I believe that from time to time every taxpayer should go to Washington, which is where we have our government and our government-related restaurants, just for the sheer fun of finding out what kind of comical high jinks grown people will engage in if you give them enough money to raise armies and hold hearings.
When I was there recently, they were holding hearings on the crucial question of how we can further screw up the situation in Nicaragua. Nicaragua has become a very hot foreign policy issue lately, as is evidenced by the fact that President Reagan recently sent Philip Habib down there. Phil had just returned from the Philippines, where his job was to make sure that the Air Force courtesy getaway jet supplied to Mr. and Mrs. Ferdinand Marcos by grateful taxpayers such as yourself was nice and clean and had enough overhead storage space for the national treasury.
But Phil faces tough sledding in Nicaragua. For one thing, they never qj get any snow. (Ha ha! Who says foreign policy issues are dull? Many people.) Seriously, you have a very difficult and complex situation in Nicaragua, which I will attempt to explain in simplified terms that even a taxpayer who uses the short 1040 form can grasp.
A few years back, there was this leader down there, a Mr. Somoza, who graduated near the top of his class at the Stereotypical Latin American Tinhorn Dictator Wearing Aviator Sunglasses Academy and who was -- let us choose our words carefully here -- a big fat tub of scum. But he was anticommunist scum, so of course concerned taxpayers such as yourself gave him bales of money, because we didn't want the communists taking over Nicaragua. And so of course the communists took over Nicaragua, and of course they have also turned out to be scum. You wonder, sometimes, when you study foreign policy, why there can't be more nice countries out there, like Canada.
Anyway, this is a serious problem, communists in Nicaragua, because of the Domino Theory, named in 1954 for Antoine (Fats) Domino, who was very big at the time. Not that he is what you would call petite today. The Domino Theory states that if the communists take over one nation in a region, and they put down a tile with a certain number of spots, the United States has to put down a tile with a matching number of spots, or the communists get to take over another nation, and so on until they take over Texas.
Actually, I don't think anybody of refinement would seriously object if the communists got Texas, especially if they passed some sensible laws, such as: No More Big Stupid Hats. But the problem is, once they get Texas, what's to keep them from taking Oklahoma? Okay, I guess that's not really a problem, either. But eventually they're going to come to a really important state, such as Tennessee. Elvis is buried in Tennessee. When I think about communists getting hold of a precious national resource such as Elvis, perhaps even selling him off in segments -- think what a single toe bone would fetch, at auction -- to raise money for their evil worldwide empire, well, you can call me a courageous patriot if you want, but my reaction is: yuck.
So we have to stop the communists. The question is, where? President Reagan would like us to stop them right there in Nicaragua, because that way (a) they won't be able to spread their vile poison throughout the region and (b) he won't have to learn the names of any additional countries. So he's always pushing Congress to send more money, provided by freedom-loving taxpayers such as yourself, down to an outfit called the contras, which is trying to overthrow the Nicaraguan government. There are pros and cons to the president's policy, as follows:
Pro: The contras are brave, Valley Forge-style patriots fighting for liberty and justice.
Con: The contras are vicious baby-killing rapists.
I assume it goes without saying that both the pros and cons are provided by well-informed government leaders receiving salaries and limousines and subsidized haircuts courtesy of satisfied taxpayers such as yourself.
The way our leaders have dealt with this situation so far is, they came up with a compromise. Here's how it works: We send aid to the contras, just in case it turns out they are good, but just in case it turns out they are bad, the kind of aid we send them is "humanitarian," which means they can't use it to kill people. (Don't laugh! This is your foreign policy!) Like, if we send them some humanitarian shovels, they can use them to dig holes, but not so deep that if a communist fell in, he would suffer a fatal injury. Also under the heading of "humanitarian" aid is cigarettes, which I assume the contras are not allowed to share with communists, because of course the surgeon general states right on the pack that they are hazardous. He works for you, too.