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by Wendy Vapors, 12/15/00

Dc: Come January 20th a new administration will take office. As part of any new administration, thousands of people take up jobs in the government, and hundreds of those jobs require security clearances at the highest level and congressional confirmation. Preparing to be confirmed by an evenly divided Senate in this most bitter of times, politically, is a daunting task. Our Wendy Vapors found one job hopeful who getting ready.

(sfx: restaurant)

(sfx: small crowd, grows throughout)

Wendy: Karl Markle has been a hippie, a real estate developer, a lawyer, a preacher, an oldere hippie, a software developer and a venture capitalist. But there's one job he has always coveted that now, he believes, he has a chance to get.

Karl: As long as I can remember, I've wanted to be the Second Undersecretary of Commerce for Compulsive Consumption.

Wendy: What does that mean?

Karl: Kind of the national czar for people who collect junk.

Wendy: Oh!

Karl: That's why I'm here. I'm pursuing my dream. Hi Denny! Mary!

(sfx: crowd up)

Wendy: That's why Karl Markle is sponsoring a get-together at Casa Zanzibar here in Washington's tony Georgetown neighborhood. He stood with me at the door and pointed out some of the guests.

Karl: Over there are some of my oldest business associates. There's one of my crooked investment partners. That lady over there is my wife. On the other side of the room is my girlfriend. One of my girlfriends. Two more just came in. (calling) Joanie! Over here!

Wendy: How about the fellow in the hat?

Karl: He helped me cheat an orphanage out of some valuable land.

Wendy: And the lady by the punch bowl?

Karl: Oh ho! VERY disreputable. Wow. What a time that was!

Wendy: Those guys in the corner, who are they?

Karl: Mobsters. (calling) Louie! Hands up! Ha!

Wendy: Aren't you worried, having so many troublesome people around you?

Karl: One thing I've discovered when you're up for confirmation in the Senate, the worst thing you can do is lie. It's the cover up that gets you, every time. Any other kind of misbehavior can be forgiven, but if you're caught lying you're done for. So I figured I'd throw a party and invite every disreputable person I've ever met.

Wendy: What a big group!

Karl: Yeah, there's someone here to represent just about every poor choice I've ever made, every underhanded, dastardly deal I've done. Every rule skirted. Every commitment violated, friend betrayed and so forth and so on.

Wendy: You don't seem very sorry about any of it.

Karl: Oh, sure I am. Real sorry. See that woman over there? If you ever need a loan, she's the one to see.

Wendy: So I don't see how any of this helps you now.

Karl: I also invited the Senators and the press. That way it's all out in the open. No cover up equals quick confirmation. Look over there. It's the chairman of the subcommittee on Righteous Indignation talking with the Associated Press editor in charge of the Overkill Department, and the two of them are swapping stories with a service buddy of mine whose dad got us into the National Guard with one call to the Senator draped over the punch bowl over there.

Wendy: They seem to be getting along well.

Karl: Sure. Everybody here already knows each other! (calling off) Candy! Did you bring the saddle?

Wendy: (vo) And so another job hopeful jockeys for an appointment in a capital city which has become numb to all kinds of unethical behavior, but simply cannot tolerate obvious lying. And whether he succeeds or not, Karl Markle will be able to assure himself that he has done everything possible to gain a swift appointment and confirmation as our next Undersecretary for Compulsive Consumption. I'm Wendy Vapors, and I'm reporting.


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