Thursday, February 02, 2006
THOLOS INTERVIEWS JUBAL DURFEE
We called up Mr. Durfee on a Sunday afternoon at his home in Beekeeper, Arkansas. He and his family, consisting of his wife, Arleen, and son, Billy, had just come in from church (First Baptist). They have an older son in Iraq. Billy's father recently gave him an assault rifle—an AK-47, in celebration of his twelfth birthday.
THOLOS: Hello, Mr. Durfee.
JUBAL: Howdy, padnah.
THOLOS: A lot has happened since we last spoke. Let's get right to it, shall we?
JUBAL: Fine with me. My boy wants to get in some target shootin' this afternoon.
THOLOS: Oh, yes. How's he enjoying the new rifle?
JUBAL: Oh, man, he just loves it. His face lights up when we go shootin' together, about once a week. It's funny. He used to be kinda shy. Kind of a sissy. He was drawin' pictures and he wanted to learn how to play the flute—if you can imagine! We was worried about him for awhile, there, me and Arleen. But since I got him the AK-47, he's almost a different kid. Really come out of himself. Startin' to blossom, you know? His Mom's so proud. I just thank God for puttin' him on the right track.
THOLOS: You think every kid could benefit from having his own urban assault rifle?
JUBAL: Well, I don't think it's for everybody. Some kids just don't have what it takes to handle one. But it's certainly done wonders for my Billy.
THOLOS: All right. Well, let's look at the news, shall we?
JUBAL: Sure thing.
THOLOS: What do you think about the recent revelation that the President has been spying on American citizens for the last four years?
JUBAL: Well, I'm glad he come clean about it. That's what I like. I find it so refreshing.
THOLOS: What do you mean?
JUBAL: Well, he's tellin' us exactly what he's doin', ain't he? No pussy-footin' around. No skull- duggery. See, I like that. He's just right out in the open with what he's doing, now. I think that takes a lot of guts.
THOLOS: But what he's doing is a violation of the law, isn't it?
JUBAL: I dunno. Maybe. But I tend to agree with Vice President Cheney on that. I think the President oughta be beyond the law. At least somewhat. I mean you can't expect to regulate everything he does. You can't fight terrorism that way.
THOLOS: So, no rule of law for the President?
JUBAL: Well, Bush is a hands-on kinda guy, you know what I mean? He's not gonna stand still for a bunch of Congressmen breathin' down his neck, tellin' him what he can do and what he can't do. That's not his style. He takes his orders from higher up, see what I mean? He's sort of like Dirty Harry. Remember those movies?--with Clint Eastwood? Dirty Harry was always breakin' the rules, always operating just outside the law. But he got the job done, didn't he? He always got the asshole by the end of the movie.
THOLOS: So, the President is Dirty Harry?
JUBAL: Yeah. Well, no, not exactly. But kinda. But at least we know what he's doin', don't we?
THOLOS: We do?
JUBAL: Yeah. He's comin' clean, comin' straight out, now. We ain't seen that before. See, with Nixon, you got all this double-talk and equivocation, and what have you. The guy couldn't come straight out and say he was spying on Americans or he was bombing the shit out of Cambodia or whatever he was doin', because, let's face it: he was too chickenshit to level with the American people. See, that's just what got him in trouble. It wasn't what he was doing. Nobody gave a shit about that. I mean, let's be honest. There couldn't have been a dime's worth of difference between bombing Vietnam and bombing Cambodia, could there? But soon as it came out that ol' Nixon was secretly bombing Cambodia, everybody suddenly flipped out. So it wasn't the bombing part that irked 'em, it was the lying part. See what I mean?
THOLOS: So you're saying it's okay to violate the Constitution and the laws of the land, so long as you don't lie about it. Is that what you're saying?
JUBAL: Right! Now, you're catching on! It's just like what I said the last time we talked, you know, about Clinton, when he lied about gettin' his horn tooted by Monica? See, that's where he got tripped up. He should never have lied about that. He should have just told 'em it was none of their goddamn business. “Fuck you.” Everybody would have cheered, then! The whole country would have been behind him. They would have said, “Yeah, right on! You go, man!” The whole thing would have blown over like so much thistle dust. But Clinton didn't have the gumption to say, “Fuck you.” So, of course everybody smelled blood and they got on him. Shit. Nobody gave a rat's ass if he got a blowjob, or if he got ten blowjobs, or fifty! They just didn't want him lyin' about it, that's all.
THOLOS: So you're saying that Clinton would have been better off to just admit what was going on--
JUBAL: Yeah, or tell 'em to go jump off a cliff, like I said. But yeah, even admitting he was getting it sucked would have been better than what he did, in my opinion. “I never had sex with that woman.” “It depends on what 'it' means." Nobody wants to hear that crap. Nobody's buying any of that. So simpering, you know? So spineless. I mean it was like, there he was again basically saying he didn't “inhale” when he answered the dope smoking question. Remember that? It was practically the same performance. I half expected him to say, "Yeah, okay, she tooted me, but it didn't count 'cause she didn't swallow." You see what I mean? Now that would have been pure Clinton. But he couldn't do it. Couldn't answer 'em straight. Why? 'Cause he's a coward, that's why. But it ain't only him. Clinton's just a symptom, you know, the perfect symbol, really, for the whole Democratic Party. They're all cowards. You can't find more than a handful that'll stand up for anything. Shit, the Democrats are better for Republicans right now than Republicans.
THOLOS: On that, I think we agree.
JUBAL: No, no, don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining! Y'all just keep right on doin' what you're doin'. (Laughter.) Watchin' the Democrats these days is like standing on a riverbank and watching somebody take a long time to drown. Meanwhile, I'm pretty confident our party will come out on the other side of all these scandals and things even stronger than we were before.
THOLOS: Okay, let's go back to when Bush lied to Congress about weapons of mass destruction hat didn't exist--
JUBAL: Well, now, I don't necessarily agree that he lied about that. I still think we're gonna find those weapons. They're stowed away in some cave somewhere, and the marines are gonna find 'em.
THOLOS: Okay, but let's just say, for the sake of argument, that there were no weapons to be found, insomuch as just about the entire civilized world is in agreement that Bush lied about that, and since he's now starting to get quite a lot of heat for lying about it, do you think he should have just told the truth about what his true motives were?
JUBAL: Well, yeah, why not?
THOLOS: Even if the administration's true motive was to get control of the oil fields?
JUBAL: Well, I don't know if that's their true motive. I don't necessarily hold with that. I mean, I think Bush really wants to get democracy goin' on over there, you know, and he just truly wants to overthrow evil tyrants and kill all the terrorists in the world. That's what I think he wants, 'cause I believe him when he says that's what God wants him to do. I believe that's what God wants. Hell, we just talked about that at church today, had a big conversation over it, how God wants and needs America to prevail in the world. Because without America spreading the gospel of Jesus and the word of God, the whole shebang will be lost to the devil. And probably should be, if you wanta know the truth. But shit, man! Once we're in there, in my opinion, we'd be crazy not to want to get our hands on the oil. I mean, by God! Of course we should get the oil. We're not fools, here, are we? We're not a bunch of innocent little lambs. Nobody was born yesterday. I mean, if it ain't us, it'll by God be somebody, won't it? And it's liable to be Iran. Or France. Or Germany. Or somebody. I mean, it's just layin' there, and I believe God intends for us to have it, pure and simple, or we wouldn't be there now.
THOLOS: That sounds kind of like Manifest Destiny.
JUBAL: Come again?
THOLOS: Manifest Destiny. It's an old term, meaning that basically everything we have was ours for the taking, sort of, by “devine right.” Like when we took the land from the Indians. Or when we defeated Mexico and acquired so much territory. Back then, just as we did with Iraq, we initiated the Mexican War by saying we had to overthrow an evil tyrant. But what we ended up with was a vast empire.
JUBAL: Yeah, I guess I see what you mean. But, basically, you know, I just think all of that is defeatist ideology. I mean, look, man, you're sittin' where you are and I'm sittin' where I am because our foredaddys had the gumption and the balls to kick a bunch of assholes out of here and annihilate the rest or round 'em up and stick 'em off in the desert somewhere. Okay? So that's a fact, right? So, what is all this complaining about kickin' some more assholes and getting our hands on the oil, before some other goons get hold of it? Huh? I mean, are we gonna get all moral all of a sudden and quit puttin' gas in our tanks? And if you and I had been around back when we raided the Indians sacred burial grounds and hauled out the gold from the Black Hills, and if somebody had handed you a big sack of that shiny shit, would you have turned it down? I doubt it.
THOLOS: So what are you saying?
JUBAL: I'm saying this is who we are, man! This is who we've always been! We've never been anything else! So, we might as well get with the program, and quit deluding ourselves. And I think that's why Bush has chosen to come straight out and level with us. No more lies, no secrets, no bullshit. See, I think he's figured somethin' out here, and that's why this is so unusual and so exciting. Because we've never had a President actually stand up, flat-footed, and say, “Fuck you. Yes, I'm spying on Americans. Yes, I'm detaining people without lawyers and trials. Yes, I'm torturing people. And yes, I'll do whatever in the sam-hell I have to do to overthrow evil and fulfill God's will. I'll break any law, I'll step on anybody that gets in my way to get the job done.”
THOLOS: Just like Dirty Harry?
JUBAL: You betcha.