FROM: Rudy Giuliani, NYC mayor on 9/11/01
TO: Revisionist & Sons Publishing Co.
RE: contingency plans for revised second edition of my forthcoming textbook, A Happier History of America
As we continue to lock in pre-orders from school districts all across the country for the first edition of my uplifting American history textbook, I want to thank you for standing unflinchingly by my side following my Friday appearance on ABC's Good Morning America. For those of you who don't watch the left-wing media, here"s what happened. I simply went on national television and said, "We had no domestic attacks under Bush. We've had one under Obama." Later in the day, I had the opportunity to talk with CNN's Wolf Blitzer and clarify my earlier remarks with these words: "This is so silly. I did omit the words 'since Sept. 11.' I apologize for that. I should have put it in. I do remember Sept. 11. In fact, Wolf, I remember it every single day."
Predictably, jackals pounced on my initial statement, joylessly failing to bask in the silliness of what happened. Andrew Sullivan went so far as to claim what I said is part of a "sick syndrome." Sullivan is so wrong. My ABC and CNN appearances add up to the wave of the future for this grand partnership between myself and Revisionist & Sons Publishing Co. As your own fact-checkers noted several weeks prior to your prudent decision to downsize their entire department, A Happier History of America contains facts that are incompletely factual.
What follows, then, is my contingency plan for the five passages from A Happier History of America that seem most likely to draw challenges from pedants and historical literalists. Any revised second edition should keep things positive. So I don't want us deleting any of my first-edition text. Rather, a light-hearted parenthetical note should clarify the so-called "historical record." Here are the passages as they would appear if -- and only if -- complaints reach a level that threatens future sales and forces us to release a revised second edition.
1) President Abraham Lincoln managed to keep northerners and southerners unified, sparing America from the cataclysm of a civil war. (This is so silly. This textbook's first edition did omit the words "except from 1861 to 1865." I apologize for that. I should have put it in. I do remember the Civil War. In fact, Wolf, I remember it every single day.)
2) The stock market thrived under President Herbert Hoover. (This is so silly. This textbook's first edition did omit the words "until October 29, 1929." I apologize for that. I should have put it in. I do remember the stock market crash known as Black Tuesday. In fact, Wolf, I remember it every single day.)
3) President Richard Nixon won re-election and served a second term. (This is so silly. This textbook's first edition did omit the words "until scandal forced his resignation in the summer of 1974." I apologize for that. I should have put it in. I do remember Watergate. In fact, Wolf, I remember it every single day.)
4) U.S. and South Vietnamese troops fended off the communist advance. (This is so silly. This textbook's first edition did omit the words "until April 30, 1975." I apologize for that. I should have put it in. I do remember the Fall of Saigon. In fact, Wolf, I remember it every single day.)
5) Thanks to the vision and precision of President Ronald Reagan, the United States never suffered any unintended consequences from equipping, training, and funding the Islamic warriors who ultimately forced the Soviet Union out of Afghanistan. (This is so silly. This section of the textbook's first edition did omit an event that took place at some point between late August 2001 and early October of that same year. I don't apologize for that omission. Because let's be real, Wolf. Summer vacation always arrives before school teachers manage to bring their history classes anywhere close to the present day. Extra details here will only exacerbate that problem.)
Finally, while there is still time to make revisions prior to the April 1, 2010 publication of the textbook's first edition, please add the following sentence to the end of my author bio: "The author is considered the most formidable candidate in the upcoming 2008 presidential election."
I think that's the most positive note to end on.
Huffington Post blogger David Quigg lives in Seattle. This piece originally appeared on his personal blogs, where other recent posts include "Cheney's Stenographer: Can Politico's editor really be so clueless?" and "Will Whole Foods CEO John Mackey please, please, please talk to me about his sex life?".