Friday, October 16, 2009

More Humor from Tom Naughton

Nice Words, Good Intentions
Posted by Tom Naughton



“Hey, Tom, it’s Bob.”

“Bob! What’s up, buddy?”

“Well, sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but that new security software you designed for the firm isn’t working. We got hacked last night. Our IT guy said it looks pretty bad.”

“Bummer. I’m totally against that kind of thing, you know. I’ve even given speeches about it.”

“Uh … yeah. So anyway, any idea why the system didn’t work?”

“Not a clue. Truth is, I didn’t really do anything.”


“Well, that’s not entirely true. I managed to strip out most of the firewall and program it so if anyone tries to get through, they receive a very moving text message explaining that what they’re doing is morally wrong. I really thought that would do the trick.”

“That’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard of!”

“Oh yeah? Tell that to the Norwegian Programming Society. They just awarded me a security prize.”

“Are you @#$%ing kidding me? You just told me you didn’t do anything! What the hell is this prize supposed to be for?!”

“For my nice anti-hacking message. They said I was helping to foster an anti-hacking attitude around the world.”

“But you didn’t do anything! What kind of idiots give out a prize for a bunch of nice words?”

“All kinds of idiots. There’s just one catch: they have to believe you’re a liberal. So that’s what I told them.”

“Now, wait a second. I’ve known you since sixth grade. You haven’t been a liberal since we were both stupid teenagers. In fact, you’ve been a hard-core libertarian for at least twenty years.”

“Well, that’s true, but I figure it this way: if a guy like Bill Maher can be in favor of big government socialist programs and suck up to every leftist politician who comes on his show and still call himself a libertarian, I can call myself a liberal. Fair is fair. And I tell you, I’m loving the benefits.”

“What, they give you some kind of liberal retirement plan, or–”

“Don’t be silly. The liberal retirement plan is to have you pay my bills when I’m old. No, I’m talking about the real benefits: From now on, people can only judge the value of my work based on my good intentions.”

“Tom, trust me. Our managing partner doesn’t give a rat’s ass about your intentions.”

“Well, he’s obviously some kind of results-oriented conservative cretin.”

“Enough! You ruined the firewall, now get in here and fix this thing!”

“Not necessary. I already implemented a system, and I sincerely believed it would work.”

“Look, pal, I know we go back a long way, but I’m telling you, there’s going to be hell to pay if –”

“No, there won’t. North Korea.”


“Bill Clinton signed a deal with North Korea where they got our nuclear reactors and promised not to develop any nuclear weapons. The press was all ga-ga about the nice words and good intentions. Then the North Koreans turned around and immediately started developing nuclear weapons.”

“Yeah, so?”

“Did Clinton get any blame for trusting an insane little dictator to stick to an agreement?”

“Uh … no.”

“Of course not. Liberal politician, good intentions. Heck, the press even tried to blame George W. Bush. Apparently the North Koreans were so worried Bush might be elected several years later, they decided to start arming themselves ahead of time.”

“Look, you still have to–”

“Yasser Arafat.”


“Jimmy Carter got Yasser Arafat to promise he’d stop blowing up people in Israel. The press was all ga-ga over the nice words and good intentions. Arafat even got a Nobel Peace Prize. Then he went back to blowing up Israelis.”

“That’s still not relevant to–”

“Meanwhile, Ronald Reagan helped engineer the downfall of the Soviet Union and freed millions of Eastern Europeans from a brutal and repressive regime. No peace prize. Heck, the press and half of Europe hated the guy the whole time he was doing it. He wasn’t a liberal, and he didn’t talk nice, so no credit. You see? It’s all about talking nice and having good intentions. That’s the beauty about being a liberal.”

“So let me get this straight: we should be grateful for the new security system because you had good intentions and you’re a liberal, and because you asked people to pretty please not hack into our databases.”

“And fostered an anti-hacking atmosphere. Yes.”

“Uh-huh. Tell you what. The Norwegians are probably right. We’ll send you a prize too.”


“But you can forget about that bill you sent us.”

“Oh, no problem. Some Chinese guys already paid me.”

“What? Why would they do that?”

“They found your credit card information in one of those databases. They said something about assuming more American debts.”



“Bob? Hello? Bob?”

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