In fact, being a Russian spy might just be the easiest job in the U.S. The Americans weren’t expected to snitch on high-level military secrets, and they weren’t in a position to discover them anyway.
Apparently, all they had to do was give sketchy reports on key political figures and commercial/technological trends.
The Russians were stupid. They didn’t need to pay spies; they could have gotten the same information by subscribing to the Wall Street Journal or doing a Google search. Talk about an easy job … Kick back, take notes on what Anderson Cooper reports on CNN, and ask the Soviets for crisp one hundred dollar bills.
So I’m announcing now that I will become an information procurer – a more pleasant term than spy – for Bolivia. I know nothing about Bolivia, though I assume their jungles contain an unwanted breed of dangerous snakes. I’m simply in it for the money.
BOLIVIAN AMBASSADOR: “As a spy, we want to know the inner-workings of the U.S. Government. We don’t want to be surprised. What can we expect in the near future?”
CYCLOPS: “You’ve bought the right guy. I can tell you what to expect. The Democrats and Republicans will fight each other. If the Democrats salute Thanksgiving, Sen. Orrin Hatch will call it Satan’s Holiday – and Rep. Jim Matheson will announce that he can see both sides to the issue.”
AMBASSADOR: “I’m not sure that’s really what we were after. The Russians, for instance, wanted to know which officials might travel on foreign visits with Pres. Obama. Can you enlighten us?”
CYCLOPS: “You bet! Pres. Obama will likely have Vice President Joe Biden travel with him. That way the President will not receive publicity for saying anything stupid. Biden will do it for him.”
AMBASSADOR: “So you don’t like the Vice President?”
CYCLOPS: “Yes, I do. I like having a Vice President who talks like a Teamster.”
AMBASSADOR: “Now what can you inform us about secret negotiations that have a serious commercial and economic impact?”
CYCLOPS: “Boy, I’ve got some real dirt for you. From my sources, I firmly believe that LeBron James will sign a long-term contract with the Cleveland Cavaliers.”
AMBASSADOR: “But what does that have to do with the economy?”
CYCLOPS: “Don’t be naive. Without LeBron, the Cavs would have a difficult time selling even 5,000 tickets in their Quicken Arena. LeBron is as important to Cleveland as the Blackberry is to a Yuppie!”
AMBASSADOR: “I appreciate your efforts, but I’m not sure my country will find your information very valuable.”
No big deal. Maybe I can sell the information to Latvia. I’ll make it a better deal than the Russians got.
The views expressed in this column are the opinion of the writer and not necessarily those of the ownership or management of this newspaper.