Psst. Hey, Senator! Just wanted to say thanks for all the free publicity! It’s getting even better now that your pal – what’s her name, the Half-Governor? – is talking about me too. You know what they say: It’s not bad press if they spell your name right!
But listen – and I really shouldn’t do this – I’m not sure you realize where you’re headed. Put it this way: When the lead singer from Megadeth says he’ll vote for you, take it as a sign. I mean, c’mon man! They sang “Prince of Darkness”!
You already talk about me like you know me. Have we met? You do look familiar, but I meet so many guys in your line of work – lobbying, that is. Oh, right, you’re a politician too. When it comes to politicians, let’s just say we’ve always got a quorum down here! Talk about your “smoke-filled rooms” …
Oh, wait. Maybe you haven’t figured out who I am. Please allow me to introduce myself – I’m a man of wealth and taste.
In fact, my taste is so good that when I go to a political fundraiser all the bankers want to know who my tailor is. (As if I’d tell them! But don’t worry: I’ll be fitting most of them for new suits soon.) I go to a lot of fundraisers these days. Gotta love that Citizens United ruling. I was able to fire a whole host of demons and start a SuperPAC instead.
I especially appreciate it when folks like you and the Half-Governor talk about me, because let’s face it: We’re working the same demographic. I’m after their souls and you’re after their campaign cash, but it’s the same crowd I’ve been running with since the dawn of time:
They’re the moneylenders who were chased out of the Temple.
They’re the Usurers that were condemned three thousand years ago in Babylon.
They’re the hypocrites who shout their faith all over the airwaves after the Bible told them to “pray in secret.”
They’re the liars, the backbiters, the slanderers, the rich men who are no more likely to get to heaven than a camel is to pass through the eye of a needle.
All of them flocked to me after the Competition kicked them out.
They’ve stood by my side ever since – and I’ve stood by them. I walked with them in ancient Rome. I guided them through the flames of Europe. I carried whips and chains on their slaveships and watched workers die in their sweatshops. They’re my people – and now they’re yours, too.
I’m talking about the money guys, mind you, not the voters. It’s easy to fool voters once you’ve got yourself a mega-million-dollar war chest, which so many of you have amassed – with a little help from my friends.
You know what almost happened just now? I almost reminded you that you can’t serve both God and Mammon at the same time. But then I thought: Why sell against myself?
As long as you’re giving me so much coverage, though, I should set you straight about the way I work. “Satan has his sights on the United States of America!” you said. “Satan is attacking the great institutions of America, using those great vices of pride, vanity, and sensuality …This is a spiritual war,” you said.
You got it all wrong, pal. I don’t attack countries or institutions. I go after people. I take ‘em down the same way the Competition lifts ‘em up: One soul at a time. And I don’t work through ethnic groups or countries or religions you don’t like. I just burrow my way into a single mind, rent some space there, and go to work.
Possession? Corruption? I prefer to think of it as a “hostile takeover.”
But I’m disappointed in you, Rick. When the going got tough you tried to backpedal and pretend I didn’t matter. Then your pal from the Frozen North spoke up, and she turned gutless too! She said you only “named evil as Satan.” The she said, “For those lame-stream media characters to get all wee-weed up about that, first you have to ask yourself, have they ever, ever attended Sunday school. Have they never heard this terminology before?”
Wait. Did Sarah Palin say that my name is nothing more than “terminology”? Get thee to a United Church of Christ! That’s liberal-hippie talk!
And excuse me, but “wee-weed up”? “Lamesteam”? Name-calling and scatological references are a great road to go down … that is, if you’re headed my way! But to we men of wealth and taste, it does sound a bit … well, juvenile.
My marketing strategy’s been public knowledge for thousands of years, so how could you get it so wrong? I’ve got seven closers that work like a charm: Sloth, pride, anger, gluttony, greed, lust, and envy. And I’ve got benchmarks for tracking my prospects that would make most sales managers green with envy. The Competition calls ‘em Commandments. I call them “barriers to sale.”
As for those commandments – well, I think “not bearing false witness” is pretty high up on the list, don’t you? So why are you accusing your opponent of using “false theology”? And who’s the Nazi in that analogy of yours?
But I gotta say: When you say that “mainline Protestantism” is “gone from the world of Christianity” … well, you’re making my work easy for me. But why are you just implying that the President isn’t Christian? I’m with Crazy Preacher Dude: Don’t wimp out now! Say he;s a heretic and Muslim, and all those mainstream Christians are too! In fact, burn ‘em at the stake while you’re at it!
With all this Muslim-baiting, have you forgotten the meaning behind the story of the Good Samaritan? I sure hope so.
But I’m still disappointed that you and the Demi-Governor would deny me. Me! The one you called the “Father of Lies.” Do you deny now that we’re fighting a“spiritual war”? Because we are – but it’s a war for the heart, not the ballot box. And it’s on, man, it’s on!
In fact, it’s always on. It’s perpetually being fought – in the dark, in the quiet, in the lonely and secret spaces. It’s always being fought, one-on-one, by a soul who’s alone in the emptiness with me.
And you know me: I’m the Whisperer. I’m the voice that tells humans to do evil. I’m the vanity that makes you all want to be on television, the pride that makes you think you can run a country. I’m the greed that makes people cheat and lie to get rich. And I’m the envy that makes you lie down with them so they’ll buy ads for you to steal the attention you covet in others.
You know me. Sometimes they call me “Satan.” Sometimes the call me “evil.” At too-big-to-fail banks they call me “moral hazard.” In your town they call me “electability.”
I don’t care what you call me, as long as I get what I came for.
My favorite part of this isn’t the talking, though. It’s the policies you and your friends are pushing. They’re as un-Christian as the day is long. No wonder this priest thinks you don’t understand your own religion: You want to treat the Earth like toilet paper to be used and thrown away. That violates all sorts of Biblical injunctions.
That makes your comment that Obama “elevates Earth above man” even nuttier than it sounded. By not respecting the Earth, you’ve placed yourself above God.
The Pope’s condemnation of the war in Iraq? You didn’t care. Your Church’s rejection of the death penalty? Yawn. Its “preferential option for the poor” that demands social and economic justice? You must have been listening to Megadeth with the headphones cranked up when they announced that.
“As you do to the least of these,” said the Competition, “so do you do to me.” You and your friends don’t seem to want to hear that. In fact, you spend most of your time undermining the very teachings you claim to believe in. To which I can only add: Keep up the good work.
If you’re as successful as I hope you’ll be there’s gonna be a whole lot of pestilence, famine, disease, and death around this place. Why, it’ll be like the good old days! That ought to get the do-gooders and preachers … how shall we say it? … “all wee-weed up.” And as for the middle class that all you politicians like to talk about – well, if you have your way it’ll disappear completely.
I know, I know. You grew up working class. If you’ve said it once you’ve said it a thousand times: You used to be a regular guy. So what? I used to be an angel.
Look at us now.