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(Special thanks to Dave MB for Skinnerisms and other CNA political
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For All Nails #147 - Sunday Morning Tea

The vitavision tuner in the Governor General's office was dialed to the 5
setting.  Given the time, it was only natural...

NABC Burgoyne, 9:00am ET, Sunday December 29th, 1974

	A tea-table is surrounded by four silhouettes, one obviously female,
	and three obviously male.  Two males on the left are leaning over
	toward each other, as if they are talking.  The music of a string
	quartet is playing as the title card:

		Sunday Morning Tea

	appears over the silhouettes.  A voiceover starts:


				  VOICEOVER

		The North American Broadcasting Company presents, "Sunday
		Morning Tea," a forum for discussing events of the day and
		the issues surrounding them.  In our studio in Burgoyne, we
		now join your hostess, Dame Judy Underwood.

	The lights on the stage appear brighter.  We see two older gentleman
	on the left.  They are familiar with the setting, and appear
	comfortable.  On the inner seat on the right, is Dame Judy, who
	appears a bit apprehensive.  On her right is a younger man, who
	appears more apprehensive.

	The woman is DAME JUDY UNDERWOOD, 58.  She was one of the most
	experienced Family Law judges in the Northern Confederation.  Ten
	years ago she stepped down to allow fresh views on the bench.  Her
	skills, graciousness, willingness to help and encourage younger
	judges earned her a knighthood.  NABC offered her a position a a
	legal analyst, and her appeal earned her a Sunday morning discussion
	show, up against the very popular Jeffrey Martin [1].  Her abilities
	from family court to steer discussion in a positive manner allow her
	to field guests of radically different perspectives on at the same
	time.  With Martin's retirement from vitavision in 1969, Sunday
	morning vitavision is associated with Dame Judy.

	She is naturally apprehensive because of recent events.

				  DAME JUDY

		The original topic of today's show was going to be a look
		back of the events of 1974.  The shocking atrocity at Bali,
		however, and how it will affect the next agenda for the Grand
		Council, will be up for discussion today instead.

		The man on my far right needs little introduction.  He was
		Governor General until this summer's abrupt special election,
		and leader of the People's Coalition until just last month.
		This is his first time on the programme, please welcome
		Carter Monaghan.

				  MONAGHAN

		Thank you Dame Judy - it's my pleasure.

				  DAME JUDY

		Next to him is Minister of Defence, and former Liberal
		councilman from Southern Vandalia, Trevor Freeman.

				   FREEMAN

		I'm glad to be here again, Dame Judy.

				  DAME JUDY

		On my right is a new voice of loyal opposition, and like
		Governor [2] Monaghan, a first-time guest, Masonist
		Councilman Ryan Creighton-Young, of Manitoba.


	Creighton-Young is very nervous.

			       CREIGHTON-YOUNG

		Thank you, Dame Judy.

				  DAME JUDY

		I'd like to start by sharing this political cartoon from
		Thursday's West North City _Courier_.

	She holds up a blown-up editorial cartoon.  It has the distinct style
	and signature of Terry Henning.  It is set on a stove top, of all
	places, and has two main figures.  On the left is a pot, with
	Mercator's face plus tiny spindly arms, and a very large mushroom
	cloud coming out of it.  The spindly arms are pointing to a kettle on
	the right, with Carl Salazar's face and its own mushroom cloud coming
	out of the spout.  The one-word caption below it reads:  "Black!"

		Mr. Henning's drawings quite bluntly point out that Vincent
		Mercator has set himself up as a power with an even deadlier
		type of bomb... this, M-bomb as the New York _Herald_ called
		it.

		My first question is:  What will the government's position be
		when the Council reconvenes tomorrow, and will the Council
		debate any related motions?

			       CREIGHTON-YOUNG

		Dame Judy, this new and even MORE destructive bomb simply
		underlines the point that James Volk has been making since he
		first published, "The Bomb Myth" 7 years ago.  We simply
		cannot engage in war anymore or we face the extermination of
		the entire human race.

		We plan on introducing a resolution condemning Mercator as an
		enemy of peace, and proposing that we disclose to the world
		detailed information on anything our scientists know about
		such a bomb, so that we can continue the balance of power
		that has kept world peace for more than a decade.

				   FREEMAN

		And while we do this, Vincent Mercator picks and blows up his
		next target.  Mr. Creighton-Young, I agree that Mercator is
		an enemy of peace, but opening ourselves up like you propose
		is not only dangerous, but foolhardy.

		I need not remind anyone present that this sort of naivete
		concerning sensitive information in the name of openness
		contributed to the Michigan City scandals of 1969.  Those
		defections...

	FREEMAN looks very sharply at the young Masonist.

		... practically placed this new bomb right in Vincent
		Mercator's hands.  I will actively discourage any revelations
		that will aid our enemies.

				  DAME JUDY

		But the proverbial cat is already out of the proverbial bag,
		is it not, Mr. Minister?

				   FREEMAN

		That does not mean we should let out the kittens also.
		There's a madman with superbombs, and possibly the support of
		his people...

			   MONAGHAN (interrupting)

		Trevor, you know as well as I do that President Moctezuma has
		done everything but order the killing of Vincent Mercator
		since his impeachment scare back in November.  The Mexican
		President is as ornery as a henhouse guard-dog...

			 FREEMAN (interrupting back)

		Carter, I may be a city boy, but I do know how hard a
		henhouse guard-dog BITES.  We don't even KNOW how the Mexican
		people feel about this.  President Moctezuma may feel public
		pressure to blame US for this...

		   DAME JUDY (interrupting with authority)

		Gentleman, while you're both showing what fine debaters the
		University of St. Louis [3] produces, neither of you have
		answered my question about government positions and Council
		resolutions!

				   FREEMAN

		The government is appalled by the senseless destruction of
		the Kramer facility in Bali.  We will provide humanitarian
		aid...

	He glances at Creighton-Young, knowing that this last bit is a bone
	to throw at the Masonists

		... and help in any manhunt of this _criminal_.

			       CREIGHTON-YOUNG

		Why didn't you hunt Carl Salazar?  Private firms threatening
		innocent people with mass destruction is hardly civilized.

			  MONAGHAN (with authority)

		Carl Salazar stopped a war!  Vincent Mercator may very well
		start it back up!

		I believe my fellow Coalitionists will support the policies
		you've proposed, Mr. Minister.  They will also remind the
		Governor-General that the Mexican government will want
		Mercator extradited back to them, and that good relations
		with our continental neighbors is CRUCIAL at this time of
		crisis.

				   FREEMAN

		I wish your government had paid more attention to our
		neighbors.  Perhaps Sen-yore Mercator would have been seen as
		a threat earlier on.

				  MONAGHAN

		We are seeing reports that Mercator based most of his efforts
		not in Mexico, but in the United Empire's newest ally, the
		_Kingdom_ of New Grenada.

		I do hope this alliance, which the Liberal party made a
		cornerstone of last summer's campaign, doesn't draw our
		Confederation into a _war_ down there.

			       CREIGHTON-YOUNG

		We must join with our Mexican neighbors in investigating just
		how this event came to pass.  I hope that any such
		investigation, however, will be free of the Liddy-like cloud
		of mystery that surrounded the Michigan City defection
		inquiries.  And hopefully without the Starkist overtones of
		suspicion.

				   FREEMAN

		I promise you, councilman, the suspicion isn't pointed at any
		members of your party.

				  DAME JUDY

		Yes, I'm sure we all agree that Mercator must be apprehended.
		This leads me to my next question: Various Continental powers
		are equally upset by this.  Will they take advantage of this
		situation, especially given both the German relationship with
		Boricua, and the recent alliance of the United Empire with
		New Grenada, to increase their presences in the Caribbean?

			       CREIGHTON-YOUNG

		We should welcome the Continental powers, not only to the
		Caribbean, but to the peace table.  This is an opportune time
		to lessen the tensions that could lead to war.

			    FREEMAN (astonished)

		Councilman Creighton-Young, are you suggested we INVITE the
		hostile Germans, the increasingly alarming United Empire -
		Carter, you have a point there - and the enigmatic
		Scandinavians to float ships in what is probably the most
		contested body of water in the world?  The Caribbean is the
		proverbial bottle, and there are already two scorpions in it!

				  MONAGHAN

		Councilman, I would very much like to draw those powers to
		the peace table, but I think we have all the foreign presence
		we need in the Caribbean as it is.

				   FREEMAN

		I will be asking the Governor-General to send the carrier
		group led by the HMNAS _Ezra Gallivan_ to join the _Winfield
		Scott_'s group already patrolling the Georgia coast.  We're
		concerned about any power or powers that might use this chaos
		as an opportunity for mischief.

			       CREIGHTON-YOUNG

		Are you ready to spill more North American blood?  Didn't we
		learn our lessons from Boricua?

	MONAGHAN shakes his head in disgust.  FREEMAN speaks first, however.

			      FREEMAN (sternly)

		I rarely let a day go by without thinking of the lessons of
		Boricua, young man.

				  DAME JUDY

		Mr. Minister, you are not admonishing a schoolboy.
		Mr. Creighton-Young is a duly elected member of the Grand
		Council.  And I am personally wondering if we have
		learned the _correct_ lessons from Boricua.

		At this point, I believe we should each take a breath, as we
		let our sponsors talk for a bit.

	The camera pulls back and we hear the string quartet (now obviously a
	recording) again.  We CUT to dramatic music and a shot of JACK
	ELLISON at a podium speaking.  We only hear the NARRATOR and the
	music, however.

				  NARRATOR

		Tonight, on "NABC at Nine", we interview Kramerica President
		Jack Ellison on the Bali Situation...



Governor-General Lennart Skinner was angrily amazed.  "Well I'll be good
God-damned!  She might just's well have fined them fifty pounds each for
contempt o'court.  Tucker, what time you got?"

"9:10, Governor-General," replied Chief of Staff Tucker Marshall.

"Ah think Dame Judy has just set herself a new national record for the
quickest cut [4] to an advertisement from a chat show.  I'm beginnin' to
wonder if I should've kept ol' Trev on his leash and sent _you_ over to NABC
to face the momma lion in her den."

"Trust me sir.  We need to show strength at this point.  Besides, he's really
the only guy we got besides you who's not intimidated by Monaghan," replied
Marshall calmly.

"Hell, Tucker, I'd be a damn sight more intimidated by ol' Judy Underwood
myself!"  Skinner chuckled, "USL debate team... makes sense, I spose," he
paused, weighing something carefully.  He continued speaking.

"You know, Ah haven't had Monaghan in here for a talk since just after the
election, and he _knows_ that sum'bitch Moctezuma better'n anyone..."

.  .  .

[1] Jeffrey Martin appears in Sobel as a player in the People's Coalition
    party.  He was a journalist by trade, but with a strong anti-Mason bent.
    There are and were pols in OTL who came from the Fifth Estate.

[2] (Thanks to Dave MB for this point.)  By CNA protocol, the title of
    "Governor-General" expires when its holder leaves office, unlike that of
    a confederation or provincial governor.  Hence Monaghan is now addressed
    formally by the title he retains from his term as Governor of Southern
    Vandalia (mentioned by Sobel).  No less an authority than Judith Martin,
    a/k/a Miss Manners, asserts that this is the correct (though normally
    ignored) protocol in the OTL USA.  Hence in 2002 President Bush's father
    is Ambassador Bush, and Senator Clinton's husband is Governor Clinton.


[3] This is a subtle slam at the pair of Southern Vandalians.  In reality,
    USL produces some FINE debaters, including Governor Monaghan and Minister
    Freeman.

[4] An OTL American might not be shocked at this, but think if this were the
    BBC or ITV...