imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
Features
latest news
best of news
syndication
commentary


KILLRADIO

VozMob

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List




IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

“Hail to the Cheat,” a political novel, by Ted Venetoulis - A Review

by William Hughes Saturday, Mar. 06, 2010 at 1:50 PM
liamhughes@comcast.net

Americans need a good laugh. After eight years of Dubya, and one year of President Barack Obama, who prefers to be loved and not feared, a political spoof has arrived to save the day. It’s Ted Venetoulis’ fun-filled novel, “Hail to the Cheat.” President Lance Billingsley gets caught by the First Lady, Jessica Berringer, “doing” her dear friend, Sondra Heatherstone, on the carpet and in the buff in the Oval Office! Fireworks quickly erupt!

“Hail to the Cheat...
ted_venetoulis_at_book_sig_copy.jpeg, image/jpeg, 658x592

[Wandering Sage Publications, 2009, 370 pp., soft cover, .95]

If you’re going to write your first novel, and it’s a political spoof, then you might as well as set it in the White House. Well, Ted Venetoulis does exactly that in his “Hail to the Cheat,” which is not only a fun read, I predict it’s going to make one zany movie.

Venetoulis is an author who has lived politics and it shows in his book. The main characters are all credible and taken from that realm. As a young man, Venetoulis worked as a Congressional aide, he was involved in the national presidential campaigns of both Robert F. Kennedy and JFK, and he also served a term as the Baltimore County Executive. Baltimore County is a giant sized suburb of Baltimore City, MD. Spiro T. “Ted” Agnew was once its boss.

After eight years of the insanity of Dubya, a deepening economic recession, mounting foreclosures, with millions laid off, and one year of Barack Obama’s presidency, a man who’d rather be liked than lead, the country deserves some laughs out of the White House, don’t you think? Hey, we’re paying for all of this crap. Aren’t we?

Venetoulis deftly delivers the comic turns and the twists, and then some. Before you get to page six of this fast-paced book, the First Lady of the Land catches her husband, President Lance Billingsley, in the Oval Office, “sprawled on the oval carpet...right on the presidential seal,” and in the buff, too, “humping” her dear friend, Sondra Heatherstone. Fireworks quickly erupt.

This madcap yarn is told from the point of view of an infuriated First Lady, Jessica Berringer. She’s the narrator. I found her very endearing, even though I think she likes the booze a little too much. We all know what First Lady Hillary did when President “Bubba Bill” Clinton embarrassed himself, in “Zippergate,” with Monica Lewinsky. Hillary chose to “stand by her man” and play the role of “The Good Wife.” Warning: Jessica doesn’t do Hillary!

Jessica, who’s in her early 50s, and still an attractive gal, insists that the adulterous First Man must leave the White House, pronto. She doesn’t give a good hoot if he has to sleep in a tent out in Lafayette Park. Jessica puts it this way to her cheating, double-dealing spouse: “Put on your clothes. Pack your stuff. And get the f... out. Now!” Sounds like a “Declaration of War” to me.

Now, kicking a pants-less president out of the White House is without precedent, as the author underscores. Presidents before “Bubba Bill,” such as Warren G. Harding, have been caught by their wives screwing around in the White House. Harding did it with his mistress, Nan Britton, in a “five-foot-square clothes closet.” His wife, Florence, suffered through that humiliation in silence. However, this isn’t the 1920s, folks, and a royally pissed off, fiery- tempered Jessica isn’t taking any God damned prisoners.

As the President drags his initially defeated ass over to the “Blair House,” (located about about a block west from the White House), the battle lines are firmly drawn. The seminal issue is this: In order to be the President of the United States, with the full panoply of its pomp and powers, the wimpy Lance needs to get his crushed-ego self back into the Jessica-Occupied White House.

At first, it’s Jessica versus the whole World! Against her, is pitted the entire Federal Government; which includes the U.S. Secret Service; and, the White House’s lying PR Machine, run by a mouthy Leo “Fibby” Buffaloya and a creepy “Super Guru.” Jessica picks up some allies. Her trusted girlfriend, the wisecracking Jamie, also joins her team. Meanwhile, Jessica is bunkered deep inside the White House and hitting the sauce pretty good, too.

The novel is full of zingers that demonstrate the author’s insightful understanding of the political whores, who have haunted the White House, and particularly, the ones on Capitol Hill, who have been running our once grand Republic into the ground. Try this one from Jessica: “In the White House, the art of sucking up reaches celestial levels where everyone, I mean everyone, nods approvingly when Lance mutters some inanity as if he were Pericles addressing his fellow Athenians.” Didn’t that happen when that warmongering doofus Dubya was in the White House?

Up front, Venetoulis lets you know that if the characters in his tome resemble “any one living”, then it’s “purely coincidental.” There is a back story, however, before he sets the dramatic face off at the embattled White House. We learn that Lance and Jessica both hailed from Akron, Ohio, where they attended college together, before getting hitched up. I would swear that Lance is a composite persona of the intelligence-challenged Dubya; the air-headed, free market zealot, the late Ronald Reagan; and that over-sexed pride of Hope, Arkansas--“Bubba Bill” Clinton.

Now, Jessica is more difficult to tag. I would think she’s mostly Hillary, with just a touch of Laura Bush tossed in. Hillary is one tough b....! I think if it would have suited her, she would have, re: Zippergate, flung “Bubba Bill” out on the White House sidewalk. She wouldn’t, however, risk it. Why? Because, she knew that the role of the First Lady of Land was her stepping stone one day to the Senate, and maybe, if she’s lucky, to the White House itself.

“Hail to the Cheat” isn’t just about Jessica getting sweet revenge on Lance either, which is a lovely thought. If it were, I don’t think the plot would have worked as well as it does. It would have been too predictable and hoisted itself on its own petard.

Venetoulis wisely added another critical element to his story, which sharply deepened his plot line, keeps the ball rolling and the readers guessing. The author cleverly made the Iraq War, the Military-Industrial Complex, corruption on Capitol Hill and, literally, the kitchen sink--relevant. And, it is all plausible, too, as you cheer on our wannabe heroine, Jessica, and wonder, right to the very end: Is she going to make it to the finish line? Stay plugged in!

By the way, Jessica also gets some help in her mission from a gallery of First Ladies, most of whom have passed on from this mortal coil. The device utilized, in the context of this farce, works.

I said up front that “Hail to the Cheat” would make a terrific film. So, to that end, let me suggest for the role of that slimy Lance--Alex Baldwin. For the raging spitfire, but lovable Jessica, I would cast Alex’s ex-squeeze, Kim Basinger! In any event, these two talented thespians have experienced the no-holds-barred battles between ex-lovers. The director won’t have to answer any questions from either of them, such as: “What’s my motivation?”

I suggest you buy “Hail to the Cheat,” and laugh your butt off. (1) Be sure to also go see the movie when it does comes out, no matter who gets the lead.

Notes:

1. The author’s web site is located at: http://www.hailtothecheat.com/ Venetoulis was raised in East Baltimore’s fabled “Greektown” neighborhood. Whatever you do, don’t tell those mad-as-hell “Tea Baggers”--that Venetoulis is a Liberal--and damn proud of it!

©2010, William Hughes, All Rights Reserved.

William Hughes is an author, commentator and videographer. His videos can be found at: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=liamh2 Email Contact: liamhughes@comcast.net

Report this post as:

Local News

GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE A12 5:39PM

lausd whistle blower A10 11:58PM

Website Upgrade A10 3:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 1:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 11:58AM

Change Links April 2018 A01 11:27AM

Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018 M31 6:57PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 7:00PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 6:38PM

Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! M19 2:02PM

Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A. M16 5:40PM

Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released M15 12:34AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups M06 12:10PM

After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video M02 11:44AM

Resolution of the Rent Strike in Boyle Heights M01 6:28PM

What Big Brother Knows About You and What You Can Do About It M01 3:30PM

Step Up As LAPD Chief Charlie Beck Steps Down F14 2:44PM

Our House Grief Support Center Hosts 9th Annual Run For Hope, April 29 F13 12:51PM

Don’t let this LA County Probation Department overhaul proposal sit on the shelf F13 11:04AM

Echo Park Residents Sue LA Over Controversial Development F12 8:51AM

Former Signal Hill police officer pleads guilty in road-rage incident in Irvine F09 10:25PM

Calif. Police Accused of 'Collusion' With Neo-Nazis After Release of Court Documents F09 7:14PM

Center for the Study of Political Graphics exhibit on Police Abuse posters F07 9:50AM

City Agrees to Settle Lawsuit Claiming Pasadena Police Officer Had His Sister Falsely Arre F04 3:17PM

Professor's Study Highlights Health Risks of Urban Oil Drilling F04 12:42PM

Claims paid involving Pasadena Police Department 2014 to present F04 10:52AM

Pasadenans - get your license plate reader records from police F03 11:11PM

LA Times Homicide Report F03 1:57PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

What does the Quran Say About Islamic Dress?? A21 4:15PM

Biodiversité ou la nature privatisée A20 11:22AM

The Market is a Universal Totalitarian Religion A20 7:14AM

Book Available about Hispanics and US Civil War by National Park Service A19 5:52PM

The Shortwave Report 04/20/18 Listen Globally! A19 4:01PM

The Republican 'Prolife' Party Is the Party of War, Execution, and Bear Cub Murder A19 11:48AM

Neurogenèse involutive A18 9:21AM

Paraphysique de la dictature étatique A16 10:13AM

Book Review: "The New Bonapartists" A16 3:45AM

The West Must Take the First Steps to Russia A14 12:25PM

Théorie générale de la révolution ou hommage à feu Mikhaïl Bakounine A14 3:30AM

The Shortwave Report 04/13/18 Listen Globally! A12 3:50PM

“Lost in a Dream” Singing Competition Winner to Be Chosen on April 15 for ,000 Prize! A12 3:48PM

The World Dependent on Central Banks A12 4:43AM

Ohio Governor Race: Dennis Kucinich & Richard Cordray Run Against Mike DeWine A11 9:40PM

March 2018 Honduras Coup Again Update A10 10:52PM

Apologie du zadisme insurrectionnel A10 3:33PM

ICE contract with license plate reader company A10 1:14PM

Palimpseste sisyphéen A09 11:23PM

Black Portraiture(S) IV: The Color of Silence...Cuba No...Cambridge Yes A09 5:32AM

Prohibiting Micro-Second Betting on the Exchanges A09 4:18AM

Prosecutors treat Muslims harsher than non-Muslims for the same crimes A08 10:33PM

Amy Goodman interview on cell phone safety A08 10:29PM

Mesa, Arizona police officer kills unarmed white man A08 9:50PM

Israeli leaders should be prosecuted for war crimes A08 9:48PM

Paraphysique de l'autorité A08 12:11AM

Two Podcasts on fbi corruption A06 10:13PM

Fbi assassins assault & try to kill DAVID ATKINS A06 7:29PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy