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Dolan, Colbert reflect on humor, joy and faith
Comedian Stephen Colbert and Cardinal Timothy Dolan matched wits on faith and humour on Friday at Fordham University.
September 17th, 2012
06:32 PM ET

Dolan, Colbert reflect on humor, joy and faith

By Dan Merica, CNN

(CNN)– What do you get when you mix the highest profile American Catholic bishop, an icon of American comedy, a priest who regularly writes about comedy and a media blackout?

The answer: a unique look at the cross-sections of faith, humor and joy.

Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan, the highest ranking Catholic in the United States, and comedian Stephen Colbert, the host of the popular late night comedy show “The Colbert Report,” put their views of faith and humor on display for a private audience of 3,000 at Fordham University on Friday night.

The event was closed to the press, save a few invited journalists who came as guests. But despite the embargo, some attendees shared the play-by-play over social media, turning what was supposed to a private event into a free-for-all. A number of reporters in attendance also wrote about the conversation on faith, some suggesting that any embargo on the information had been shattered by social media.

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“My assignment was to share with you for a few moments what you might call the theological reasons for laughter,” Dolan said in his opening remarks he later posted on his blog. “Why would a person of faith be cheerful? Why is a crabby believer a contradiction?”

“Here’s my reason for joy: the cross,” Dolan said, who went on to argue that the reason for happiness is the fact that even after Jesus was crucified, he rose three days later.

“ ‘He who laughs last, laughs best…’ and we believers have never stopped smiling since that Resurrection of Jesus from the dead,” Dolan said. “So, Good Friday did not have the last word…Easter did! That’s why I can laugh.”

The event, moderated by the Rev. James Martin, took place in front of 3,000 cheering students in Fordham’s gymnasium.

Colbert is the youngest child in a family of 11 kids and was raised by Catholic parents. The comedian is also raising his child Catholic and he even teaches Sunday school in New Jersey. Dolan, while also being a cardinal in the Catholic church, is the president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, the church’s U.S. arm.

In an interview after the event, Martin said the response they received “exceeded anyone's wildest expectations.”

“Spiritual conversations like that are one important way to draw people to the faith,” Martin said. “And listening to people speak honestly and openly about not only the joys of their faith, but also the struggles they have with the church, is naturally attractive.”

In a side conversation with Dolan, Martin told CNN that the high-profile Catholic said that this sort of event is “the new evangelization.”

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

Due to the desired media blackout, much of what is known about the event came from Twitter via Grant Gallicho – the associated editor of Commonweal, a lay Catholic journal, and others using the hashtag #Dolbert and #DolanColbert.

During the event, Martin took questions from the crowd and via Twitter. At times, the questions took a serious look at deeply-held issues of faith. According to Gallicho’s tweets, a question from the audience included, “How to maintain joy when religious leaders spread hate, esp. with respect to homosexuality?”

Gallicho later tweeted that Colbert said: “If someone spreads hate, he's not your religious leader. Keep your own joy.”

According to a New York Time story, Dolan gave a “meandering” answer to the question.

A Public Religion Research Institute poll earlier this year found that almost 60% of Catholics supported allowing gay and lesbian couples to legally marry, despite church teaching to the contrary.

One of the best received jokes of the night was in response to a question about joining the priesthood and it’s requirement of celibacy. Dolan encouraged men thinking about the priesthood to date. Colbert chimed in and quipped it would be a great chance to use the pick up line, "I'm considering the priesthood, but maybe you can change my mind,” Gallicho tweeted.

Another zinger came in exchange between the cardinal and the comedian. Dolan asked, "Do you feel pressure to be funny all the time?" Colbert fired back: "Do you feel pressure to be holy all the time?” according to a news release by Fordham.

The event was the idea of Michael Peppard and Charles Camosy, two Fordham professors who came to Martin with the idea. They wanted to tie it to his recent book, “Between Heaven and Mirth."

In Martin’s opening remarks, he touched upon the way that Dolan and Colbert use humor.

“They are my favorite humorist and Catholic leader, though, from time to time, I’m not sure who is who,” Martin said.

CNN had been in negotiations with event organizers, with the hopes of live streaming the event and broadcasting a taped special after the event. Negotiations broke off abruptly when the organizers decided to close the event to the media.

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Catholic Church • Christianity

soundoff (236 Responses)
  1. ScottCA

    An excellent summary of what religion is
    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6axdZAxyt2g&w=640&h=360]

    September 17, 2012 at 11:56 pm |
  2. ScottCA

    This is another good one.
    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_WpGC5lPKhM&w=640&h=360]

    September 17, 2012 at 11:53 pm |
  3. ScottCA

    This has to be funny.
    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xmuzYQsH7O4&w=640&h=360]

    September 17, 2012 at 11:43 pm |
  4. ScottCA

    The difference between intelligent people and religious people. Is that intelligent people listen to Steven and understand he is being sarcastic, Religious people think Steven is being serious.
    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oBWBpo5aDLw&w=640&h=360]

    September 17, 2012 at 11:40 pm |
    • b4bigbang

      You do realize that (according to Wikipedia) Colbert is a practicing Catholic and a Sunday School teacher?

      September 17, 2012 at 11:47 pm |
    • ScottCA

      The citations on Wikipedia do not link to any articles with any mention of that.

      September 18, 2012 at 12:00 am |
    • ScottCA

      There are enough articles on his faith present to give it some credence as a claim.

      But even if he is a part of the faith it just shows that even intelligent people can fall pray to religious delusions and abusive indoctrination since birth.. Many of the men flew planes into the twin towers and have blown themselves up in the name of religion had excellent educations.

      What maintains Steven's faith if existent would be an interesting study for psychology to look at delusional beliefs and dissociation with reality. He is close to breaking free though, since he can to some extent question the validity of the claim of his belief. What is holding him to the church is likely social bonds at the moment and misplaced sentiment. The wounds of indoctrination are deep in the psyche very deep indeed.

      September 18, 2012 at 12:13 am |
    • b4bigbang

      Scott, are you implying that there is no correlation between IQ and religious faith?

      September 18, 2012 at 12:35 am |
    • End Religion

      It's an assumption many non-believers make but often work through it. It's a part of the awakening to atheism.

      It's like looking at those black and white drawings that show 2 different pictures in the same drawing depending on if you're focusing on the black parts or the white parts. Once you see the other side it becomes so obvious you have to wonder how anyone couldn't see both to begin with. Once you see how ridiculous religion is, it becomes so transparently ludicrous that we often assume a religious person must be unintelligent.

      It is simply not the case. There are many very smart religious people. There has to be since we're outnumbered by so much. The poor and uneducated are often targets of religion, but dumb does not necessarily equal religious, just as smart does not necessarily equal atheist.

      I haven't figured out what it is, this delusion. There's some veil that drops down over a nutter's critical thinking whenever religion is discussed. Perfectly rational and logical in all other aspects of life, a religious person will against all reason suddenly defend imaginary beings. It is a bit frightening in a way, this slipping in and out of sanity.

      September 18, 2012 at 1:37 am |
    • thecollegeadmissionsguru

      @EndReligion, Man, that answer is one of the best I have read recently on here. Well put, very well put.

      September 18, 2012 at 4:09 am |
  5. ScottCA

    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hj9oB4zpHww&w=640&h=360]

    September 17, 2012 at 11:37 pm |
  6. ScottCA

    Science can answer moral questions. Religion can tell us nothing about religion. Faith means to believe in something for no good reason, thus it cannot tell us what we should or ought to do, both of these require reasons based in logic.
    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hj9oB4zpHww&w=640&h=360]

    September 17, 2012 at 11:25 pm |
  7. ScottCA

    Good talk too bad he did not have more time.
    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J3YOIImOoYM&w=640&h=360]

    September 17, 2012 at 11:21 pm |
  8. ScottCA

    There is no evidence of any god.
    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YUe0_4rdj0U&w=640&h=360]

    September 17, 2012 at 11:18 pm |
  9. Colin
    This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Ka
    September 17, 2012 at 11:12 pm |
  10. Chad

    ‘He who laughs last, laughs best…’ and we believers have never stopped smiling since that Resurrection of Jesus from the dead,” Dolan said. “So, Good Friday did not have the last word…Easter did! That’s why I can laugh.

    Well Said!!!

    September 17, 2012 at 11:12 pm |
    • ScottCA

      That's it pray to the non existent zombie Jesus god, for which you have no evidence of existing. Watch out for that 6ft tall green monster in your closet which is equally likely to exist as your Yahweh with no evidence.

      September 17, 2012 at 11:16 pm |
  11. ScottCA

    The Reason Dolan gives for laughter is the zombie Jesus? Seriously, the man cannot be serious. This is a ridiculous statement. we should all be happy because a supposed twisted god felt it necessary to kill himself and rise from the dead and tell us be good or I will burn you for eternity? Where is the joy in this? Oh and I left out that he says he can sentence us to eternal torture for thought crime and is watching our every single move and thought. I am still waiting for the joy part of this enslavement to the supposed zombie god for which there is no evidence to support.

    September 17, 2012 at 11:12 pm |
    • ScottCA

      Dolan is a madman who should be locked up in an insane asylum for saying what he did. Just replace the word god with the word Thor and everyone would be rightfully giving him Medication for his schizophrenic delusions. We should be doing the same for this claim with any non existent god, claimed to be real with no evidence.

      September 17, 2012 at 11:14 pm |
  12. Colin
    This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on." Me: "Who's Karl?" Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times." Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?" John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself." From the Desk of Karl 1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town. 2. Use alcohol in moderation. 3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you. 4. Eat right. 5. Hank dictated this list Himself. 6. The moon is made of green cheese. 7. Everything Hank says is right. 8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom. 9. Don't use alcohol. 10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments. 11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you. Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead." Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper." Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting." John: "Of course, Hank dictated it." Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?" Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people." Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?" Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right." Me: "How do you figure that?" Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!" Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up." John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too." Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong." John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure." Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..." Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese." Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese." John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!" Me: "We do?" Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so." Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.\'" John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking." Me: "But...oh, never mind. This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first: John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary." Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?" John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?" John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass." Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..." Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?" Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..." John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us." Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?" Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..." Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?" John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town." Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?" Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you." Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?" John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money." Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?" John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it." Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?" Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street." Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?" John: "Hank has certain 'connections.\'" Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game." John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you." Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..." Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank." Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?" John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Ka
    September 17, 2012 at 11:10 pm |
    • Chad

      troll..

      September 17, 2012 at 11:14 pm |
  13. Colin

    This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first:

    John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary."

    Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us."

    Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?"

    John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you."

    Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?"

    John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass."

    Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..."

    Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?"

    Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..."

    John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us."

    Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?"

    Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..."

    Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?"

    John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town."

    Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?"

    Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts
    out of you."

    Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?"

    John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money."

    Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?"

    John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it."

    Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?"

    Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street."

    Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?"

    John: "Hank has certain 'connections.'"

    Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game."

    John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you."

    Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..."

    Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank."

    Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?"

    John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on."

    Me: "Who's Karl?"

    Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times."

    Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?"

    John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself."

    From the Desk of Karl
    1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town.
    2. Use alcohol in moderation.
    3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you.
    4. Eat right.
    5. Hank dictated this list Himself.
    6. The moon is made of green cheese.
    7. Everything Hank says is right.
    8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.
    9. Don't use alcohol.
    10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments.
    11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you.

    Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead."

    Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper."

    Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting."

    John: "Of course, Hank dictated it."

    Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?"

    Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people."

    Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?"

    Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right."

    Me: "How do you figure that?"

    Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!"

    Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up."

    John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too."

    Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong."

    John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure."

    Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..."

    Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese."

    Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese."

    John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!"

    Me: "We do?"

    Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so."

    Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.'"

    John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking."

    Me: "But...oh, never mind.

    This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first:

    John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary."

    Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us."

    Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?"

    John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you."

    Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?"

    John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass."

    Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..."

    Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?"

    Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..."

    John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us."

    Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?"

    Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..."

    Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?"

    John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town."

    Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?"

    Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts
    out of you."

    Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?"

    John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money."

    Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?"

    John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it."

    Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?"

    Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street."

    Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?"

    John: "Hank has certain 'connections.'"

    Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game."

    John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you."

    Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..."

    Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank."

    Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?"

    John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on."

    Me: "Who's Karl?"

    Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times."

    Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?"

    John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself."

    From the Desk of Karl
    1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town.
    2. Use alcohol in moderation.
    3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you.
    4. Eat right.
    5. Hank dictated this list Himself.
    6. The moon is made of green cheese.
    7. Everything Hank says is right.
    8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.
    9. Don't use alcohol.
    10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments.
    11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you.

    Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead."

    Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper."

    Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting."

    John: "Of course, Hank dictated it."

    Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?"

    Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people."

    Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?"

    Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right."

    Me: "How do you figure that?"

    Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!"

    Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up."

    John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too."

    Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong."

    John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure."

    Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..."

    Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese."

    Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese."

    John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!"

    Me: "We do?"

    Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so."

    Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.'"

    John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking."

    Me: "But...oh, never mind.

    September 17, 2012 at 11:09 pm |
    • Chad

      troll

      September 17, 2012 at 11:13 pm |
  14. Colin

    This morning there was a knock at my door. When I answered the door I found a well groomed, nicely dressed couple. The man spoke first:

    John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary."

    Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us."

    Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?"

    John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you."

    Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?"

    John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass."

    Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..."

    Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?"

    Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..."

    John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us."

    Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?"

    Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..."

    Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?"

    John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town."

    Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?"

    Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts
    out of you."

    Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?"

    John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money."

    Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?"

    John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it."

    Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?"

    Mary: "Well, He gives you a little bit before you leave. Maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street."

    Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?"

    John: "Hank has certain 'connections.'"

    Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game."

    John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you."

    Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..."

    Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank."

    Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?"

    John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on."

    Me: "Who's Karl?"

    Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times."

    Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?"

    John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself."

    From the Desk of Karl
    1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town.
    2. Use alcohol in moderation.
    3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you.
    4. Eat right.
    5. Hank dictated this list Himself.
    6. The moon is made of green cheese.
    7. Everything Hank says is right.
    8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.
    9. Don't use alcohol.
    10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments.
    11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you.

    Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead."

    Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper."

    Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting."

    John: "Of course, Hank dictated it."

    Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?"

    Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people."

    Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?"

    Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right."

    Me: "How do you figure that?"

    Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!"

    Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up."

    John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too."

    Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong."

    John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure."

    Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..."

    Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese."

    Me: "I'm not really an expert, but I think the theory that the Moon was somehow 'captured' by the Earth has been discounted*. Besides, not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it cheese."

    John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists make mistakes, but we know Hank is always right!"

    Me: "We do?"

    Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so."

    Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.'"

    John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking."

    Me: "But...oh, never mind.

    September 17, 2012 at 11:02 pm |
    • Chad

      In Internet slang, a troll is someone who posts inflammatory,[3]extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community, such as a forum, chat room, or blog, with the primary intent of provoking readers into an emotional response[4] or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion.

      September 17, 2012 at 11:07 pm |
    • thecollegeadmissionsguru

      Actually Chad, regardless of your definition, what he posted makes a BUTT load of sense, and what you normally post is nonsense...so which is better.

      September 18, 2012 at 4:16 am |
    • Colin

      Had Chad, worked out why Paul lied about how many people supposedly saw the resurrected Jesus yet?

      September 18, 2012 at 4:31 am |
  15. Bill

    Cardinal Dolan is the highest ranking Catholic Prelate in the U.S.; but that does not make him the highest ranking Catholic. I believe that he would second the notion that somewhere in the country there is someone unheralded, undiscovered, unspoiled by the attention of the media, who is quietly going about the work of making the message of Christ real in the lives of those around him or her. My vote for highest ranking Catholic in the U.S. goes to that person. Cardinal Dolan ain't chopped liver, but next to a person like that even he would be in awe.

    September 17, 2012 at 8:52 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Bill,

      that would require a new definition of 'ranking'. Your description might fit the most worthy (or somesuch thing) but there's no question that the Cardinal is the highest 'ranking'.

      That's like saying a good soldier is higher ranking than the Joint Chief of Staff.

      September 17, 2012 at 9:02 pm |
  16. Ted

    Believing in imaginary creatures leaves you with less form, not more. And the void is between your ears.

    September 17, 2012 at 8:14 pm |
  17. John D

    I attended and staffed this event. Colbert was certainly in character for some of it, but it was refreshing to hear a more eloquent and sincere version of everyone's favorite faux-conservative pundit. You could tell his answers were legitimate, and were not thought of ahead of time–he said it all on the spot, and from the heart. The event itself lasted for about 2 hours, but the dialog itself was just shy of an hour; the rest of the time was Colbert, Dolan, and Martin giving humorous intros, which I found to be the highlight of the evening. It was a great night, and I'm glad it was a closed event. The media would have certainly intruded on what was truly a night designed for the Fordham community, specifically the nearly 2,000 Fordham students, some of whom waited in line at 3 in the morning to get tickets.

    September 17, 2012 at 8:00 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @John D,

      thanks for sharing. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

      Cameras can be intrustive and the results would just end up in the spin cycle of 24 hour news.

      September 17, 2012 at 8:04 pm |
  18. Lycidas

    Colbert is one of the funniest guys out there that actually teaches you something.

    September 17, 2012 at 7:04 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      Yep. He is funny on purpose. You can be funny. You can make a point. It's really hard to do both at the same time, every week.

      Hence his most recent Peabody – for exposing the truth about SuperPacs with a very enjoyable yet instructive approach.

      September 17, 2012 at 7:21 pm |
  19. I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

    A few observations:

    1. This would have been quite interesting (and I expect, quite funny). It's kind of a shame it was a closed event (but being a closed event makes perfect sense in this case – for both of the panelists and no doubt made it a better event.)

    2. How much social media is too much? Freedom of the press is good. I'm a fan of the fourth estate, but should everything be public, always – even for subjects beyond naked royalty and other celebrities?

    3. I am sure that on this topic Stephen Colbert wanted to be much more genuine than his over the top, Conservative pundit persona. Since he usually only appears in public 'in character', the media blackout would have permited him to be genuine. Given the Cardinal's recent engagements, no doubt he too was happy to be able to make semi-public remarks outside media scruitiny.

    September 17, 2012 at 7:03 pm |
  20. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things

    September 17, 2012 at 6:33 pm |
    • Gay Christian Anal Stimulators

      We thank you for being such a frequent customer.

      September 17, 2012 at 6:42 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      actions cause change; prayer wastes valuable time.

      unclasp your hands, get up off your knees, go outside and put those hands to use actually helping people.

      September 17, 2012 at 6:53 pm |
    • truth be told

      As previously told to bittyfink whose memory must be less than that of a certified moron. Work without a plan is useless and probably the best you would expect from battyfink. Prayer provides a plan. A good man prays a great man acts on prayer.

      September 17, 2012 at 7:28 pm |
    • Greenspon

      One pair of hands working to fix a problem does more good than millions of hands clasped in prayer. And no, prayer does not provide a plan. Prayer is merely a refuge for weak-kneed, stupid cowards.

      September 17, 2012 at 8:00 pm |
    • Dennis

      Like the man said, all prayer does is make you hoard cats. At best.

      September 17, 2012 at 8:01 pm |
    • Dennis

      The first reply was the best.

      September 17, 2012 at 8:02 pm |
    • truth be told

      Without prayer we would still be without form and void. All we have , all we are, all advancements in all fields is due to the fact that someone asked God for them.

      September 17, 2012 at 8:05 pm |
    • Ted

      No. Asking a sky fairy, for which you have no evidence even exists, to help you solve your own problems is wimpy at best. Prayer is only for wimps and stupid folk. Get off your fat ass and work to solve your problems yourself. You'll be far better from that than from kowtowing on your knees to some jerk-off in the sky whose priests are only out to ream you.

      September 17, 2012 at 8:11 pm |
    • Ted

      Believing in imaginary creatures leaves you with less form, not more. And the void is between your own ears.

      September 17, 2012 at 8:15 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.