Commentary

It's Not Personal, It's Business

There was widespread rioting across the Middle East following the Fox announcement that it would produce as many as a dozen films a year aimed at Christian audiences under a banner called Fox Faith. But, it was difficult for observers to determine if the Fox riots were simply a continuation of the papal riots, which were preceded by the No-Bunkers-Around-Baghdad riots.

"I'm exhausted," said one holy warrior. "These days of anger seem to go on forever. I've been rioting, shooting up the neighborhood for months. Seems like every week somebody pisses off the defenders of the faith, and we have to make up new placards and banners and head back out into that 105-degree heat to burn somebody else's effigy until the Western media gets some footage for the evening news. Sometime we have to riot for hours before they get off their satanic butts and take our pictures."

"I don't know what we'd do if we didn't have those anti-Western riots on a regular basis," said a producer for CNN who wished to remain anonymous because she isn't a cute blonde like the rest of the staff. "Television is all about pictures, and without them we have no story. Once in a while, the weather's bad or they run out of excuses to riot and we don't have our daily footage. That's when we report, 'There was no rioting in the Middle East today--unlike last week,' and then we show last week's riot footage."

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The persistent rioting has provided a new business opportunity for Ali Mohammed of Najaf, who launched Rioters-R-Us, which employs hundreds of former high school and college students to stage disturbances across Iraq.

"The average guy simply doesn't have the time to paint his face and beat himself with a whip. He's got to make car bombs or prep for nighttime attacks on the oil pipelines. He's too busy to stay current on what we're supposed to be outraged by on any given day, so we take the pressure off by providing turnkey riot solutions," says Mr. Ali (or Mr. Mohammed, whichever). "Just tell us what the West has done wrong today, and in less than four hours our men can be on the street with the correct signage and chants. We have a staff writer who does nothing but come up with slogans and chants that rhyme with 'hate America'!"

Business for Rioters-R-Us was up 175 percent in the third quarter, and bookings are strong through the end of the year.

"You can just feel the tension, the pent-up demand for street violence," says Mr. Ali (or Mr. Mohammed, whichever). "Even though they can't predict it, our customers are certain that somebody, somewhere in the West will do or say or write something that requires a riot. These days it doesn't take much of a spark to start a conflagration around here. I mean who really cares what Fox runs? Clearly they don't, what with "Nip/Tuck," "Temptation Island" and "The Simpsons." But, throw Jesus in the mix and now we're talkin' holy war."

"Face it, we have the West hogtied," said Suhrgay RachMan eNoff, assistant vice president, Barricades and Flag Burnings at Rioters-R-Us. "They are so paralyzed with fear that we have been able to shut down all debate and productive dialogue about Islam.To be able to intimidate people with backyard swimming pools, plasmas TVs, SUVs and dental plans, is an aphrodisiac to people with nothing but time on their hands.

"Besides, it's good for business."

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