07/06/2005: "Ben Gets Grilled"
News item: Conservative advocacy group Progress for America has posted an internet ad with a fake newscast saying that Democrats would oppose a Bush nominee for Supreme Court even if it he named Benjamin Franklin. Setting: Senate hearing room. “This hearing is called to order. Today questioning of the nominee, Mr. Franklin, will be conducted by the majority senators from this committee. The chair recognizes the Senior Senator from Mississippi.” “Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Mr. Franklin, I understand that you write under a pseudonym, ‘Poor Richard.’ Is this some kind of comment on class warfare?” “The poor have little, Beggars none; The rich too much, Enough not one.” “I’ll take that as a yes. Tell me, Mr. Franklin, what are your views on the Patriot Act?” “They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” “That’s a pretty strong statement! Do you have similar concerns for the War in Iraq?” “There was never a good war or a bad peace.” Surely there must be some topic on which you agree with the President. Environmental policy perhaps? “When the well's dry, we know the worth of water.” “Apparently not. OK, let’s try something else. Don’t you think there’s been too much focus on supposed ethics violations and campaign spending limits?” “He that lieth down with Dogs, shall rise up with Fleas.” “How about a stronger role in government for religion?” “What is serving God? Tis doing Good to Man.” “So you don’t believe in the importance of promoting right values?” “To be proud of virtue, is to poison yourself with the Antidote.” “We seem to have some real differences on the importance of cultural values. Tell me, what is your position on substance abuse?” “Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.” “Mr. Franklin, never in my experience has a nominee expressed ideals so opposed to the traditional values on which this country was founded!” “Experience keeps a dear school, but fools will learn in no other.” “Mr. Franklin, you are trying the patience of this Committee. I’ll ask one final question that takes us to the heart of the issue at hand. Do you believe that the Constitution is a fixed document that must always be strictly interpreted according to the original intent of the Founding Fathers? “Our new Constitution is now established, and has an appearance that promises permanency; but in the world nothing can be said to be certain except death and taxes.”