We are reminded this week of Ernest Thayer’s immortal 1888 classic Casey at the Bat. A Midwestern wag we know was struck by the similarities as great expectations met reality yet again.
The outlook was uncertain for Truth and Justice that day;
the score stood many to zero, with election not far away.
With the government bathed in corruption, a dangerous embarrassing shame,
a sickly silence fell upon the land, but the people were aflame.
Millions groaned in deep despair. The rest clung to that hope which springs eternal in the human breast;
they thought, if only Comey could get a whack at that –
they’d put up even money now, with Comey at the bat.
For thirty years the pair had skated,
Over ice micro-thin, yet they never were abated.
Arkansas squalor, Saudi billions, pardons and bedrooms for sale,
Access for money, money for silence, Justice could not spear that whale.
From across the globe the billions flowed, building the Foundation of lies,
While hidden in her cellar, the nation’s secrets were transcribed.
This was the flaw, the chink in the mail, the cold forewarning of Fate,
If only Someone, Honest and True, would step up to the plate.
Then from three hundred million throats there rose a lusty yell;
it rumbled through the valley, it rattled in the dell;
it knocked upon the mountain and recoiled upon the flat,
for Comey, mighty Comey, was advancing to the bat.
There was ease in Comey’s manner as he stepped into his place;
there was pride in Comey’s bearing and a smile on Comey’s face.
And when, responding to the cheers, he lightly doffed his hat,
no stranger in the crowd could doubt, ’twas Comey at the bat.
Three hundred million eyes were on him as his agents scoured her dirt;
All their tongues applauded when he wiped it on his shirt.
The Crooked One bobbed and weaved, and contorted all a’twit,
defiance gleamed in Comey’s eye, but FEAR foretold a slip.
And now the Crooked One fired back over the air,
and Comey stood a-watching, shakin’ and tremblin’ there.
Close by the tall Director her airborne salvo’s sped–
“That ain’t my style,” said Comey. “Strike one,” the AG said.
From the heartland jammed with people, there went up a muffled roar,
like the beating of the storm-waves on a stern and distant shore.
“Out with Lynch! Out with her!” shouted millions in the land;
and it’s likely they’d have done it had not Comey raised his hand.
With a smile of Christian charity great Comey’s visage shone;
he stilled the rising tumult; he bade the case go on;
he signaled to Loretta, once more the BS flew;
but Comey still ignored it, and the White House said: “Strike two.”
“It’s fixed!” cried the maddened millions, and echo answered “fraud!”
But one scornful look from mighty Jim and his sycophants were awed.
They saw his face grow stern and cold, they saw him squint and strain,
they knew his storied “courage” would not pass on Hill again.
Confidence frames Comey’s sturdy face, his eyes twinkling a tease;
blowing smoke about “integrity” with deceit and slippery ease;
And now Loretta meets with Bill, the White House signals “pass,”
Mighty Comey “questions” Hill for hours, no record or oath alas.
And now the waiting’s over, it’s time to stand up tall,
“On TV in Hoover’s place,” he says, “where I’ll be seen by all;”
“No one know what’s coming,” he boasts, and then he lets it go,
and now the country gasps, at the force of Comey’s blow.
Oh, deep in the bowels of Wall Street the shyster eyes are bright;
the White House crowd is sneering, and Hollywood hearts are light;
The “elites” are snarkly laughing, and somewhere Putin shouts;
but there’s no joy for three hundred million — mighty Comey has struck out!