Dear President Donald J. Trump,

Acting within our jurisdiction as the ancient Greek goddesses who punish crimes against the natural order, we have found you guilty during recent years of numerous atrocities, and yet our traditional methods of retribution (inflicting madness upon you, spreading disease through your nation, etc), have not yet deterred your behavior.

Meanwhile, you are growing increasingly dictator-like and dangerous: floating the idea of having your face engraved on Mount Rushmore, pushing to delay the US presidential election this November, sending in federal paramilitaries to stop Black Lives Matter protesters, and so on. In order to better protect democracy, a Greek invention that the gods have preserved for millennia, we are improving our existing torture policies as follows in regard to cases such as yours.

I. Hearing ABBA Non-stop

Subsequent to receiving this letter, you will hear ABBA songs inside your head everywhere you go, no matter what you happen to be doing. For example, you will tune out Dr. Anthony Fauci so that Frieda and Agnetha’s highest notes overwhelm his warnings about the coronavirus epidemic. Every time you see the National Rifle Association leader Wayne LaPierre, you will hear “I believe in angels / Something good in everything I see” and have a vision of him dancing to the song, a gun strapped to his chest, throwing millions of dollars in campaign money to the floor.

II. Singing ABBA

In the event that you continue with your atrocities in spite of actions taken under the guidelines outlined in section I of this policy update, you will not only hear ABBA in your head but also sing ABBA involuntarily in the midst of challenging situations. For example, after 30 million people go unemployed in America, you will hum “Money, money, money / Always sunny / In the rich man’s world' while you are attempting to talk about the recent stock market rally fueled by the Federal Reserve. During your meeting with Vladimir Putin at the G20 Summit in Riyadh this fall, you will croon “Honey honey, touch me, baby / Ah-hah, honey honey” every time he makes a suggestion. You will belt out “I feel like I win when I lose / Waterloo” at your campaign rallies before you are ready to announce your unofficial plan of action for November.

III. ABBA Withdrawal

The policies enacted under the guidelines in both sections I and II will result in an addiction to ABBA which, as outlined herewith in section III, can be used to implement further torture. ABBA’s upbeat trills and electric synthesizers will disappear on occasion from your head, leaving you in confusion and wondering if perhaps ABBA lies or at least fails to tell the whole story. To recover a feeling of power, you will scream at a twenty-year-old reporter for being “bad!” and “sensationalist!” and “corrupt!” because she asked why you serenaded Putin. When the stock market crashes, you will slam Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell for disagreeing with you that he has only to join you in singing “Money, Money, Money” to make prices rise again. You will grow red in the face when the people at your campaign rally in Tulsa refuse to join hands and cough at one another in a grand “Waterloo” singalong.

None of that will help.

IV. Atonement

Once you finally see that your addiction to ABBA is alienating you from others and reality, you must choose between further and continuing ABBA torture, as outlined under sections I-III, or atonement. Under the guidelines in section IV, atonement requires the sacrifice of your presidential business suit for a) gold lycra pants, b) silver boots with platform heels c) a pink satin shirt, and d) a sequined hat. Second, you must make a pilgrimage to ABBA The Museum in Stockholm, where you will genuflect before the bobblehead figures of Agnetha, Björn, Benny, and Frida that are enshrined there, publicly acknowledging that 1) they have long been your idols and 2) you accept responsibility for the consequences. Thirdly, when you return to the United States, you and your soldiers will hold a disco in Congress upon the transfer of power to your rival for the presidency, Joe Biden, instead of performing the military coup that you had planned.

Sincerely,

Tisiphone, Megaira, and Alekto


And now a quick joke...

“You’re the one,” he always said to his wife. “You’re the two,” he always said to his second wife. His English wasn’t very good.