Friday, December 11, 2009



Warning: If you are easily shocked with regard to contrary
points of view, conspiracy theories, offensive language, political
correctness, sex, violence, or anything else that may offend your
sensibilities or lack of open-mindedness, or if you're a minor
(but by no means limited to the aforementioned), please do
not read this novel. It's not for you…

Note: This is a work of fiction. The events described here
are imaginary: the settings, events and characters are fictitious,
and/or are the product of the author's imagination or used
fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual events or locales
or persons (living or dead) is entirely coincidental.

Copyright (C) 2006 By F. Scott Sinclair. All Rights Reserved.

Scene Eight

The Walls Have Ears: A Novel of America

by F. Scott Sinclair

President Adolph S. Steinhart

I stood by the gas fireplace in the Oval Office that I had
installed after my doctor suggested that a little intense
heat was needed to unclog my arteries. I placed my
elbow on the mantle, and then gazed at the flakes of
snow drifting by the windowsill. My new national
security advisor, Jennifer Berg, sat on the couch
reviewing the daily intelligence report provided by
my less than reputable intelligence agencies. I said,
removing my elbow from the mantle, “Care to enlighten me?”

After taking a deep breath, Jennifer Berg said,
“Well, sir... I’m afraid we’ve got another crisis on our hands.”

Dumbfounded, I clinched my fists, jamming them
into my pants pockets, and said, “Christ, what’s the
matter now?”

“Since you put it that way, I guess I’d better get
to the bottom line, huh?”

“Give it to me straight. I can take it. I’m the
'War President' if you haven’t forgotten? I’ve been
your folks 'flak catcher' for nearly eight years. What’s
new that I can’t handle? My popularity couldn’t be
any lower, or I’d be at ground zero...and digging,
if you get my drift?”

Staring at the blue Persian rug with the Seal of the
President of United States on it, Jennifer said, “Your
old foe from a couple a years ago has resurfaced.”

With my furrowed brow and pursed lips, I strutted
towards the couch, and said, “Out with it...!”

She couldn’t look me straight in the eyes, and
could barely utter the nightmarish name that nearly
floored me. She said hesitantly, “Former Senator
Lester Hampton has announced his intention to be
a candidate for President in November. Mr. President,
I had no idea—“

“I did. People think I’ve got a few screws loose, and
maybe they’re right... But don’t ever underestimate me...!”

Red-faced, Jennifer says, “That’s a given, sir. You
know me better than that. With the possibility that
the democrats might find a suitable candidate that
inspires our religious supporters, and Lester Hampton
being a rich and powerful independent, we’ve got our
work cut out for us.”

I tucked the tail of my white dress shirt in, and
said as I sat down behind the oak desk, “Something’s
brewing, and it isn’t going to be me...or you, for that

“You’re referring to the rumors of potential
Nuremberg criminal charges being asserted against
us once you’re out of office?”

Jennifer always seemed to catch the nuisances
that I tried to veil in a cloud of dust. “The big lie,
my dear.”

Crossing her legs, she says staring at the intoxicating
flame of the gas fireplace, “Big lies, sir.”

I rubbed my face with my handkerchief, and replied,
“True... But what’s worse, we’ve got to keep on with
bigger lies in order to bury the old ones.”

“Would you care for another cup of coffee, Mr. President?”

“Sure... That would be nice.”

Jennifer went to the cart near the entrance to
the Oval Office and poured us each another cup of
brew. The smell of real fresh coffee has always
stimulated my senses, kind of like smelling the
salt in the air at the ocean. The aromatic steam
rises and drifts sensually towards heaven, which
also reminds me of a wave crashing against the
rocks. And afterwards, the pulverized water
evaporates into a mist that engulfs anyone within
its range.

As she handed me the China cup and saucer,
I said, “Any ideas on how to defuse the situation.
We’re good at diverting people’s attention from our
follies. The polls wouldn’t indicate that. But that’s
exactly the point. We have accomplished our
neoconservative agenda magnificently. We managed
a coup, or putsch...if you will, without any significant
resistance. Sure the ACLU is a thorn in the side, but
we’ve managed to survive unscathed up until now.”

Taken aback, Jennifer’s blue blouse appeared
soiled, and says somewhat startled, “Up until now...?”

“Former Senator Hampton...”

“Oh, yeah... I can’t see us being able to stop his
barrage of inquires and point blank speeches that
will certainly hit the mark with the public.”

I sat up and straightened my tie, and said, “He’s
weak on terrorism. We aren’t. He has the advantage...”

“In what way?”

“America has been able to avoid spilling more
blood since 9/11.”

Removing her shoes in order to get more
comfortable, she then says, “And that’s an advantage
for Senator Hampton?”

“Yes... Because we’re losing the war in Iraq and
our diplomatic efforts towards Iran are adrift. We’ve
managed to buffalo the public into giving us all their
rights as provided by that damn piece of paper: the
Constitution. And yes, we’ve kept terrorists under
control here at home. Since I haven’t paid much
attention to this, I think we’ve been more lucky,
than anything else...”

Reading between the lines, Jennifer quips,
“Meaning, without a repeat performance of 9/11,
we’re vulnerable?”

“You’re good, Jennifer... I really mean that. Without
having to spell things out, I can truly say I don’t know
anything. Anyway, do what you can domestically to
curtail the candidacy of former Senator Hampton. I’ll
breathe easier, and so will the rest of the gang. I don’t
want to be airlifted with a bag over my head to The Hague
in the middle of the night once my term of office is over.
Is that clear...?!”

She nodded her head, and made a few notes on the
yellow legal pad straddling her thighs. She put her shoes
on, stood up, and thrust her hand out, and says, “Do I
have your blessing on this one?”

“Domestically, we are very vulnerable. And in Iraq
and elsewhere, our cause is lost. Fear is our only ally
on the home front. Us it prudently...”

Jennifer clenched my fist, and adds, “I’ll get right on it, sir.”

“As I knew you would... I have great confidence in
you, just like my political adviser. Without the two of
you, I wouldn’t be sitting here in the Oval Office enjoying
the power I’ve been able to amass. And besides, what a
great honor it is having the ghosts of past presidents to
help comfort me for the duration of my time in office.”

As Jennifer customarily did, she nodded her concurrence
and bid me good day. As the door to the Oval Office closed
behind her, I wandered over to the window that overlooked
the garden, thwarting my anxiety about my future in a daydream...