President Clinton: The Screenplay


by Mark Katz
As appeared in the NEW YORK TIMES, 8/25/98, page A17



	CONFIDENTIAL: FOR THE PRESIDENT'S EYES ONLY

		MEMORANDUM TO THE PRESIDENT

From: Harry Bloodworth-Thomason
Date: August 25, 1998


Prez:

	I've been watching CNN, and I can't believe how many people think the
bombing of terrorist sites in Sudan and Afghanistan is just part of a "Wag
the Dog" scenario we've concocted.

	That's outrageous!  I have never even seen "Wag the Dog"! And from what
I've heard, there's no dog in it.  And there aren't any dogs involved in
this military action either, which confuses me even more.

	Is Buddy O.K.?

	But all this talk about "Wag the Dog" led me to think about some possible
diversions.  Let me know if there are any you want to green light.

	Let's do lunch!

	* "Saving Private Ryan" scenario -- Send Navy Seals to infiltrate
 		China and bring back Charlie Trie, the former 
		restauranteur who's on the lam after being charged with 
		making illegal contributions.  Then make him testify on 
		Capitol Hill.  Let's face it: Even a campaign finance 
		scandal has got to be better than the Lewinsky situation.

	* "It's a Wonderful Life" scenario -- Ask America to contemplate 
		this scary concept: What if Ross Perot had won the 1992
	 	election?

	* "Annie Hall" scenario -- You relocate to Los Angeles.  Strike 
		that.  We should probably stay away from any reference to 
		Woody Allen.

	* "Braveheart" scenario -- Exactly like "Wag the Dog" scenario, 
		only we invade Scotland

	* "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington" scenario -- Give a speech about 
		national health care reform or some such and just keep 
		talking for the remaining 20,573 hours of your Presidency.

	* "The Right Stuff" scenario -- John Glenn already had his joy 
		ride in space.  Maybe you just need to get away for a
 		while.

	* "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" scenario -- Something 
		involving James Carville.  Idea still in development
 		stage.

	* "Jaws" scenario -- You get the press corps in the waters off 
		of Martha's Vineyard.  I'll take care of the rest.

	* "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" scenario -- You and Al 
		throw caution to the wind and set off on a devil-may-care 
		international crime spree.  Or alternatively, Hillary 
		and Tipper do a "Thelma and Louise" thing.  Everyone 
		knows it's the same movie.

	* "The Full Monty" scenario -- A last-ditch alternative only.

	* "All the President's Men" scenario -- Just kidding!







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