Dispatches from the Creation Wars

Comedy as Political Truth

“You’re born absolutely free except laws of nature. If you drink too much you’ll get drunk, that’s a law. If you get old you die, that’s a law…these are the only laws you’re born with and any government just fucks you out of that type of freedom…You’re not free. You need a diploma in this country to cut hair. They say if you give a man a fish, he’ll eat for a day. But if you teach a man to fish…then he has to get a fishing license. But he doesn’t have any money, so he has to get a job and enter the social security system. And he has to file taxes, and you’re gonna audit the poor son of a bitch because he’s not really good at math. You pull the IRS van up to his house and take everything. You take his velvet Elvis and his toothbrush and his penis pump and that all goes up for auction with the burden of proof on you because you forgot to carry the 1. All because you wanted to eat a fish, and you couldn’t even cook the fish because you need a permit for an open flame. And then the health department is gonna wanna ask you a bunch of questions about where you’re going to dispose of the scales and the guts. This is not a sanitary environment. And ladies and gentleman, if you get sick and tired of it at the end of the day, it’s not even legal to kill yourself in this country. You were born free and you got fucked out of half of it, and you wave a flag celebrating that fact…If you wanna fix the pledge of allegiance, put a disclaimer at the end: With liberty and justice for all…must be 18, void where prohibited, some restrictions may apply, not available in all states.”

Doug Stanhope


  1. #1 spyder
    April 22, 2005

    So well said, thanks for posting this Ed. What has always upset me about this sort of observation, is that so few comprehend its overpowering significance. We live in a nation that is one of the wealthiest in the world, yet, our poor are forced by this wealth to live more marginally, and less successfully, than the poor in most developing countries. It boils down to the realization that we must access our basic life supporting needs through the economic system. We cannot access life supporting needs outside of it. We can’t go, as people do in Africa, South America, and Southeast Asia, and live off the land, drinking from streams and collecting energy resources, because that is trespassing and/or failing to pay fees for use of public lands. WE can’t dumpster dive or live off the landfills as people do in large cities in South American and Asia, because here that is illegal and punishable by fines and jail. We are not allowed to use shelter not authorized by governments.

    Our wealth, and standard of living, has taken our lives way out of balance with the planet and with one another.

  2. #2 OGeorge
    April 22, 2005

    Why oh why does this guy have to do “Girls Gone Wild”? He certainly isn’t funny on the commercials.
    Oh hell, I’m just old and jealous.

  3. #3 frank in NY
    April 22, 2005

    Well, you used to attach the commenter’s attribution to the wrong post, separated from its true post by a horizontal line. Now the attribution, though not attached to the wrong post, is equidistant between posts. No longer misleading, now just ambiguous. I guess it’s an improvement.

  4. #4 Troy Britain
    April 22, 2005

    We cannot access life supporting needs outside of it. We can’t go, as people do in Africa, South America, and Southeast Asia, and live off the land, drinking from streams and collecting energy resources…

    …And causing all sorts of environmental damage in the process.

    Yes the people live of the land but they do so at the expense of other living things. They strip forests for energy (wood for fires) and/or to make room for crops and those animals not killed outright by human hunters for food die anyway because of a loss of habitat.

    Hardly a panacea.

  5. #5 euan
    April 22, 2005

    Life in a state of nature – nasty, brutish and short.

  6. #6 Ernest in Chicago
    April 22, 2005

    It should be easy to throw some CSS code in your stylesheet to separate comments by color coding, as Haloscan does, or some other means of cleary delineating who is leaving what comment.

    Right now, there’s just some text floating off to the right that indicates that someone left a comment. Could have been the person below, could have been the person above.

    Of course, you can figure it out, but it actually involves figuring it out. Why make the reader figure it out, when a few lines of CSS could just make it clear?

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