It was a work around the house Saturday and after I completed a few chores out in the hot morning sun, I developed a cravings mostly associated with pregnant women. I put the to-do list on the kitchen table and steamed up a dozen oysters left over from Friday night’s party. That didn’t satisfy my cravings so I ate some leftover fried okra – cold. Then I remembered that there was some ice cream in the freezer. I finished that off and retired to the sofa feeling a little ill. In a short time, I dozed off into never, never land. I was in a trance like snooze. My mind was still active in a manner that made me feel both asleep and awake. All that happened next, I attribute to the time I spent in morning sun and the turmoil going on in my stomach. It seemed I rose from the sofa to turn on the television set, an act which assured me that this was a dream because I’m a remote control kind of guy.
The Jerry Springer show was just beginning:
“My guests today,” Springer was saying, “are all here to reveal their most guarded secrets. My first guest is a nationally known radio personality. A man who often boasts about performing on his radio show with half of his brain tied behind his back.”
Springer does a double take with the card he is reading from and forms an incredulous look on his face as he lets out a faint snicker. “We’ll never know what that would look like since he performs on the radio. But, my producer informed me that were I to listen to his show, I’d be able to tell that half his brain was, indeed, tried behind his back. Please welcome, America’s fieriest political conservative, Rush Limbaugh.”
The audience howls with delight as Rush Limbaugh trudges out his three hundred pound hub, waves to the audience and the camera and takes his seat. Springer returns his eyes to the idiot card.
“It says here that you’ve got a big secret you want to reveal to your fans, and that this secret has nothing to do your past drug problem or your three ex-wives.”
“That’s right Jerry,” Limbaugh says.
“First I’ve got to tell my audience that in order to get you on the show, we had to agreed not to discuss your past problem with drug dependency or your multiple divorces but I must ask you Rush…”
“I’m outta here,” Limbaugh rose from his chair.
“No Rush, I’m sorry, sit down. I just couldn’t resist – I had to try, but that’s it. I’ll stick to our agreement. My producer tells me that during the day you are a blistering advocate of right-wing causes, inflexible and tenacious as no other before you have ever been — but at night you’re a cross ideologue. What’s going on here?”
“Well Jerry,” Limbaugh begins, “as everybody knows, I have the most popular radio talk show ever in the history of radio. For two decades now, I’ve been lauding the virtues of capitalism, conservatism, gun ownership, a strong military and distrust of the federal government — especially during Democratic administrations. Jerry, no one in America, and I do mean no one, has laid the case out as steely cold as I have done. I’ve been one mean S.O.B. and 20 millions Americans loves me for it. All 20 million of them listen to my radio show. Advertisers would kill to get their products on my show. Five days a week for three exhilarating hours, I gather millions of my loyal minions to their radio set to hear my sponsors’ pitch. Jerry, I’ve become richer than I ever dared to imagine – only in America.”
“That all sounds very good,” Springer says, “however, you told my producer that you want to tell your listeners, all 20 million of them, about your secret. And, by the way, they’re waiting in the blue room. (The camera pans the blue room. There is a burly white guy pacing the floor. He is a composite of 20 million Limbaugh listeners.) What is it your fans call themselves?”
“Ditto Heads,” Limbaugh answers.
“Well Ditto Heads doesn’t know why they’re here. They think that they’re here to meet their hero. What are you going to tell them?”
“Well Jerry, I’m going to come clean with them about my being a cross ideologue.”
“You wanna explain this cross ideologue thing before we bring Ditto Heads out?”
“Jerry, it’s like when people of one gender dress in the clothes of the opposite gender. It’s like cross dressing.”
“You mean that on your show you’re a scorch the earth conservative, but there are times when you’re a limousine liberal?”
“Jerry, when night falls, I just can’t resist all those perverted do-good urges that come over me. When night falls, I just want to take in the homeless, feed the poor, undo global warming, marry gays, confirm a woman’s right to choose, double the minimum wage and free the slaves…oh, that’s been done already.”
“And, it also says here,” Springer reads from the card, “that Ditto Heads all over the country believe in you. They think you’re the original angry white man ready to defend America from all things not white and male. 20 million Ditto Heads are in the dark about this peculiar behavior of yours. Tell me, Rush – tell my studio audience – tell America, do you think that you’ll lose Ditto Heads once they find out that you’ve been engaging in…what’s it called?”
“Liberal Causes,” Limbaugh says defiantly. “I don’t worry in the least bit. You’ve never seen a more loyal group of Americans than my Ditto Heads. They won’t get all bent out of shape over this. My minions will do whatever I tell them to do even when I tell them about me and Liberal Causes.”
“Yes,” Springer says, “Liberal Causes. You’ve been engaging in Liberal Causes and we have a surprise for you and for your Ditto Heads. My staff was able to locate Liberal Causes and she is in the green room and we’re going to bring her out right after this break.
Before the show eased into a commercial, the camera pans the green room. Liberal Causes, a mixed race woman, herself a composite of all the unfulfilled remains of the New Deal and the Great Society eras, is sitting in a chair with crossed, long, lovely legs. Desirable as she is, Liberal Causes have become increasingly unpopular in America over the last thirty years. She is always advocating things many Americans have become apathetic about. Liberal Causes is constantly begging for a universal government health care program. She nags about the damage done to the environment. Liberal Causes stands alone in America when it comes to being indignant about corporate corruption and the excesses of Wall Street. She pushes for things like a woman’s right to choose, a living wage for workers, gun control, an improved educational system, gay rights, all these things the loudest Americans have come to scorn.
Someone off camera in the green room tells Liberal Causes that she is on camera. She plays to the camera by standing up to reveal her bombshell shape, big bust and a prominent behind. Her skirt is revealing and she strikes a seductive pose as the camera moves in for a final close-up shot before the commercial. When the show resumes, it becomes clear that the prompt to bring Liberal Causes out was only a tease. Springer summarized the topic and walks over to where Limbaugh is seated.
“Tell me Rush, how long have you been a cross ideologue?”
“Well Jerry, it all started after I became a multi-millionaire ten fold. I started handing out a hundred grand to this and that cause every now and then and getting my Ditto Heads on the radio to match it. I gave to uncontroversial health concerned charities – It felt so good. I wondered how it would feel to donate to Liberal Causes – but I never acted on the impulse. Then one night I met Liberal Causes after a dinner I attended at the White House – the previous White House. Liberal Causes was outside protesting the president’s policy on global warming. I jokingly gave her a little something as I passed her. She winked and slipped me her phone number. Let me tell you Jerry, Liberal Causes are very seductive. I couldn’t get her out of my mind. Liberal Causes was stunningly enticing. I went to see her one night at the homeless shelter two blocks away from the Capital building. I had a couple of C notes in my pocket and I gave it to them. The feeling I got hooking up with her late that night was just absolutely scandalous. I went to my doctor afterward to be sure everything was all right. That was just the beginning. Not only are Liberal Causes seductive but they are highly addictive. It takes the American treasury to deal with this obsession, but I’ve got the kind of money that allows me to dabble in my secret weakness for Liberal Causes. Look, this Ditto Heads thing has evolved and turned big and there I am – king of the radio and now I’m king of a segment of American public opinion.”
“Well, let’s see what Ditto Heads will have to say about all of this – let’s bring them out, please welcome Ditto Heads.”
20 million Dittos Heads fuse into this one burly white man drives onto the stage in a muddy four wheeler with a rifle mount and a deer tracking radar. He is dressed in a green camouflaged suit and combat boats. He disembarks the vehicle with admiration in his eyes. He greets Limbaugh with a hug and a secret handshake.
“Welcome,” Springer says, “you’ve been with Rush Limbaugh for how long now?”
“Hey Jerry,” Ditto Heads says looking out into the audience. “Well, Jerry, some of us are long time listeners, but many of us are listeners Rush picked up during his eight year crusade against Mr. and Mrs. ‘depending on what the meaning is – is.’ Jerry I just got to tell you, Rush is the greatest.”
“That so?” Springer says like a man hiding the hammer he’s going to use to whack you across the face.
“Jerry, before we started listening to Rush we were so ignorant we were letting our country slip away from us. Our politicians were passing laws that were giving it up to Liberal Causes, from immigration to taxation, I tell you, we were losing America”
“And, that’s bad because you don’t care for Liberal Causes – is that right?” Springer chuckles.
“Damn straight,” Ditto Heads says and gives Limbaugh a high five.
“Ha,” Springer giggles. “Do you know why you’re here today?”
“To meet our hero – the man himself – America’s freedom crusader,” Ditto Heads says, forty million eyes seeking Limbaugh’s approval.
“Go ahead Rush,” Springer prods, “tell them why they’re here.”
“Well you know,” Limbaugh starts off hesitantly, “you know all that money I make because of you Ditto Heads, there I’ve admitted it, it’s you Ditto Heads who make it possible for me to pull down the kind of money I do – well it’s gone to my head. I’ve developed a sinful nightly habit. I’ve been engaging in Liberal Causes.” (Liberal Causes, Liberal Causes, Liberal Causes.) The studio audience howls so loudly that Ditto Heads couldn't make out what was being said and raised their hand to give Limbaugh another high five. “At night I go out to further Liberal causes,” Limbaugh adds.
The noise subsides and Ditto heads hears Limbaugh’s last statement clearly. Stunned, Ditto Heads stops another high five in mid-air and adopts a kind of Hulk Hogan look, after the Hulkster’s been battered and is now coming back alive, or like a deer caught in a car’s head lights – wide bulging eyes.
“No, no. Say it ain’t so Rush,” Ditto Heads says rising from his chair, his arms flailing, as he circles Limbaugh sitting in his chair. “Rush, you’re the man, how could you do this to us?”
“Now don’t get all bent out of shape,” Limbaugh says, “this is just something I do at night for my own personal pleasure, it has nothing to do with how we are shaping America for your future.”
“Rush, I just can’t believe that you would have anything to do with Liberal Causes – that slut, if I could get my hands on her I’d tear her apart. Rush, tell me, what do I need to do to keep you home at night? You don’t need any of what Liberal Causes has to offer you.”
“You seem upset,” Springer says to Ditto Heads. “Do you feel betrayed?”
“Yes Jerry, you see we put our trust into this man to lead us to an America that’s free and without Liberal Causes,” Ditto Heads says and then he turns toward Limbaugh and screams, “Why Rush?”
“Tell me,” Springer asks Ditto Heads, “who do you blame for this – Liberal Causes or Rush?”
“Liberal Causes, the slut.”
“Well, guess what…?"
Ditto Heads looks at Springer not knowing that this is where they should anticipate a surprise.
“We have Liberal Causes back stage and you can confront her – when we come back from commercial.” The segment closes with the camera on Ditto Heads pouting their displeasure and still circling Limbaugh.
During the commercial break, Springer goes to his dressing room to down a Courvoisier. Two of his producers come out to incite Ditto Heads with provocative statements about Liberal Causes and get them enraged for the final segment.
The show continues with Springer walking to center stage where Limbaugh and Ditto Heads are seated. “You want Liberal Causes to stop this thing with Rush Limbaugh – it that it?”
“That’s it,” Ditto Heads agrees.
“Then why don’t you just ask Rush to stop his cheating?”
“Because I want to confront Liberal Causes, that socialist slut, to let her know that she cannot share Rush or America with me – Conservative retrenchment is here to stay”
“Well let’s bring her out – please welcome Liberal Causes.”
Liberal Causes makes a slow unsteady entrance on two-inch heels. (Socialist slut, socialist slut, socialist slut, the audience howls.) Liberal Causes walks to the front of the stage and pulls up her blouse to taunt the audience by revealing her bare multiracial twins. (Socialist slut, socialist slut, socialist slut, the audience howls so loudly that Springer has trouble regaining control of his show.)
“Have a seat,” Springer implores as Liberal Causes pranced from side to side on the stage. “Have a seat…please you may have a seat,” Spinger shouts above the howls.
“Hi Jerry,” Liberal Causes greets Springer.
“Huh, hello,” Springer says signaling the audience into silence. “You’re caused quit a stir here. Now tell my audience, tell America why are you fooling around with Ditto Head’s man?”
“Well Jerry, he comes to see me – he finds me attractive. He pimps off of the malcontented, the disgruntled and the gloomy people he calls Ditto Heads and at night he whips a little bit of it on me – you know what I mean, Jerry?”
“That’s a lie,” Ditto Heads says as they make an attempt to grab Liberal Causes by the neck, but is restrained by Springer’s three brawny bouncers. Liberal Causes jumped from her chair to avoid Ditto Heads’ attack as the bouncers hold Ditto Heads at bay and Spinger continues his questioning. “It sounds like you don’t care much for Ditto Heads?”
“Jerry, Ditto Heads are everything that is wrong with America. They support ruining the environment, fleecing the working class which they are a part of, world military domination, maligning emigrants, neglecting the elderly, reversing racial progress, repressing gays and holding women down for vain reasons – plus they’re so easily manipulated to act against there own economic and social interest, they’re turned into puppets. This is what they express on the radio every day. After three hours a day of that kind of talk, Rush needs something to relax him, he needs a little Liberal Cause.”
Liberal Causes pulls up her skirt to exposed her “No Justice/No Peace” sign to the camera and then to the audience who begin the chant “No justice, no peace, no justice, no peace, no justice, no peace.” This infuriates Ditto Heads and they lunge at Liberal Causes, but the bouncers’ keeps them separated.
“No justice, no peace, what kind of a slogan is that?” Springer asked.
“Well Jerry,” Liberal Causes answers as she dodges another one of Ditto Heads’ assaults, “whenever Rush comes to see me at the homeless shelter he gotta bring justice ‘cause he knows here is where he’ll find peace.”
“And what do you have to say to all of this Rush?”
“You know I find this all pretty amusing. I come on your show to help your stinking rating, but you ambush me with this spectacle. I know not to trust you bleeding hearts – but I figured you for a colleague so I thought I’d help you out in the ratings.”
“Why that’s mighty liberal of you Rush, but that’s not the question we’re concerned with at the moment. You’ve made Ditto Heads so mad they could kill and Liberal Causes goes on and on – the question is this – which one of these two will continue to receive your loyalty?”
“Ditto Heads know that when it comes to an entrenched America, buttoned up and exclusive, I’m the man – so what if I tickle Liberal Causes once in a while.”
“Is that so?” Springer asks Ditto Heads who seems confused. “Would you allow this relationship to go on this way?”
“Jerry, We’re not angry at Rush, he made us what we are and we’ll do whatever he says – but Liberal Causes will not be around because when I get my hands on that socialist slut she’ll wish she lived in Scandinavia.” Ditto heads says and makes an unexpected lunge at Liberal Causes, grabbing her by her left arm and spinning her to the floor. The bouncers’ scramble desperately to separate them – pandemonium breaks out – The audience is shouting “Jerry, Jerry, Jerry. Ditto Heads and Liberal Causes are in a battle to the death if they are not soon separated.
At this point, I awaken to a dry throat and a sweaty forehead. The oysters were fermenting in my stomach, the cold fried okra was refluxing in my chest and the ice cream had gassed up — my body was revolting against me and created a sense of turmoil — without doubt the source of my dream. I got up from the sofa, looked at the refrigerator, thought for a second, then I decided I’d better go outside and mow the lawn.