Celtic Diva's Blue Oasis: George in Purgatory

Saturday, August 20, 2005

George in Purgatory

George in Purgatory by Erica Jong

I have a persistent vision of George Bush entering Purgatory (which I imagine as a scene out of Dante) and being confronted by the bloodied souls of the women and children he killed in Iraq.

“Remember us!” they cry.

“I have to get on with my death,” he says.

No guide comes to accompany him.

Not Virgil, who guided Dante, nor any of the presidents who preceded him. The founding fathers may not be in heaven, but they have no use for him. Nor does FDR, Teddy Roosevelt, nor Woodrow Wilson. Not even fuzzyheaded Ronald Reagan wants to guide him. Everyone seems to know he’s anathema.

Finally Jesus, who can forgive anyone, comes to greet him.

“All you have to do is acknowledge your mistakes,” Jesus says. “And I will receive you into the flocks of the forgiven.”

“Remember us!” the dead children cry.

“Shah,” says Jesus, “everyone deserves as chance to repent.”

“I have to ask Turdblossom,” says George.

“No counselors allowed,” Jesus says. “Look into your heart.”

“I have to ask Laura,” George says.

“She’s still on earth,” says Jesus. “She can’t help you now.”

“What did my father do? George asks.

“He repented of his lies, his dirty business deals, his adulteries. . .”

“Then God Damn it! I’m not gonna!” George screams.

And with that, he is flung into the icy circle of the traitors with Judas, Brutus and the others and frozen forever.

“It’s not so bad,” Judas says. “With global warming, we’ll get defrosted someday. And we’ll still look good.”

George is perplexed. “Isn’t that just a left-wing theory?” he asks, “like evolution?”


Blogger enigma4ever said...

really good piece- I think Shrubby think's a free ride- a pass- he thinks that he is ordained by HIS god to do this- but to have to be accountable- whoa....and no entry....
and no one to bail him out or lie for him...there's a thought...come on over to http://watergatesummer.blogspot.com/.....

8/21/2005 9:50 AM  
Blogger Coldfoot said...

Oooooooooh. I bet you think that is a clever piece.

Now, try writing a clever piece where Bin Laden meets Allah and his 72 virgins.

What's the matter? Is that a Politically Correct hot-potato?

It's easy to mock a Christian man in America. Mock a Muslim and you may suffer the fate of a Salmin Rushdie, whether you're American or not.

I doubt you thank God, and American fighting men that you have the liberty to mock a good Christian man. You should.

And for perspective; I believe there were nearly 40 combat deaths in Iraq this month. There were over 30 murders in Detroit in the same period. I will thank God that we have competent men leading our country who have kept casualties so low.

You should too.

As for the terrorists killed in Iraq. I have less sympathy for them than American fighting men, but yet I have sympathy. To live in a largely uneducated society, with a large peasant population must be tough. Coming from such a hopeless situation, can you blame them for falling victim to the rhetoric of Muslim Clerics who blame the West for all their woes, and promise 72 virgins in heaven? I can't.

Make no mistake. It is the clerics who are victimizing these desperate young men, not Bush.

8/22/2005 1:12 AM  
Blogger CelticDiva said...


There was a comment here that I just deleted because it was obviously advertising a business venture.

If you feel that I was in error, please feel free to email me and we can discuss it. I'm pretty patient, but if someone spams like that repeatedly, they will be banned.


The Management

8/22/2005 10:30 AM  
Blogger CelticDiva said...


First off, this article IS clever, whether you agree with it or not.

Secondly, nowhere is the author disparaging Christianity in any way. On the contrary, Erica Jong is holding it in high esteem and is challenging George Bush to actually honor the tenents of the religion that he claims to uphold. If you pay attention, Jesus's teachings in the Gospel have a lot to say about peacemakers, the poor and little children and also makes it clear that there are serious other-worldly consequences for any injustices done to those three groups. He also has a thing or two to say about leading people astray.

As for your paragraph "thanking" Bush for "keeping the casualties down," how many more would you like to lose before we figure out what the hell we are doing? The U.S. in Iraq is like a giant fighting an ant...yet the ants keep doing significant damage and the giant acts baffled. Military experts and members of the leadership have repeatedly emphasized that we could probably clean up the insurgency (for awhile) with more troops. As it is, our soldiers go from place to place trying to clear insurgents, only to have them come back when they leave. It's like plugging up holes in a dam, only to leave them unplugged when they try to plug up other holes.

Now, the insurgents are building bigger and better roadside bombs, killing more soldiers at one time.

I know that I'm not typical of other people...I work for the Army and I deal with Iraq every day in one way or another. There are pictures everywhere of my coworkers that are serving over there now. I couldn't be more proud of them.

I'm also furious that we don't know how we are going to get them out.

As for your final paragraph, I couldn't agree more that poverty and a lack of education have created terrorist-in-the-making across the entire Middle East. Rev. Jim Wallis, founder of Soujourner Magazine, states in his latest book "God's Politics," "“Unless we drain the swamp of injustice in which these mosquitoes of terrorism breed, we’ll never overcome terrorism.” President Bush's policies regarding poverty relief, humanitarian aid and sustainable economics for the disadvantaged ensure that these swamps threaten to breed terrorists for a long time to come.

8/22/2005 11:37 AM  
Blogger Coldfoot said...

Disparaging Christianity? Where did I say or imply that? If the shoe fits it can be worn, though.

Facts are facts. I believe there were 2 soldiers murdered here in Alaska this past month. Just in Fairbanks there was one soldier murdered, and one soldier who was stone cold sober and crashed his car into a sign and died.

Alaska (Fairbanks in particular) is a more dangerous place for soldiers than Iraq. One Alaskan (that I know of) died in Iraq.

Every death is a tradgedy. How many more Alaskan soldiers need to die before you are clamoring to keep them locked down in the barracks. Now that would really save a lot of lives.

8/22/2005 11:56 AM  
Blogger CelticDiva said...

Coldfoot, you said this in your first comment:

It's easy to mock a Christian man in America.

Like it or not, you are inferring that Bush's Christianity is part of what's being mocked. My previous comment responds to that inferrence.

Regarding your last comment:

While I comprehend what you are trying to say, the logic you are using to make your point is totally off the wall.

I don't agree that every death is a "tragedy," since we are all mortal. While death is sad and a soldier's death in an accident (which could happen to anyone) is regrettable, it was not something that military authorities could have consciously prevented nor was it likely related to his job with the military. Those dying in Iraq are doing so because they are soldiers under orders from our President to be in harm's way.

I mean this as respectfully as possible, but I find it offensive and shockingly insular that your assessment of the war seems to be based on how many "local" people have been killed. Do non-Alaskan deaths mean nothing to you? Yes, we lost one soldier this month...but what about the other 14 soldiers from the same town in Ohio who were killed by the same roadside bomb?

For your information, the reason Alaska hasn't had many Iraq fatalities is that we have barely had any active military over there.

That's all changing now - we are in the process of sending in almost 4,000 Alaska Stryker Brigade troops - most of which are from Fairbanks. The Stryker Brigade is trained for the front-line, so I'm sure that Alaska will catch up with the rest of the country in its number of grieving families.

Will that make you feel more invested in the welfare of our troops?

8/22/2005 1:35 PM  

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