by Burt Prelutsky

If you want to Comment directly to Burt Prelutsky, please mention my name Rudy.

In years past, Donald Trump warned us about the ever-soaring national debt. If I recall correctly, he said the magic number was $24 trillion. After which, we would have passed the point of no return. In spite of the fact that liar-nObama pretty much doubled the debt to $20 trillion by the time he vacated the Oval Office, President Trump seems to have forgotten his dire warning.

For one thing, Trump has said he has no plans to do anything about the ever-expanding so-called entitlements. For another, he called for a massive increase in military spending, even though the Pentagon can’t account for $800 million that’s gone missing.

In hopes of getting the Democrats on board, Trump and the Republicans are offering clown-Schumer just about an equal amount in domestic spending, otherwise known as bribes dispensed by liberals to their major voting blocs.

For openers, before I’d give the military an additional nickel, they would have to explain how it is they managed to misplace almost a billion dollars.

Next, I would make the Pentagon explain why we have so many military bases in so many countries. Aside from subsidizing local economies, what good do they do? How does having a few hundred or a couple of thousand soldiers in scores of countries help us? If any of the four members of the axis of evil, consisting of Russia, China, Iran and North Korea, staged an all-out attack, those Americans would be the first fatalities.

I’m not saying, as Sen. Rand Paul and other Libertarians would, that we don’t have interests and allies worth protecting, or that our military posture should consist solely of making certain the U.S. mainland could withstand an invasion.

But we could get by with far fewer foreign bases, so long as our nuclear stockpile was up to par, and we had sufficient planes, boats and missiles, to call anyone’s bluff.

It should be clear to everybody by this time that it hardly matters to anyone except the mainstream media who gets blamed by the mainstream media for government shutdowns. As I recall, they blamed the GOP for the last one, and eleven months later, the Republicans took control of the Senate.

Also, with Trump calling the shots, unlike liar-nObama, he would not be out to punish the public during a shutdown by closing national parks and national monuments. In fact, inasmuch as Social Security checks continue going out during shutdowns, most people would hardly notice.

⦿ Speaking of Social Security, it’s high time we quit letting the Democrats call every government handout an entitlement. There are only two legitimate entitlements; the first is Veteran’s benefits, the other is Social Security. That’s because people either sacrificed their earnings or their years to military service and are therefore entitled. Every other so-called entitlement is an unconstitutional bribe disguised as something called welfare.

⦿ Re. Todd Rokita (D, IND) is that rare congressman who possesses a sense of humor. He is pushing his colleagues to pass what he calls the Creating Relief and Useful Middle-Class Benefits and Savings Act. I’m sure he’d be the first to agree it’s a rather clumsy name for a piece of legislation, but it’s intended as a dig at Nancy Pulosi, who dismissed the corporate bonuses paid out to workers as a result of the Tax Reform Bill as “crumbs.”

Rokita’s bill would make those bonuses tax-free. How could the Democrats not vote for it? After all, if they’re going to tax “crumbs,” it raises the logical question in most people’s minds whether the next taxable item on their agenda is the very air we breathe.

To be fair, when your fortune is upwards of $50 million, as is Nancy “Let them eat cake crumbs” Pulosi’s, it’s reasonable to regard bonuses of $1000-$2000 as chump change.

⦿ Within a 10-year period, two brothers, Herman and Joseph Mankiewicz, won three Oscars for Best Screenplay. The older brother won his in collaboration with Orson Welles for “Citizen Kane,” Joe won his in back-to back years for “A Letter to Three Wives” and “All About Eve.” He also won back-to-back Oscars for directing both movies.

Herman should not have had to share the honors with Wells since he, unlike Wells, actually was a writer. He was also the one who knew the subject fictionalized in the movie, William Randolph Hearst, having spent years working in the newspaper business. Moreover, as a child, he had his bicycle stolen. The name of his beloved bike was, as you have probably guessed if you ever saw the movie, Rosebud.

It will probably not come as a surprise that Wells actually requested that Mankiewicz agree to remove his name from the credits, so that Wells could be fully credited with directing, producing, starring in and writing the movie.

You can understand why Mankiewicz once cracked about Orson Welles that “There, but for the grace of God, goes God.”

Once, upon being assigned against his wishes to write a Rin Tin Tin movie, Mankiewicz turned out a script in which the erstwhile heroic canine carried a baby into a burning building.

About one of his studio bosses, he said: “Louis B. Mayer had the memory as well as the hide of an elephant. The only real difference is that elephants are vegetarians and Mayer’s diet was his fellow man.”

His younger brother Joe once, in giving voice to what most conservatives actually believe, said: “I don’t see why democracy should equate literacy with illiteracy. I believe that people should have to qualify for voting privileges. Perhaps each person should have a vote, but some should count for more than others because some people know more than others and are better qualified to vote.”

⦿ A joke was passed along by several readers, so I don’t feel right bestowing credit on any one individual.

This allegedly took place on the first day of school in London.

Teacher: “Ahmed al Sheriah.” Student: “Here.”

Teacher: “Mustafa al Nasser.” Student: “Here.”

Teacher: “Fatima al Bindihiri.” Student: “Here.”

Teacher: “Ali Acmah Shabeeb.” Student: “Here.”

Teacher: “Ali Su al Len.” No answer.

Teacher: “Ali Su al Len?”

At which point, a little girl in the back stood up and yelled: “It’s pronounced Alison Allen, for crying out loud!”

⦿ In response to my recent defense of General Robert E. Lee, Wayne Brenholt, my favorite person living in Chetek, Wisconsin, wrote: “One wonders how short the Civil War would have been and how many lives saved had Lee accepted President Lincoln’s offer to lead the Northern troops.”

I replied: “As an honorable man, Lee could not have accepted Lincoln’s offer. Although we have no way of knowing how many lives would have been saved if Lee had led the Union forces, what we do know is that if Lincoln had allowed the Confederate states to secede, more than 700,000 American lives would not have been lost.”

⦿ According to Russ Mothershed, a beacon of light in Knoxville, Tennessee, claims that the following actually happened in Texas. Or perhaps he thought it might have happened. As they say on Fox, I’ll report, you decide.

Late one night, a deputy was parked outside a bar in Austin. After last call, he noticed a man leaving the premises who was so drunk, he could barely walk.

The guy stumbled around the lot for several minutes, during which time he tried his keys on five different vehicles. He finally found his own car, opened the door and plopped face down across the seat.

He finally got a grip on the steering wheel and sat up. In the meantime, the deputy continued watching him, as the other patrons drove off.

Finally, the drunk switched his windshield wipers on and off, although it wasn’t raining.

He then got his headlights on, flicked his blinkers on and off and honked his horn.

At last, when his was the only car on the lot, he pulled out and drove slowly up the road. Finally, the deputy was able to go into action, turn on his flashing lights and pull the guy over.

When he administered a breathalyzer test, it showed that the guy could barely move the needle.

Dumbfounded, the deputy said: “I’ll have to ask you to accompany me to the police station. It seems the breathalyzer is broken.”

“I doubt it,” explained the proud Texan. “Tonight, I happen to be the designated decoy.”

If you want to Comment directly to Burt Prelutsky, please mention my name Rudy. 


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