Let me take you back in time, ladies and gentlemen. It’s 1987. I am at the time working at KFBK in Sacramento, California, and I have created this term, invented this term “Gorbasm,” to describe the reaction of various people, primarily in America, but around the world, to the prospect that nuclear holocaust is at hand because Ronald Reagan is in the White House, but only Mikhail Gorbachev can save the day, can save the world, can save the planet! He’s reasonable. Reagan has an itchy trigger finger, right there poised above that button. Now, all the time previous, from ’81 to ’87, Reagan had never met with the Soviet leader. He said there was a reason: “They keep dying on me.” But Gorbachev came long; he was a young guy compared to previous Soviet leaders. But Jeanne Kirkpatrick nailed it. She said once in a speech that I heard at UC Davis, “The only difference between Mikhail Gorbachev and previous Soviet leaders is that he is alive.” Of course, the students at UC Davis snickered in the audience. But eventually a summit meeting was scheduled right in Washington, D.C, ladies and gentlemen. It was to occur in, I believe it was 1986 or 1987 — and as this summit meeting approached, the anticipation and the excitement was hard to contain on the part of those who literally felt that Ronald Reagan posed a nuclear threat to the world. I came up with a theme song that would introduce each Gorbasm as it occurred, and the Gorbasm was simply the expression of sheer delight that Gorbachev was on the scene. Whenever he said anything there were Gorbasms. And so, ladies and gentlemen, that big day in world history arrived. Gorbachev arriving at the United States, Andrews Air Force Base.
(Playing of Gorbasm theme song.)
On this big day of Gorbachev’s arrival, literally thousands of Americans were shepherded to the tarmac at Andrews Air Force Base, because HE was arriving. These were various members of the press. They were members of the state department and other liberal intelligentsia who felt finally for the first time in seven years safe and relief that Gorbachev was coming, meaning Gorbachev was going talk to Reagan and talk Reagan out of blowing up the world. Was going to tell Reagan it was not a good thing to do, that everybody would die, and so they were all gathered on the tarmac, and there, in the sky, the first visible sign of the arrival of him, Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev. The plane crept closer and closer on its final approach to Andrews Air Force Base. Finally it touched down, an Ilyushin -62 jetliner. The technology to build the Ilyushin-62 stolen from Boeing by Soviet spies. The plane reaches the end of the runway, turns around and begins to taxi in. The assembled crowd can hardly contain itself, so excited are they that Gorbachev has landed. They’re doubly excited that Gorbachev has decided to stay, has not turned around and taken back off. Didn’t do a touch-and-go but has actually touched down and taxiing in. The plane approaches. It gets closer; it gets larger! The plane pulsates, ladies and gentlemen. The crowd begins its pulsation.
The crowd can barely contain itself because he is here to save the world from the madman Ronald Reagan with the itchy trigger finger poised above the nuclear detonation button! The Ilyushin-62 reaches the stairway, comes to a screeching halt. Moments pass. The excitement continues to build but subsides when the front door does not open immediately. Eventually, however, the door does open, and little communists of one stripe or another begin deplaning — and with each communist that gets off the plane, the assembled state department and media people gather in even greater excitement, peering through binoculars, hoping for a look at that birthmark, which got bigger each time Gorbachev said something that made people think the Soviet Union was expanding, because that birthmark typified Soviet expansion! The more the U.S. believed in Gorbachev, the more like the U.S. the birthmark looked. You could see the peninsula of Florida. You could see Chappaquiddick. You could see Cape Cod — if you looked carefully at that birthmark. Finally after all these communist underlings had deplaned, the band began playing, and there he was at the top of the steps, the savior of the world, Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev!
The media, the state department, the liberal intelligentsia could not contain itself any longer, and, ladies and gentlemen, almost en masse, moaning and groaning, sighs of sheer pleasure and excitement were heard emanating from the gathered thousands, a multiple Gorbasm was taking place in public! People were still dressed, Gorbachev was still dressed. Reagan was nowhere near. Reagan was in the White House with his finger poised over the nuclear button, but Gorbachev was here and the world was safe. You could hear the screams of delight, the shouts of sheer, utter pleasure, uncontrollable orgasms taking place. As the chief architect of the Gorbasm deplaned, he was met by Reagan administration officials. The crowd feared they might assassinate Gorbachev so that Reagan could blow up the world, but alas, Gorbachev was safely ensconced in a ZIL limousine, one of the worst made automobiles in the history of the planet, two to three miles to a gallon of gasoline, and taken to the Russian embassy where he immediately entered the spy room and listened to intercepted communications from various government agencies and plotted his strategy in his summit meeting with Reagan. Shortly after these Gorbasms occurred en masse, the Berlin Wall fell, and the Gorbasms were replaced with limp disappointment. Reagan had survived. Gorbachev was nobody. And yet they rebuilt Gorbachev’s image, it was he that brought this about, Gorbachev personally brought down the Berlin Wall. Gorbachev so interested in saving the world from Reagan that he blew up effectively his own country. To this day the birthmark exists, but it’s not nearly as large as it was on that day of mass multiple Gorbasms.
(Continued playing of song.)