On last night’s episode of The Colbert Report, Stephen Colbert complained about how dull the midterm elections are despite the fact that almost $4 billion are being spent on them.
He said he was watching an old Star Trek episode, “A Taste of Armageddon,” which was from “the good old days, back before Captain Kirk’s mission was to travel the universe searching for cheap airlines tickets.”
In the episode, the crew of the Enterprise is sent to a planet that has deemed conventional warfare too destructive. “Instead, they have a computer simulate war and calculate the number of dead, and citizens determined to have been killed must submit themselves to termination in a disintegration booth.”
“In the end,” Colbert says, “Kirk destroys the war computers and convinces these societies to live in peace, all for the noble purpose of boning a hot alien.”
“This episode about two bitterly opposed factions determined to destroy the other reminded me of the midterms. Think of the parallels — nobody wants them to happen, and they’re costing a ton of money.”
“Folks,” he continues, “instead of the destructive mess, let’s have computer simulate all of our elections from now on and select the winners. Now, I’m sure many of you are saying, ‘Stephen, that sounds great, but what about the $4 billion?'”
“Don’t worry,” Colbert replies. “We’ll still piss that stuff away, because every election cycle, the computer will order huge piles of money to submit themselves to the disintegration machines.”
He then informs the audience that he has “taken the initiative and built myself a Disinteporter 6700 and filled it with piles of $100 bills. It will either disintegrate or teleport somewhere else, I’m not sure. Either way, folks, the money will be gone. But I can’t watch, because full confession, earlier today I boned that money.”
When he turns on the Disinteporter 6700, the money disappears — and is replaced by Star Trek veteran and Internet celebrity George Takei.
“George Takei, how did you get here?”
“I don’t know — I was in the elevator on my out, when I ended up here. But I overheard your plan, and it’s madness! Don’t do it, Stephen!”
“But it will solve all our problems, and nobody will get hurt!”
“Democracy is a sacred trust, Stephen. Yes, it’s a messy business, but the will of the people must not be abdicated to a machine. Only by engaging more deeply in the issues and voting your conscience can we hope to move beyond the eternal gridlock that threatens to destroy our society. No matter how bleak things seem, you have the ability to change. Do your duty as an American, and as a citizen of the galaxy, and vote!”
“I’ve got to say,” Colbert responds, “those are powerful words — and disinteport!”
Watch the entire episode of The Colbert Report below via Hulu.