Alexander Acosta was doing just fine
In his comfortable Cabinet post.
Lucky for him, the Department of Labor
Got far less attention than most.
Dumpty’s first pick for Acosta’s position
Could hardly have been more obtuse:
Andy Puzder, renowned for his cheeseburger porno
And rumors of spousal abuse.
Puzder was dumped in a clumsy debacle
That pummelled the bumbling POTUS.
So Acosta, an amiable U.S. Attorney,
Drew virtually no public notice.
Scaramucci, Reince Priebus, Sean Spicer, and Bannon
Were fired or forced to resign.
Fifty others all shared the same infamous fate,
Yet Acosta was doing just fine.
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But a ten-year-old story leaked out from his past
And yanked him from placid obscurity.
His name was attached to a sickening scandal
that shook his serene job security.
The law had caught up with a Palm Beach roué,
A man of luxurious means,
Charged with trafficking, pimping, procuring, and rape
Of dozens of underage teens.
He’d concocted a sexual pyramid scheme
Of unspeakable breadth and perversity,
Promising vulnerable, penniless girls
A route out of brutal adversity.
The perp, Jeffrey Epstein, deserved to be crushed
By Justice’s ruthless iron fist,
But the priciest lawyers that money could buy
Got him off with a slap on the wrist.
Life in prison? Oh, no. A mere thirteen months
In his own private wing of a jail,
With work-release privileges twelve hours a day
To relax and catch up on his mail.
In the history of flagrant miscarriage of justice,
No case is as lurid and stark.
And the terms of the deal were kept under seal
So the victims were kept in the dark.
Was a rigorous U.S. Attorney in charge?
Or a grovelling, feckless imposter?
In fact, he heads up your Department of Labor:
The amiable Alex Acosta.
A predator wed to a fawning enabler
Is a fellowship forged by the Devil.
Who would have thought such a partner in crime
Would ascend to the Cabinet level?
We are living, alas, in the Dumptyan Era
Where scandals erupt by the hour.
They stir a recurring and queasy sensation
A virus infecting the health of the nation,
Brought on by a toxic and foul combination
Of money, perversion, and power.
From “Dumpty: The Age of Trump in Verse,” by John Lithgow, to be published by Chronicle Prism.