After a long and productive Facebook conversation (productive for Facebook, anyway), I think I have a good way of explaining this whole Iran/Nuclear Deal/$400 Million Payment thing in a way suburban voters can appreciate. It’s not better than the way the PRESIDENT tried to explain complex geopolitical negotiations to you all. But I accept that we live in a world where some people trust Rupert Murdoch’s propaganda pages over Barack Obama. So I’ll do what I can.
In this allegory, “Me” is the United States. “Liam” is my real-life neighbor who I never talk to who is Iran in the story. “Don” is my other real-life neighbor, who is a very nice man and not at all like the character I’m about to make him play.
ME: Liam, we need to talk. I really need you to stop throwing trash into my yard.
LIAM: Fuck off and die.
ME: Yes. Clearly. But the trash, man, it really has to stop.
LIAM: Your yard encroaches on my yard. I will never stop fighting it.
ME: Noted. Still and all, you need to stop throwing trash on my yard.
LIAM: Let’s say I stopped throwing trash on your yard. Would you stop intercepting my packages and throwing them into the street?
ME: So you noticed?
LIAM: It is an ILLEGAL embargo on my...
ME: Yes, yes, done. Anything else?
LIAM: And about that fence.
ME: Oh my God, you are still pissed about that?
LIAM: In 1988, the previous owners paid you to build a fence around this property. That fence was never built.
ME: Well, when you moved in you started cursing at my children whenever they went outside. I didn’t really want to send them over there to help...
LIAM: THE FENCE WAS PAID FOR!
ME: You are such a dick.
LIAM: I have filed a lawsuit...
ME: I know.
LIAM: And the courts say you owe me $10,000.
ME: If you win.
LIAM: I will DEFEAT YOU.
ME: How about I give you $1,000 bucks and we’ll call it even?
LIAM: Point 3: The Jews.
ME: Liam, this is not the time to get into your rampant Antisemitism.
ME: Now, about my dog.
LIAM: What dog?
ME: Liam, I know you have my dog in your house.
LIAM: How could I have your dog... unless it ILLEGALLY came onto my property?
ME: Give me my dog back.
LIAM: Fine. I don’t want your stupid dog anyway.
ME: Okay, this has been very productive. Can I make this payment via PayPal?
LIAM: YOU CUT MY CABLE LINES.
ME: Oh, that’s right. That was funny. Don’t you have WiFi?
LIAM: I don’t know the password for your router.
ME: Man, you’re in rough shape.
LIAM: Give me cash!
ME: Okay. Okay. I’ll drop it off when I come by to pick up my dog.
DON: YOU ARE PAYING A RANSOM FOR YOUR DOG!
ME: Don... I didn’t know you were there. Have you been listening this whole time?
ME: Umm... so then how do you... whatever, Liam and I were just settling some of our differences.
DON: YOU ARE WEAK.
ME: What? I just got him to stop throwing trash onto my lawn. Trash that YOU usually bitch about.
DON: Liam has HUMILIATED you!
LIAM: That’s... true? Yes. I have. YOU HAVE BEEN HUMILIATED!
ME: Okay. Well, as long as there’s no trash on my lawn, I really don’t care about the optics of...
DON: I would NEVER let “LITTLE Liam” humiliate me like that.
ME: Jesus Christ. I’m so happy I’m moving out of this neighborhood in six months.
I know that not all Americans appreciate the nuance of international negotiations. But the ones who don’t probably shouldn’t be running for president.