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The Country's in the Very Best of Hands

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November 3, 2004

Some observations on elections, politics and the like in the wake of the U.S.A. presidential elections. And yes, the title is definitely ironic.

Selection Source Performer(s) Comments
Confidence in the System Dear Friends: A Firesign Chat David Ossman Now available in new, easy-to-swallow propaganda form and fast-acting mind control! This is clearly a popular product in the USA.
The Country's in the Very Best of Hands Li'l Abner (OC 1956) Peter Palmer, Stubby Kaye, Ensemble Back in Dogpatch from a trip to Washington D.C., Marryin' Sam and Li'l Abner share their insights on government with the population. Based on the satirical comic strip by Al Capp, Li'l Abner has music by Gene De Paul, lyrics by Johnny Mercer and a book by Norman Panama and Melvin Frank.
Progress is the Root of All Evil Li'l Abner (OC 1956) Howard St. John General Bullmoose, the quintessential corporate robber baron, expounds a philosophy that could have come straight from the Bush administration.
For Our Information Duck Soup (OS 1933) Groucho Marx, Margaret Dumont Rufus T. Firefly lays out his plans for the presidency of Freedonia. Some of them will sound unsettlingly familiar ("If any form of pleasure is exhibited / Report to me and it will be prohibited. / I'll put my foot down, / So shall it be. / This is the land of the free!")
The Sidestep The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas (OC 1978) Jay Garner, Ensemble A slippery Texas governor does "the sidestep" whenever confronted with a difficult question. Does this sound familiar? The show has music and lyrics by Carol Hall and ran for over 1500 performances, from 1978 to 1982. A sequel, The Best Little Whorehouse Goes Public, flopped (only 16 performances) as did a 2000 revival with Ann Margaret and Gary Sandy.
Mission Accomplished GOP Party Monsters Wayne Lammers Major hostilities in Iraq are over, right?
Three-Five-Zero-Zero Hair (OC 1968) Company We haven't learned much, have we?
Another National Anthem Assassins (Revival Cast 2004) James Barbour, Michael Cerveris, Alexander Gemignani, Mary Catherine Garrison, Jeffrey Kuhn, Denis O'Hare, Becky Ann Baker, Neil Patrick Harris, Marc Kudisch The sinister Proprietor of the deserted carnival shooting gallery in which the show is set joins the chorus of presidential assassins (successful and failed) for a new national anthem for the disaffected and the angry. Stephen Sondheim's surrealistic musical about presidential assassins got a chilly reception at it's premiere on January 27, 1991 and ran only 147 performances. The revival was originally scheduled to open in the fall of 2001 but was postponed because of the 9/11 attack.

Acronyms and other mysteries defined:

OC: Unless otherwise indicated, the Original Cast recording of a Broadway show, along with the date.

OS: Unless otherwise indicated, the Original Soundtrack recording of a film, TV show, etc.

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 Back to Playlists  |   Previous Show— Spooks on Stage (October 27, 2004)   |   Next Show— New and Improved (November 10 2004) 
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