One can imagine the evil spirits that are scurrying out of Washington this week. When Bush left office, a series of otherworldly beings left with him. The ghost of Nixon. The demons of Abu Graib. The negative energy being expelled from our nation's capital must be enormous.

Whatever Barack Obama says and does in the next four years, he's already created more positive energy than any other president since, possibly, FDR.

Never in my lifetime, at least, has an election created enough excitement to cause some company to produce a half-hour infomercial starring Montel Williams selling commemorative coins. You can't watch basic cable these days without an Obama plate or Obama medallion being hawked.

Can you imagine anyone buying a George W. Bush plate or coin except as an ironic statement? Or maybe a poster with his most remarkable achievements, such as the Iraq War, Hurricane Katrina and the rigged 2000 election?

The ascension to power of Barack Obama is unprecedented in all of our lifetimes. The entire nation is hopeful and guardedly optimistic for the first time in more than 10 years.

Let the historians of the future and the gatekeepers of Hell render judgment on the unholy reign that was the Bush presidency.

Let us move into the future.

It's going to look very much unlike anything we've seen before. The repo men of the world are turning their attentions away from us regular working-class people and are carting away the items owned by our largest companies.

Trillions of dollars in equity have been swept away. Retail chains are in fierce competition to see who can be the fastest to file bankruptcy and close all their stores. Eventually, raccoons and birds will inhabit the abandoned big-box buildings that, in more prosperous times, housed Linens 'n' Things and Circuit City stores.

We will eventually come to regard the Republican Party and the conservative movement in general in the same way we look at members of strange doomsday cult religions or the way we regard the folks who think UFO transmissions are controlling the Earth.

Until then, conservatives should - for the sake of the country - do something that they've often told the rest of us to do, but have never been able to do themselves: shut the hell up, for at least a year, maybe two.

We'll let you know when it's OK to speak again. Now go watch NASCAR and listen to country music and drive your pickup trucks in silence.

The rest of us don't want to hear about how patriotic you are, because your politics caused Sept. 11, a disastrous war in Iraq and a crippled economy. Our nation is exponentially less safe than it was eight years ago - and far more damaged.

We don't want to hear about how you love the Constitution. Your guys routinely used it for toilet paper from 2001 until Tuesday afternoon.

And we especially don't need you in the way as we make the needed reforms to bring this country back. You've done enough damage. Go stand in the welfare line with the rest of us.

President Obama is asking us for a period of national unity, of healing, compassion and an honest effort to resolve our differences in a civil and constructive manner.

I say to hell with that. I say let's go knock on the doors of all the banks we've bailed out and ask where our credit is. If they can't cough it up, then we should be able to seize their laptops, expensive office furniture and decorative plants as partial repayment.

I want there to be a revolution similar to that in Cuba, where the corrupt political leaders are jailed for years without trial. I want to see Donald Rumsfeld and Mitch Daniels picking up cans along the side of Prospect Street until the $10 trillion they stole from the national budget is paid back.

This is no time to be conciliatory. This is the time to metaphorically spit in the faces of the people who caused this mess, the same ones who moved out of Washington this week.

This is a time of hope and optimism. I have hope we can wash the Washington streets of all the scum and rid it of the vermin who've infested it until this week. I am optimistic that it can be done.

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