This will be the last column for a while as the world of newspapers adapts to the whims and ways of market forces.
I thought I should bring some class to the situation by adapting a bit of Shakespeare to play the satirical jester. Those who know their Shakespeare will see I have taken some liberties with the original text of Hamlet.
Act 5, Scene 1. The White House Oval Office
The curtain rises and we see a man with a very bad fake tan and what appears to be a dead animal on his head. He is pouting and smirking at the same time. NB: His mother clearly never told him that if he does that when the wind is changing that he will be stuck with it for ever.
Trumplet – How long will a man lie I' the earth ere he rot?
White House Staffer: He can lie as long as the speech is made on national television.
Trumplet – Why me more than another – because I am amazing even to myself.
First Trump supporter – Why sir, you hide is so tanned, that it will keep out water a great while. Here is a photo of one of your people who has died from the coronavirus.
Trumplet – Who was it?
Second Trump supporter – It is said that a pestilence came on him from a mad rogue President acting as the jester.
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Trumplet – Alas poor New York. I knew all was not well - a fellow of infinite jest, of a most excellent fancy. Claims were made that many were ailing but I did make the jest greater and yet smaller in the telling. Now I must turn my thoughts to blaming others for their misfortune as it is I that makes American Great Again. Tis my ego that commands me to treat the States in my kingdom with disdain lest they do not bow down to my will and doth tell me constantly that I am never wrong. Any that should cross me will be told "Thou art Fired" and be led away without the chance to even empty their desks.
Let that limp rag called the New York Times be deemed fake in all its elaborate fakeness because nay it is them that hath published wordage about the way I have managed the onslaught of disease upon the nation. It is so bad what they have done that it pains me to speak of it for than an hour at a time. Tell me one thing.
White House Staffer - What's that, my lord?
Trumplet - Dost thou think Obama looked o' this fashion i' the earth?
White House Staffer - E'en so.
Trumplet - Pah! It's so bad, so fake, a bad, bad, bad fake.
Puts down the copy of the New York Times
White House Staffer - E'en so, my lord.
Trumplet- To what base uses we may return? Why may not imagination trace the noble dusting of lies upon the surface of the truth?
White House Staffer - 'Twere to consider too curiously, to consider so.
Trumplet - No, faith, not a jot; but to follow this hither without modesty enough, tis likelihood to lead it to us as being blameworthy thus: many died, the bad news must be buried with them. Money is wealth; of wealth we make loans; and why of that loan, whereto was converted into profits, might they not stop an oil-barrel? Imperious President, they say, with ears of clay, Might stop a hole with lies to keep the truth away: O, that ego, which keeps the world in awe, Should build a wall to expel the migrant flaw! But lies, but lies aside: here comes the media.
• Terry Sarten (aka Tel) is a writer, musician, social worker and paid up member of the Satirista. Feedback welcome: email@example.com