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The Greatest Show on Earth

By Dale Lucht

Do you remember the 1952 movie: “The Greatest Show on Earth”? It won the Academy Award for best picture that year. The story was of course about the Ringling Brothers, Barnum and Bailey Circus. As a kid I loved the circus, the animals, the acrobats, clowns, trapeze acts, tightrope walkers and lion tamers. As a farm kid I even liked the smells and the pure seediness of the whole experience.

It’s probably been over 30 years since I’ve been to the circus. Since they moved indoors to arenas and exhibition centers its allure has waned. Then with attacks from animal rights activists, declining attendance and high operating costs the Circus has announced it will close May 2017 after 146 years.

P.T. Barnum was an interesting man, a showman, business man and even a politician. He is widely, but erroneously, credited with coining the phrase “There’s a sucker born every minute”. In 1841 Barnum opened “Barnum’s American Museum”. It drew huge crowds, people would mull around, not allowing new patrons to enter. Barnum’s purpose in life was to make money. If more people left then more people could pay admission and enter, so he came up with a new exhibit. Signs pointing to the egress, an egress is a fancy word for exit.

In 1875, a circus based in Delavan, WI convinced Barnum to lend his name to their troupe and became known as “P.T. Barnum’s Great Traveling Museum, Menagerie, Caravan, and Hippodrome.” The moniker “Greatest Show on Earth” was added later. Mergers followed and in 1919 became known as Ringling Brothers, Barnum and Bailey Circus. Like I said though this is all about to end.

But wait a minute. We have Washington D.C. There are many clowns such as Sean Spicer and Kellyanne Conway, and of course the Dick Cheney clone: Steve Bannon. We watch aghast as they walk the tightrope between truth and lies concerning Russia and their involvement in our election.

Then you have the high-flying aerialist, those death defying trapeze artists: the democrats. They stay at the top of the ring on their trapeze watching the crowd, perhaps dropping a water balloon on those below. Make sure there is a sturdy net that has been made in America.

Is Mike Pence the lion tamer? Will he invoke the 25th Amendment and remove Donald Trump from office?  The 25th Amendment allows the Vice President and a majority of Cabinet Secretaries to assert that the President is unfit for office, and then remove him from office.

Donald J. Trump would be assumed to be the Ringmaster, but I think he’s just acting the job. I believe he’s the bossy clown, I mean he’s already got the clownish wig, humongous hands and huge ego. When you watch him speak, Trump uses flamboyant gestures. Watch my hands, don’t pay attention to what I am saying. It is classic misdirection. Do we have a Ringmaster? I’m half tempted to fill Putin’s name in there, but I can’t go there. Putin definitely views himself as a puppet master and how many American’s are being controlled?

We no longer have no drama Obama in the White House. What we now have is the newest “Greatest Show on Earth”. Elephants enter stage right.

Which way to the Egress?

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