I bled in and out of consciousness for a while as the Vol beside me snatched his dying breaths, and the Beasts at the front of the car clung on to dear life by the thinnest of threads.
A man with a vicious high-pitched voice pierced the throbbing darkness, dropping I’s for r’s like every decent fun-loving psychotic Trinitario gangster from Santiago de los Caballeros, the second city of the Dominican Republic, where new money fortunes made from the distribution of narcotics had decades ago usurped the old-money fortunes made from growing bananas, coffee, tobacco, cacao, corn, and rice in the lush fields of Cibao Valley[i] and ripping gold, silver and pieces of amber from huge open-cast mines around Pueblo Viejo, without a care for the world or the indentured Haitians that did the heavy-lifting.[ii]
“Que tú piensas?” the Trinitario gangster asked his honcho as he proudly surveyed all the mayhem he had caused.
“Si hay dos haitianos, mata a uno; si hay tres, mata a dos.” his honcho replied, delivering a death-sentence to one the Beasts in the X5’s front seats, whom I assumed were dark-skinned.
“Yeah,” the squeaky-voiced Trinitario chirped before the gunshots: “Dominican don’t play! Where there are two Haitians, kill one; where there are three Haitians, kill two.”
And I felt blood that wasn’t my blood splatter my shirt.
A spring chill riding on an unsteady, gusting easterly breeze stung my open wounds and for a moment the dark got a little brighter behind my blindfold as the Trinitarios carried me from the X5 and laid me down to rest, roughly, on the backseat of something even higher and mightier like perhaps an Escalade. And few moments later we were rumbling south, shuddering through potholes on the trucks’ oversized rims, which hurt my bruised, if not cracked ribs like hell.
We filtered on to what I guessed from the volume of the stop and go traffic was the Major Deegan Expressway and then after a few minutes and a slow 360-degree turn climbed up and over the George Washington Bridge where a gusty squall buffeted the slab-sided truck as it sped west over the Hudson River, which knocked me out.
I ‘came to’ lying on a couch in the ‘great room’ of a shiny new mansion bragging on its red lacquered walls, a couple of unremarkable colorless scribbles by Cy Twombly and a series of giant red-canvases with thick drab parallel lines inside by Mark Rothko that perfectly amended and restated the room’s bordelloesque theme.
My first blink brought Joy, who was simmering by my side, into focus.
The second reintroduced me to Angel Maranzano, Isaac “Ike” Mercer, Stephen K. Barron and Sheldon Winner, a buncha-cunts that had all eyes on an enormous 65-inch Sony A9G MASTER Series OLED TV showing a ‘live’ broadcast of Kunt’s first 2020 re-election rally at the Amway Arena in Orlando Florida, on conspiracy theorist Charles Herring’s, rabidly anti-abortion, pro-Kunt, One America News Network.
The scene was being set by a gushing reporter hiding behind a lot of flat, lightening, war-paint who cracked a vacuous smile as she had been trained to do while ‘pushing Kunt’s candidacy, scuttling stories about police brutality, encouraging anti-abortion myths and legends, minimizing coverage of Russian aggression, and Kunt’s misogynist assaults.’ [iii] But, her eyes betrayed her fright like a deer in the lights as she described the surly mood of the maddening crowd — a sea of white faces topped by red ‘Make America Great Again’ caps.
Behind her Kunt called: “Hello Orlando, we love being in Orlando,” to which his cunts responded as if in church, with alternating chants of “BUILD A WALL” and “LOCK HER UP,” like they were asking the Rolling Stones to play ‘Satisfaction,’[iv]
Kunt held his hands to both ears and smiled wide enough to connect his lobes: “Thank you. Thank you, Orlando. What a turnout! What a turnout! You know, I said to my people that if we have about three or four empty seats, the fake news will say ‘he’s lost his magic because he didn't fill up the arena.’ So, we crammed it to the rafters with you’all --- the same patriots Crooked Hillary called ‘deplorables’ and ‘irredeemables,’ with whom I have MADE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN! How does that sound?”
It sounded viscous and threatening, magnified by 20,000 tormented, entitled, homogenous, surly threatening voices, which was exactly how Kunt needed it to sound to get off: “Yeah,” said the lord of millions of disenchanted flies basking in the fleeting glory of adulation, “And the next day there were hundreds and hundreds of people proudly wearing: ‘We are deplorables’ on their chests.”
As Kunt waved to hush the crowd in preparation for his next revelation, Joy, who would never be hushed or yelled at Bannon who was back from exile and in the center of things: “You may fool the rest of the country, but I’ll call your bluff any day of the week. IMPEACH THE KUNT! IMPEACH THE KUNT!”
Bannon turned around and pointed Joy to the scene on the screen, where the banners behind Kunt were alternating from blue and KEEP AMERICA GREATto red and MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN, and where Kunt was playing the role of ringmaster, magician, showman, clown, and messiah.
“You know tonight we have a big decision to make --- we have to come up with a theme for the 2020 campaign, right? Is it going to be MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN, which is, I think, the greatest slogan in the history of politics. This is MAGA country, right?”
Yes, it was, and the cunts chant of “MAGA, MAGA, MAGA, Oi, Oi, Oi,” rumbled around the arena on a wave until Kunt waved it off.
“Or seeing as we have already made America great again,” Kunt drooled as he counted out the blessings he’d bestowed on an ungrateful nation. “We've rebuilt our military. We've taken care of our vets. I pulled us out of Obama’s crazy nuclear deal with I-ran,” he bragged puffing out his chest like a vengeful dragon, his head spinning as he sought affirmation, adulation, affection from face after face in the crowd, before resting his gaze on a dusty biker with a beard painted red, white and blue. “And if they retaliate and attack anything American we will obliterate them!”
Obliterating Iran struck a chord from the VIP section to the nose-bleed seats and the dusty biker roared his approval in a fed frenzy of non sequiturs from “build a wall” through “lock her up” to “USA, USA, USA. Make the towelhead motherfuckers pay!!!”
Kunt, fed off the dizzy frenzy, “I yanked us out of the Paris Climate Accord because it made America less competitive, less great. We've cut the hell out of regulations. You know, I have cut more regulations than any president in the history of our country, regardless of the length of their term. We’ve weaponized tariffs to bring manufacturing jobs back, and now we have China, who has ripped us off for years, on its knees. We passed the greatest tax cut of all time which has sent the stock market to all-time records. I’VE APPOINTED 145 CONSERVATIVE FEDERAL JUDGES who will bring law to order. And we’re building a wall to keep the migrant animals out and cages to hold them if they do breach our defenses! And on Sunday. Yes, you heard me, Sunday morning as you go to church I will start to deport millions of undocumented immigrants. How does that sound?”
It sounded tremendous to the African-American woman in a blue rinse and a blue MAGA T-shirt who wailed, “ICE, ICE, BABY” over a mass chorus of “USA, USA, USA, USA.”
“What I’m saying is that having survived the ‘Russia Investigation,’ AKA the greatest and most expensive witch hunt in American history! Which, with more than $40 million wasted, came up with nothin --- no collusion, no obstruction --- except of course that I have extremely powerful friends!!”
“I often think back to that incredible day of June 26, 2017, when despite lack of media attention and the bookie’s odds and being outspent eighteen to one by a 10-term incumbent with his clammy hands superglued to the levers of power, WE WON, WE WON, WE, WON.” She sang, arpeggiating up the octave to a high C, and we will change the world for the better. Not just for our generation but for all those that come after us.”
And then she paused as the “Sí se puede” chant rebuilt, louder and prouder than before.
So, my brilliant talent campaign people who cost a fortune and never give me any ideas --- I'm only kidding --- told me that we can’t make the change, give up the greatest political slogan ever, without testing its replacement thoroughly, and they gave me a criminally expensive plan for that. But, I told Nadiya before I got on stage that I had a much better idea! I’m going to let you vote on it by the loudness of your cheers. So, will it be Make America Great Again? Or will it be Keep America Great. Let me hear it. Ready? Make America Great Again?”
And the crowd cheered loud and proud, believing that every cheer counted.
“Or, Keep America Great Again?”
And the crowd roared even louder as it had been pre-ordained to do.
“Wow, I thought MAGA had it won, and then I heard this cheer. My eardrums will never be the same. Keep America Great it is! We're going to keep on fighting for every man and woman and child all across this land. With every ounce of heart and mind, and sweat and soul, we're going to keep making America great again, and out of the hands of Islamists like congresswoman Ilhan Omar and socialists like senators Bernie Saunders, Elizabeth ‘Pocahontas’ Warren and congresswoman Joy Alicia Lopez, because AMERICA IS NOT A SOCIALIST COUNTRY.”
“Yeah, I’m going to keep on working for you,” Kunt vowed, as the ‘USA’ chant rebuilt. “We are going to keep on fighting. And we are going to keep on winning, winning, winning. So, bring those American flags to DC on July 4th, because we're going to celebrate America together and recommit to keeping America great for Americans. Thank you, God bless and good night. “
On the cut to a commercial break, Angel Maranzano turned towards me wearing a fat victorious I-told-you-that-we-rule-the-world grin on top of his sagging hang-dog jowls, sucking the life out of a Cohiba Corona Especial cigar as he sucked the life out of everything.
“We use Trinitarios to control the Beasts like Cats are used to cull rats,” he blew, at me by way of an explanation I could have lived without.
“And when the cats get out of control?”
“We gas them, don’t we Sheldon,” Angel leaked absently, swinging his gaze from cunt to cunt, as he punched his left palm with his right fist to add an exclamation mark. Then he scooped his jacket off the back of a chair and tried it on for size, theatrically, like he had places to go, people to meet, and was short on time.
When he swung his gaze back to face me it had caught a chill and yet sweat over-filled the furrows on his forehead and there was a small but expanding patch of damp where his shirt touched his ribs, suggesting he was agitated — out of sorts.
“Degas, we love the American people,” he said slowly and softly and then he chomped the live head off his cigar and spat it out on the floor.
It was a neat party trick, but I was all partied out, so I left it to Joy to provide the happy clapping and the rebuttal: “You,” she said turning on all of them, “don’t love the people at all! You’re amused by the idea that you can use them, abuse them and their environment and that they’ll still vote for your man.”
“We like you Joy,” huffed Sheldon, wheeling forward. “You handle yourself, like a winner!!! But, we all know that this David and Goliath shit never works out in the end, because Goliaths make the rules and then adapt them to the circumstances. You may win a battle or two, but Goliaths win the wars and well before the end you’ll get weary and sell out. So, here’s the deal. It’s a twofer. We’ll settle Elia’s inheritance issue for two-hundred and fifty million dollars, and we’ll provide you a clear path to run for president in 2024, not by financing you directly, but by hobbling your competitors, so you will have lived by your promise not to take a cent from corporations, PACs and evildoers like us. Of course, you will still have a Republican to beat but it is likely that another Kunt presidency will drag the country into deeper political, social and economic crises and will convince disillusioned voters to try something drastically different --- something ‘radical’ like you, whether we like it or not.“
Joy’s response was short seditiously sweet and yet definitive: “Gents, I don’t like having people do little things for me and this is no little thing you are offering. So, the answer is no never, because I don’t want to be obliged to return the favor, ever.“
If the cunts were surprised Joy rejected their offer, they wore it well which made me wonder if it was a ruse, though its purpose was unclear to me at the time.