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Throwing out the rules
Well, war is in the news again, and
some people are worried, but not all.
America has redeemed itself with a
couple of successful invasions in the
last decade - Panama and Grenada
- and gosh darn it, the old UsA really
hasn't lost a war since Vietnam.
The propaganda machines on both
sides are running full bore. In the
interests of balance, WeekendMagazine
offers some perspective on the crisis.
Beating the war drum
An NBC report last Friday looked at
the companies that would profit from
the war. One company chair
announced a multi-million dollar
contract for providing anti-nerve gas
serums to the troops. Naturally, NBC
neglected to mention General
Electric, which owns NBC. GE is one
of the biggest military contractors in
the country, and manufactures
everything from nuclear detonators to.
missile guidance systems.
Given that most mainstream media
applauded the invasion of Panama, it
wasn't likely that they were going to
take a dovish stance on Iraq. Those
who dared to compare the invasion to
Panama were quickly silenced. "We
did not go in and seize Panama", Ted
Koppel told Iraq's ambassador.
When the media start referring to
the U.S. troops as "we", one wonders
how balanced coverage can
The "we we" syndrome is one
thing to watch for, but other censors
are more overt. President of NBC
News, Michael Gartner, was quoted
recently in the Wall Street Journal as
saying that military censorship in the
Gulf exceeds even the most serious
censorship of World War II.
The Vagaries of international
On television last week, George
Bush proclaimed that the United
States would not stand for aggressors
invading other countries and breaking
international law. His interest in
international law is fairly recent. The
violations of international law in the
invasions of Grenada and Panama
were denounced by the United
Nations. There wasn't much hand-
wringing in the White House back
It's no wonder that the U.N.
endorsed the use of "all necessary
means" to oust Hussein. The army in
the Gulf is about as multinational as
Ulrich's Book Store. It is u.s. blood
that will soak the desert floor. The
rest of the world figures that as long
as the bullheaded Americans are
intent on taking care of business,
there's no point in stopping them.
Death and destruction
Bush also announced on television
that he (about to personally engage in
combat, no doubt) would not tolerate
Do girlies 8-adult just want
to have tun? Or are careers
for chicks just luck, pluck
"Hey, Donna, what do you want to
be when you grow up?"
"I don't know, Lisa, but I'm
graduating in a week. What do you
"Girlie, I don't know either. It's a
good thing I just bought CAREERS
FTOVR GrIYRVLS'!, the new
and improved Parker Brothers game
of Fame, Fortune and Happiness."
"Gee Lisa, didn't the head of the
U.s. Small Business Administration
trash that board game this week for
'insensitivity to modern realities?"'
"Oh, don't worry your pretty little
head about that, Donna. We've got to
find you a career. Anyway, Career
Planning & Placement is closed for
"Okay. Is that the box there? Dig
the groovy hot-pink lettering and the
purple hearts on the cover. Let's
"You neatly set up the board while
I read the rules. Honey, I said neatly!
Now, the object of the game is to be
the first to achieve your own personal
Success Formula. You try to earn any
combination of fame, fortune and
happiness points as long as they add
up to a total of 60."
"I don't get it."
"Chickie, get with the program.*
Don't you want a successful career?
See, like I can try to earn 20 fame
points, $20,000 and 20 happiness
points. If I get to my goal before you
get to yours, I win."
"So, can I just try for $60,000
without any happiness or fame?"
"Sure thing! But keep it to yourself
- like the rules say: 'Remember to
fold your Success Formula sheet so
your opponents can't see it - you
don't want them to interfere with
"Words to live by, Lisa. Now
"Let's choose our game tokens.
Can I be purple? It matches my
"All right, I'll be white - just like
all the career women on the cover of
the box. Do the rules say that will
help me win?"
"Hmmm, I'm not sure. But here's
the part you've been waiting for: your
choice of careers. Let's see, there's
fashion designer, animal doctor,
school teacher, super mom and rock
star! And the rules say you can go
through as many careers as you
"Gosh, Lisa, that's liberation. But I
was kinda hoping to be a writer or go
to graduate school."
"Listen, Donna. You won't win the
game with an attitude like that.
Besides, you have some good options.
Take animal doctor - that way you
don't have to worry about screwing up
"I guess only the boys get to do
that, huh? But what about graduate
school? Can't I get a PhD?"
"Sorry, Donna, Parker Brothers
makes you stop with a B.A. You can
get a fashion degree if you want to be
a fashion designer, a music degree if
you want to be a rock star and a
teaching degree if you want to be a
"Yeah, and what does the liberal
arts degree prepare you to be? Super
"You got it! Wow, you're picking
this up pretty quickly. I
think we're ready to play.
Just roll the dice and follow
the instructions on the space
where you land. Like the
rules say: 'As in real life,
sometimes you have a by Dc
choice - and sometimes an
"I hate this game."
"Now, now, Donna. Don't get too
emotional. Roll the die."
"Fine, I rolled a three. But I'm not
playing unless I can go to college."
"All right. Just move your piece
along the college track. Let's see ...
one, two ... three. Ooooh! It says
'DESCRIBE YOUR DREAMY
TEACHER' for two happiness
"No! I won't do it. I'm rolling again.
There, I got a five."
"Okay. 'SHOW US HOW YOU
SLOW DANCE WITH YOUR
MAIN SQUEEZE' - DRAW ONE
"Maybe I won't go to college after
all. I guess I'll try one of the careers."
"That's the spirit! Remember, we
girls have enough time and energy to
be all that we can be! But wait, now
it's my turn. Hand me the die and I'll
show you how it's done, sweetie."
"This is boring. Let's play chess."
"Oooh! I landed on animal doctor! I
don't know very much about this
career. What do I have to do?"
"Well, Lisa, it says here,
'IMITATE A WET DOG
SHAKING ITSELF DRY' -12
"Want to roll again? 'FROG HOP
AROUND THE ROOM' - $2,000.
Or, 'TELL US ABOUT YOUR
DREAM HORSE' for two happiness
points and four fame pointsi" t
"I'm rolling again. There, I got an
"'SHOPPING SPREE! GI ,
BANK HALF YOUR PAY IN
CASH.' Hah! That's $1,000,
according to the rules."
"I think it's your turn."
"I'm going for rock star. Here it
goes ... Dannit, I landed on Super
"At least yotj can put that liberal
arts degree to good use. It looks like
you rolled a four, tDonna."'
"Please, tell rne more."
"'SING A LULLABY WHILE
ROCKING A BABY' for six
happiness points! 'TELL US THE
NAMES OF YOUR 8 CHILDREN'
for eight happiness-points! 'TELL
US WHAT'S FOR SUPPER' for 12
fame points! Donna, you must have
won. You have so much money and
"Not to mention happiness.
Actually, I guess I have won. Hurray.",
"Aren't you happy? Youhave more
than 80 happiness points!"
"Lisa, the game is over! And, no,
I'm not happy. What if I wanted to be
a scientist or
doesn't the game
"So why did they change
"Patricia McGovern, s ol<
for Parker Brothers, said tha
games are more popular wit
than boys now. Anyway, she
game was tested on girls age
who chose fashion designer,
doctor, school teacher, supe
and rock star as dream caree
"But the box says the gan
ages 8 to adult! Who conduc
"McGovern said it's a sec
"You mean to tell me that
aren't some girls out there w
to be someithing more than
"Oh, McGovern said she'
they do. But according to he
a CPA maybe isn't as fun as
"Anything would more ft
playing Careers For Girls. A
ever happened to finding4
"Don't teflI me you really
you'd feel fulfilled after .pla
game. Like the company
spokeswoman said,,'It's onl
It's xot meant to be a role n
Forgive me, Lisa. I gues
a silly girlie."
k A, I' Actually,
Donna, it used to
nna ladipaolo allow it. For
I Lisa Pollak nearly 30 years
sold a game called 'Careers' that
included politics, prospecting,
farming, sports and space as options."
"These were careers for girls?"
"No, this game was for girls and
boys. Then, in 1984, the game was
taken off the market because of poor
sales. It was revised and re-released in
April of this year"
8 WEEDDcme ,19
WEEKEND December x',1990