Volume 75, Number 37 | February 1 - 7, 2006

Talking Point

Donor sought by a Democratic Party on life support

By Daniel Meltzer

Medical hot lines across the country remained silent today after physicians in the nation’s capital sent out an emergency call for a willing donor to step forward to contribute his or her brain as well as an entire backbone to the Democratic Party, which has been diagnosed with extreme multiple osteoneurological failure, or E-MONF syndrome (pronounced “eemonf”).

“The patient is a virtual jellyfish,” Dr. Alvin Zweistein, chief of osteoneuropathology at Walter Reed Army Hospital in Bethesda, Md., told reporters today ats a news conference, “completely immobilized and unable to communicate comprehensibly, to stand up for, or to, anything, and only occasionally being heard to mumble, sotto voce, such utterances as, ‘Oh, well…’ and ‘With all due respect…’ and ‘Being in the minority after all….’ Response to external stimuli is nil.”

The patient does occasionally twitch on its right side and spit from that side of its mouth, one hospital staff person told this writer, however the significance, if any, of these apparently random, spontaneous spasms remains unclear.

“The party is currently on life support and its ultimate survival is by no means assured,” Zweistein said, grimly.

It may be the first identified case of an entire political party having been stricken with E-MONF, for which the only known hope would be the still-untested double transplant. Without it, the likelihood of full recovery of a patient with severely atrophied brain and backbone would be negligible, he estimated. In one earlier isolated individual case, he said, nearly full function did return without surgery. However the unnamed patient reportedly went on to exhibit extreme megalomania, compounded with severe communicative difficulties characterized by progressive retardation of grammatical skills and pronounced pronunciation difficulties with his own native tongue. The patient credited divine intervention for his recovery.

Just who might step forward to offer both brain and backbone to the currently mindless, spineless Democratic Party remains subject to speculation.

“We are in a state of emergency, without question,” one unnamed party supporter has said. “Look at us. Nobody knows what to say or even in which direction to lean anymore.”

Observers had been sounding alarms for years regarding the party’s noticeable twitching and tilting to its right. It was only a matter of time, many felt, before it literally fell over onto its face.

Someone suggested that the reputedly upright and putatively “centered” New York Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton step forward as a likely donor. However, a recently revealed rightward lateral curvature of her own spine, observed when she removed her suit jacket to be fitted with a battery-powered microphone at a recent speaking engagement, presumably now disqualifies her. Such public exposure of her previously unacknowledged condition would explain her having nearly fallen off various stages and speakers’ platforms on several occasions, as she took unorthodox positions on various issues.

“Besides,” one party official volunteered on condition of anonymity, “it’s not just a backbone, of which we are certainly in desperate need, there’s the brain as well. One without the other, as we have all too often discovered to our great dismay, is utterly useless.”

While Clinton’s rightward cant may worry some party faithful, others are firmly against accepting any donor spine that leans leftward, leading to a state of virtual paralysis within the ranks.

Owing to a mounting burden of weighty national maladies, including a catastrophic and presumably permanent war, mass confusion and consternation over costly and complicated medical insurance programs, indefinitely displaced hurricane victims, hemorrhaging federal budgets and electronic bug infestation, the collapse of the party’s central nervous system has many now seriously alarmed.

A nationwide debate has reportedly begun over whether the patient should be allowed to die a peaceful death or be kept on artificial life support indefinitely. “Time will tell,” one observer noted, “but only if it is tortured,” which instantly precipitated another episode of bizarre positionings and inarticulate utterances.

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