T. Herman Zweibel
Publisher Emeritus (photo circa 1911)

Among the mewling, puking horde of bottle-babies that is The Onion's reader-ship, there have always been those who seek to tell me how to run my business. Indeed, hardly a week goes by in which this strident minority of harpies are not complaining about my use of lead-based inks, the occasional tooth which has been pressed into the financial section, or The Onion's continued silence on the prison-reform issue.

Lately, there has been a new undercurrent to the river of candied sewage these goody-goodies wish to pour down my throat. This Republic has once again succumbed to the notion, common in prosperous times, that children are precious porcelain cherubs who should be kept in velvet-lined gilt boxes and protected from the harsh realities of life. They say I should not be publishing the swear-words in my news-paper, nor the teats above the front-page fold, where children may see them.


God-damn it! Is it my fault you leave my news-paper lying around where your piss-pantsed off-spring can leave their eye-tracks all over it? Is it my fault that the harsher Anglo-Saxon monosyllables are sometimes the only way to adequately communicate the difference between mush-mouthed Presidential candidates? And is it my fault that Fatty Arbuckle recently decided to plant a broken soda-water bottle up some drunken trollop's ulcerated spout? Yes, I paid Mr. Arbuckle handsomely for his story, but the charge I paid him to molest the girl has never been proven! It was news-worthy, and the people who buy advertisement-space have a right to see it on The Onion's front page!

Please, gentle readers, do not fool yourselves into thinking that your children are anything but blood-thirsty little savages. Have you forgotten what you were like at that age? I have not! I was no more than 11 when, on a yachting-trip with the other boys of Cadwalader Preparatory Academy, I dashed out the brains of my class-mate Piggles with a flat stone. And now that I have a son of my own, I can tell you first-hand that children have not advanced. Why, just Sunday, I was forced to rebuke young N. Aeschylus after he attempted to fry the scullery-maid in her own fat! He is a bit precocious for his age, but I intend for him to helm this paper if and when I pass on. If he keeps up like this, I can see he will do a fine job of it and not kow-tow to the limp-wristed likes of the censor-ship crowd.


T. Herman Zweibel, the great grandson of Onion founder Friedrich Siegfried Zweibel, was born in 1868, became editor of The Onion at age 20, and persisted in various editorial posts until his launching into space in 2001. Zweibel's name became synonymous with American business success in the 20th century. Many consider him the “Father Of American Journalism,” also the title of his well-known 1943 biography, written by Norman Rombauer.