I can never manage to keep my own New Year’s resolutions, so I thought I’d prescribe some for a few of the world’s noteworthy folks who could definitely use a change – if not for their own good, then for the good of others.
1) Robert Mugabe - I believe you’re still a nominal Catholic. Confess your sins and pray that you die before you can commit any more. Your poor country has suffered enough at your hands, and you, and your nation, would be greatly improved by your death.
2) Kim Jong-Il – Except for being Catholic, ditto.
3) Raul Castro – You’re not a complete idiot. I have this vision of you picking up something by Milton Friedman one day, reading it straight through, and shouting “Eureka!”, after which you will tip-toe into your brother’s room, smother him with a pillow, and then declare an end to the obscenity of the Marxist state in Cuba. No time like the present, old fellow!
4) Ahmadinejad (and the entire government of Iran) – Just stop being militant, triumphalist Muslim a$$holes, already. And try to get it through your thick heads that nothing says “psychopathic morons” like that business of hanging allegedly adulterous women and suspected homosexual men from cranes.
5) Barack Obama – Ignore that groveling press, Mr. President, and whatever you do, don’t believe your own propaganda. In fact, you should emulate the ancient Roman practice of having someone constantly whispering in your ear: “All glory is fleeting, and you’re just an exalted ward-heeler who, in a less shabby age, never would have risen higher than the sewer of Cook County politics”.
6) John McCain – Remember this, John: there’s a point beyond which magnanimity becomes vanity, and goodwill becomes masochism. Nobody’s going to rally around a banner that doesn’t stand for anything but good sportsmanship (especially when even that is directed almost exclusively toward the other team). Conservatives have no desire to continue fielding selectively amicable losers. You ran on the McCain ticket and lost; resolve to govern as a Republican senator for a while, and you might go a long way toward redeeming yourself.
Update: Readers are encouraged to suggest their New Year's resolutions for whatever magnificoes strike their fancy.