Newmann: An alien recount
On October 30, 1938, Orson Wells scared many Americans half to death with his radio adaptation of “War of the Worlds.” The original book, written by H.G. Wells (no relation) in 1898, centered on an invasion of earth (specifically the U.K.) by blood-sucking Martians armed with hideous weapons of mass destruction.
Many listeners of the 1938 broadcast had not tuned in at the beginning (when the show and its intent had been announced) and the realism of both the actors and the sound effects caused some mass panic. Perhaps the lesson is to always tune in from the beginning.
Fast forward to 2020 and we have a yet a more current broadcast version of “War of the Worlds.” This one could be called “War of the Weird.”
The cast members include, but are not limited to, a commander-in-chief, 126 congress people, 19 state attorneys general, a handful of senators, a legal advisor with strange hair dye, conspiracy theorists who think an election is rigged and a partridge in a pear tree. The whole plot is so absurd and convoluted that, even if you tuned in on time, you might just want to turn it off within a few minutes. Where the Martians in the original “War” were pure fiction (and scary), the crew in this episode seems to go beyond fiction (and they’re scary, too).
Now imagine an election (pick any election). And, when that election actually takes place and the votes are tallied, and retallied and then tallied again for good measure, the person who won on the first tally (and all the subsequent tallies) seems to have finally been declared the winner.
But wait … how can this be? Something’s wrong with this picture. There’s no way that after all the counting (and recounting) this result could be right. Somewhere there’s skullduggery.
So … onto the courts. Ironically, the judges in many of these same courts have been appointed by the seemingly injured party. Surely these august legal scholars would see the illicit voting outcomes as scurrilous and dastardly. One would think they would move quickly to quash these false results and declare the loser the winner or, at very least, order a new election.
But, no. They don’t. They throw out the challenges. Quickly. Now we really have a problem. These judges don’t really see the true winner. The term “justice is blind” takes on whole new meaning.
There must be another avenue to remedy this injustice. But where? Use your imagination … there must be some place. Somewhere.
And so it goes. On. And on.
All the accusations of cheating and stealing and wrong doing continue.
It’s a “war” that seems to have no end in sight. And it doesn’t even have any interesting aliens to fight against. Just ourselves.
But, remember, this is just our own little fictional broadcast.
Many factual broadcasts out there are much more worthy of our time and attention.
Tom Newmann splits his time between Edwards and Queenstown, New Zealand. He has been going winter-to-winter since 1986. He was also a journalist in Missoula, Montana, at the Missoulian for quite a few years. Email him at email@example.com.
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