Oct. 22, 2001: Is there no rest for the weary?

Having just concluded an extraordinarily successful term as chairman of the Governor’s Special Committee to Design a State Flag That Looks Like a Pair of Cheap Golf Slacks, I figured I had earned the right to a little peace and quiet. Alas, it was not to be.

I have received an urgent request from Mars, which is where Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney’s head is most of the time, asking me to help her decide how to spend the $10 million she hopes to wheedle out of Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal. The prince is carrying this loose change around because New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani told him to put his money where the sun doesn’t shine after His Most Exalted Poobah questioned U.S. policies in the Middle East. The prince was gracious enough to offer his opinions while standing at Ground Zero in New York.

McKinney says she knows a lot of people “of color” who could use the money. She didn’t specify what color the people were but I assume anyone with blue eyes isn’t in the top five. Nonetheless, my orders are to identify those people and organizations most deserving of this unexpected bonanza and to eliminate anyone who thinks Alwaleed should have his mouth washed out with camel dung. These directives narrow the field quite a bit and make my job much easier. It is just a question of who can most benefit from McKinney’s unselfish act of stateswomanship.

The most obvious beneficiary will be the National Association of Truth Fudgers. This organization encourages people to tell most of the story but not all. Cynthia McKinney is their poster person. She justified her bad-taste letter to Prince Whatever by pointing out she voted for the War Powers Act. Big deal. So did everybody else, except Barbara Lee, of the Peoples Republic of Berkley. What McKinney failed to mention was her diatribe of September 25 in which she demanded that the American people see “proof” that Osama bin Laden was responsible for the terrorist attacks before we dare retaliate. She makes a darn good point. A senior citizen bowling team from Akron could have been the real culprits. One can never be too careful about these things.

I also recommend a few bucks for the That’s My Girl Foundation — Marlo Thomas, honorary president and her bozo husband, Phil Donahue, honorary person. This grant would help fund State Representative Billy McKinney’s request for some wallet-sized photos of his daughter without her foot in her mouth. Very few of these photos are currently in existence.

I also propose a grant to Terrorists ‘R Us. This organization designs public information programs utilizing wide-eyed college students to convince the rest of us that it isn’t necessary to go to war with people who highjack airplanes, blow up buildings and spread anthrax, or with those who support them. The terrorists just need a little love and affection. Flying airplanes into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon are merely attention-getting devices, like two-year-olds who have temper tantrums and throwing their Tickle Me Elmos. Who could possibly be in a better position to explain this outlook to us than a bunch of sanctimonious barely post-pubescent college kids who couldn’t spell “real world” if you spotted them two R’s and an E?

If my abacus is functioning properly, just enough money should be left over for those patriotic folks at the American Civil Liberties Union who continue to work feverishly to eliminate such repugnant phrases as “God Bless America” from our vocabulary. Nothing is easy, however. Since U.S. currency has “In God We Trust” plastered all over it, there is no way I would insult their strongly held beliefs by making them accept our money. I am pleased to report that a compromise is at work. The good Saudi prince has agreed to take the ACLU home with him and start a Saudi Arabian Civil Liberties Union, which should greatly improve the quality of life in both countries.

Other deserving groups abound, but $10 million doesn’t go as far as it used to. I’m not complaining, however. Being asked to take on this task by Her Eminence is a great honor. It isn’t every day I make such a significant contribution to world peace and global understanding. I just hope that when Congresswoman McKinney returns to outer space, she will remember to thank me for my Herculean efforts.

Blue-eyed people have feelings, too.