James Clay Fuller

Things We're Not Supposed to Say

Thursday, March 11, 2004

Contest: Predict bin Laden’s capture date

Some may call this little item cynical. I say the Bushies have long since surpassed Niccolo Machiavelli in cynicism and willingness to do whatever they think it will take to hold and increase their power. I’m not cynical, I’m realistic.

Anyway, I’m going to stage a little contest here, folks, open to all but my immediate family. I will send a deck of Shareholders Most Wanted playing cards to the three entrants who come closest to naming the date that the capture of Osama bin Ladin is announced. Simply pick your date (add a time, if you like) and email me by clicking on the “contact" link on the right side of this page. Give me your name and address so that I can mail the cards to the winners.

I will not use the list of entrants for anything else and will, in fact, destroy it as soon as the cards have been sent to the winners.

The cards are inspired by the deck used to promote the capture of Saddam Hussein allies in Iraq. Each card carries the portrait and a little information about a major corporate crook in this country. Ken Lay, ex-chairman and CEO of Enron is the ace of spades, for example, and Dennis Kozlowski, ex-chairman and CEO of Tyco, is the ace of clubs. The cards also tell you what has happened to the big-buck jerks so far (nothing in the vast majority of cases).

Warning: Picking the date of capture may be trickier than it might first appear. Will the event take place fairly soon so that it can be used throughout the campaign? Or will the Bushies hold off in order to make a big splash closer to election day? You have to get into their heads to predict the timing.

A great many people in Europe believe the reports from Iran that bin Ladin already is in custody and the Bushies are merely waiting for the right time to spring him on the electorate. I think that’s highly doubtful. However, there have been signals for at least a couple of months now that his hiding area is known and that our government and/or Pakistan can lay hands on him pretty much at will.

So email your guesses. You’ll enjoy the cards, which can be used for poker, gin, solitaire, for pinning to a dart board or tossing on a floor to soak up the product of a backed up drain.