History Teaches Lessons. Sometimes Up Close.

For those of you who don’t want to participate in political discussions, or are such special snowflakes that you might melt in the face of strong opinion, this may be the week for you to head over to the Huffington Post and Salon. This will not be a venue you wish to frequent. I’ll be sorry to see you go, hope you’ll be back on the tenth of November, but probably won’t lose a lot of sleep over it if you label me and delete the bookmark from your browser. (On Netscape, which I suspect you’re still using if you’re taking that path, the control you’re looking for is on the upper right.)

So, fair warning: it’s pretty political from here on in until the election is over. I’ll put the rest below the fold.

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Once again, flash fiction for you. Absolutely no relationship between this and real events. A fever dream from the swamp.


The ice cubes rattled as he drained the glass. Tea with lemon. He needed a clear head while he thought this through.

As the glass approached the table next to him, he caught a glimpse of a figure seated in the corner chair. Startled, he pulled the weapon from it’s place next to the seat cushion and aimed it at the visitor’s head.

A chuckle greeted his action. “Not going to have any actual effect, kind sir. But if you insist, know that you’ll have a rather large hole in your wall and the refrigerator on the other side will cease to function.”

The visitor moved into the light. Comey knew the face and the costume: George Washington.

“How did you get past my men? And why the hokey getup?”

Washington wavered in space for a moment and then became solid again. “Because this is what you expect when you think of me. I paid the artist well to do the portrait. He cleaned me up a bit. I got past your men because I’m a ghost. I thought you were smarter than that, James.”

Comey lowered the weapon. Great: not only was he under the gun at work, it seemed he’d had a stroke and was losing it.

“No, you’re not crazy. No more than Nixon. We used to send people to talk to him as well. It is unfortunate that your modern era ascribes such things to madness, not the relationship between all Americans. I was first in line to talk about what you’re facing, and I volunteered to come here tonight. You’d have a hard time with my accent and vernacular, so I’m using modern idiom. But look at the bright side: the alternative was Teddy Roosevelt. Good grief, the stories he ties you up with. I have heard enough about the River of Doubt to last for eternity. And I know something about that time frame. Any questions?”

Slumped in the chair, Comey merely shook his head.

“A wise man once said that when you crush the dreams of the people, and lead them to believe the system is skewed against them, they give up hope. They need to see justice served to go onward in their quest of life.”

Comey looked at his empty glass, and back at Washington. “Was that Jefferson?”

Washington let out a hoarse laugh. “No. I’m paraphrasing Donald Trump. He’ll repeat it again next week. Jefferson was never that pithy. But he is enjoying this whole episode. His nonsense about watering the tree of liberty with blood is one of the few things you people remember about him. Tom was a lot of things in his day, but I always found that attitude a bit annoying. I’m more in favor of planning things, fighting the enemy on the field of battle, and being honorable. You’re on the field of battle now, James. How does it feel?”

“Not very honorable. You know what I’m thinking about. What would you do?”

Washington smiled. The wooden teeth thing was not true. But then again, ghosts get to pick their appearance.

“I’d do exactly what your subordinates suggest. We never meant for there to be nobility in this nation. We fought a bloody civil war over it. Yes, a civil war. What else would you call it when we were all British subjects?”

Comey started to see the point as Washington lit a pipe. “You think this is going to lead to civil war?”

Washington shook out the match and nodded. “What option do your people have when they are treated as subjects, not citizens. You have established a ruling class of criminals worse than the King ever was in his day. They legislate in the middle of the night, tell you they know better. They’ve forgotten that they’re the employees in the bargain.”

“But what about Trump? He’s got the moral compass of a rat.”

“James, you forget what men were like in my day. Trump is a boor. He’s not crooked, but he’s sleazy. He’s the type who would have wound up in a field with Aaron Burr at dawn, or some other man whom he’d impugned. But he wouldn’t be the first Putz in the White House. I like that word: Putz. Stole that from Trump, as a matter of fact. He is, however, loyal to the nation. He knows he’d be there as a servant. He’s got enough money and a nicer plane than Air force One. He’s no threat to the republic. And he does, in his heart, understand the average person. That money doesn’t insulate him from his people. He’ll never forget who actually runs this country, and it’s not the politicians. Unlike his opponent, and her ilk, he has no pretensions to royal titles.”

“But we foresaw this eventuality. We made sure that it wouldn’t happen again. I’m just surprised it’s taken this long. It was mighty close in 1967. Thankfully Madison insisted we put the Second Amendment into the Bill of Rights. The rest of us thought nobody would be stupid enough to give that right up under the circumstances we endured. For the sake of all that is holy, it was a part of common law and common sense. James Madison wound up being right in his poor opinion of the masses. I’m glad he was.”

“How can I prevent a civil war? No matter what I do, people will go insane this close to an election.”

“I’m still a believer in the American people, James. Pursue the case. Arrest the criminals, expose the evil and filth that has threatened to steal your birthright. Her followers will complain. Some will pursue violence. But the vast majority will see the propriety of it once she’s in prison. If you let her get into the White House, she’ll finish the destruction of the faith of the people in the rule of law. Your man told you that the other day. It’s true. We fought with our lives and sacred honor to build a nation of laws, not fiat justice and royal edict.”

“James, do you truly believe she loves this country and its people? Would a true patriot lie to Congress repeatedly? For the love of all I hold sacred, she used clandestine communications to hide her crimes from the people and her president. Would a patriot sure of the cause let brave men die on Tripolitanian, er, Libyan soil? Ask Jefferson about that one: he gets terribly wound up. Moreover, you, and the men and women of your Bureau are viewed as pawns to do their bidding. At the risk of sounding ludicrous, read her Wikileaks emails. Even her minion Podesta realizes she views you all as serfs in her bond. Is that any way for a free man to live?”

The words rang true to Comey. He’d caved in to pressure earlier in the year and now he had a chance to right that mistake. Loretta be damned.

“Mr. President, I thank you for your visit. Any other sage advice for a weary man?”

Washington started to fade out. “Yes. Don’t drink your coffee on Friday morning at the meeting with your boss.”

The room was eerily silent except for the melting ice cubes cracking. They sounded just like wooden teeth.

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Come back tomorrow for some modern day insights. Remember why the founders did what they did. They left it to you. Can you preserve this nation, or will you give it away in pursuit of party loyalty and free stuff?

Joseph Courtemanche

About Joseph Courtemanche

I'm a conservative Christian author who's been happily married for over 30 years. I am a Veteran of the United States Navy, Naval Security Group. I speak a few languages, I have an absurd sense of humor and I'm proud to be an American.
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3 Responses to History Teaches Lessons. Sometimes Up Close.

  1. Korissa Olson says:

    Great Post Joe!! My fav line: “or are such special snowflakes that you might melt in the face of strong opinion” Beautiful.

  2. Sam Pakan says:

    Great job! I’m going to my safe place now.

  3. Definitely your genre. Keep going.

Comments are closed.