Monday, March 15, 2010
By Alan Caruba
For a long time I have been reading the commentaries of Burt Prelutsky because they would show up on one of the websites to which I too am a contributor. At first I would just read them and find myself laughing out loud at the sheer wit of the man. He is very funny and I mean that in the nicest way.
You can enjoy his weekly observations at http://burtprelutsky.com.
Burt has the credentials of a funny man. In a halcyon past, he wrote for television sitcoms that include Mary Tyler Moore, Rhoda, Family Ties, MASH, and Bob Newhart. I feel sorry for anyone who did not watch television in their heyday. He could write serious detective drama as well for shows like Dragnet, McMillan & Wife, and Diagnosis Murder, among others.
For a long while he was a humor columnist for the Los Angeles Times and movie critic for Los Angeles magazine. His freelance writing credits are formidable and I say this as a longtime freelance writer. He was also an anomaly in Hollywood. He was a conservative.
Prelutsky is about my age and our lives rather astonishingly mirror one another. We both come from a line of Russians who wisely decided to get out of town before the Cossacks showed up to spoil the party and kill everyone.
Recently, we exchanged books and I got his latest, “Liberals: America’s Termites” which is subtitled, “It’s a shame that liberals unlike hamsters never eat their young.” The media expert, Bernard Goldberg, a fixture on Fox’s Bill O’Reilly Show, wrote the foreword in which he lamented “No one should be this good, this often, and make it look like he isn’t even breaking a sweat.” He compared him to Mark Twain and so do I.
As I read his book, I was struck by what I have come to call "Prelutsky’s"; little gems of wisdom. Here are just a few:
On a higher education: “I honestly feel sorry for all those dutiful and loving parents who feel they must hock the silverware in order to finance junior’s liberal arts education. Guilt, being as ingrained in some people as it is, I know that even if I started screaming from a rooftop that they’d all be better off if they gave the kids $10,000 and a library card, my words would fall on deaf ears.”
On riots anywhere: “Most liberal pundits, I’ve found, justify riots, blaming society at large for its marauders. I, on the other hand, am not so easily hoodwinked. Check out the photos of every riot you’ve ever seen and you will discover that it’s the same riff-raff in every mob, no matter where the vandalism takes place.”
On movie critics: “Frankly, it’s a wonder to me that there are grown-ups willing to spend their lives in dark theaters just so they can come out and assure us that once again our worst cinematic fears have been realized.”
On the federal government: “What truly confounds me is the blind faith that liberals have in the federal government, at least during those years when left-wingers are running the show in Washington. What, I constantly ask myself, is wrong with those people that they’re dying to have the feds in charge of their health care? After all, these are the same bureaucratic dunderheads who mailed out at least 10,000 of those $250 stimulus checks to dead people. Just in case you were wondering, it didn’t stimulate even one of them back to life.”
If you are weary from reading the usual liberal tripe in the mainstream media, you can take a refreshing break by purchasing Prelutsky’s latest book ($15.00, plus $5.00 shipping and handling) from Scorched Earth Press, 16604 Dearborn Street, North Hills, CA 91343-3604. You can order it through Amazon.com, but you won’t get an autographed copy!
© Alan Caruba, 2010