SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 24, 2018
Trump’s 680th Day In Office
These Fictitious People Still Sound A Lot Like Some People We Know
Here’s another column featuring the same sleazy 1980s characters at the satirical Patronage County Courthouse, to illustrate things going on hereabouts these days, so our Persons of Consequence might gain yet another useful perspective on the news.
These articles are Beloved Whistleblower Publisher Charles Foster Kane’s attempt to encourage undiscovered young writers, such as the struggling columnist below who shares his acute and surprisingly accurate take on local Politics as Usual in satirical Patronage County.
“From the Soup Line to the Ridiculous” by James Jay Schifrin
I’ll tell you this…you’ll have to go a long way to find a better promotion than the one last week that brought President Reagan to town for seven minutes.
A lot of people complained about the cost to local taxpayers. But think about the local benefits.
Traffic was snarled and parking was impossible, but at least police for a lot of overtime.
Mayor David Mann assured Cincinnati by his actions that federal funds would be tripled. Usually a dissident Democrat, put aside petty partisan politics and made the chief executive feel right at home.
When asked why his welcoming address was delivered at the soup line protest on Fountain Square, the mayor explained, “I just couldn’t help myself. When I saw all those TV cameras, I just went sort of crazy.”
Not since the Kool Jazz Festival has the Westin Hotel had so much great publicity. La Rosa’s gave pizza to some free-loading White House staff members. And some lucky rich people got out of meeting the President or hearing him speak, but only after paying thousands of dollars for that privilege.
Local politicians weren’t so lucky. Their attendance was mandatory. Somebody was making a list and checking it twice. Those who couldn’t afford $1,000 for dinner had to find some way to sneak in. Most inventive was Patronage County’s own beloved Commissioner Swindle, who posed as a bus boy to gain entrance. Once inside, Swindle was seen stuffing his pockets with appetizers. “Waste not, want not,” Swindle tried to tell a reporter.
But maybe Swindle is right. Any elected official who can afford $1,000 for himself and a guest just to listen to his boss give a speech certainly doesn’t need a pay raise. Not only that, he doesn’t need all that money he’s being paid right now.
This op-ed column first appeared in the Mt. Washington Press on December 9, 1981.