The Death of Satire

Satire (500 B.C. – February 2, 2012)

Satire died today at the approximate age of 2,512 years.

Satire had been in ill health for decades since the Vice Presidential term of Dan Quayle in the late 1980’s made the popular form of comedic commentary nearly superfluous.

In recent years, the rise of former beauty queen and Alaska Governor Sarah Palin to national prominence and the clown car full of insanity known as the 2012 Republican Presidential candidates have made it even more difficult for Satire and the many writers and comedians who have struggled valiantly to keep it alive.

Today, with Donald’s Trump’s endorsement of Mitt Romney for President of the United States, Satire finally pulled the plug on itself. “There’s just no point in going on,” said Satire moments before passing away, “If a rich politician with an image problem as an out-of-touch, self-promoting multi-millionaire is going to publicly accept the endorsement of the most egregiously shameless huckster mutli-millionaire in the country, I just don’t see the point of existing anymore. What can I possibly add to that?”

Before contemporary political madness rendered it redundant, Satire had enjoyed a long history as a means of pointing out life’s absurdities with an eye toward improving society. Reached for comment upon Satire’s untimely death, Wikipedia noted Satire’s vast contributions to literary tradition and society in general. “Vices, follies, abuses, and shortcomings were held up to ridicule, ideally with the intent of shaming individuals, and society itself, into improvement. Although satire was usually meant to be funny, its greater purpose was often constructive social criticism, using wit as a weapon.”

Satire’s longtime friend and neighbor, Fat Dave Silberger added, “Ya just can’t shame guys like Romney and Gingrich into improvement. Not that Satire didn’t try — every night, busting its ass on The Daily Show and Colbert. But when Trump endorsed Romney – ya just can’t hold a thing like that up to ridicule. It’s just ridiculous on its face. Satire knew the time had come to end it all with dignity.”

Satire’s earliest years were spent in Greece, where it was born around 500 B.C., taking the form of bawdy comic plays, often performed by men dressed as Satyrs: mythological creatures that were half-man and half-goat or horse. These were happy years for Satire, helping to expose the foibles of Athenian society in such comedies as Aristophanes’ The Clouds and Lysistrata.

Moving to Rome around 65 B.C., Satire became involved with Quintus Horatius Flaccus (AKA Horace), who came to be considered one of the first great Roman satirists. Horace could not be reached for comment because, of course, he’s been dead for over two millennia.

Satire is survived by thousands of practitioners of the form who have been left to contend with the remainder of the 2012 Presidential race without one of mankind’s most essential literary tools.

There will be no public service. Donations to the Delphic Oracle can be made in lieu of flowers.


Filed under Comedy, History, Politics

7 responses to “The Death of Satire

  1. Rush Pearson

    Um, Paul, were you kidding about the donations to the Delphic Oracle? That place turned into a house of prostitution about the same time Phil Gramm deregulated the shit out high finance.

  2. Fat Dave

    I don’t ever recall saying what you quote me as saying, but I appreciate the shout-out just the same! Actually one thing I’ve been saying about these right wing clowns for years now is that you can’t shame people who lack the shame gene.

    Sadly & ironically enough, that is a shame.

    • Dan Wharton (wart)

      Dave –
      I think you need to invent a new Character a Satyr named Shamus to take back up the Fight! TEN Against the Empire!!!! “Shoulder to Shoulder, Elbow to Knee! Zip down your Fly When you’re in Company!”

  3. Shelly Goldstein

    Beautiful Paul.
    From the beautiful Satyric tradition of strong bawdy men who were half-goat, all that’s left are a few pathetic old white guys who are all jackass.

  4. Barbra Zuanich-Friedman

    No, I think you’re mistaken…I hope I’m right. I’ve heard that Satire was taken by flying ambulance to the Sunrise Hospital in Las Vegas soon after The Donald endorsed Romney….what I understand is that he was admitted under a false name and whisked in without much notice and is being given life-saving treatment by a band of progressive and forward thinking intellectuals and liberal thinkers/comedians/show hosts. Bill Maher is supposedly bedside. Trust me.

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