Then we’re all the way to the right, where Sahl picks up speed: “Hitler — remember him? If you don’t, and you have cable, you can turn on the History Channel. He’s on there a lot.” The head of Hitler goes up top, under the rightmost R. Below (and slightly overlapping) him go Mussolini, Mel Gibson (“a right-wing fascist”), Bruce Willis (“a right-wing fascist”), Dick Cheney and George W. Bush. To the immediate left of these, beneath the R’s M, he adds Saddam Hussein (“Cheney said today that Saddam Hussein is a leftist!”) and Osama bin Laden (“Cheney calls bin Laden a leftist!”). And to their immediate left go Clint Eastwood (“in the left wing of the right wing of the Right) and our Governor Arnold Alois Schwarzenegger (“a left-wing fascist posing as a right-wing fascist”).
That leaves the chart empty between the leftmost leftists and the leftmost rightists. Citing a need for further evaluation, Sahl adds Hillary Clinton’s head to unmarked turf above SD, the Social Democrat midsection. Bill Clinton tops the center’s right, and below him go Al Gore, Dixie Chicks, John Kerry (“Remember him?”) and Howard Dean.
And that’s that. The rest of the chart — the middle of the left to the middle of the middle — remains headless.
House lights come up. Questions from the audience. Someone wonders how old Sahl is. What he thinks of Kucinich. Wonders if he might be using the term fascist a bit too cavalierly. If he’s had a “most useful or favorite” politician over the years.
“They’re all pretty good,” Sahl replies to this last. “Comedians are lazy. They all call Bush dumb. I’ve met Bush, and I didn’t find him dumb. He’s stubborn. He’s valiant, in a way.
“And if you met his mother, you’d know why.” Sahl makes an extremely disturbing face.