Okay, feeling check: I'm feeling really inadequate today. I've been on the horn to Washington all morning and I've had quite enough of it thank you very much. Although I really like the idea of saying I am "on the horn to Washington". I think I'll say I'm "on the horn to Washington" more often. Yep, I was on the horn...nevermind. I'm trying to execute this difficult feature exploring the way in which the two-tiered structure of government, or state/federal partnership functions when so many states must reduce themselves to lobbying groups in order to get their concerns addressed. Apparently no fed on the Hill is at all bothered by their gripes, as no one wants to talk to me. This jerk Joe was the worst though, this geek staff member of a certain mid-western Senator who must live in the shadow of a certain man whose middle name is that of a certain evil dictator overthrown in recent memory.
Anyways, when I got through to his highness grand poobah of media relations, he graciously allowed me 15 seconds to describe the piece before chiming in, "Why did you choose the Senator for this interview?" I said, "Well..(basically I thought the guy would be desperate for media attention)...I see that the Senator is a member of the Subcommittee on the Financial Services and General Government, and..." He interjects, "He is the CHAIR of the Subcommittee, and the Subcommittee is a federal appropriations committee which hardly deals with state legislative issues and I'm afraid I just don't think this interview is in the Senator's best interest as he receives 200-300 interview requests per week (HA! try millennium!)and I'm sorry but I am going to have to respectfully deny your request."
Ouch. Oh well, as a means of catharsis, I would like to join in the mass inadequacies that must penetrate the collective conscious of several world leaders who are making headlines today. First and foremost: Tony Blair, are you feeling a wee bit inadequate today? You must be, otherwise you wouldn't blame the media for your current state of public disapproval. Kindly remove your man parts from our president's backside, and don't let the door hurt your swollen man parts on the way out!
Also, Fidel Castro, are you feeling inadequate today? Yes the world knows you don't care much for our president, but your recent editorial about Bush's visit to Albania left something to be desired. Really, a man whose hatred for W burns like that of a thousand suns can only come up with: "He tried to commit them further to spill generous blood in those peaceful wars"? Really? I know you're no Molly Ivins, and that you may be a bit on the, er, how should I say it, waiting list for God's waiting room, but come on, the entire world has your attention and don't recruit a speech writer?
And Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, everyone knows you're more than a little inadequate at this time. Media types throwin' around the word "Hamasastan" and all. But here, for you, I offer this comic relief. If America's boundaries were re-worked, it might look a little something like this:
Masha Gessen is the author of *The Future Is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia*, which will be published in October. In the July issue of Har...
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