's treason in the air!"

I couldn't believe it. Axel was singing in bar! Now I'm asking myself why the hell I agreed to meet him for lunch. Was I nuts, or what! I must admit, Axel had a pretty nice basso singing voice. I was praying he wouldn't start dancing on the table.

"Did I mention the environment, global warming, energy, Medicare, social security, Medicaid, healthcare, abortion, education, human rights, women's rights, civil liberties, tax cuts for the rich, prescription drugs, more tax cuts for the rich. "I love authoritarian rule. Don't you?" Sounds like a song from Mel Brooks movie, "The Producers." Have I forgotten anything?"

"You forgot immigration, Axel. They're still working on it. Border wall is in the works. Along with another executive order to ban refugees, and all Muslims from entering the US, and deportation of all illegal immigrants, now, and forever."

"Yeah, a border wall at a $20+ billion and counting price tag. Makes you wonder what that kind of money could do to improve our public schools Trump and his rich gal pal Betsy DeVos are so critical of. Which reminds me. Why would he pick a Secretary of Education who has no experience in public education? Baffling, to say the least. If it's not one scandal, it's another. Why would he pick a damn fool like Pruitt to head the EPA? The idiot thinks global warming is a scam perpetrated by world scientists?"

"I think you're right about DeVos and Pruitt. I read in the newspaper that Trump was picking his cabinet for their loyalty, not expertise or experience."

"You got that right. In the last month and a half, alone, the White House has managed to rack up an unbelievable folio of messes, one deception after another. And Trumpy's nonchalant acceptance of mendacity, corruption, and incompetence in his administration is beyond belief. This administration has-to-be the absolute worst in the history of the USA. And his cabinet! Well, welcome to the millionaire's club. Or are they all billionaires already?"

Not wanting to interrupt Axel's diatribe, I simply nodded my assent, sipped my beer, and looked around, hoping no one else was listening to the ranting and raving revelry coming from our direction.

"Trumpy acts like a spoiled brat with a highly honed passive aggressive personality he uses to get his way. He exhibits all the perverted characteristics of someone with the extreme pathology of a sociopath. There should be a sign on the White House gate; 'Practicing Sociopath. Walk-ins welcomed.'

I had to laugh at Axel's analogy of Trump's personality.

"Trumpy reminds me of a former student of mine. Juvenile delinquent kid I had when I taught junior high many years, ago. Rich kid, too! Immature, self-centered, egotistical, pathological liar, a thief, a bully, ended up in prison by the time he was in his early 20s. What do they call that when a person won't grow up? Arrested development? Or is it retarded development?"

"You're asking me?" I asked, dumb-founded, at the same time wondering how Axel happened to have all this insight into the psychological make-up of POTUS? Ah, but I remembered. Axel used to have a fling-thing with a child psychologist of international fame. I think she was Turkish. I couldn't help wondering if they were still an item. Axel must have absorbed a little something during their more intimate tete-a-tetes.

"Trumpy is one manipulative-power-hungry-control-freak-sob who's totally out of control! And the worse part of it is he keeps getting away with it. Someone ought to tell Trump there's a world of difference between wanting to lead the world and being a world leader. You remember MILOS GLORIOUSUS? The braggart warrior in 'A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.' Milos was a loud mouth bastard, too! The role was written for Trumpy. He owns it. He doesn't even have to show up for rehearsals. Not sure what he'd look like in a Roman tunic with his big ass sticking out behind."

I choked on my beer, laughing at the image of Trump's 'rump' on a golf course wearing a Roman tunic.

"Ah, and here's a little trivia for your grandchildren. Do you realize in the last month alone, Trumpy, the supposed leader of the free world, has single-handedly managed to upset the balance of power in the entire Middle East, the most volatile region in the world ... and all for the worse! Not to mention the negative effect he's having on the rest of the world, especially China and North Korea. And all of Europe is scared shitless of what he may do next. No one can be this stupid! We're supposed to be the moral authority for the rest of the world. We set the example for others to follow. Why is he doing this?"

While Axel was catching his breath, I couldn't help thinking about how much longer POTUS and his gang of gutless GOPers would continue to get away with the greatest White House scam ever perpetrated on the American public since GOPer star couple 'the Reagans' gazed doe-eyed into their crystal ball while listening to Frank Sinatra sing romantic to the beat of 'Drums Along the Potomac.'

"And if that's not enough, get this. Every time I watch television news footage of those dorks running around the White House, I think of the movie 'Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.' Remember the posse that kept chasing Butch and Sundance? No matter where they'd go this posse just kept chasing after them. And Butch kept asking, 'Who are those guys?' Butch was still asking "Who are those guys?" when he and Sundance leaped off that high cliff into the river below. Well, that's exactly what I've been asking myself about Trumpy and his White House cronies. 'Who are those guys?' "

I shrugged 'search me' while waving at the waitress for another beer. Axel's rants were making me thirsty.

"Where the hell is that posse when WE need them? All these White House messes are so unreal, they're surreal! Hey, that's it. Trumpy is like the man who turns into a cockroach. What's his name wrote it?"

"Kafka! 'Metamorphosis!' " Surprised with my memory of required reading in Lit 101, years ago, I toasted myself with a long swig of beer.

"Yeah! That's the guy! Surreal, Surreal! That's what Trump and his gang of gutless GOPers are ...Surreal!" What a bunch of incompetent mediocre asses. They have to be, the most bizarre collection of absurd/surreal/cartoon/comic book characters, all in one place, all at the same time."

Since I couldn't disagree I kept my mouth shut, and took another long swig of beer.

"You know, Madeline Albright hit the nail on the head when she said "This guy Bannon is pulling the strings in the White House." She called him a 'Puppet Master.' And those strings he's pulling are wrapped around a little fascist handbook Bannon clutches to his chest covetously. Where the hell, did this guy come from? He keeps talking about 'deconstruction.' Deconstruction, my ass! His hidden agenda is right out of a 1930s' fascist playbook. Lie, and lie some more. Divide and conquer. It's them or us. Suppress the press. Chaos and turmoil front and center. Distraction on top of distraction. Fear and terror is good! Scapegoating is a must. Get them refugees, immigrants and Muslims the hell out of here. Deport all of them now. Watch what happens when the catastrophic event finally hits the fan. As per Bannon's fascist playbook. 'Never fear. We've got POTUS to save us. Supreme ruler of what was once known as Land of the Free.

"Trumpy's ridiculous budget proposal has Bannon's fingerprints all over it. Did you see what he's proposing? Might as well 'deconstruct' the entire US government as we know it. Bannon would love it. He's already got the country divided. It's them and us! This budget proposal is looking like it's all part of a set-up for the catastrophic event Bannon's been praying for. Watch! He's going to get Trumpy's to provoke North Korea. Bet on it! And the gutless GOPers are too stupid to see it for what it is. If the GOPers pass Trumpy's budget, we're in deep shit.".

"One thing for sure, all those 'forgotten people' that voted for Trumpy haven't a clue what the hell is going on. Do you think they understand what 'deconstruction' is all about? And if Bannon pulls this off, the new world order will be in the upside-down world of the great manipulator, the Bane of Beltway, Bannon, the terrible. The most dangerous man in the world today. Trumpy and 'those guys' in Congress, the gang of gutless GOPers will have no one to blame but themselves."

I don't know if it was the last beer or not, but I suddenly realized Axel's rant was making a lot more sense than just blowing off steam. Maybe he knows something I don't know.

"Makes you wonder what 'those guys' are really up to, don't it? What they've been doing most of their lives, huh. Wonder what they were like as kids?"

And therein Axel Christensen proceeded to tell me the tale of 'The Boy Who Would Be King.'


Part I
Axel Christensen

NOTE: This story is not to be confused with Rudyard Kipling's 'The Man Who Would Be King' ... which made a hell of a lot more sense a hundred years ago, than what's been going on in the White House for the past few weeks.

Once upon a time there was a spoiled little rich boy whose name was Trumpy. As a child Trumpy's favorite nursery rhyme was 'Humpty Dumpty.' He insisted his mother recite it to him every night before going to sleep. Trumpy had an expensive world globe in his bedroom. This special globe was very fragile, for it was made of multi-colored cut-glass that rotated slowly in its cradle-like-stand. Because the globe was round and bumpy, Trumpy imagined it to be 'Humpty Dumpty.' A small light bulb inside the globe made 'Humpty Dumpty' glow in the dark, giving off an eerie green aura to the room. One night, for no apparent reason, Trumpy smashed 'Humpty Dumpty' in to pieces. Whether he did this out of fear, curiosity or spite was never known, or ever admitted to.

Earlier that same evening his mother had refused to recite 'Humpty Dumpty' as punishment for Trumpy having broken one of his other toys. Trumpy denied breaking Humpty Dumpty. He lied to his mother, telling her an evil little man who said his name was Rumpelstiltskin had sneaked into his bedroom and smashed Humpty Dumpty in to pieces. Trumpy's mother shook her head in disbelief, not at her son's wild imagination, but at Trumpy always blaming others when he was obviously at fault. The following day Trumpy promised his mother when he became king he'd have all his horses and all his men put 'Humpty Dumpty' back together again. Blaming others would follow Trumpy into adulthood. This wasn't the last Rumpelstiltskin would appear in Trumpy's life.

Trumpy was very good, or bad, depending on one's point of view, at breaking things, mostly his toys. He had a closet full of broken toys and his room was cluttered with an assortment of toys all in need of repair. Trumpy thought a toy had to be broken before he could get a new one. At an early age, it was obvious Trumpy liked to break things. Breaking things, often destroying them, became the driving force behind Trumpy's obsession to be king. Ironically, the 'Humpty Dumpty' world globe Trumpy broke as a child was his first exposure to 'global warming' that he would confront as an adult. The expensive colored cut-glass world globe named 'Humpty Dumpty' couldn't be put back together again either. Metaphorically speaking. An omen of things to come (?)

Rumor has it Trumpy may have fallen, or was dropped on his head, repeatedly, or at the very least, more than once, as a child. Therefore, he could relate intimately with Humpty Dumpty's 'great fall.' Trumpy learned early in life 'if it ain't broke, you'd better break it quick.' It's a sure way to get a new toy. It didn't take Trumpy long to realize there was a method to his madness. Even his father's constant reprise "You break it, you own it!" didn't deter Trumpy from breaking things. Trumpy knew he'd eventually get another new toy.

Sure enough, Trumpy's next new toy was a pet turtle he named Lumpy. Lumpy would be much more difficult for Trumpy to break. And whenever Trumpy tried, Lumpy retreated into his shell, not to come out for a long time. Trumpy never got a chance to play with his new pet turtle. He failed time and again to coax Lumpy out of his shell. Lumpy was more like a pet rock. Eventually Trumpy grew bored of his inert pet turtle. He dropped Lumpy from the second-floor bedroom window to the pavement below. This was Trumpy's way of getting even with Lumpy the turtle for not playing with him. Getting even would be another twist in Trumpy's character.

Trumpy had many nick-names, but Quirky seemed be the most appropriate because of a peculiar tic or quirk he had: Trumpy behaved as if he were more than one person. He seemed to have several different personalities, both real and imagined. These imaginary personalities were Trumpy's only friends.
Quirky never had any real friends. Most of them having deserted him after putting up with his devious shenanigans. Quirky always had to be the boss, the one in charge of all the games they played. He not only made up the rules, but he was forever changing the rules to assure he would be the winner.

Losing was unacceptable to Quirky. If he happened to be losing, he had a disturbing habit of jumping up and down, stomping his feet while romping around the room, screaming at the top of his lungs, often running into walls. Sometimes Quirky would throw himself on the floor, hold his breath until he turned blue in the face, all the while kicking up a storm, until he got his way. As a grown-up, Quirky became addicted to angrily tweeting on Twitter, hoping to always get his way.

Quirky's temper tantrum tactic became his modus operandi for bullying others. These were the first overt symptoms of Quirky's megalomania personality. Quirky was doomed to be a control-freak and exhibited all the weird tendencies of a practicing sociopath. However, Quirky was very devious, and he would one day find a way to use this peculiar trait to his advantage, Tweeting on Twitter would become a daily ritual.

Trumpy may have been devious as a child, but not very bright. As an adult, he was even dimmer. One critic, who knew him way back when, wrote, 'If his IQ drops any lower, we'll have to water him twice a day!" This same critic gave Trumpy the lovable nick-name 'dim wit.'' Others preferred to call him Iggie (or ignoramus), Romper-Stomper, Wall-Banger, Stooge, Stoop, Surly, Strut, Super-Strut, Super-Dooper- Strut, Swag, and Quirky, of course. As an adult Trumpy would insist he be addressed formally by his given name, Nescient.

As a child Trumpy had more nick-names than he had friends (real or imaginary) and personalities. He was also very stubborn and refused to change his mind even when proved wrong. Another peculiar character trait that would follow Trumpy into adulthood.

Trumpy's multiple personality quirk was never a problem for him, personally. He readily accepted the fact he had more than one personality. Not a split personality, mind you, but more like multiple personalities that suddenly appear out of nowhere. Trumpy often assumed the personas of fictional characters as in an obscure fairy tale, "Three Ugly Sisters": Mendacity, Pretentious, and Arrogance. Trumpy referred to his three imaginary friends as his 'Royal Princesses.' They were his only friends.

The Royal Princesses had an obnoxious cousin who also appeared regularly; Prince Vanity (not to be mistaken for Prince Valiant of comic strip fame), was known for his enormous hubris (not to be mistaken for some unmentionable part of the human anatomy). Trumpy, now Quirky, never understood the difference between vanity and pride. Once a visiting relative had the audacity to inform Quirky that vanity was the jealous cousin of pride. Not sure what the visiting relative meant Quirky responded excitedly, "That's me! That's me!" Ah, but I'm getting ahead of our story of the multiple personality rich boy who would be king. Back to the Three Ugly Sisters.

Ugly sister #1, Mendacity, also known affectionately as Mendy because of her ability to lie convincingly, continuously, disarmingly, often with vehemence. Mendy's lies were convincing because she really believed her lies. Or possibly, she didn't know the difference between make-believe-fantasy and reality. This may have had something to do with Quirky's lack of any moral claim on intellect. The inability to distinguish between fantasy and reality would also be a part of Trumpy's character for the rest of his life.

Ugly sister #2, Pretentious, or Pretense, on the other hand, was always in perpetual motion pretending to be something or someone she was not. This was true of Trumpy as a child and as an adult (Nescient). For Nescient was a real estate mogul, golfer, racist, misogynist, beauty pageant owner, womanizer, tv presenter, tv actor, any man, every man, con man. Pretense liked to pretend she was in charge, a hero to all mankind (or some kind) and at the very least, leader to her imaginary subjects. Kind of like Walter Middy, but, far more ludicrous.

Thus, the Middy factor became a major part of the personality of this rich boy who would be king. It soon became obvious neither Quirky or Pretense could distinguish between fantasy and reality, nor each other. They were, after all, one and the same. They called one another 'me-me' while giggling at their reflection in the bathroom mirror. 'Me-me' liked to dress-up in uniforms and other costumes or wardrobes. Quirky could often be heard arguing with Pretense about what uniform to wear on any given day of the week. Sibling rivalry in the most absurd/abstract form?

Ugly sister #3, Arrogance, better known as Cocky, could strut the city sidewalk turf with the best of those that strut in the neighborhood. No one ever understood what she/he had to be arrogant about, or to strut about. Arrogance/ Cocky/Quirky/Trumpy/Nescient believed she/he was better than anyone else. After all, she/he was royalty, even if, of the city sidewalk type.

Cocky/Quirky behaved as if she/he were the center of the universe, and all things and people must revolve around her/him. Humility was unheard of in the parlance of Cocky/Quirky. As she/he got older and grew in stature Cocky/Quirky/Nescient added a swagger to the strut. Not surprisingly, the Cocky/ Quirky swagger-strut became quite popular with several break-dancers/rap music groups on the side- walks of NYC. Cocky/Quirky never realized the dance/rap groups were making fun of them. Nor would Nescient ever realize how much his imaginary friends would dominate/influence his personality for the rest of his life.

As Trumpy, matured to adulthood, his fame, more often notoriety, grew proportionately. One day, early in his reign as would be king, Trumpy, now Nescient, decided (he was also a self-proclaimed decider) he needed to kick some ass to quick start his quest to be king. The rich kid who would be king needed to prove to himself and others he could kick some ass from time to time. For better, mostly for the worse, Nescient had a kick-ass mentality. He was the bully-on-the-block, as in NYC big time.

However, in order, to really kick some ass, properly, as in proper ass kicking, Nescient held a brief-on- the-spot-spur-of-the-moment-get-together-summit-like-meeting with his imaginary friends, now advisors; the Royal Princesses, Mendacity, Pretense, Arrogance, and their obnoxious cousin Prince Vanity. Nescient bade the three ugly sisters contact their relative, Avarice, the supreme ruler of everyone and everything in the Land of Guile.

Since the meeting was a quorum-of-one it didn't take long for Nescient to agree he should summon his sycophants (ass kissers in rich man's parlance), order them to find some ass to kick asap, as in quickly. Otherwise the would-be monarchy could soon be in jeopardy. The inability to distinguish between fantasy and reality was already creating problems in Nescient's would-be monarchy. Everyone inside/outside, including the sycophants, and the wealthy supporters, knew the monarchy was short on substance, but long on bullshit! Patronage, cronyism, nepotism, favoritism, loyalty, theocracy, money walks the talk, became a way of life in this would-be kingdom, assuring everyone that incompetence would rule this monarchy, forever, in perpetuity! Although, there were others that hoped it wouldn't last half that long.

However, as with all things mediocre, loyalty (sucking-up) took precedent over experience and competence. To wit; unqualified people had been placed in responsible positions of authority; friends, relatives, neo-conservatives, social conservatives, political hacks, born-again-religious-freaks, and those that could walk-the-talk, as in the very rich, were everywhere. These neophytes were to be-in-charge of one thing or another.

Only recently a newspaper expose had cited an unusually large number of right-wing-neo-con-born- again-religious-freaks conspiring inside the would-be monarchy, in an attempt to close the gap between rich and the very rich. Those that can walk-the-talk, anyway. Zealously + Conspiracy + Incompetence = Mediocrity! The would-be monarchy is in dire need of a head-ax-man.

As with any mediocre would-be-monarchy, on this day, the sycophants were out in force. Sycophant #1, had the appearance of a warthog (of the wild pig genus, not the military vehicle). Rumbled dress, disheveled hair, warts and all. Toad, not of Toad Hall, was lurking/slinking/sliming nearby. Toad, aka; the hoary genius; the architect; the great manipulator of truth, and champion of all things associated with flatulence, sucked up to Nescient like an overused/oversized/automatic toilet bowl plunger. Toad's perpetually pursed wet lips were shaped like the under ring of a forest toad stool similar-to an old fashioned mini-sized outhouse seat. No one was ever sure, but Toad's unusually large head could have been the direct result of backed-up flatulence. Consequently, no one ever got too close to Toad for fear of this odorous menace.

Toad's official title in the would-be kingdom was 'The Great Manipulator.' Toad had been the one most responsible for recruiting Nescient's true believers/followers; right-wing-neo-con-born-again- religious- freaks, and all those that love to wallow in bullshit. Zealously! Sung to the tune of 'Jealousy.'

"As a child, Toad, like Nescient, had few, if any, friends. Toad wasn't exactly a fun kind of kid to play with. Most of the kids in Toad's neighborhood didn't like him because they didn't trust him. No one was afraid of getting warts, or even being vaporized by Toad's constant barrage of flatulence. They simply didn't trust Toad because he was one devious bastard! Every time they did let him join in their games, Toad cheated.

It got to the point whenever he tried to join in, everyone stopped playing, crossed their fingers, held their noses, and as a group turned their backs on Toad. Toad was hurt and offended, but being devious by nature he knew the day would come when he'd get even with all of them. 'Vengeance is mine' sayeth the Toad! 'Rejection is too worse than death!' he cried at home alone. Toad could quote Woody Allen, the Bible (Old & New Testaments), Machaevelli and the coveted 1930s fascist play book in the same breath.

The other kids didn't always know what Toad was up to, but they knew it was best to be leery of the Toad when he wasn't pestering them. Warts and flatulence were better than not knowing what the Toad was plotting next. Toad would put today's bible lesson to good use tomorrow or the next day or the day after that. Bet on it!

Toad would introduce Nescient to a devious policy of deconstruction in-order-to get the would-be kingdom operational. It was time to change the social, economic and political landscape of Nescient's would-be kingdom. Toad chose the code name Rumplestiltskin when meeting privately with Nescient. Nescient threw a tantrum. He wanted to use Rumplestiltskin as his code name. Eventually Nescient had to concede that Toad's appearance was more fitting of the code name Rumplestiltskin. For their secret clandestine meetings Nescient chose the code name 'Humpty Dumpty." Nescient and Toad were ready for 'all the king's horses, and all the king's men to kick some ass.'


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