One fine Thursday night I was browsing a local bookstore and came across a new version of the venerable Goodnight Moon, a children’s book by Margaret Wise Brown. As is the case when you have absolute familiarity with a thing, at first glance I scanned right past the book to others on the new publications shelf. My wife, however, redirected my attention back to the book. It, in fact, was not by Margaret Wise Brown, but a publication by Gan Golen and Erich Origen. The first few pages in were enough to see that this was the Bush hater’s parody dreambook.
I can still probably quote the entire original version from memory having read it to my two daughters at least a thousand times when they were two through five years old. It was one of their favorite books. While I in general support Bush and find the “Bush lied, people died” crowd tedius and annoying, this parody had me almost rolling on the floor laughing. The book is full of subtle anti-Bush sentiments and barely hidden jokes.
At the begining of the book, a stuffed elephant and donkey toy are sitting demurely on the shelf. In the middle of the book, the elephant is humping the donkey and at the end the donkey is reaming the elephant. (Hopeful thinking, I guess.) A miniature Bin Laden is skulking around, and a puppet theatre evolves gradually throughout the book. The room’s bookcase shelves numerous titles. Reading carefully you can see both “The Prince” and “The Art of War” (both of which I own multiple copies), as well as less well known titles such as “No Chad Left Behind”.
A Halliburton “H” adorns the refinery flag, hidden microphones are placed on the walls and behind the pictures and a truely tasteless “Goodnight towers” page shows two towers of alphabet blocks knocked down by a model 757 with the words “911” and “blowback” spelt out. Clearly the authors attribute the entire 911 event to Bush even though he had been president for less than a single year.
I would have bought the book except for the knowledge that my money would be in part going to these scurrilous authors. It’s sad that nothing is sacred and a children’s classic is now being used as a political tool. I will however donate my money to any lawyers who might want to sue the authors for copyright violation.