A video that appeared just after midnight today on the Campaign for Vermont website has sent shock waves across the Vermont political landscape.
In a clip allegedly recorded in an unnamed tax haven, former Wall Street plutocrat Bruce Lisman announced that his last three years of dabbling in state politics was all an elaborate prank.
“I can’t believe you rubes took me seriously!” he said, lounging on a plush sofa with his trophy wife, as they clinked their champagne glasses together. “Me — Bruce Lisman, super-rich Master Of The Universe — waste my time and energy on Vermont? Bwahahahahaha!
“It was all a joke, and you fell for it!”
Lisman went on to explain the origin of his caper.
“We were driving our Bentley — well, Manfred was driving, we were in the back, of course — and we saw this old schmo by the side of the road with a ‘WILL WORK FOR FOOD’ sign. And you [he points to his wife] said, ‘Gee, honey, he looks just like you after a long weekend!’
“I realized she was right. And the idea came to me just like that!”
Lisman hired the man on the spot. And while Lisman lived it up in his luxurious hideaway, his doppelgänger moved into the Lisman manse in Shelburne and began appearing in public as “Bruce Lisman” offering his insights into the Vermont economy. The real Lisman thought it would just be a brief escapade, a little something to chuckle about at the country club, but it turned into much more.
“I couldn’t believe you bought the swill he was peddling! So we just rolled with it. Pretty soon, a bunch of those gullible Vermont ‘elites’ had signed on board. Boy, were they easy to fool! Especially that Pelham guy — what a maroon!”
He also mocked the reporters and pundits who constantly speculated about him running for Governor. “Why the hell would I waste my time being Governor?” he said. “I could buy and sell the entire misbegotten state if I wanted to. But it’s not worth the bother.”
Lisman ended the video by announcing he’d fired his double and stopped writing checks to Campaign for Vermont.
“It’s been a blast, but it’s all over now. So long, suckers!”