EMPIRIA Magazin - Kuliffay Hanna szelekciója

 

POLITICAL HUMOR, SATIRE, MOCKERY

 

POLITIKAI HUMOR, SZATÍRA, IRÓNIA

(angol nyelvű válogatás)

 

 

“I think it’s the duty of the comedian to find out where the line is drawn and cross it deliberately.”

                                                                                                                                             (George Carlin)

 

 

Melania’s Rough Draft

 

Thank you very much. Thank you. You have all been very kind to Donald and me, to our young son Barron, and to our whole family. Ladies and gentlemen, I have a dream. I have a dream that children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by net worth of their parents but by the content of their character.

From a young age, my parents impressed on me the values that you work hard for what you want in life: that your word is your bond and you do what you say and keep your promise; that you treat people with respect. If you only consult Donald’s financials, you’ll see what we have. And what we owe. It isn’t very much. But Donald and I have the satisfaction that every dime that we’ve got is honestly ours. I should say this. I don’t have many mink coats, I have 41 respectable Republican cloth coats, and Donald always says I look hot in anything.

I have been with Donald for 18 years and I have been aware of his love for this country since we first met. He never had a hidden agenda when it comes to his patriotism because, like me, he loves this country so much. But do not mistake his warnings about Mexicans, Muslims, Obama, Hillary, China and NBC Universal as fearmongering. Let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself — nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance. In every dark hour of our national life, a leadership of frankness and of vigor has met with that understanding and support of the people themselves which is essential to victory. And I am convinced that you will again give that support to Donald in these critical days.

As I began to prepare my remarks, I thought to myself: In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. But that was only a start. Imagine there’s no heaven. It’s easy if you try. No hell below us. Above us only sky. Imagine all the people, Living for today... Aha-ah...

I was born in Slovenia, a small, beautiful and then communist country in Central Europe. Think: Austria, minus the schnitzel. My sister Ines, who is an incredible woman and a friend, and I were raised by my wonderful parents. My elegant and hard-working mother Amalia introduced me to fashion and beauty. My father Viktor instilled in me a passion for business and travel. Their integrity, compassion and intelligence reflect to this day on me and for my love of family and America. I dedicate this speech to them. But in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground. We can, however, build a resort on it.

And so, my fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country. Let us brace ourselves to our duties, and so bear ourselves that if the Republican Party lasts for a thousand years, men will still say, “This was their finest hour.”

Thank you, God bless you, and God bless America.

Bob Garfield. June 2016

* * *

 

From: Previously Undiscovered Manuscript Reveals Things Jesus Didn’t Say

 

Things Jesus didn’t say:

”Love your friends, bless those who bless you … and screw everybody else.”

“If you had the faith of this mustard seed … you wouldn’t need all that fancy ‘affordable health care.’”

“Blessed are the racists, for they will rise to great heights in the new administration.”

“My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? I mean, look at all these liberals, and their un-Christian ‘caring for widows, orphans, and the stranger.’ Why can’t they care about Christian stuff, like the 2nd amendment or school prayer?”

“Go, sell all you have and give it to the richest one percent.”

“Blessed are those who hate immigrants in my name, for they shall inherit all the jobs white people don’t want to do.”

“Follow me and I will make you fishers of … people who look just like you.”

“Give unto Caesar that which belongs to Caesar, and give unto God only what you can’t hide on your 1040.”

“Let the little children come to me … unless they’re in Head Start or need help with school lunches, then cast them out into the outer darkness where there will be weeping and gnashing of their tiny little teeth.”

“Come unto me all ye who are weary and heavy laden … and I will make sure you have no union to watch over you.”

“Go ye therefore into all the world … and make sure everybody hates Muslims. Because obviously.”

“My God, my God, why do women not see that men should have the last word about what they do with their bodies?”

“You have heard it said, ‘You shall not commit adultery, but I say to you … unless she’s a lot younger, prettier (like a model or whatever), and you’ve had enough foresight to sign a prenup.’”

“You have heard it said, ‘An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth, but I say to you … what the hell? They’ve got it coming.’”

”You have heard it said that healthcare should be a right for everyone, but I say to you, ‘If you can store up for yourselves another new Benz, even though it comes from money meant for poor people’s chemotherapy, then you should totally do it.’”

“You cannot serve God and mammon … which is why it was important to have the Supreme Court rule favorably in Citizens United. Helps us keep to keep who’s who straight.”

 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven … but if you have a suitably large investment portfolio, that definitely won’t hurt.”

“If anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn the other also.” (Marginalia—“This only applies to People of Color and women in abusive relationships.”)

“Again, you have heard that it was said to those of ancient times, ‘You shall not swear falsely, but I say to you … just kidding. That’s for suckers!”

“And I, when I am lifted up, will draw all straight, cisgender, middle class white guys unto myself.”

“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep … except refugees. They definitely do not count.”

“So therefore , none of you can become my disciple if you do not give up all your possessions.” (Wait. Actually, he did say that, but he probably shouldn’t have.)

Derek Penwell. March 2017. The Huffington Post

* * *

Obama Alienates Millions with Incendiary Pro-Knowledge Remarks

 

President Obama handed the Republican Party a gift for the general election by making a series of offensive pro-knowledge remarks at Rutgers University over the weekend, a leading Republican official said on Monday.

According to Reince Priebus, the chairman of the Republican National Committee, the President’s inflammatory comments, in which he offered full-throated praise for such controversial fields of knowledge as math and science, are sure to come back to haunt the Democrats in November.

“If President Obama was trying to alienate millions of Americans in one speech, mission accomplished,” Priebus told Fox News. “When I watched him speak, I said to myself, ‘Well, Christmas came early this year.’ ”

While many Republicans expected Obama to walk back his ill-advised praise of knowledge, facts, and evidence, the White House as of Monday morning had refused to do so.

“The President seems to be doubling down on this, which is not surprising,” Priebus said. “This is a man who never met a fact he didn’t like.”

The R.N.C. chairman said that the Party was already creating negative ads that would make extensive use of the President’s polarizing pro-knowledge rant.

“This fall, we will ask the American people, ‘Do you want four more years of knowledge, or do you want something else?’ ” Priebus said. “Because the Republican Party has something else.”

Andy Borowitz. May 2016

* * *

Clinton’s Speech to Goldman Sachs: June 4, 2013

(Excerpt)

Millions of working sad-sack Americans have similar fantasies. They want more money. More pay. Decent wages for hard work. They think it grows on trees. They think that money will grow and nuzzle up to them in their sleep, when they have no money-appeal. They think they can tax Other People’s Money to get what they want. They don’t realize Money has to be jacked up the ass, stuck in the veins with meth, dragged out and pimped to make more! You have figured out how to make your money work, turned it into a profit-generating prostitute! The future expected earnings of a profit-generating prostitute! That you’ve shorted! These people, idiots, all of them, they expect money to come to them! Without scheming! By working hard and being good! Like puppies and ponies! Like flowers after a downpour! Like the lilies of the valley! Like utopian visions of a drug-addled Marxist!

(Laughter)

Wages need to be kept down, and people just need to work harder. Damn harder. At least as hard as Bill worked to keep Haiti down.

(Applause)

We must lower incomes for low-value working schmucks so they give up on any notions of a middle-class life. But more than that, we must reduce expectation: the profit-sucking cage of entitlement, expectation, and imagination. We must drive income down steadily and siphon that surplus wealth to you, the captains of finance, so that we can build a strong economy that is innovative, powerful, that acknowledges and rewards your genius…

(Applause)

And that will be my mission, from the first day I am president to the last. I…

(Applause)

I will get up every day thinking about you, the hard-working Wizards of Finance, Lords of Capital, Economic Giants of Innovation, Noble Titans that make us strong and powerful!

(Applause)

I came from a petit bourgeois family with a drapery business that exploited workers to give me a good middle-class life, a first-class education, and my incorrigibly elitist beliefs. It put me on third base instead of striking out. As I try to steal home, I will be thinking about all of the Wall Street bankers that I represented in New York and the “advice” that they gave me, and I will work with them—for you– to give them the maximum freedom to do what’s best for them. Because what’s best for Wall Street is what’s best for the US. What’s best for Goldman Sachs is what’s best for the planet. I promise to take on this challenge against the clamoring, whining, agitating babies demanding for major changes in our economy and the global economy, demanding for equity and justice. These demands are stupid beyond belief.

(Laughter)

As you know, advances in financial technology and global trade have created new areas of commercial activity and opened new markets for our exports. Too often policy wonks want to resort to protectionist measures because they don’t realize that these treaties are designed to suck wealth out of the third world and suck it into your portfolios. These people suffer from a lack of big-picture thinking. They believe that they are still going to be building widgets in a factory if it were not for the 1 billion Chinese stealing their jobs. They don’t understand that we are sucking the lifeblood out of both of the Chinese and all workers—the vampire squid with the blood funnel—creating value, wealth, growth!

(Cackles)

Today’s marketplace focuses on the short-term, instantaneous financial trading, and short-term earnings reports, and that’s just how it should be. Those who are struggling need to rent out their living rooms, garages, bathrooms, dog houses, sell trinkets on ebay, sell themselves, their time and their bodies in the gig economy. All of this creates exciting extra wealth, which should go to you, the geniuses of the universe, because you are the ones driving this with your investments, speculations, deregulation, policy capture, and, of course, outright bribes. There’s no problem that a little more liberalization and deregulation can’t make better!

(Takes out check and cackles)

But all of these trends are temporary, and artificial, and unless we push really hard to make them happen, they won’t continue. The choices we make as a nation matter. The choices we make will set the stage for what American life will be like in this 21st century: will we have a nation of namby-pamby socialistic commies whining and demanding every little privilege while our nation crashes down around our ears, and we are reduced to becoming serfs for the Chinese? Or will we have a powerful country, bristling with guns and weapons, capable of putting everyone in their place? Capable of invading countries on a whim? Of unleashing chaos and violence gratuitously? Of violating a leader’s body orifices with sharp objects with impunity?

(Cackles).

Of manipulating the world economy on a dime, without sweating any labor?

(Applause)

As president, I will work with you to turn the tide of populism, to make these currents of change unfeasible, impossible. We don’t hide from change; we subvert, hijack it, appropriate it.

(Applause)

But it will take money. Lots of it. This is a good start.

(Waves check again, smiles, coyly).

The measure of our success must be how much incomes rise for you, the elite, the 0.0001%, not some just arbitrary growth targets tethered to people’s unwarranted and undeserved notions of “equity”, and “justice”.

(Applause)

I want to see our economy work for the top, the leaders, the Gods, the Masters of the Universe like you. We’re not going to find all the answers we need in the playbooks of the past, we can’t go back to the policies of social equity that failed completely…

Today is not 1968. The sixties are so over. And it’s not 1917. The Bolshies are so over. It’s not 1789. No more liberty, equality, fraternity. No more freedom fries. Non Merci! ça suffit! People need to accept the fact that finance capital is a reality, that the interests of the capital markets drives the world, that it can’t be turned back, and that it’s the solution for all the challenges we face now, including the unending catastrophes that it’s creating, including the burning, fiery apocalyptic end of the planet.

So today, I’m proposing an agenda to give you what you deserve, an agenda for unlimited financial deregulation, growth, wealth accumulation and concentration. It’s the least we can offer you given the undeserved contempt and abuse you’ve suffered over the past years.
More concentration means more jobs and more new businesses catering to you. More jobs give people more opportunities to service you, toady up to you.

(Waves check suggestively).

Full employment is completely unnecessary, the desperation of potential unemployment keeps people working hard to keep their jobs, so their productivity and toadying should be absolutely top notch! No more disrespect!

We know that Finance creates most of the wealth in this country, so that has to be THE top priority. Let me tell you straight: I want to be the presidency of, by, for Goldman Sachs, and I mean it. I’ll make sure to line my cabinet with your people, like everyone else. Lloyd, name your position!

K.J. Noh. February 24, 2016

* * *

 

 IS OUR CHILDREN LEARNING?

It will be a real shame if ISIS forces moved into Baghdad and took over many of that city's treasured arts and destroyed famous statues and artifacts.

For example, the Baghdad George W. Bush Museum and Liberry of Fine Farts may be vulnerable.

Inside the liberry, placed under glass, is the famous book, My Pet Goat, which Bush was reading while two hijacked airliners crashed into the World Trade Center in 2001. A sign over the single bookshelf there is a quote by the former president which says: "Is Our Children Learning?" which is placed directly beneath a larger sign, Mission Accomplished!

Outside, on the top steps of the Bush Liberry, is a statue of the former conqueror standing akimbo, bent over with his head between his legs mooning the world.

The pedestal with this inscription etched into a bronze plaque reads: "I Done Told 'em To Bring 'em On and They Done Went and Brung 'em On!"

Oh, the nostalgia!

John Williams · Top Commenter · Hard Knocks University. May 2015

* * *

 

Bush Campaign Hopes to Stoke Nostalgia for Nation’s Most Glorious Era

 

Media advisers to former Governor Jeb Bush are hoping to exploit nostalgia for what is widely seen as the greatest era in American history, the years 2001 to 2009. Tracy Klugian, who heads the newly assembled Bush media team, said that he and his staff are poised to tap into the nation’s longing for a time “when everything in this country seemed to be going right.”

A centerpiece of the marketing strategy will be evoking memories of the 2003 invasion of Iraq. “It’s been a long time since the United States has invaded another country for no reason,” he said. “People are sentimental about those simpler times.” Additionally, Klugian and his fellow Bush marketers hope to remind Americans of “a chapter in our history that showed what this nation was made of: Hurricane Katrina.”

“A lot of people are nostalgic about the way the government didn’t panic about Katrina and instead took its time to come up with a response,” he said. “I think when we look back on those days, we all say, ‘Heck of a job.’”

Finally, Klugian said, the Bush team hopes to rekindle Americans’ memories of “one of those most exciting times in recent history,” the financial meltdown of 2008. Seeing the financial system teeter on the brink of Armageddon was a thrill ride we haven’t experienced the likes of since,” he said. “I know I’m not alone when I say that I miss those days.”

All in all, Klugian said that he and the Bush team “can’t wait” to roll up their sleeves and start reminding America of the glories that were the years 2001 to 2009. “When you have a great story like the Bush story, it’s hard to know where to start,” he said.

Andy Borowitz

* * *

San Diego Hosts Convention of People Who Shot Bin Laden

 

The San Diego Convention Center is hosting the first-ever convention of people who shot Osama bin Laden, with organizers expecting a turnout of between three thousand and four thousand. According to organizers, the agenda of the convention is to help people who killed bin Laden market their story for books, movies, YouTube videos, and other media platforms.

Tracy Klugian, who came up with the idea of the convention shortly after he killed bin Laden, in 2011, said that he hoped the weekend-long gathering would help participants to “take their experience of shooting Osama bin Laden to the next level.”

“At the end of the day, this weekend is all about storytelling,” Klugian said. “I’ve met hundreds of guys who have great stories about the night they shot bin Laden, but they’re still a few workshops away from turning it into a decent TED talk.”

He scoffed at the suggestion that the marketplace was saturated with people who shot the Al Qaeda leader, making it more difficult to monetize that fateful night in Abbottabad.

“That’s like saying there can only be one ‘Hunger Games’ movie,” he said. “Trust me, killing bin Laden is a very powerful brand.”

Andy Borowitz. February 2, 2015

* * *

Hillary Clinton Dodges Gang Gunfire En-Route to Los Angeles Book Signing

 

LOS ANGELES – Upon arriving to the signing event for her new book “Hard Choices” at a Century City bookstore this morning, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and daughter Chelsea found themselves caught in the middle of a gang war and were forced to run with their heads down in an effort to escape being hit by gunfire. Both women managed to make it inside the bookstore without injury. Afterwards a stoic Mrs. Clinton told reporters that she feared for the safety of her daughter more than she did her own well being.

“Chelsea is with child and my own motherly instincts kicked in. As we ran I had my arms around her in an effort to shield her from the bullets whizzing past us. All mothers understand my actions because they’re an instinctual, innate reflex instilled by God.” Mrs. Clinton’s entourage was scheduled to arrive at the rear of the building but at the last minute she asked her driver to drop her off in front of the store. Secret service agents were not informed of the change and continued to the back entrance.

“Chelsea and I just wanted to walk in through the front of the store like regular folks,” Mrs. Clinton said. “Unfortunately, a gang fight erupted when we got out of the car and we found ourselves running through a hailstorm of bullets.” Few pedestrians were outside during the shootout so eyewitness accounts of the harrowing incident are scant. A female jogger saw people running but didn’t realize it was Mrs. Clinton. “I saw two women running towards the store with their heads down. I thought maybe they were filming a movie or something. I didn’t hear any gunfire, but I was listening to my iPod. Luckily they weren’t harmed.”

A man entering a bank also said he saw two women running, “but I didn’t hear any gunfire.” This afternoon Mrs. Clinton spoke of her horrifying ordeal on MSNBC’s Hardball with host, Chris Matthews.

CHRIS MATTHEWS:  Madam Secretary, thank God you’re safe!

HILLARY:  Thank you, Chris. It was a close call.

CHRIS MATTHEWS:  Tell us what happened.

HILLARY:  We arrived at a greeting ceremony that was being held inside a bookstore. I remember getting out of the car and was shocked to discover we were under sniper fire. So we just ran with our heads down to get into the bookstore before either of us were hurt. Fortunately my daughter and the fetus are safe. That’s the only thing that matters, Chris.

CHRIS MATTHEWS:  Well you sure showed the American people how you react under pressure. Your actions were heroic, Madam Secretary, yet you’re so humble about it all.

HILLARY:  Oh, Chris, I didn’t do anything a regular mom with financial difficulties wouldn’t do.

CHRIS MATTHEWS:  You can relate to the common people, can’t you? I mean, most politicians live in a bubble. How have you been able to keep feelings of entitlement at bay?

HILLARY:  Oh, Chris, I guess it’s just who I am. I’m fortunate to be financially secure today, but it wasn’t always that way. Bill and I really struggled after we left the White House. When you’re forced to choose between paying the electric bill or putting food on the table, it’s something you never forget.

CHRIS MATTHEWS:  You don’t forget, do you Madam Secretary.

HILLARY:  Well, I didn’t. And I think my daughter respects that. She remembers how Bill and I struggled financially after leaving the White House. By then Chelsea was attending an expensive college and it was a constant battle to come up with tuition payments. (Hillary sighs) It wasn’t easy, Chris. And that’s why I’m able to identify with so many Americans who are struggling today.

CHRIS MATTHEWS: But it wasn’t just college tuition, there were the exorbitant costs of Chelsea’s cosmetic surgeries.

HILLARY:  Oh lord! (laughs) If you only knew the cost of making that child presentable.

CHRIS MATTHEWS:  (chuckles) I’m reminded of the Dorothy Parker quote, beauty is only skin deep, but ugly goes clean to the bone.

HILLARY: (laughing) Bill was so worried Chelsea was going to end up resembling one of his trailer park Tarts. But we hired the finest plastic surgeons in the world and the results they achieved were a godsend.

CHRIS MATTHEWS:  The surgeons did a remarkable job. So even as you struggled to put food on the table, you somehow found the money to repair your daughter’s disagreeable appearance.

HILLARY:  A mother’s love for her child is unconditional, Chris.

CHRIS MATTHEWS:  Madam President, you recently said the Bible has had the biggest influence on your thinking. What’s your favorite scripture?

HILLARY:  Oh, that’s easy. Genesis 10:8 –  And Cush begat Nimrod: he began to be a mighty one in the earth.

CHRIS MATTHEWS:  Did I read somewhere that if you and President Clinton had a son you planned to name him Nimrod?

HILLARY:  Yes. We were trying to begat a Nimrod when I became pregnant with Chelsea.

CHRIS MATTHEWS:  That’s a beautiful story, Madam President. I’m so glad you’re safe. Keep your head down!

HILLARY:  (chuckling) Always a pleasure, Chris.

By Mark Donahue

* * *

 

Agency Busy Spying on Three Hundred Million People Failed to Notice One Dude Working for It

 

A U.S. intelligence agency was so busy spying on three hundred million Americans that it failed to notice one dude who was working for it, a spokesman for the agency acknowledged today.

“I guess we were so busy monitoring the everyday communications of every man, woman, and child in the nation that we didn’t notice that a contractor working for us was downloading tons of classified documents,” the agency spokesman said. “It’s definitely embarrassing, for sure.”

Despite having an annual budget in the neighborhood of ten billion dollars, the agency had no idea that a dude who was working for it five days a week was getting ready to send those classified documents to a journalist who would then tell everybody in the world.

“Maybe if we hadn’t been so busy keeping our eye on those other three hundred million people, we would have noticed that this one guy who was working right under our noses was up to something totally fishy,” the spokesman said. “But you know what they say about hindsight.”

As for where that guy who leaked the documents was planning to go next, the spokesman admitted, “We don’t have a clue.”

“I know what you’re thinking—an intelligence agency probably should know that Hong Kong has an international airport and that its departures board lists flights to Moscow and whatnot,” the spokesman said. “I don’t know what to say. Maybe we need a bigger budget or something.”

Posted by Andy Borowitz.  June 24, 2013

* * *

 

 “Compared to Dick Cheney… George W. Bush is a Saint.”

President George W. Bush was scheduled to visit the Episcopal Church outside Washington as part of his campaign to restore his pathetic poll standings.

His image handler made a visit to the Bishop and said, ‘We’ve been getting a lot of bad publicity because of the president’s position on stem cell research, the Iraq war, hurricane Katrina, and the Veterans Administration. We’ll make a $100,000 contribution to your church if during your sermon you will say that the President is a Saint.’

The Bishop thought it over for a few moments and finally said, ‘The Church is desperate for funding ~ I’ll do it.’

Bush showed up for the sermon, and the Bishop began:

“I’d like to speak to you all this morning about our President who is a liar, a cheat, and a low-intelligence numb-nuts who can’t put a compound sentence together.

He bugged out of combat service during the Vietnam war and went AWOL to avoid a drug test, then had all reports on the sordid event destroyed.

He is the spawn of a Nazi loving great grandfather who smuggled anti-Americans into this country on his shipping line.

He took the tragedy of September 11 and used it to frighten and manipulate the American people.

He lied about weapons of mass destruction and invaded Iraq for oil and money, causing the deaths of tens of thousands and making the United States the most hated country on earth. It is a three-trillion dollar folly. He appointed fund-raiser cronies to positions of power and influence, leading to widespread death and destruction due to government paralysis after Hurricane Katrina. He awarded no-bid cost-plus contracts and tax cuts to his rich friends so that we now have more poverty in this country and a greater gap between rich and poor than we’ve had since the Depression.

He has headed the most corrupt, bribe-inducing political party since Teapot Dome.

The national surplus has turned into a staggering national debt of 7.6 trillion Dollars.

Oil rose from $18 to over a hundred per barrel, leading to transportation costs which the people of America cannot afford, with low minimum wages, part time jobs, no health insurance, and outsourcing.

Vital research into global warming and stem cells is stifled because he’s afraid to lose votes from religious kooks.

He is the worst example of a true Christian I’ve ever known, but compared to Dick Cheney…George W. Bush is a Saint.”

(By Global Research. politicalhumor.about.com June 22, 2008)

* * *

 

U.S. Seemingly Unaware of Irony in Accusing Snowden of Spying

The United States government charged former intelligence analyst Edward Snowden with spying on Friday, apparently unaware that in doing so it had created a situation dripping with irony.

At a press conference to discuss the accusations, an N.S.A. spokesman surprised observers by announcing the spying charges against Mr. Snowden with a totally straight face.

“These charges send a clear message,” the spokesman said. “In the United States, you can’t spy on people.”

Seemingly not kidding, the spokesman went on to discuss another charge against Mr. Snowden—the theft of government documents: “The American people have the right to assume that their private documents will remain private and won’t be collected by someone in the government for his own purposes.”

“Only by bringing Mr. Snowden to justice can we safeguard the most precious of American rights: privacy,” added the spokesman, apparently serious.

(Posted by Andy Borowitz. June 22, 2013)

* * *

 

President Clinton Counsels Anthony Wiener

WASHINGTON – This morning an anonymous source gave the New York Times a recording of a telephone conversation between former Congressman Anthony Wiener and former President Bill Clinton a few days after Weiner left office in disgrace. The source claims the recording was found in a dumpster behind a popular Hooters restaurant in Washington D.C. by a curious vagrant. The tape was delivered to the Times early this morning by a person wearing a Richard Nixon mask and large clown shoes. Following is a transcript of their conversation.

WIENER: President Clinton?

CLINTON: Yes?

WIENER: Anthony Wiener here.

CLINTON: Anthony! So good to hear from you .

WIENER: You’re not just saying that?

CLINTON: No, not at all. (several seconds pass) Really!

WIENER: OK, good. Uh, I think I need to apologize to you.

CLINTON: Why?

WIENER: Because you officiated at my wedding to Huma.

CLINTON: Who?

WIENER: Huma, my wife.

CLINTON: Beautiful woman.

WIENER: Thank you. So I want to apologize.

CLINTON: OK, I guess. Sure, why not.

WIENER: OK. Uh….I’m sorry.

CLINTON: Anything else?

WIENER: No, I guess not.

(Several seconds of silence)

CLINTON: OK, thanks for calling.

WIENER: Uh…I was also wondering if maybe, you know, maybe you could say something publicly in my defense.

CLINTON: (laughs) No offense, buddy, but what could I possibly say in your defense?

WIENER: I don’t know, maybe that what I did was inappropriate but you think I should stay in politics and relentlessly fight for my constituents?

CLINTON: Who in their right mind would believe that?

WIENER: But you were the president. People listen to you.

CLINTON: Yes, I was, and I had some issues of my own with the fairer sex. I think if I attempt to come to your rescue it could very well end up the most laughable moment in recent history. Worse than Jesse Jackson giving me spiritual advice on adultery with his mistress in the other room.

WIENER: But the American people love you!

CLINTON: Yes I believe they do, and I have no intention of losing that love, no matter how misplaced it might be.

WIENER: I’m really hurting here, Bill.

CLINTON: I feel your pain Wiener, I really do. And don’t call me Bill.

WIENER: I’m sorry, Mr. President.

CLINTON: You need to stop thinking about yourself and think about your wife.

WIENER: No offense, sir, but you really don’t have room to talk.

CLINTON: Excuse me?

WIENER: Look what you did to Hillary.

CLINTON: First of all, it’s Mrs Clinton. And second…..that was a lot different.

WIENER: How?

CLINTON: C’mon Wiener, you’ve seen my wife.

WIENER: You know I’ve always wondered, why did she stay with you?

CLINTON: She wanted to be the first woman president. She used me for her own selfish ambition.

WIENER: I wonder what my wife wants?

CLINTON: Millions are asking the same question, buddy.

WIENER: It’s just so painful.

CLINTON: (laughs) I can imagine. You go through your entire life with the name Wiener and in the end it’s your wiener that destroys you. Ironic isn’t it?

WIENER: Your wiener destroyed you too. Isn’t it the same thing?

CLINTON: Not even in the same ballpark. Most important, I kept my job. But I was persecuted for having almost sex with a real woman. You scurry around with your childish messages and little underwear pictures on a computer screen. That doesn’t make it for me. I need to be able to grab me some corn-fed meat.

WIENER: Corn what?

CLINTON: I like em’ corn fed and dolled up like a cheap hooker on a New Orleans riverboat.

WIENER: If I was, let’s say a mayor, I’ll bet I could be having real sex with women who ride riverboats. I had lots of girls sending me pictures.

CLINTON: From what I’ve been told, you really don’t know who’s sending you things on the Internet. It could have been Dick Cheney sending you messages from his basement in his underwear, drinking canned beer and blowing wind.

WIENER: Well maybe the worst is over. I’m going to a rehab place to wait for everything to die down.

CLINTON: I don’t want to burst your bubble, but you haven’t seen the worst yet. Not even close.

WIENER: You mean my wife?

CLINTON: Pay back is a bitch, and they relish every moment of it.

WIENER: How bad is it going to be?

CLINTON: Have you ever noticed the size of Hillary’s legs?

WIENER: Uh, sure.

CLINTON: Every now and then she’ll wrap those things around me in bed and just squeeze.

WIENER: Pretty bad?

CLINTON: It’s like a pair of vice-grips from hell. And the look on her face when she’s squeezing, all those years of pent-up rage boiling up….with her eyes bulging and the veins in her neck throbbing….

WIENER: Sounds horrifying!

CLINTON: And it’s at home so she’s not wearing make-up.

WIENER: (gulps)

CLINTON: Burning in the flames of hell could not possibly compare.

WIENER: But my wife is skinny. Her legs aren’t anything like Hillary’s.

CLINTON: Does she have long toenails? Sharp elbows? Are her fingers long enough to wrap around your neck? What about her teeth? Your wife has some pretty big teeth and they look sharp. Hey, isn’t she a Muslim?

WIENER: Yeah,

CLINTON: And you’re Jewish?

WIENER: So?

CLINTON: Whew! I’d keep my eyes peeled. Those people like to video tape their violence.

WIENER: I could leave.

CLINTON: Where you gonna go? Who’s gonna want you around?

WIENER: Lots of women, sir. I have a whole bunch following me on Twitter.

CLINTON: You need to wake up, son. Those girls followed you around because you were a congressman. Same reason your wife married you. That’s all being slurped down the drain like piss in the men’s room at a Redskins game. You’re toast, Wiener. After you resign you’re going to need your wife to pay the bills. Who’s going to hire you? You’re a pariah. Your own family members will shun you.

WIENER: But you survived.

CLINTON: There’s a reason they called me Slick Willie.

WIENER: Maybe I can be Slick Wiener.

CLINTON: Ain’t gonna work. First of all, it sounds really stupid. Second, I’m a phenomenon. Even the most dour Republican will tell you that.

WIENER: What am I going to do?

CLINTON: That global warming stuff seems to be where all the washed-up people are headed.

WIENER: There is some good money in it. Maybe I’ll give it a try.

CLINTON: OK, I gotta run. Good luck, Wiener.

WIENER: Thanks Mr. President.

CLINTON: And Wiener?

WIENER: Mr. President?

CLINTON: Unless there’s a live woman in close proximity, keep it in your pants, huh?

WIENER: I’ll try.

(By Mark Donahue.  The Daily Rash. 2013)

* * *

 

BOOK OF BARDWASH

 INTELLIGENT DESIGN, ANYONE?

As they say, you can't fix stupid, but one can nevertheless imagine how stupid might have originated, along with other undesirable things like evil, disease, and many other aspects of life that somehow seem to be of rather unintelligent design if by design at all.

Ruminating on this idea resulted in the following application of exegesis and hermeneutics to Holey Scripture.  Divine inspiration was provided by a visit to the Sistine Chapel and the sight on the ceiling there of Michelangelo's depiction of the Creation of Adam and also his Fellatus Interruptus Original Sin scene entitled Forbidden Fruit. To understand the divine inspiration, especially the hermeneutics as applied to nonverbal communication, it's important to look at the pictures as we proceed. For the opening scene, see the following link and note the expressions and attitudes of the Heavenly Host on the periphery as well as those of the central figures, to wit, the Lord God extending His Finger to Adam:          

http://www.italianrenaissance.org/michelangelo-creation-of-adam/

The working title for the following manuscript is:  INTELLIGENT DESIGN, ANYONE?

Upon creation of His Spit 'n' Image, it came to pass that the Lord God then said unto Adam, "Pull my finger."  And it came to pass that a great ripping noise of violently erupting gas came to pass and rent the heavens.  Foul and putrid dark clouds of Holey Primordial Vapor churned throughout the void, lightning accompanied this vicious gas which issued from out the Almighty Flatulent Fundament, and booming thunder rolled across the vast firmament.

Lo and behold, on the instant that the evil gas came to pass, all the Heavenly Host who were downwind of the Lord, and, lo, even some who were upwind, turned their noses away and sang in unison, "Phew!"

Reminder, see:  http://www.italianrenaissance.org/michelangelo-creation-of-adam/

After the Holey Primordial Gas had come to pass, the Lord did feel better for it, having loosed a Godawful host of Almighty Microbes, but then it came to pass that a celestial pestilence did settle upon the earth in cesspools, and flies and other foul and creepy creatures of intricate and delicate design did come to pass, feeding on the precipitate of the Primordial Gas. And it came to pass that these plague bearing creatures did go forth and multiply and spread unto the four corners of the then flat and square earth, and would eventually infest not only God's chosen people who later descended from Adam but also myriad unchosen mongrel peoples who had come to exist on their own or on other gods' whims.

But in the meantime it came to pass that all people everywhere on the face of the earth, descendants of Adam as well as all others, were dreadfully stupid, wicked and sinful, so that the Lord God became exceeding sore and waxed wroth, wherefore He caused a great flood to drown every living thing on earth, including the intractable human pets that He had created in His own image specifically so that they would worship Him and boost His self image. Thus so frustrated, He destroyed in the flood all people on earth except one man, Noah, whom He considered righteous, and Noah's family, whom He then exhorted to go forth and multiply and populate the earth afresh, obviously unmindful of the fact that the evil traits and weaknesses were still there, in the very genes of these His favored people.

After all, the original ancestors of these creatures were created in the Lord God's own Perfect Image and therefore must have had nasty and stupid natures patterned after His, by definition. It is believed that the Lord used His own spit to make mud in the construction of Adam, hence the ancient phrase His "own spit and image", bastardized in modern times to "spit 'n' image" and to "spittin' image" or "spitting image", but at any rate, all of His human creatures must have inherited at least some of the Lord God's own rather nasty DNA, although mongrel strands of less divine origins got introduced early on, but that's not really an excuse for The Purported Supreme Bean and Origin of All, is it?  Hmmm... 

The Lord is perhaps to be forgiven for overlooking that aspect of His creation, for He must have had an awful lot on His mind, what with trying to micromanage the universe, and He obviously hadn't foreseen Watson and Crick's modeling of the structure of DNA. And He obviously didn't have enough knowledge of genetics to realize that starting over again with just Noah, his wife, their three sons and their wives, a total of eight people more than half of whom were blood relatives, that there would not be anywhere near enough of a gene pool to be successful, or, the result would be at best a population consisting largely of idiots and other malformed individuals, almost as bad as his first experiment which began with the smallest possible gene pool which of course was of purely divine origin but then showed flaws immediately and as it came to pass became polluted in short order.

Of course the Lord God had a thing against even rudimentary science from the get-go and threw His first Divine Temper Tantrum (DTT or DTs) when Adam and Eve disobeyed Him and ate of the forbidden fruit of the tree of knowledge.

Now you must look closely at the following scene, Forbidden Fruit/Fellatus Interruptus - Michelangelo, Sistine Chapel, and be thus titillated as well as enlightened:

http://www.allposters.com/-sp/The-Sistine-Chapel-Ceiling-Frescos-after-Restoration-Original-Sin-Posters_i2583127_.htm?AID=817093637

(It is obvious from this picture that the talking snake interrupted Eve while she was administering the world's first BJ, in order to tempt her with the forbidden fruit from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, and it follows that Eve got Adam to eat the fruit by promising to finish the job, because she quickly caught on to the knowledge of what was good for a man.  Note that the snake is a woman, too, and that Adam is more interested in tickling her and getting her to join the fun than he is in eating apples. Of course this all led to God's hatred of women, and punishing Eve and all her female descendants with the pain of childbirth, and punishing all men by forbidding BJs on threat of the sentence of death by stoning and then hellfire for eternity.
It's apparent that ol' Michelangelo got his hermeneutics just right, since down through the centuries the authorities of the Roman Catholic Church have certainly given their blessings to his paintings.  But let's return to our interpretation in Part 1, re the aftermath of Noah's flood...)

So it came to pass that God's new chosen people descended from Noah still had faulty genes inherited from His original creatures who were made in His own image, and thus turned out all over again to be very contrary, fickle, naturally wicked and willfully sinful, stubborn and headstrong, as the Lord God Hisself repeatedly complained directly to Moses, in the Lord's exact words "a stiff-necked people", who, in order to be kept obedient and their heads turned along the not at all straight but rather exceedingly tortuous and narrow path that the Lord desired them to tread, had to be kept constantly enthralled by His miracles, and since the jealous Lord God desired to keep this people for Hisself, He durst not let their attention stray to other gods.

And it came to pass that even after, by wielding a vast array of miracles to whip Pharaoh into submission, He had delivered His people from bondage in Egypt, and then parted the sea for their safe passage and drowned their enemies, yet they failed to remain impressed for long, wherefore when the Lord then fed them repeatedly in the desert by the miracle of daily manna from heaven, they, the Lord's "stiff-necked people", complained about the lack of variety and quality in the diet and demanded of Moses that he either find them a more effectual god or return them to bondage in Egypt, where there had at least been some fish or meat, as well as cucumbers, melons, garlic, etc., whereas in the desert this god provided only the monotony of this incessant diet of trumped-up bread.

And whensoever God took His eye off His people and tried to have a private moment for conversation with Moses in order to concentrate on laying down His hundreds of mind-numbingly repetitive laws and elaborately obsessive instructions for the building of His tabernacle and the preparing and offering of burnt flesh sacrifices to provide for Him a sweet savory smell and a free lunch to His just established professional priests, then His people, whensoever thus left unattended while the Lord God whined in private to Moses, they would go astray and start worshipping other gods and graven images and carousing and making merry instead of paying attention to serious business.

Wherefore it came to pass that the Lord was prone to frequent bouts of petulance and continually whined and threatened His "stiff-necked people" through Moses, and in fits of DTs literally murdered thousands of them with plagues and direct and personal fire as well as opening up the earth and swallowing some of them, in full view of the remainder, in such fashion that no mistake could be made about the fact that this was punishment from on high that came immediately upon Moses' several warnings...like, Here it comes, now take that!...and they nevertheless continued their rebellious behavior.

Indeed, on a number of occasions the Lord God would have wiped them all out but for Moses' impassioned importuning on their behalf, playing upon the Lord's gargantuan ego by saying things like:  Now my Lord God, what would Pharaoh and the Egyptians say?  Why, they'd say that this god was unable to lead his people to his vaunted promised land, wherefore it came to pass that He lost them in the desert, is what they would say.  So, come on, be the merciful Lord God that You are supposed to be, Moses would then say...and the Lord God would back down yet again  

Because he was deemed guilty of a small oversight in protocol, His Magnanimous Maker, in spite of Moses having worked his butt off, denied him entrance to the Promised Land. Before Moses was made to part from them, just before their arrival in the fabled land of milk and honey and while passing on to them a string of laws, Moses told his people that the Lord was not giving them the Promised Land because they were good and righteous, not at all, but only because He had sworn it to their fathers and therefore His reputation was at stake, and, besides, the heathen peoples that He was thereby dispossessing were even more wicked and hateful, so the children of Israel were lucky and better straighten up and fly right. Some of Moses' last words of caution, Deuteronomy 10:16, were that they should "C i r c u m c i s e therefore the f o r e s k i n of your heart and be no more stiff-necked."  So, all you unicornholeologists who call yourselves theologists, take that and hermeneuter it if you can.

Notwithstanding how many might have undertaken that difficult self-cirumcision, it came to pass that God's second experiment in populating the earth turned out just as badly as His first, and sinning and willful, "stiff-necked" in the Lord God's own words, in other words, mule-headed obstinacy continued unabated among the descendants of Noah, until after a thousand or so more years of impotent agonizing over His design failures and uncontrollable creatures, the Lord God in a fit of pique finally had a Super Supreme DT and instigated the sacrifice of His only begotten son (Sacrifice to whom, Himself? Ed.) whom He had sired in a vain last-ditch effort to impress and redeem His chosen people.

But it came to pass that His chosen people, eye witnesses to all His Almighty Feats, who surely should have known the Lord best, were not, and their descendants to this day are not impressed with His purported impregnation of a human virgin.  Like, so what?  Why, the gods of some of their neighbors, for example the Greeks and Romans, had already laid claims to the feat of impregnating human virgins, no big deal, and the resulting offspring had had all too human flaws.  And His chosen people remain to this day unimpressed with His leadership through Moses wandering through the desert to the Promised Land.

It had after all come to pass that the son who issued from the Lord God's rape of a poor human man's virgin intended wife was not much of a chip off the old block, but then to abandon His son and allow him to develop into a revolutionary who would throw the money changers out of the temple and demand of the wealthy that they give everything away, and to turn the other cheek when somebody smacks your face?  What is he, crazy?!  This, after His Father's chosen people had waited generation after generation for a promised victorious messiah.  This, after the Father had taken 40 years, much of it spent huddling with Moses and obsessing over frivolous ceremonial details designed to salve His own ego, 40 years to lead His chosen people around and around in and then finally across a 300-mile patch of sand and gravel to end up in the vaunted Promised Land that He had touted to generations, to lead them finally, as Golda Meir, Prime Minister of modern-day Israel in the early 1970s, complained, "to the one area of the Middle East that has no oil."

So it came to pass that after rejection of the whole schmear of this imposter messiah, rejection by eye witnesses who knew His Purported Father intimately, then came along a geopolitically savvy New Age prophet named Paul, some 50 years after the death of this purported messiah, and Paul dressed up the crucifixion-redemption-salvation idea and sold it to the Gentiles, and the leader of these unchosen mongrel peoples, the Roman emperor Constantine, some 300 years later became convinced that such a system of beliefs would have utility in controlling the masses of people, who had nothing to lose anyhow and needed to get at least a semblance of a life, and thus with their pennies might buy into the idea that professing belief in this swill about a son of God and his death for their sins, taking all punishment onto himself, would then allow them to enjoy sin throughout life and then by confessing to a priest and having their sins absolved just before death, would get them everlasting life in a heavenly paradise in exchange.  And then the monks of this "faith" brewed and offered free beer to attract folks to church!

So it turned out that those who put their faith in this myth in order to be redeemed were an exceedingly mixed mongrel menagerie who had resulted from much begetting among and between all peoples with only traces of God's chosen people.  And it was a good deal for their leaders because by getting the people to believe in the promise of a happy life forever in paradise in the hereafter, they could be more easily taught patience in bearing a slave's life on earth.

Of course the leaders conveniently ignored the bits about giving away wealth and turning the other cheek, and never mind the business of kicking the money changers out of the temple, which never made sense because temples are all about money anyhow, and besides, the leaders would just be collecting back the small change they themselves had paid out to the peasants.

And it came to pass some six thousand (sic) years after this purported creation of the universe and mankind and everything, that it had of necessity to be remarked that if this history all be by God's design and His will, then this god must have altogether inadvertently created evil as well as good (along with a lot of just plain bad, flawed, dysfunctional, sinful and downright stupid people), and that He obviously, even after wiping everything out and starting over, has not been able to correct his, 'scuse me, His mistakes. So that it must be said of this god, who is supposed to be all-powerful and all-knowing, loving and good, but needs your money to help Him take care of the way too many toy and now sick and starving people He created, great guy but just can't handle money, also needs your love, gets jealous and real nasty when He feels unloved, indeed threatens you with hellfire if you don't love Him of your own free will, indeed the best that can be said of this god is that he is an underachiever, and spiteful too.

TOM BRADSHAW  (From the Wall Street Journal)

* * *

 

Rebecca Vitsmun - while in a sea of "God" rhetoric in the aftermath of the Moore, OK tornado - was being interviewed by CNN's Wolf Blitzer

 

When asked by Wolf "Do you thank the Lord?" she quickly responded that she was an atheist.

It's important that our community shows that we have your back when you come out publicly as an atheist. Let's show the world that you don’t need to believe in a god to have human compassion nor does all charity fall under the banner of religion. Let's get this courageous woman and her family back in their own home.

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Bill Maher’s History of Anti-Catholicism 1998-2013

 

March 22, 2013, “Real Time with Bill Maher” [HBO], on Pope Francis: After labeling the pope a “virgin bachelor,” Maher opined, “What other business could you be in where your company gets caught running a child sex ring since forever and you still keep your customers?”

March 15, 2013, “Real Time with Bill Maher” [HBO], on Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI: After displaying pictures of notable persons holding signs mocking themselves, Maher showed a picture of the pope emeritus holding a sign saying, “Not actually sick…I just hated that f***ing job.”

February 15, 2013, “Real Time with Bill Maher” [HBO], on the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI: “Now…as you all know, this week, Pope Benedict told Vatican Radio—you know, Vatican Radio, playing the hits from the 8th century, 9th century and today—Benedict told them he was going to resign because the Church needs a fresh, young face, somewhere other than a priest’s lap.”

“It’s okay to let go. No one can fault you for losing faith in an organization that won’t even allow women as priests, because, the reasoning goes, Jesus didn’t have any female apostles. Yeah, you remember the Last Supper: a total sausage party.

“The fact is that any enterprise that excludes women almost always descends into sexual deviancy. At least at my bathhouse.”

“Show me any culture that’s traditionally hostile to women, and I will show you a culture that is screwed up. Like the Taliban. Like our military with its enormous rape problem. And like the Catholic Church.”

February 11, 2013, “Conan” [TBS], smearing priests: “We found early this year or last year in the Republican primaries when the Republicans made contraception an issue, 98% of Catholics use birth control and the only ones who don’t are the priests. They would if altar boys could get pregnant.”

October 12, 2012, “Real Time with Bill Maher” [HBO], on the vice presidential debate between Congressman Paul Ryan and Vice President Joe Biden: “I have not seen an old Catholic guy give it to a young Catholic guy like that since since I was an altar boy.”

May 20, 2011, “Real Time with Bill Maher” [HBO], on the 2011 John Jay Report on Sex Abuse in the Catholic Church: Maher and his panel of guests discussed the release of the 2011 John Jay Report on Sex Abuse in the Catholic Church. Maher branded all priests as abusers and falsely claimed that the report blamed the 60s for the abuse scandal.

Maher said, “Here is what they found: Not as bad as you think; it magically solved itself one day in 1985…. And the Church isn’t the problem, celibacy isn’t the problem, repressed homosexuality isn’t the problem. You know what the problem was? The 60s… I’m not kidding, they said it was the permissive attitude of the 60s.”

March 11, 2011,Real Time with Bill Maher” [HBO], on a Catholics Come Home ad campaign: “The Catholic Church is changing. We get it. You don’t want us touching your kids. Message received. This chart shows alleged inappropriate behavior toward children since 90 AD. (Chart shows arrow going up every year) When we first started keeping records. We are going to bring those numbers down. We are not miracle workers but here is our pledge to you. You bring your kids back to church and there will be a significantly lower chance that he or she will be inappropriately touched—particularly she. And if one of our priests does touch one of your kids, you will dine absolutely free at Long John Silver’s. We’re the new Catholic Church and we know it’s time to roll up our sleeves and pull up our pants.”

October 19, 2010, “The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell” [MSNBC], on gay priests: “What’s interesting to me is the way conservatives—and I would put the military in this lately in the way they’ve been talking about it and the Catholic Church talk about gay as if it’s something that we really can’t resist if it’s around us. You know, that’s how the Catholic Church talks about it. You know, our priests are not sinning, they’re just giving into temptation when they’re molesting children and going gay and stuff like that.”

September 28, 2010, “Joy Behar Show” [HLN], on having faith: “Religion is all about sticking in fingers in your ears and humming. They don’t want to hear what the reality is. They want to believe what they believe. It’s—it’s not about critical thinking. I mean, faith is the purposeful suspension of critical thinking.”

“I don’t know if anybody could read the Bible and still want to be a religious person. It is a book that is filled with immorality, wickedness, and then just plain silliness.”

September 28, 2010, “Joy Behar Show” [HLN], on the Bible: “But it is a lot of wickedness, there’s a lot God acting like a psychopath and just ethnically cleansing people and wiping people out…. I was pointing out on the show Friday night the Ten Commandments. You know, this is the ultimate list of the ten things right from God and it doesn’t include rape, incest, or genocide. That’s ok. That’s not on the top ten. But apparently swearing, working on Sunday and building statues to other gods, those are the things that are important.”

November 19, 2008, “Tonight Show with Jay Leno” [NBC], on Proposition 8:
Leno: “I don’t know how two people getting married will suddenly ruin my marriage. I was told this will ruin my marriage. If two gay people—how? What does it matter to me?”

Maher: “It doesn’t matter. And of course it’s all coming from religion, which is ironic because Jesus never said anything about homosexuality in the Bible. And, you know, what if Jesus was gay? I am not saying he was. But it wouldn’t make him any worse. I mean, it could be. He was a gentle guy, never got married. Every prayer ends with ‘ah, men.’ I’m just—What? What did I say?”

November 14, 2008,“Real Time with Bill Maher” [HBO], on priest saying he would withhold Communion for people who voted for Obama: “A Catholic priest in South Carolina has told his congregation: if you voted for Obama you can’t receive Communion. That’s right, the cracker won’t let you get the cracker. He said supporting Obama constitutes material cooperation with intrinsic evil. Then he proceeds to pass around the plate so everyone could chip in to pay off the child f***ing lawsuits.”

April 11, 2008,Real Time with Bill Maher” [HBO], attacking pope as Nazi and accusing him of covering up for molester: “And, finally, New Rule: Whenever you combine a secretive compound, religion and weirdos in pioneer outfits, there’s going to be some child f***ing going on. In fact, whenever a cult leader sets himself up as ‘God’s infallible wing man’ here on earth, lock away the kids.

“Which is why I’d like to tip off law enforcement to an even larger child-abusing religious cult. Its leader also has a compound. And this guy not only operates outside the bounds of the law, but he used to be a Nazi and he wears funny hats. That’s right. The pope is coming to America this week, and, ladies, he’s single!

“Now, I know what you’re thinking: ‘Bill, you can’t be saying that the Catholic Church is no better than this creepy Texas cult! For one thing, altar boys can’t even get pregnant.’

“But, really, what tripped up the ‘little cult on the prairie’ was that they only abused hundreds of kids, not thousands all over the world. Cults get raided. Religions get parades. How does the Catholic Church get away with all of their buggery? VOLUME, VOLUME, VOLUME!

“If you have a few hundred followers and you let some of them molest children, they call you a cult leader. If you have a billion, they call you ‘pope.’

“It’s like if you can’t pay your mortgage, you’re a deadbeat, but if you can’t pay a million mortgages, you’re Bear Stearns, and we bail you out. And that’s who the Catholic Church is, the Bear Stearns of organized pedophilia. Too big to fail.

“When the—when the current pope was in his previous Vatican job as John Paul’s Dick Cheney, he wrote a letter instructing every Catholic bishop to keep the sex abuse of minors secret until the statute of limitations ran out. And that’s the Church’s attitude: ‘We’re here, we’re queer, get used to it.’

“Which is fine. Far be it from me to criticize religion. But, just remember one thing: if the pope was, instead of a religious figure, merely the CEO of a nationwide chain of daycare centers where thousands of employees had been caught molesting kids and then covering it up, he’d be arrested faster than you can say, ‘Who wants to touch Mister Wiggle?’”

February 8, 2008,“Real Time with Bill Maher” [HBO], on Mother Teresa: When Maher said, “Mother Teresa, who we found out recently, actually lost her faith,” Bob Costas then said Mother Teresa questioned her faith from time to time; she didn’t lose it entirely. Maher responded, “Well, but it’s Mother Teresa. Kind of like finding out Colonel Sanders doesn’t eat chicken.”

February 4, 2008, “Larry King Live” [CNN], on being an anti-Catholic bigot: “They accuse me of being a Catholic bigot. First of all, I don’t have it out especially for Catholics. I think all religions are koo-koo. Ok? It’s not just the Catholics. I’m not a bigot. Just because I wish for the demise of an organization that I think is entirely destructive to the human race, that doesn’t make me a bigot. I also wish for [the] demise of Hamas and the KKK.”

January 25, 2008, “Real Time with Bill Maher” [HBO], on the Virgin Birth: “But I think it is much more likely that there could be space ships from outer space, than what a lot of things people believe. People still believe, you know, excuse me I know I may inject religion into every show but UFOs are a lot more likely than a space god [that] flew down bodily and you know who was the Son of God and you know had sex with a Palestinian woman…”

January 4, 2008, “Late Night with Conan O’Brien” [NBC], attacking religious faith and the Eucharist: “You can’t be a rational person six days of the week and put on a suit and make rational decisions and go to work and, on one day of the week, go to a building and think you’re drinking the blood of a 2,000-year-old space god. That doesn’t make you a person of faith…That makes you a schizophrenic.”

August 17, 2007,“Larry King Live” [CNN], on the release of his movie “Religulous”: “It should come out at Easter. I would like it out as soon as the time people are celebrating the space man’s flying up to heaven.”

May 22, 2007,“Real Time with Bill Maher” [HBO], attacking Catholicism, mixing it with homosexual themes: “And it’s easy to start a religion! Watch, I’ll do it for you: I had a vision last night! A vision! The Blessed Virgin Mary came to me – I don’t know how she got past the guards – and she told me it’s high time to take the high ground from the Seventh Day Adventists and give it to the 24-hour party people. And what happens in the confessional stays in the confessional. Gay men, don’t say you’re life partners; say you’re a nunnery of two. ‘We weren’t having sex, officer, I was performing a very private Mass, here in my car. I was letting my rod and staff comfort him. Take this and eat of it, for this is my roommate Barry. And for all those who believe there is a special place for you in Kevin.’”

April 16, 2007,Real Time with Bill Maher” [HBO], discussing religion and drugs: “Religion is bad, drugs are good.” On all religions: “Childish, destructive and nonsense.”

April 13, 2007,“Real Time with Bill Maher” [HBO], attacking the Eucharist: Maher showed a pictured of Keith Richards and said, “New Rule, snorting your father isn’t crazy.” Then, he showed a picture of a Catholic priest giving Communion and said, “Eating your father, that’s crazy.”

April 8, 2005, “Real Time with Bill Maher” [HBO], mocking the death of Pope John Paul II: “The Pope may be cold but this crowd is hot.”

“The Pope was laid to rest just as he requested, in a pine box with his drum sticks, an Allen Iverson jersey and then Bono came and poured Jack Daniels on the coffin.”

“People waited in line for 24 hours to see the Pope’s body and when they got to see the Pope they smelled worse than he did.”

“For those who could not make the funeral the Vatican has asked that in lieu of flowers just stop touching your d***.”

“American Catholics say, ‘We love the pope, he should be a saint but he is kind of full of sh*t on everything we believe.’”

“For a church that is so against homosexuals they put on a pageant that you could not believe.”

May 2003, “Bill Maher: Victory Begins at Home,” Maher’s Broadway show:

“What’s the reason for this insanity?” Maher had been discussing Islam. “One word: religion. The Catholics got away with f***ing kids.” When the audience gave a mixed reaction, he said, “Oh come on! Get the rod out of your a**!” He then impersonated an altar boy saying to a priest, “Put some more lotion on, Father,” and said, “Holy lubricant, Father!”

“Don’t regulate drugs: regulate religion. I was raised Catholic and I was not molested. I’m a little insulted. Apparently, I wasn’t attractive enough.”

“The problem is they drill religion into your head when you are very young. Well, when you are four years old you believe in Santa Claus, too. Santa Claus, Easter Bunny, the Virgin Birth, sure! When you’re a priest everyday spewing this bulls*** about the apple and the snake etc. you can see him just saying, ‘Ah, f*** it, just blow me, kid!’”

“It’s so gay, the Church! With the robes and the smoke and kneeling in front of the priest with your mouth open eating God.”

“How does a country get away with keeping half its population in beekeeper suits? I’ll tell you how. They say the magic word: religion. It’s their religion. You say religion, you can get away with anything. The Catholics got away with f***ing kids, for crying out loud!”

June 20, 2002, “Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher” [ABC], on the canonization of Padre Pio: “Pope John Paul canonized him and the reason it sticks in my craw is because it just seems like they needed a saint badly, because they had a lot of bad P.R. with the whole, you know, we’re having sex with kids thing.”

June 5, 2002, “Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher” [ABC], responding to a guest who had said that no one wants to see the Catholic Church go away: “Well, no, I’d love to see the Church go away. And there are lots of people who would.”

May 22, 2002, on “Larry King Live” [CNN], on the Catholic Church: “Well, I wasn’t raised Jewish. My mother is Jewish. But I never even knew I was half-Jewish until I was a teenager. I was just so frightened about the Catholics and everything that was going on there in the church—and I was never, you know, molested or anything. And I’m a little insulted. I guess they never found me attractive. And that’s really their loss.”

May 10, 2002, “Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher” [ABC], on the sex abuse scandal in the Catholic Church: “So it is in this spirit that I offer this modest proposal that the Catholic Church just drop the pretense and just go gay. Just come out of the confessional. Preach the sermon on the mountain. Embrace it. Let the straight people be Baptists. It’s high time you gay Catholics stood up and announced to the world, ‘We’re here, we’re queer, get Eucharist.’”

May 7, 2002, “Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher” [ABC], on sex abuse settlements: “I am not defending the Church. I have hated the Church way before anyone else. I have been pounding religion for nine years on this show.”

March 8, 2002, “Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher” [ABC], on the sex abuse problem: “Before puberty, I would say nobody caused me more pain than the Catholics.”

“I apparently was not attractive enough to be hit on [by priests].”

Jason Jones of Human Life International commented that the sex abuse problem was not prevalent in Europe or South America. Maher shot back, “You’re right. In African countries they rape the nuns.”

March 5, 2002, on “Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher” [ABC], on the Eucharist: Kirk Franklin, a black musician, attacked the Eucharist by complaining “gotta take the cracker.” To which Maher replied, “Gotta take the cracker from a cracker.”

October 27, 2000, “Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher” [ABC], on Christianity and Halloween: “Christianity is grafted from paganism… It’s all about a man in the sky who’s going to send you in a burning lake of fire if you screw up… Which is the perfect description of religion itself.  I mean, what is scarier than drinking the man’s blood every Sunday? That’s not a spooky ritual? ‘Here kids, drink his blood and eat his body.’ Like that’s not pagan? What can be more pagan than that?”

August 9, 2000, “Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher” [ABC], on sex abuse: “Look, it’s a fact of life. Priests, a lot of times, molest boys, okay? They are celibate and it’s a magnet for homosexual pedophiles.”

July 11, 2000, “Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher” [ABC], on celibate priests: “Be fruitful and multiply. What’s more weird than being celibate. There’s nothing more perverted than that.”

March 20, 2000, “Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher” [ABC], on the Annunciation: Maher commented that the Archangel Gabriel didn’t tell Mary she was pregnant with Jesus, he showed her his “horn had turned pink.”

March 9, 2000, “Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher” [ABC], on the celibate priesthood: “Priests are supposed to be celibate. They’re not having sex with women…. Just with the boys.”

March 2, 2000, “Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher” [ABC], on anti-Catholicism in the wake of George W. Bush speaking at Bob Jones University: “Isn’t it amazing that this is an issue in this election? When was the last time you ever heard of a Catholic being bashed? … But when was the last time someone called you a Papist? I mean really, is this really going on nowadays?”

November 10, 1999, “Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher” [ABC], on why many people don’t go to synagogue or church: “You shouldn’t, I don’t think, lump the synagogue in with the Church. They operate very differently, OK. The synagogue—and I’m not Jewish, but I was raised Catholic—was never as corrupt as the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church, which is people, not God running it, OK, hugely corrupt, did horrible things through history, maybe…because they were that powerful.”

“Catholics practice what they want to practice. They go to see the pope because he is a big celebrity, but they go home and they masturbate, they practice birth control…well they do.”

February 4, 1999, “Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher” [ABC], on the pope and abortion: “The pope had his dress up about the abortion issue.”

October 8, 1998, “Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher” [ABC], on the Catholic Church: “But Catholics nowadays are like, you know, ‘The pope says we shouldn’t do this and this, but we really wanna pick and choose the parts of the religion that we feel fits us. You know the pope says you shouldn’t masturbate or have abortions, but that’s fine for him, he’s an elderly man, but for us…’”

(William A. Donohue, president of CATHOLIC LEAGUE For Religious and Civil Rights. March 2013)

* * *

Cheney Marks Tenth Anniversary of Pretending There Was Reason to Invade Iraq

 

In a sombre ceremony attended by former members of the Bush Administration, the former Vice-President Dick Cheney marked the tenth anniversary of making up a reason to invade Iraq.

The ceremony, held on the grounds of the Halliburton Company headquarters, brought together the former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, the former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, the former Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz, and other key members of the lying effort.

Calling the assembled officials “profiles in fabrication,” Mr. Cheney praised them for their decade of dedication to a totally fictitious rationale.

“Making up a reason to invade a country is the easy part,” Mr. Cheney told them. “Sticking to a pretend story for ten years—that is the stuff of valor.”  

Mr. Cheney added that their “steadfast charade had raised the bar for all future Administrations.”

“When it is time to invade Iran or Venezuela, will the President have the will to make up an entirely fake reason to do it?” he asked. “That remains to be seen.” The ceremony ended on an emotional note, as Mr. Cheney placed a wreath on the Tomb of the Unknown W.M.D.

Former President George W. Bush, who was said to be otherwise engaged, was represented at the event by a nude self-portrait.

(Andy Borowitz. The Borowitz Report.  March 19, 2013)

* * *

Position vacant: New Pope Wanted

 

Pope Benedict XVI announced this week that he will resign from the papacy on February 28, 2013, and speculation is rife about who will succeed him. His decision sets the stage for a conclave to elect a new pope before the end of March, 2013, and this Vatileaks posting offers some advice and background information to the candidates contesting the position of the new leader of the Catholic Church. It should be remembered that the successful applicant must be able to take charge of a religion that is sinking in moral bankruptcy, and he must also be able to ignore Amnesty International’s accusations that the Church of Rome has constantly violated human rights. Here are some other requirements for the position of Pope:

1. The successful applicant must be ready to maintain the ancient tradition of protecting the Vatican’s international paedophile ring of thousands of Catholic priests who rape innocent little children, and follow the examples of both Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI in allowing career paedophiles to continue operating unabated in the Catholic priesthood.

2. The new Pope’s first job is the impossible task of trying to attempt to recover the profound loss of faith in all Catholic countries around the world.

3. Candidates should apply for the papal position only after they have securely suppressed the sins of their past with false documentation, and thus be in a position to pretend to be unsullied. As happened with John Paul II, immediately after the elevation of the new Pope, the Vatican’s propaganda machine moved into action, and issued false statements about his past.

4. The new Pope must continue to conceal the fact that the Vatican created a false history for itself, and the Gospels are not collections of biographical facts about Jesus Christ, but un-historic priesthood fabrications. He must also maintain the Vatican’s bitter hostility towards its past being exposed, and not enter into a discussion about the erudite Dr. Joseph McCabe’s famous quote: ‘The Vatican is in the business of concealing its history’ (A History of the Popes, Dr. Joseph McCabe, Rector of Buckingham College (d. 1955); C. A. Watts and Co, London).

5. The successful applicant will need to address the recent political rejections of the Catholic Church in the USA, the Philippines, German, Ireland, the Netherlands, Australia and other countries; the priests’ revolts in Austria, Ireland, the USA and elsewhere, and the international bank regulators constant pressure on the Vatican Bank to cease its money-laundering activities.

6. The new Pope must decline all live TV interviews in case he is asked to produce evidence for the existence of Jesus Christ.

7. Hidden behind secret and complex offshore company structures, the new Pope must subtly expand the Vatican’s massive worldwide wealth of real estate, gold bullion, banks, art treasures, office blocks in London, sports stadiums, casinos, businesses, publishing houses, blocks of flats in Paris and Switzerland, stocks and bonds, that currently totals more financial value than any other single institution in the world.

8. To be a successful Pope, stage-acting experience is an advantage.

9. The applicant must be able to present the Bible as the ‘unadulterated word of God’ without bursting into laughter.

10. A life-time supply of lacy frocks and frilly overlays is part of the employment package, as is the standard pagan ‘fish-head’ papal tiara of Babylonian lore.

11. Like many popes, the applicant must say that his illegitimate daughters or sons are ‘nieces’ or ‘nephews’, and falsely pretend to be pure.

12. As the ‘infallible’ head of the Catholic Church, the new Pope must be prepared to face current and expanding charges of ‘Crimes against Humanity’ directed at the Holy See at The Hague, originally instigated against Pope Benedict XVI that pass on to the new Pope.

13. The successful applicant’s remuneration package includes unlimited amounts of cash, gold and jewels, and a palace in Vatican City resplendent with chefs, servants, housemaids and Swiss Guards for personal protection against his many enemies. A richly-appointed summer palace, the Castel Gandolfo near the Mediterranean Sea is included in the package and comes complete with a swimming pool and a personal staff of around 50 people.

14. He must be prepared for other countries to follow Ireland’s example in shutting down their Embassies in Rome and severing their ties with the Vatican.

15. The new Pope will have a jet airliner available to provide free, unlimited first-class international travel for him and his hangers-on.

16. The successful applicant will receive the key to the executive toilet in the ‘Raphael bathroom’ in Vatican City’s papal palace, and will be excused for vomiting on the Cortina Marble tiles if intoxicated.

17. The position offers exquisite gourmet meals and fine vintage wines free for the remainder of the successful applicant’s life.

18. The victorious candidate faces a growing sense of disillusionment with the Catholic Church as millions leave, and others look at the Holy See with deep skepticism after learning about centuries of falsifications and pre-meditated forgeries in the Christian Gospels.

19. The new appointee to the chair of St. Peter must, on all occasions, pretend to be interested in the concerns of Christian believers, and not spend his days shooting birds in the Vatican gardens as did one of his predecessors.

Applicants are invited to apply in Vatican City in the first instance in March 2013 at the conclave in the Sistine Chapel, and be ready to indulge in offering bribes to the cardinals that is a traditional part of the process of becoming pope.

(Vati Leaks - Thursday, February 14, 2013)

* * *

Palin: Obama Seems To Want To Go Back To The Days Of Slavery

 

Sarah Palin went on Heinity on Thursday to do some sort of to-the-core-of-the-earth analysis of something Obama-related, god knows what, but perhaps hugs? (Hannity describes it as a “sort of bit of information,” which is the closest any conservative has come to admitting how flea-sized this incident is.) And the gist was Sean Hannity asking Palin what all “this” “means.” Something something, Obama’s hug of a guy, “class warfare” and attempts to help the broke suggest that the president is “bringing us back” to the era in which blacks were considered to be 3/5 of a person. It’s true, this — wanting equality, supporting others who do — is a true replica of slavery, you can’t even tell the two apart.

Some of the exchange:

Hannity: Bleebloopityblahblah?

Palin: He is bringing us back, Sean, to days, uh — you can harken back to days before the Civil War when unfortunately too many Americans mistakenly believed that not all men were created equal.

What a thing. What a day. Palin goes on to say (WARNING: CRAP ENGLISH FOLLOWS):

Palin: And it was the Civil War that began the codification of the truth that here in America, yes we are equal, and we all have equal opportunities, not based on the color of your skin. You have equal opportunity to work hard and to succeed and to embrace the opportunities, god-given opportunities to develop resources, to work extremely hard, and to, as I say, to succeed. Now, it has taken all these years for many Americans to understand that — that gravity, that mistake took place before the Civil War, and why the Civil War, had to really start changing America. What Barack Obama seems to want to do is go back to before those days when we were in different classes based on income, based on color of skin. Why are we allowing our country to move backwards instead of moving forward –

Hannity: Whu–

Palin: — with that understanding that as our charters of liberty spell out for us, that we are all created equally.

Incuriouser and incuriouser! Whatever could this white lady be talking about? That welfare encourages people historically deprived of opportunities to continue to not have them? That rich people are more sensitive than others and poor people should be considerate of that? That health care saves people’s teeth from falling out, which causes them to be too elitist? Please let us know, if you know.

(Liz Colwille. May 2012)

* * *

Trump to Hire Tiger Woods' #1 Mistress for 'The Celebrity Apprentice'?

 

Donald Trump has reportedly propositioned the now-infamous Rachel Uchitel, Tiger Woods' numero uno side dish. According to TMZ, Trump, a longtime friend of Woods, asked Uchitel to be on the next season of The Celebrity Apprentice, and she said, "Absolutely."  Of course, NBC will have final say on the cast, but it got us thinking, what if Trump did an all-mistress version of The Celebrity Apprentice? Who would star? We have a few ideas:

- Sandra Bullock's ex, Jesse James' tatted-up lady, Michelle "Bombshell" McGee. She definitely got the "sex sells" memo and could bring that to her business sense for the show; however, she seems to have not gotten that "white supremacy paraphernalia definitely does not sell" memo.

- Former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer's call girl, Ashley Dupre. She knows how to keep it professional -- Eliot Spencer was only "Client number nine" to this business-savvy lady. And she probably doesn't kiss on the mouth.

- North Carolina Senator John Edwards' baby mama, Rielle Hunter. This lady knows how to keep a secret, even one that has a striking resemblance to John Edwards. Plus, she's A-OK with being made to look like a first-class beeyotch. And there has to be at least one on The Apprentice.

- Monica Lewinsky, former President Bill Clinton's paramour. She could pimp her handbag line and possibly help her team formulate a new brand of stain remover. Plus, she looks jaunty in hats. Perhaps she could advise Trump on a fedora to replace his signature comb over.

- Letterman intern/assistant, Stephanie Birkitt, with whom he cheated on his longtime love. Birkitt's boyfriend tried to extort Letterman after learning about the affair--he's now serving six months behind bars (and just scored an Emmy nomination to boot!). And in business (or rather, in shady business), it can be a good idea to have friends in low places, and Steph certainly brings that to the table.

Anyone we left out? Would you watch The Celebrity Apprentice starring any of these women? Who do you want to see star on the show? Sound off in the comments below!

(Jen Harper. Editor, BuddyTV . 2010)

* * *

 

THE ROVING EYE - The Dead Drone sketch



(Hats off, of course, to Monty Python)

A group of journalists attend a United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) press conference in a nondescript room in Langley, Virginia.

Journalist 1 [approaching the podium]: Excuse me, I wish to register a complaint.

[CIA spokesman/spook does not respond.]

Journalist 1: 'Ello, Miss?

CIA spook: What do you mean "miss"? I'm no Victoria Nuland, buddy.

Journalist 1: I'm sorry, I thought this was the State Department. I wish to make a complaint.

CIA spook: We're closin' for now, gotta move forward with our shadow war in Iran.

Journalist 1: Precisely. I wish to complain about this spy drone of yours that disappeared this week in eastern Iran.

CIA spook: Oh yes, the, uh, the RQ-170 ... And your information is incorrect, that was in eastern Afghanistan. What's, uh ... What's wrong with it?

Journalist 1: I'll tell ya what's wrong with it, buddy. It's dead, that's what's wrong with it.

CIA spook: No, no, it's uh ... it's resting.

Journalist 1: In the freaking Iranian desert? Look, buddy, we all know a dead drone when we see one, and I'm looking at one - in Iran - right now.

CIA spook: No, no, it's not dead, it's ... it's restin'! Remarkable drone, the RQ-170, ain't it? Beautiful radar-evading piece of technology, right? Can't tell you more about it because it's classified.

Journalist 1: "Classified" doesn't cut it. It's stone dead.

CIA spook: Nononono, no, no! It's resting!

Journalist 1: All right then, if it's restin', I'll wake it up! [Shouting at a joystick] 'Ello, Mister Dodo Drone! I've got a lovely fresh IRGC [Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps] target for you if you just show ...

[CIA spook hits the joystick]

CIA spook: There, it beeped!

Journalist 1: No, it didn't, that was you hitting the remote control!

CIA spook: I never!!

Journalist 1: Yes, you did!

CIA spook: I never, never did anything ...

Journalist 1: [Yelling and hitting the joystick repeatedly] 'Ello!!!!! Dronie Boy! Testing! Testing! Testing! Testing! This is the god damned CIA calling!

[Thumps joystick on the CIA spook's lectern. Throws it up in the air and watches it plummet to the floor.]

Journalist 1: Now that's what I call a dead drone.

CIA spook: No, no ... No, it's stunned!

Journalist 1: STUNNED?!?

CIA spook: Yeah! You stunned it, just as it was wakin' up! RQ-170s stun easily.

Journalist 1: Um ... now look, buddy, I've definitely 'ad enough of this. That drone is definitely deceased, and when you guys issued a press statement a while ago, you assured us all that its total lack of movement was due to it bein' tired because of its prolonged secret mission.

CIA spook: There is no indication, I repeat, no indication, that Iran shot it down.

Journalist 1: But you're missing a drone. It was on a secret mission. It crash-landed in Iran. And Iran says they shot the bloody thing down.

CIA spook: Well, it's ... it's, ah ... it probably thought it was in the Nevada desert.

Journalist 1: NEVADA DESERT?!?!?!? What kind of crap is that? Look, why did it fall flat on its back in Iran, of all places? By now the Revolutionary Guards must be throwing a party to the Russians, the Chinese, the Pakistanis, the North Koreans for God's sake, so everyone can rip your technology apart, for a price ...

CIA spook: The RQ-170 prefers keepin' on its back! Hey, remarkable drone! Lovely tech features, radar evasion, portable ...

Journalist 1: Look, the IRNA news agency took the liberty of examining that drone after it crash-landed, they discovered that, yes, it was nailed to the soil of eastern Iran. [Pause]

CIA spook: Well, o'course we nailed it over there! If we hadn't nailed that drone down, it would have flown away and VOOM! Feeweeweewee!

Journalist 1: "VOOM"?!? Buddy, this drone wouldn't "voom" if you sent the Navy SEALS Team Six to give it an electric shock. It's bleedin' demised!

CIA spook: No no! It's a trick! It's a top-secret counter-insurgency trick to fool the enemy!

Journalist 1: It's not a bloody trick! It's passed on! This drone is no more! It has ceased to be! It's expired and gone to meet its industrial-military complex maker! It's a stiff! Bereft of life, it rests in peace in a Shi'ite paradise! Its metabolic processes are now history! It's off the twig! It's kicked the bucket, it's shuffled off its mortal coil, run down the curtain and joined the bleedin' choir invisible!! THIS IS AN EX-DRONE!! [Pause]

CIA spook: Well, we'd better replace it, then. (he takes a quick peek behind the lectern). Sorry sir, I talked to our boss, General David Petraeus and uh, we're right out of secret drones.

Journalist 1: I see. I see, I get the picture.

CIA spook: We got loads of bunker-buster bombs though. [Pause]


Journalist 1: Do they spy?

CIA spook: Nnnnot really.

Journalist 1: WELL THAT'S HARDLY A BLOODY REPLACEMENT, AIN'T THAT RIGHT?!!???!!?

CIA spook: N-no, I guess not. [Acts stiff, looks at his feet]

Journalist 1: Well. [Pause]

CIA spook: [Quietly] D'you ... d'you want to go visit the Pentagon and take a peek at their ... contingency plans?

Journalist 1: [Looks around] Yeah, all right, sure.

(Pepe Escobar. December 2011)

* * *

 

My Bad: A Political Medley

After a week of sometimes indignant public denials and insistence that he was the victim of an Internet hacker, a weeping and stammering ... [Representative Anthony D. Weiner] acknowledged at a news conference that he had sent the photo of himself in his underwear to ... a college student in Seattle. 

— The Times, June 7

TODAY, I want to briefly address a private matter. (1) I’d like to take this time to clear up some of the questions that have been raised over the past 10 days or so, and take full responsibility for my actions. (2)

There’s no question at times of my life, partially driven by how passionately I felt about this country, that I worked far too hard and things happened in my life that were not appropriate. (3) I was blind to how arrogant and self-centered I had become; I did not recognize that I thought mostly of myself. The worst part about this is I even tried not to become caught up in my own self-importance. Unfortunately, the urge to believe in it was stronger than the power to fight it. (4) I know that my public comments and my silence about this matter gave a false impression. (5)

I made a serious mistake. (6) I haven’t told the truth, and I’ve done things I deeply regret. (7) I’ve been unfaithful to my wife. (8) That was a mistake, and I deeply regret it. (9) This is no time for evasions, denials or alibis. I fully accept responsibility and I am truly sorry for my actions. (10)

I can only tell you I was motivated by many factors. First, by a desire to protect myself from the embarrassment of my own conduct. I was also very concerned about protecting my family. (11) To all those I have disappointed and hurt, these words will never be enough, but I am truly sorry. (12) I regret the harm that my actions have caused my family, my staff and my constituents. (13)

As an elected official, I fully realize that my life is open for public criticism and scrutiny, and I take full responsibility for the mistake in judgment I made in attempting to handle this matter myself. (14) Over the course of my public life, I have insisted — I believe correctly — that people, regardless of their position or power, take responsibility for their conduct. I can and will ask no less of myself. (15)

I’ve let down a lot of people. That’s the bottom line. And I let them down and in every instance I would ask their forgiveness. Forgiveness is not an immediate process, it is in fact a process that takes time and I’ll be in that process for quite some weeks and months and I suspect years ahead. (16) I do not believe that God tortures any person simply for its own sake. (17) I do believe in a forgiving God. And I think most people, deep down in their hearts hope there’s a forgiving God. Somebody once said that when we’re young, we seek justice, but as we get older, we seek mercy. There’s something to that, I think. (18)

As we go through the process of working through this there are going to be some hard decisions to be made, to be dealt with. (19) I owe a humble thank you to the many people who helped to get me here, and who helped me serve effectively. (20) I am very proud of the things we have accomplished during my administration. (21)

But I guess where I’m trying to go with this is there are moral absolutes and that God’s law indeed is there to protect you from yourself, and there are consequences if you breach that. This press conference is a consequence. (22) I ask that the media respect my wife and children through this extremely difficult time. While I deserve your attention and criticism, my family does not. (23)

Thank you for watching. And good night. (24)  

(1) Eliot Spitzer, March 10, 2008.  

(2) Anthony D. Weiner, June 6, 2011.  

(3) Newt Gingrich, March 8, 2011.  

(4) John Ensign, May 2, 2011.  

(5) Bill Clinton, Aug. 17, 1998.

(6) Gary Hart, Sept. 8, 1987.  

(7) Mr. Weiner.  

(8) Mark Sanford, June 24, 2009.  

(9) Larry Craig, Aug. 28, 2007.

(10) Jesse Jackson, Jan. 18, 2001.  

(11) Mr. Clinton.

(12) John Edwards, Jan. 21, 2010.  

(13) Christopher Lee, Feb. 9, 2011.  

(14) Mr. Craig.  

(15) Mr. Spitzer, March 12, 2008.  

(16) Mr. Sanford.

(17) James E. McGreevey, Aug. 12, 2004.  

(18) Mr. Gingrich.

(19) Mr. Sanford.  

(20) Mr. Ensign.

(21) Mr. McGreevey.  

(22) Mr. Sanford.

(23) Arnold Schwarzenegger, May 17, 2011.  

(24) Mr. Clinton.

(By THOMAS VINCIGUERRA. Published: June 8, 2011)

* * *

Paul Wolfowitz

From Dickipedia - A Wiki of Dicks

 

Paul Dundes Wolfowitz (b. December 22, 1943) is a visiting scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, former academic, diplomat, military strategist, policymaker, and a dick. Wolfowitz served in the Defense and State Departments under Carter, Reagan, George H. W. Bush, and George W. Bush. In 2007, he resigned from the World Bank after an investigation over a promotion he secured for his girlfriend, and the fact that the affair forced people to conclude that someone was, indeed, willingly having sexual intercourse with Wolfowitz.

Personal history

Wolfowitz was born to a Polish-Jewish immigrant family in New York. In 1957, Wolfowitz, then fourteen years old, spent a year living in Israel, as if Israel didn't have enough problems. Even as a child, Wolfowitz was a strong supporter of Israel, and, like many neocons, would channel that passion into a lifelong devotion to screwing up the Middle East.

As something of a dick prodigy, Wolfowitz began attending Cornell while still a high school student. Later, while still an undergraduate, he met Claire Selgin. They married in 1968, after which he convinced her to have sexual intercourse with him at least three times, producing the couple's three children.

The two separated in 1999. It is unknown why it took Claire Wolfowitz until 1999 to divorce, though one possible explanation is that, as a prominent anthropologist, she traveled frequently and was thus better able to tolerate being in a marriage with a dick like Wolfowitz.

In addition to English, Wolfowitz is able to be a dick in five other languages, Arabic, French, German, Hebrew, and Indonesian.

Post-graduate education

After graduating from Cornell, Wolfowitz attended the University of Chicago, because he wished to study with Leo Strauss, the intellectual godfather to an entire generation of neocon dicks.

In 1970, Wolfowitz went to Yale, where he earned a Ph.D. in political science. His doctoral dissertation was on "water desalinization in the Middle East." Though his dissertation did not solve the water supply crisis there, the issue, largely due to Wolfowitz's later efforts, is no longer considered among the region's top problems.

One of Wolfowitz's students at Yale was I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, the dick who later became an aide to Vice President Dick Cheney and was convicted in the Valerie Plame affair.

Professional life

After working in the Carter and Reagan administrations, Wolfowitz became George H.W. Bush's U.S. Undersecretary of Defense for Policy and was responsible for realigning U.S. military strategy in the post-cold war environment, which has been a stunning success. This is known as a joke.

Following the Persian Gulf War in 1991, Wolfowitz co-wrote the Defense Planning Guidance to "set the nation’s direction for the next century." The Bush administration had decided not to move into Baghdad and overthrow Saddam Hussein, favoring instead a policy of containment. Wolfowitz’s plan called for "preemption" and "unilateralism." It is unfortunate that we will just never know how that would have turned out.

After the election of President Bill Clinton in 1992, Wolfowitz left government service and became a private sector dick, until the Republicans regained power in 2000 and reassembled the network of fringe neocon dicks, much like the old gang from Ocean's 11, except with more death, chaos, car bombs, and suffering.

In 1997, Wolfowitz was associated with the Project for a New American Century, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank founded by second generation dicks William Kristol and Robert Kagan. PNAC's goal was to channel the feelings of sexual inadequacy felt by neocons into a foreign policy program. In regards to that goal it is generally thought to have been a great success.

From 2001 to 2005, Wolfowitz served at President George W. Bush's Deputy Secretary of Defense. In May 2001, Wolfowitz ordered the recall of 600,000 military berets made in China, stating "U.S. troops shall not wear berets made in China." Up until then, few knew about Wolfowitz's muscular fashion policy. There has been some speculation that Wolfowitz was also behind the sudden switch to skinny jeans in 2006.

Iraq war

Of the attacks of 9-11, Wolfowitz said: "9/11 really was a wake up call and that if we take proper advantage of this opportunity to prevent the future terrorist use of weapons of mass destruction that it will have been an extremely valuable wake up call." Though many criticisms have been made against Wolfowitz over the course of his career, failing to "take proper advantage" of the deaths of other people's children has never been among them. It is only too bad that the 2,974 victims of 9/11 couldn't have gone through their "extremely valuable deaths" earlier.

Post-Iraq

Having f***ed up the military and political aspects of the Middle East, only the financial sector was to enjoy Wolfowitz's vision and acumen. Accordingly, in 2005 Bush put forth Wolfowitz to be the President of the World Bank. The nomination split opinion. On one side was every sane person in the world, on the other, the Wall Street Journal editorial page.

While at the bank, Wolfowitz's relationship with a bank staffer, Shaha Ali Riza, became public. This was a problem for two reasons. The first: bank rules prohibit sexual relationships between a staff member and a manager, even if the former reports to the latter only indirectly. The second reason: someone is having sexual intercourse with Paul Wolfowitz. Presumably, she would regularly and willingly see Wolfowitz naked. Most likely, she even let him touch her. Sexually. Worst of all, though Riza was in her early 50's when she began dating Wolfowitz, recent scientific advances have made it possible that Riza could even have brought yet another Wolfowitz into the world. This would seem to be in direct conflict with the World Bank's mission of helping to improve conditions in the world.

After an ensuing ethics investigation, Wolfowitz announced his resignation from the bank on May 17, 2007. A week later The New York Post reported that Wolfowitz and Riza had split up, leaving Wolfowitz to satisfy himself sexually, perhaps with images of his handiwork in the Middle East.

(Dickipedia is a production of Huffington Post Comedy)

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The 10 Funniest, Strangest Stories of the Year

Here are the stories from 2010 that most lent themselves to joshing and kidding and ribbing.

Please be advised: the Top Ten Comedic News Stories of 2010 are not to be confused with the Top Ten Legitimate News Stories of 2010. They are as different as Lasagna and asphalt. Ear wax and linoleum. A lunch wagon sink trap and nuclear lab clean rooms. Toe shoes and track cleats. Christian Science Ministers and health insurance seminars. Sure, sure, there were more serious stories involving death and destruction and devastation o’plenty but we tend to concentrate more on those narratives that offer a break from the tension. That allow  us to view the desolation from the lighter side of the vast dark chasm. (. . .) So here they are, the stories from 2010 that most lent themselves to joshing and kidding and ribbing.

10. Dick Cheney’s 6th heart attack. How does a guy without a heart have 6 heart attacks? It would be like Rod Blagojevich contracting a brain tumor. Cheney is so evil, Hell keeps spitting him back.

9. Barack Obama. True to his word, the 44th President managed to unite the country. Against him. Although, the two sides do view him through different prisms. The right sees him as Malcolm X. The left - Urkel.

8. Christine O’Donnell. Delaware Senatorial candidate claimed she’s not a witch. Then the local Wiccan community denied having anything to do with her. Which probably didn’t lead above the fold on her election eve mailer.

7. California Gubernatorial Candidate Meg Whitman. A Jerry Brown staffer called her a “ho” and she went ballistic. “Its an insult to all women.” Nooooo, we’re pretty sure it was specific to you. Spends more than a seventh of a billion dollars on her campaign and still cuts her hair with a salad shooter. Go figure.

6. Glenn Beck. Attempts to reclaim the civil rights movement by holding a rally on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. Because isn’t it about time angry middle aged pudgy white guys got a fair shake from society?

5. Health Care. 2700 pages long. Or 2900. They’re still not sure. Lot of stuff can happen in 200 pages. I’ve read Harry Potter.

4. The TSA’s new search policy. Just direct me to the agent who didn’t volunteer for the gig.

3. Sarah Palin. At Tea Party Convention she criticized Obama for over dependency on a Teleprompter while she had notes written on her hand. Which is a 5th grade teleprompter for people who can’t read fast. Every two weeks there’s something with her. Every two weeks, she erupts. She’s like Republican herpes. And I mean that in a good way.

2. George W Bush’s Autobiography. Decisions Decided by the Deciding Decider. Wherein he talks about how glad he is to be out of Washington. That makes about 310 million of us. Online campaign urges customers to transfer book from Non Fiction to True Crime.

1. BP Oil Spill. Largest pile of toxic sludge to hit American shores since Ann Coulter’s latest book. Brightside: Able to refuel jet ski midtrip.Please be advised: the Top Ten Comedic News Stories of 2010 are not to be confused with the Top Ten Legitimate News Stories of 2010. They are as different as Lasagna and asphalt. Ear wax and linoleum. A lunch wagon sink trap and nuclear lab clean rooms. Toe shoes and track cleats. Christian Science Ministers and health insurance seminars. Sure, sure, there were more serious stories involving death and destruction and devastation o’plenty but we tend to concentrate more on those narratives that offer a break from the tension. That allow  us to view the desolation from the lighter side of the vast dark chasm. Like when Mel Gibson, Charlie Sheen, Elena Kagan and the Chilean miners were disrupted by the Icelandic Volcano from attending the World Cup. A worthy account yes, but alas, not esteemed enough for our list.

(Will Durst)

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 Terrorists.  Go get'em, Interpol!

Dear Interpol:

As a longtime feminist activist, I have been overjoyed to discover your new commitment to engaging in global manhunts to arrest and prosecute men who behave like narcissistic jerks to women they are dating.

I see that Julian Assange is accused of having consensual sex with two women, in one case using a condom that broke. I understand, from the alleged victims' complaints to the media, that Assange is also accused of texting and tweeting in the taxi on the way to one of the women's apartments while on a date, and, disgustingly enough, 'reading stories about himself online' in the cab.

Both alleged victims are also upset that he began dating a second woman while still being in a relationship with the first. (Of course, as a feminist, I am also pleased that the alleged victims are using feminist-inspired rhetoric and law to assuage what appears to be personal injured feelings. That's what our brave suffragette foremothers intended!).

Thank you again, Interpol. I know you will now prioritize the global manhunt for 1.3 million guys I have heard similar complaints about personally in the US alone -- there is an entire fraternity at the University of Texas you need to arrest immediately. I also have firsthand information that John Smith in Providence, Rhode Island, went to a stag party -- with strippers! -- that his girlfriend wanted him to skip, and that Mark Levinson in Corvallis, Oregon, did not notice that his girlfriend got a really cute new haircut -- even though it was THREE INCHES SHORTER.

Terrorists. Go get 'em, Interpol!

Yours gratefully,

Naomi Wolf

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Opinion: Decisions Decided by the Deciding Decider

You have to marvel at George W. Bush's audacious return to the national stage, not to mention his curious timing. After all, there wasn't what you would call an overwhelming popular demand for his reappearance. Apparently even putative war criminals got to make a living. But it's going to take more than one media-blitzing book tour to scrub his image. For that he'll either need another two or three decades of restorative exile or a wire-mesh scouring pad the size of Albania.

Here comes the New Bush, just like the Old Bush. The first volume of 43's memoirs (oh, there will be more) has been released, and, though you know in your heart he wanted to call it "The Great Decider" or "Decisions Decided by the Deciding Decider," cooler heads prevailed at Crown Publishing Group, simply titling it "Decision Points" as told to George Bush by Dick Cheney. No. I just made that last part up. And neither is Amazon bundling the autobiography with "My Pet Goat," but it's a fiendishly good idea.

Not sure who edited this puppy, but odds are that person burned through about four spell checks. Ironically, he's got a long way to go to live up to the standards set in previous Bush family tell-alls, especially the one penned by his mother's dog. Booksellers will surely decide which section to stock the volume geographically. In Dallas, it will go under Biography. In D.C., Current Events. San Francisco, Horror. And New Orleans, True Crime.

To be honest, it's kind of creepy to see Laura's husband plastered all over the tube again after a two-year sabbatical. Like Hollywood rebooting a particularly gruesome series of "Nightmare on K Street" movies. Can't be easy for him either, flacking 512 pages of redacted reminiscences with an approval rating hovering around the level of "go to snake belly and dig," but that's show biz.

This collection of recollections, or, more precisely, lack thereof, is about as revealing as an aerial view of an underground bunker. To say this print revival effort is not big on revelations is like implying moles don't need sunblock. Then again, maybe it's a continuation his own personal Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Then Lie, policy. George Bush and introspection: Not a match. The board goes back.

He does nail a colloquial tone in this tome, leading off with a self-deprecating tour of his storied misspent youth. Then takes too much time whining about the churlish noise of politics, oblivious to the fact that his good buddy Karl Rove is responsible for adding numerous decimal points to the decibel damage. Goes on to speak about how happy he is to be out of Washington, and with all due respect, may I say, sir, that makes 310 million of us.

Throughout the book, Bush clings to the notion that waterboarding is legal and not torture (cuz a guy said so), which should hold a measure of solace to the segment of the book-reading public who would rather be waterboarded than read this unapologetic self-serving hogwash. Although admittedly, compared with other presidential self-chroniclings -- not half bad. Definitely two steps above the expected "I Can Haz Prezidenzy?" Crayons sold separately.

(Will Durst)

(The New York Times says Emmy-nominated comedian and writer Will Durst is "quite possibly the best political satirist working in the country today," and the Chicago Tribune calls him a "hysterical hybrid of Hunter S. Thompson and Charles Osgood."  2010)

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Pope Vows To Get Church Pedophilia Down To Acceptable Levels

 

VATICAN CITY—Calling the behavior shameful, sinful, and much more frequent than the Vatican was comfortable with, Pope Benedict XVI vowed this week to bring the widespread pedophilia within the Roman Catholic Church down to a more manageable level. Addressing thousands gathered at St. Peter's Square on Easter Sunday, the pontiff offered his "most humble apologies" to abuse victims, and pledged to reduce the total number of molestations by 60 percent over the next five years.

"This is absolutely unacceptable," Pope Benedict said. "It seems a weakening of faith in God has prevented our priests from exercising moderation when sexually abusing helpless minors. And let me remind our clergy of the holy vows they all took when they entered the priesthood," he continued. "They should know that they're only allowed one small child every other month."

The pope said he was deeply disappointed to learn that the number of children sexually abused by priests was almost 10 times beyond the allowable limit clearly outlined in church doctrine. Admitting for the first time in public that the overindulgent touching of "tender, tender young flesh" had become a full-blown crisis, the Holy Father vowed to implement new reforms to bring the pedophilia rate back down to five children per 1,000 clergy.

"The truth is there will always be a little bit of molestation—it's simply unavoidable," Vatican spokesperson Rev. Federico Lombardi said. "But the fact that young boys have gotten much more attractive over the past few decades is no excuse for the blatant defiance of church limits that have been in place for centuries. The majority of priests don't want to molest kids at all," he added. "But for those who do, we must make sure they're doing it at a reasonable rate."

Following the pope's speech, the Vatican released a statement outlining its plan to reduce pedophilia. Starting next year, specially trained cardinals will make unannounced visits to inspect and observe random churches in order to ensure they are not going beyond diocese-wide molestation caps. The inspector-cardinals will grade each parish based on long, private interviews with altar boys in darkened church basements, and careful observation of priests' sexual activity. These senior officials will also have the authority to enforce harsh punishments for any clergy member violating his allotment of pedophilia.

"If a priest goes even one child over the limit, there will be hell to pay," said Prefect Emeritus of the Congregation for Bishops Giovanni Battista Re, explaining the Vatican's new "Three Strikes, You're Out Rule." "After the third offense, the offending priest will immediately be moved to another parish. This will give officials time to investigate the case, and will act as an effective deterrent since it usually takes months for priests to gain the trust of the new children."

As a "goodwill measure," Cardinal Re said all churches will also be required to display a sign next to the altar showing the number of days since the last molestation. Criticism of the pope's new plan has already begun to emerge from within the Catholic Church itself. Rev. Walter Moore, a pastor at St. Peter's in Chicago, questioned the Vatican's methodology in calculating the molestation rates, saying the church's inconsistent definition of pedophilia may have skewed the numbers.

"Is it technically pedophilia if the child's clothes are fully on the entire time? What if he's asleep when it happens?" Moore said. "It's time we had some clear guidance from Rome on this issue. For instance, the church counts it as one incident regardless of whether the child is molested multiple times by the same individual or by two priests at once. That's just plain wrong. Plus, if it's supposed to be a special secret between the priest and the boy, is it even any of the church's business in the first place?" he added. "Maybe Brandon is just trying to get attention."

The Vatican would not release details of the pope's upcoming world tour, in which he plans to clear up any confusion on the matter by personally demonstrating what constitutes molestation.

(The ONION. April issue, 2010)

 

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Huge Deficits May Hamper America's Ability to Wage Pointless Wars, Pentagon Fears

 

WASHINGTON -- Mounting budget deficits for the foreseeable future may "greatly hamper" the U.S.'s ability to wage pointless wars, a leading Pentagon general says.

According to Gen. Blanton Creegan, "The days of our invading a country for no reason whatsoever may be at an end." Gen. Creegan adds, "In the past, we were able to start a war with a country simply because we said they might have WMD -- now, we may actually have to check first."

The General says that the Pentagon was especially worried that, given the new budget constraints, the United States may no longer be able to engage in "open-ended quagmires with no end in sight."

"We still have the money to put boots on the ground," he says. "But we can't afford to put anyone in those boots."

"Going forward, we are going to need to have a reason for going to war, a clearly defined mission, and a realistic exit strategy," Gen. Creegan adds. "This could put us out of business."

Reflecting on the waning of America's ability to engage in pointless conflict, the General waxes philosophical: "It was fun while it lasted."

(The Andy Borowitz Report)

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IRAQ WAR SEVENTH ANNIVERSARY – “WE’LL KNOW BETTER NEXT TIME”

 

(. . .) Hey, kids! I know that right now, if you're watching the "news" at all, you're probably neck deep in health care and whip counts and wondering how Bart Stupak is going to vote. But you know what happened seven years ago today? The United States launched a pointless war in Iraq! Not a deficit-neutral one, either! But for some reason, nobody cares about it anymore.

You remember why we went to war in the first place, even? A reminder: it was because the American people were sold on the idea that Saddam Hussein was in possession of weapons of mass destruction. And in a post-9/11 world, that wouldn't stand! The only thing that would stand was crazy over-reaction to everything! Actual weapons inspectors kept telling us that they couldn't find any WMDs -- but that was coming from Hans Blix, some kind of Swedish socialist, and Mohammed ElBaradei, whose name sounds pretty Muslimy! And then Donald Rumsfeld said that absence of evidence wasn't evidence of absence and that there were unknown unknowns and what not, and so we trotted off to invade Iraq on the thinnest of pretexts, and what ho! It turns out that Saddam's awesome military capacity amounted to "occasionally being able to boil some soup."

Of course, that wasn't the only reason we invaded! America needed to show the terrorists that we were serious. But as it turned out, fighting the actual terrorists was hard. But Iraq looked like it would be a cakewalk, the very sort of place where we could execute the vision of Thomas Friedman: What they needed to see was American boys and girls going from house to house, from Basra to Baghdad and basically saying, "Which part of this sentence don't you understand. You don't think that we care about our open society? You think this [terrorism] bubble fantasy, we're just going to let it grow? Well, suck on this. Yes! Let's forcibly sodomize some people who had nothing to do with the 9/11 attacks, to prove our seriousness!

See, we were going to "fight the terrorists in Iraq so that we wouldn't have to fight them here," in America. Nobody could explain why we simply couldn't keep fighting those terrorists in Afghanistan, where they were. You know, it was March when we launched the war, so maybe we were all just really caught up in the NCAA tournament, and we wanted to play the terrorists on a neutral court. Eventually, a microscopic terrorist organization called "al Qaeda in Iraq" sprung up where none existed before. Meanwhile, our actual enemies made their way to safe havens, reconstituted themselves and touched off a golden age of global jihad.

Eventually, goals got grander and vaguer and more impossible to deliver on. At some point, our mission became "spreading democracy" at the tip of a bayonet. We were going to settle Iraq out, create an American ally, and slowly all the bad actors in the region would turn around. It was a pretty, pretty theory -- surely, among the prettiest! In practice however, getting bogged down in Iraq strengthened the hand of the Iranian regime, emboldened Hezbollah and did nothing to prevent the elevation of Hamas in Palestine. (. . .) Of course, we can all celebrate the deposing of Saddam Hussein, a brutal dictator who murdered the citizens of Halabja with poison gas developed from chemical precursors that became available after President Ronald Reagan removed Iraq from the list of State Sponsors of Terrorism. What's harder to celebrate is the way Saddam's ouster culminated in a early morning hanging at which his executors chanted the name of Moqtada al Sadr -- that avatar of Jeffersonian democracy. After the execution, Hussein's body was repeatedly stabbed, in keeping with post-Enlightenment government traditions.

In 2004, John Kerry ran for President against George W. Bush, and the War on Iraq was the key issue of the day. Unfortunately for Kerry, he ran into the little problem of not being able to reconcile his previous support for the War In Iraq with his latter-day opposition to it. So, rather than just do the right thing and admit he was wrong, he attempted to split the difference. Sure, the whole war in Iraq was a terrible strategy, Kerry reasoned, but if America would just put him in charge of the terrible strategy, he would make everything better through the sheer force of his John Kerryness. There weren't nearly enough Americans willing to vote for that nonsense, however, and Bush was re-elected to a second term.

In the years that followed, Democrats stood up and swore up and down that Bush needed to bring an end to the war. We needed a timetable for withdrawal! We needed a hard date set to end the occupation! We needed to take back up the War in Afghanistan, where our enemies were. But the poor little dear Democrats just didn't have the votes to do anything!  Of course, that all changed in 2006, when the Democrats were swept back in to legislative power on the strength of their constant promise to end the War in Iraq. But when the time came to act on their promises, the Democrats completely and utterly punked out, like cowardly little shits, and the war wended on.

I guess I'm leaving some stuff out, like the widespread insurgency, the sectarian violence, the shame of Abu Ghraib, the displacement of thousands of people from their homes, the destruction of a nations' infrastructure, the looting of a nations' culture and many, many thousand of deaths. On the other hand, there was a SURGE! And it demonstrated that U.S. military casualties could be reduced by adding reinforcements. I hadn't thought this premise was the least bit controversial, but everyone talked about the Surge as if they'd just discovered a vein of Unobtainium, or something. Oh, and at no time did the media bother to seriously question the wisdom of any of this, because to do so would mean inviting the reputation-killing charge of Not Being Serious, which would mean fewer invitations to cocktail parties where one could get drunk with Christopher Hitchens.

Eventually, in November of 2008, the Bush administration entered into a Status of Forces Agreement with the Iraqis that finally solidified the setting of a timetable for withdrawal and a hard end-date to the Iraqi occupation. The drawing down of troops is proceeding according to those guidelines, and the Iraqis are holding elections. Of course, bombs are going off all over the place during those elections, but we're not going to let that get in the way of the success we all richly deserve. And now, Thomas Friedman is saying things like, "It's Up To The Iraqis Now. Good Luck". And that is just a PERFECT explication of where the Very Important People In America are at, right now.  Former President George W. Bush's gut instinct that this region craved and needed democracy was always right. It should have and could have been pursued with much better planning and execution. This war has been extraordinarily painful and costly. But democracy was never going to have a virgin birth in a place like Iraq, which has never known any such thing.

Some argue that nothing that happens in Iraq will ever justify the costs. Historians will sort that out. Personally, at this stage, I only care about one thing: that the outcome in Iraq be positive enough and forward-looking enough that those who have actually paid the price -- in lost loved ones or injured bodies, in broken homes or broken lives, be they Iraqis or Americans or Brits -- see Iraq evolve into something that will enable them to say that whatever the cost, it has given freedom and decent government to people who had none. That, though, will depend on Iraqis and their leaders. See, WE DID IT. Even though the actual doing of it was terrible, and people died, and it cost us untold sums of money. But nobody promised it would be easy, except for those who did! Historians will sort it out, in textbooks being cooked up by McCarthy-loving dullards in Texas. We have given Iraq a great gift, and if they cannot eventually overcome the death and devastation and displacement and distrust, well... THAT'S THEIR FAULT.

See, that's the amazing thing: everyone who led the charge into Iraq really believes that they are going to walk away clean from this! Everyone actually believes that it is perfectly OK to have not learned a goddamn thing from all of this.  Well, we'll know better next time.

(Jason Linkins)

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A Hypothetical Invasion of Bolivia

 

Suppose the world had awakened this morning to the news that the Russian army had attacked and invaded Bolivia. Thousands of Russian paratroopers have landed in the country, securing airports, permitting hundreds of Russian transport planes to bring in tens of thousands of Russian soldiers

Despite being badly outmanned and outgunned, the Bolivians, both military and civilian, are resisting the invasion fiercely. Both the Russians and the Bolivians are suffering hundreds of casualties.

When asked why Russia has decided to invade Bolivia, Russian officials respond, “In order to spread democracy, stability, peace, and freedom in Latin America.”

What would be the reaction of the American people? My hunch is that at least 99 percent of the American people and 100 percent of U.S. officials would be angry and outraged. Immediately, U.S. officials would be denouncing the raw, naked aggression and demanding that Russia exit Bolivia immediately. Many federal officials would even be demanding U.S. intervention on behalf of the Bolivians.

My hunch also is that there would be very little sympathy for the Russian soldiers who were losing the lives in the battles. The attitude among Americans would be that they shouldn’t have invaded Bolivian in the first place. Virtually all the sympathy, I think, would be with the Bolivian people, especially those who were losing their lives in the conflict.

Now, change the identity of the invader. This time the world wakes up to the news that the United States has invaded Bolivia. Fierce battles are taking place and both sides are taking heavy casualties. When asked why the U.S. has invaded Bolivia, U.S. officials respond, “In order to spread democracy, stability, peace, and freedom in Latin America.”

My hunch is that the reaction of many Americans would be entirely different. Bumper stickers would immediately appear on cars across the land exhorting Americans to “support the troops.” The following Sunday and every Sunday after that, ministers in both Catholic and Protestant churches would be asking their parishioners to bow their heads in silence and pray for the troops who are in harm’s way, working for peace and defending our freedoms in a faraway land. American soldiers being killed would be mourned and medaled as having died in the service of their country. The Bolivian dead would be called “the bad guys.”

How can we be certain that the American reaction to a Russian invasion of Bolivia would be dramatically different from a U.S. invasion of the country? Two reasons: Afghanistan, which both the Soviet Union and the U.S. invaded, and Iraq, which the U.S. invaded.

(Jacob G. Hornberger)

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FILL IN THE BLANK STORIES

 

It’s easy to get jaundiced covering politics and government after awhile.  So much of what happens in  Washingtonworld is so predictable it’s like the old joke about old jokes. They’re  so familiar someone assigns numbers to them. Even after the historic election of Barack Obama, the collapse of the economy, and the sweeping agenda he’s proposing, the narrative is falling into the old joke patterns. Just for laughs, let’s compile a top 10  list for the comedians here in DC. They appear in no particular order.

1) (Country’s name) erupts into angry ant-government demonstrations , followed by repression. (President’s name) administration spokesmen say the best course for the US government is to not get too deeply involved for fear of scuttling vital, delicate negotiations. (Opposition party) critics bitterly complain on (Fox News) (MSNBC) that President (name) is failing to stand up for American principles.

2) (Name) Bank has paid back federal stimulus money much more quickly than economists felt would be economically prudent.  Although the bank is still receiving (number) billions in federal aid Treasury Secretary (name) put out a statement saying the “pay back is another indication our economic turnaround plan is working”. (Name) Bank officials deny the move has anything to do with executive compensation restrictions attached to government funds.

3) The (Congressional Budget Office) (Independent Budget Monitor) released a study today that estimated the cost of President (Name)’s (Name) Initiative.  The amount exceeded by (number) Billion dollars any earlier projections. (Party) opposition leaders immediately blasted on (Fox News) (MSNBC) the administration for “dangerous fiscal irresponsibility which will saddle our children and grandchildren with crippling debt”. At the White House Press secretary called the report “sobering but added “This just demonstrates the urgency for reforming the broken (name) system.

4) The American Civil Liberties Union has criticized the (Name) national security legislation as a “dangerous threat to civil liberties”. Government spokesmen who refused to be identified because they were not authorized to speak about top secret matters they knew nothing about because they were in no way connected to the proposed bill told the (media name) that the measure is necessary to continue the War Against (name war), and that safeguards are in place to protect the fundamental (name) rights of innocent Americans.

5) (Muslim name) who has filed a lawsuit claiming that his civil rights were violated when he was identified by a government (name the privacy intrusion) sweep, then kidnapped and sent to (classified) by the (CIA, FBI) where he was tortured, will be unable to proceed with his legal action after lawyers for the (President’s name) Justice Department successfully argued the litigation would reveal “State  Secrets”.

6) US military officials in (war zone) acknowledged that (high number) of civilians  had been killed in an attack run by US (name drone) (B-1) aircraft in which (number) ton bombs were dropped on a (school) (mosque). Originally, the Pentagon insisted (low number) had been killed and that all were enemy fighters.  Survivors in the (country) village were bitter and said they would fight “the murderous Americans”.  Defense officials, meanwhile announced a new program aimed at “winning the hearts and minds” of the (country) population.

7) (President) administration lawyers cited concerns that releasing pictures that show American interrogators torturing captives would inflame anger against US forces.

8) Supreme Court nominee (name) issued a statement today announcing (he) (she) would resign from the (gender)-only (name) club after (opposition party) supporters had accused (him) (her) on (Fox News) (MSNBC) of (chauvinist) (reverse) sexism.

9) (Politician) has expressed outrage after (Commentator or Comedian) said that (his) (her) daughter had been (”pimped out) (”knocked up”) (whatever). (Commentator) (Comedian) denied he was fanning the flames of the controversy to improve ratings.

10) (Newspaper) (Radio TV) organizations held still another meeting to try and figure out why fewer and fewer (readers) (viewers) were paying attention to these stories.

(Bob Franken – Franken Sense)

* * *

 

 Pharisees on the Potomac

 

Like cats that have lost their whiskers, the Republicans seem off balance now that they have lost their talent for hypocrisy.

They are still practicing the ancient political art of Tartuffery, of course, just without their former aplomb.

Who can forget the glory years, when the Gipper invoked God but never went to church? When Arlen Specter accused Anita Hill of perjury to distract from Clarence Thomas’s false witness? When Newt Gingrich and other conservatives indulged in affairs with young Washington peaches as they pushed to impeach Bill Clinton?

No one had more flair than W. and Cheney, crowing about making us safe as they made the world more dangerous, and bragging about fiscal restraint while they spent us into oblivion.

Now when Republicans get caught flouting the principles they dictate, they are not able to practice hypocrisy with such impunity.

Loverboy Mark Sanford’s career continued to go south last week as news organizations exposed his two-faced tactics on travel expenses. When he ran for South Carolina governor in 2002, he attacked the Democratic incumbent for “lavish spending” on hotels and planes. Once elected, he asked state employees to bunk together in hotel rooms when they traveled and chastised staffers who spent more than the $208 federal rate.

But, as Politico reports: “He routinely billed taxpayers for high-end airline seats, racking up more than $44,000 on business and first-class tickets. He often stayed in pricey hotels that far exceeded the rates he imposed on other state employees.” On a trade mission to China, Sanford spent $12,000 on business-class tickets, leaving aides in economy for about $1,900.

The religious boardinghouse in Washington where Sanford sought succor from fellow conservatives, where he agonized to pals about his tango with the enticing María, is also back in the news. Affiliated with a secretive Capitol Hill group known as the Fellowship — which also sponsored Bible study and prayer circles attended by Hillary Clinton when she was a senator — the pious dwelling is becoming a tourist attraction, a monument to Republican hypocrisy.

The C Street house, as the flag-flying brick rowhouse near the Capitol is known, serves as a residence and Bible study retreat for many Christian conservative lawmakers. But it looks as if what these guys were praying for was a chance to get lucky.

John Ensign, the Promise Keeper who broke all his promises, resides there. As The Washington Post reported, Senator Tom Coburn, who lives there, had an emotional meeting about forgiveness at the house with Doug Hampton, the husband of Ensign’s mistress. (Forgiveness plus bribery can often do the trick.) Coburn says he would not talk to a court or the Senate ethics committee about the episode because he was counseling Ensign partly as a doctor. (Coburn is an ob-gyn.)

Last week, The Associated Press revealed that the estranged wife of a former Republican congressman, Chip Pickering of Mississippi, had filed an alienation of affection lawsuit seeking damages against her husband’s gal pal, a wealthy former college sweetheart named Elizabeth Creekmore Byrd. The suit charges that as a lawmaker, Chip used C Street as a divine love nest. (. . . )

(Maureen Dowd)

* * *

 

 

Who Is This "Dick Cheeny" Guy and Why Should I Care What He Thinks?

 

I'm using my channel-flicker to flick through the channels today, and I see this 100-year-old grouchy guy named "Dick Cheeny" giving a speech at the "American Enzyme Institute" (?), and it looks like his mouth is about to slide off the side of his face and expose his skull, so I stop and watch.

Lo and behold, the guy isn't speaking about enzymes at all. As far as I can tell, he's talking about torturing people -- namely, that President Obama, who is president, which means he is in charge, which means he decides American foreign policy, which means everyone else can shut up, isn't doing enough of it.

My initial thought was, "Who is this Dick Cheeny guy and why should I give a flying purple goddamn what he thinks?" Do people believe he's important? Because he sounds like someone who lives on the subway and wears origami sailor hats made out of Soldier of Fortune magazines.

As far as I could tell, his speech was actually some weird kind of mouth-yoga where you keep returning to "9/11" position every thirty seconds:

For me, one of the defining experiences was the morning of 9/11 itself. As you might recall, I was in my office in that first hour, when radar caught sight of an airliner heading toward the White House at 500 miles an hour.

Actually, no, Mr. Face-sliding-off, I don't recall that on 9/11 you were in your office (at the RadioShack where you work?). You could have been bussing tables at Applebee's, or stuffing envelopes from home, or drinking a protein shake made of your own bile. How would I know? I have no idea who you are. Why are you on my television?

But then Cheeny started talking about how "rounding up random Afghan teenagers and torturing them in Cuba's armpit has saved trillions of American lives," and "if we let a bunch of scraggledy-bearded douchebags into the American penal system, somehow they'll hypnotize the guards and convert the wardens and build a mustard-gas-Islam-fart-bomb," or whatever, and I started thinking, "Wait a minute, this guy looks familiar."

Then he started in about "dark days" and "gathering threats" and "nefarious enemies" and "the desert-people are scheming" and "even a piece of cheese can be a mighty weapon" and then I remembered:

This is the guy everyone in America deemed a total asshole and decided to ignore about five years ago.

THE END.

(All quotes from memory)

 (David Rees)

* * *

 

Obama Gets Laughs Jabbing Bloomberg, Geithner, Boehner

 

"All in all, we're proud of the change we've brought to Washington in these first hundred days but we've got a lot of work left to do, as all of you know. So I'd like to talk a little bit about what my administration plans to achieve in the next hundred days.

During the second hundred days, we will design, build and open a library dedicated to my first hundred days. (Laughter.) It's going to be big, folks. (Laughter.) In the next hundred days, I will learn to go off the prompter and Joe Biden will learn to stay on the prompter. (Laughter.)

In the next hundred days, our bipartisan outreach will be so successful that even John Boehner will consider becoming a Democrat. After all, we have a lot in common. He is a person of color. (Laughter.) Although not a color that appears in the natural world. (Laughter.) What's up, John? (Laughter.)

In the next hundred days, I will meet with a leader who rules over millions with an iron fist, who owns the airwaves and uses his power to crush all who would challenge his authority at the ballot box. It's good to see you, Mayor Bloomberg. (Laughter.)

In the next hundred days, we will housetrain our dog, Bo, because the last thing Tim Geithner needs is someone else treating him like a fire hydrant. (Laughter.) In the next hundred days, I will strongly consider losing my cool. (Laughter.)

Finally, I believe that my next hundred days will be so successful I will be able to complete them in 72 days. (Laughter.) And on the 73rd day, I will rest." (Laughter.)

(Keeping with tradition, President Obama got a chance to try his hand at stand-up at the White House Correspondent's Dinner Saturday night.  Above is an excerpt.)

 

* * *

 

Cheny starts pro-torture Facebook page

 

In his most aggressive public relations move since leaving office, former Vice President Dick Cheney today established a Facebook page for fans of torture.

In recent weeks, Mr. Cheney has been speaking out in praise of such controversial interrogation tactics as waterboarding, but in establishing his Facebook page the former vice president seems to be attempting something far more ambitious: creating a social network for torture fans everywhere.

"This is a place where fans of waterboarding can meet, chat, and yes, hook up," Mr. Cheney told Fox News host Sean Hannity last night.

The former vice president extolled his torture fan page as a dating site, telling Mr. Hannity, "This way when you go out on a date with somebody you know going in how he or she feels about waterboarding. I think that's important in building a long-term and hopefully loving relationship. It's certainly something Lynne and I share."

But based on the tepid early response to Mr. Cheney's torture fan page -- only he and his wife Lynne have signed up to date -- the vice-president may face obstacles in creating a social network of waterboarding fans.

"I can't think of a creepier place to hook up with someone than a site that Dick Cheney is involved in," said Tracy Klugian, 27, of Madison, Wisconsin. "I'd feel like someone was always watching me."

At the White House, Vice President Joe Biden was harshly critical of his predecessor's remarks on torture, telling reporters, "Dick Cheney had eight years to run his mouth without thinking. That's my job now."

(Andy Borowitz)

 

* * *

 

Sarah Palin's $159,050 Conflict of Interest

 

While you read this, Alaska's First Dude, Todd Palin, is riding a snowmobile -- I'm sorry, snow machine -- 1971 miles from Big Lake to Fairbanks. In the course of performing this awesome feat, his Arctic Cat's powerful two-stroke engine will emit the same amount of hydrocarbons as an automobile driving from Chicago to San Francisco and back 150 times.

A small price for the rest of us to pay to honor the indomitability of the human spirit and one man's ability to sit and hold on.

It's not just a blaze of glory and aromatic hydrocarbon. A conventional two-stroke engine emits as much as a quarter of its fuel unburned, directly into the air. This week, as a participant in the Iron Dog™ snow machine race, Todd Palin will release as many cancer-causing and smog-forming pollutants as a Chevy Malibu driven around the Earth at its equator 28 times.

Seems like a lot of work, just to get away from Sarah Palin.

But Todd's not just doing it because he hates his home life and likes things that make loud noises and emit benzene. He does it because it's there. And for hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash and gifts from corporations who do business with the Governor's office.

For riding a snowmobile.

Something you could train a bear to do.

The Emperor Nero used to clean up at the Olympic games. It was eerie. He won everything. According to Suetonius, he once won a chariot race despite falling off and not finishing the course. That's how good he was. He also never wore the same clothes twice. So he would have fit right in with the Palins there also.

I'm not insinuating anything. I'm just saying.

The total purse value of this year's Iron Dog™ is $159,050. The sponsors include the petroleum giants Tesoro and Conoco-Phillips; State Farm, Wells Fargo, Frontier Airlines, Alaska Airlines and the Alaska First National Bank.

The Iron Dog™ has fewer than 40 entrants a year, and one of them is always Todd.

Does this smell? I'm probably the wrong person to ask. I hate the cold and I think motor sports is an oxymoron. But he is Alaska's First Lady, and Tesoro is an oil company.

Let's say this was Louisiana in the '30s. If Texaco sponsored a pancake-eating contest, and Huey Long's wife kept winning it, there would have been talk.

To be fair, Todd can't win the whole purse.

There are lots of little door prizes just for rookies and women and steak dinners for Cutest Hat. Just like in Jack London days.

And, to be fair, Todd doesn't always walk away from the camping trip with the hundred grand first prize. He's only won four times.

Once after Sarah was elected to the Wasilla City Council, once after she was elected mayor, the year she was appointed to the Alaska Oil and Gas Commission, and the year she was elected governor.

(Chris Kelly. Writer, Real Time with Bill Maher)

 

* * *

 

Obama Considers Tax on Cabinet

 

President Barack Obama is mulling a controversial new tax program that would require members of his Cabinet to pay taxes owed under the Federal tax code, the White House confirmed today.

While the unorthodox tax proposal is reportedly "only in the planning stages," it is being eyed as a possible way to balance the Federal budget.

"According to projections, if members of the Cabinet actually paid their taxes, we could wind up with a budget surplus in excess of $18.2 billion," said Obama economic adviser Paul Volcker.

Mr. Volcker said he strongly favored the plan, but added, "Fortunately for me, I'm not officially in the Cabinet."

But imposing taxes on Cabinet members may be easier said than done, critics of the plan warn.

"Remember, these people are not used to paying taxes," said one White House source. "They are going to be hopping mad about this."

Another wrinkle in the plan is how the taxes would actually be collected, with President Obama reportedly favoring a cash-at-the-door entry fee for every Cabinet meeting.

"If they don't have the money, they don't get in," said the source. "They're not going to be able to just sail into the White House for free like the Jonas Brothers."

When told of Mr. Obama's plan to make his Cabinet members pay taxes, Fmr. Sen. Tom Daschle responded, "Whew! Sounds like I dodged a bullet."

(Andy Borowitz) 

* * *

 

Harman: It's Not My Fault I Couldn't Figure Out Domestic Wiretapping Was Illegal

 

You rise to become the top Democrat on the House Intelligence committee. When you get this position you become part of the elite 'Gang of Eight,' and as part of your intel briefings, you are told that under orders from the president, the National Security Agency set up "unique access points inside the U.S. telecommunications infrastructure." You are assured that this is legal. You are a trained lawyer.

What do you do?

Well, if you are one particular Congresswoman, you don't think that's its highly suspicious that the NSA is operating inside the United States. You don't find a way to research the legality of the program, by getting hypothetical answers from constitutional and intelligence experts. You don't read the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to see if the program sounds legal.

Instead, you wait until 2004 when a reporter comes sniffing around and then you warn him not run a story.

Then, after the story finally runs some 13 months later, you call for the prosecution of the New York Times for revealing the illegality you thought was legality. 

Then you smell changes in the political winds, perhaps get a little curious. Three years after becoming the top Democrat on the Intelligence committee, you finally decide to learn about the history of FISA and learn that it is the ONLY way for the nation's spooks to spy on Americans. You start stamping your feet a little bit in public.

Then you wonder why Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a fellow Democratic Californian congresswoman, passes you over in 2006 for the chair of the House Intelligence committee.

Then you try to defend yourself online in 2008 saying you were not for the program when it was secret and against it when it was revealed.

You are Jane Harman, (D-California).

(By Ryan Singel)

* * *

 

Top 10 Reasons Sarah Palin Cancels the Debate

 

10. Suspicious Russian tourists spotted across the Bering strait in Dezhnevo

9. Wrasslin' a bear

8. Learns Tina Fey will be watching

7. When taken on tour of White House by McCain handlers, is "inadvertently" locked in Cheney's man-sized safe

6. Schedule for memorizing state capitals thrown off by need for new schedule to memorize states

5. Speechless after finally looking up what "MILF" stands for

4. On deadline to finish her book, Namin' Your Baby the Alaskan Way

3. Needs more time to really nail those hilarious hair-plug zingers

2. No matter how hard she scrubs, she can't get Kissinger's moral stank off of her

1. Stuck in traffic on the Bridge to Nowhere

(David Weinberger)

 * * *

 

An Obama Fable – It’s All About the Mood, Dude

 

The Obamarama Campaign Express was roaring down a New Hampshire highway near Nashua when an aide spotted the sprawling No Holds Barred Sports Bar. “Let’s stop the bus,” she urged, “and do some random schmoozing.”

Obama and his entourage poured out of the bus and headed for the front door, over which hung a large sign: “HOME OF THE POLI-BEER: WHERE BOOZE, POLITICS AND SPORTS MIX IT UP!”

Inside the packed bar, the guys and gals were gathering for the Big Game to start. Before the game, however, there was an hour for political talk time. Their eyes widened in amazement when they saw Barack, bounding through the doorway with his secret service detail.

The bar had a big pit, with a huge crackling fireplace, where the patrons have their regular give and take. Obama was ready for some of that.

He started: “I stand for change. They said we set our sights too high in Iowa. They said now is not the time. I proved the cynics wrong in corn country and I’ll prove them wrong in the granite state. To show you I mean it, no speech, go at me. Our time for change has come.”

Guy number one - ”Ok, Barack, you’re going for the power in the Big House, the big companies already have the power, how ya gonna make us little people powerful?”

Obama - ”Stay tuned. One leap at a time. We are one people. Get me there first.”

Gal number one - ”You say, CHANGE, well how are you going to cut the bloated military budget full of vast waste, fraud and abuse, when you’ve specifically said you’ll ‘expand and modernize the military?’ Why, it’s already half or more of the government’s operating budget, squeezing programs for children, health and all that. I’m an accountant and I know numbers.”

Obama - ”Exactly. Our time for change has come. I’m going to change the old weapons with new weapons and the old soldiers with the new soldiers. That’s real change-at the grass roots.”

Guy number two - ”You don’t seem to have any rough edges, Barack.”

Obama - ”It’s all about the mood, dude.”

The crowd was getting agitated and the questions came faster and faster.

“Why are you for nuclear power with taxpayer guarantees?”

“Will you oppose Congress getting pay raises, pensions and health insurance until the American people get the same?”

“Do you favor repealing the anti-union nightmare-the Taft-Hartley Act of 1947?”

“How can you talk about change and take gobs of campaign money from the big corporate lawyers and bosses?”

Obama, smiling: - “It’s ALL about the mood, dudes. All the rest are details you can look up on my website-obama_is_us.org. We are choosing hope over fear.”

Gal number two - ”Ok, answer this one that probably isn’t on your website. When are you going to meet with Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton and campaign in the black ghettos-say Harlem or Watts?”

Obama - ”Whoaa, give that tough lady a Poli-beer on me! We are one nation.”

Guy number three (with an Obama face mask) -”I’m the old Obama, remember me? I was for single-payer, full medicare for everyone. I was strongly for Palestinian rights and for replacing NAFTA and WTO, not for tweaking them. I was for taxing the super-rich and defending class actions. I was for capping credit-card and loan shark interest rates. What happened to me?”

Obama - ”Well, didn’t I tell you that I stand for CHANGE?”

Gal number three - ”You seem to be for everyone, but not everyone is for everyone. Some are against everyone. Tell me, are the big corporations, the greedy defense contractors, drug, oil and insurance companies, starting to quake in their boots at the thought that you are now the front-runner?”

Obama, lifting his chin - ”Well, Ma’am, we haven’t ordered our seismometer yet.”

Oooohs and boos float around the pit. A few start drifting away.

Guy number four - ”You’re one of those smart Haavard lawyers, Barack. You were a constitutional law teacher. You were against the illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq. So, why aren’t you putting two and two together-impeachment of the war criminals in the White House followed by conviction in the Senate?”

Obama - ”You don’t understand (testily), impeachment talk is just more of the same old Washington politics. I stand for change. No need to point fingers. We are one people.”

Gal number four - ”Hello, Barack. I’m Hermaphrodite and I luv your blended politics of harmony.”

Obama - ”Great! Then how about a quick dance around the bar before we have to leave,” he said, humming to the tune of the Battle Hymn of the Republic - ”We are choosing unity over division, we’re sending a powerful message, that change is a coming to America, it is all about the mood, dude…”

(Ralph Nader)

* * *

 

 

Hello, God?  It's me, Dubya!

 

 

Are you there, God? It's me, George W. Come in, Almighty. Do you read me? It's about 8:00 pm and it's just after my last bubble bath of the day and here I am again, kneeling here in the Oval Office all by myself in my most favoritest PJs, the funny ones with the little M-1 tanks and baseball players all over them. I gots some problems, Lord.

 

Look, I've done everything you asked. I've been good. Haven't I? I take the message to the people, don't I? I spout that evangelical born-again crap in pisswater Podunk conservative churches across this burned-out fear-drunk nation like I was emceeing a freakin' rodeo in Crawford. And they eat it up, Lord. They eat that stuff up. Hell, I even believe a lot of that fire-breathin' Second Comin' evildoer-hatin' stuff myself.

 

And looky here! Look how much dough I induce those evangelical suckers to cough up into the coffers of the GOP (that's God's Own Party -- just for you, Lord!). Doesn't that cut me a little slack for when I skip over the part where Jesus says "Blessed are the peacemakers?"

 

Or when he says to turn the other cheek? Or love thy enemies? Or when the Bible says, "The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control"? Or any of that other pointless pacifist hippie junk?

 

I mean, forgive me 'cuz I know your boy Jesus was great and all, but did he have the Carlyle Group breathing down his neck, screaming for more war profits? Did he have a million neat-o bombs at his instant disposal? Did he have Rummy scowling down his hawkish nose at him during naptime? No, he did not.

 

Look. I behave. I never have sex and I hate that sicko porno gay pagan naked sexual stuff, and to this day I'm damn proud that those disgustin' dildo thingies are still illegal in Texas.

 

Heck, I even want to change the freakin' U.S. Constitution to prevent them icky gays from ever gettin' legally married and thus soiling the precious institution of uptight heterosexual man-woman Christian marriage counseling. I want to codify right-wing homophobia, Lord! Don't that count for somethin'?

 

Hell, I'm a former raging alcoholic who stopped binge drinking years ago (I attributed it to you! Remember?) 'cuz I got so drunk I fell into a fever dream wherein I coulda swore I saw Jesus chattin' with Buddha and Shiva and Allah and Isis, and they was all sighing and shaking their heads and agreein' to send me back in the next life as a smelly tree fungus. And that can't be good.

 

Remember, Lord, back in the '00 debates when they asked me to name my favorite philosopher, and I said, "Jesus"? Remember how cheesy and obnoxious and cop-outy that was, given how Jesus was actually the Original Liberal and given how everyone knows I haven't read a single "real" philosopher of any note since they made me stand up in Philosophy 1A back at Yale and read a passage from that pagan homo Plato guy when I could barely focus due to all the gin? Wasn't that good?

 

We bombed them nasty Iraqis in Your name, Lord! Afghanis, too! Hell, I've even gone so far as to tell anyone who'll listen that it was your very will that we invade those countries, that you were pretty much speaking to me, through me, when I told General Whatshisname to go ahead and bomb the living crap outta them evil evildoers and never you mind the women and babies you just git me some war on terror, beeyatch! Whoops, sorry.

 

Oh, I know what them liberals say, that your son Jesus Christ was a card-carrying pacifist, hated war and hated bloodletting and hated hate. But damn, your boy certainly didn't know about the price of crude, you know? I mean, a Christian's gotta do what a Christian's gotta do to fuel up the SUV and keep the Saudis happy and keep the Lockheed stock from steppin' in a financial cow pie, am I right, Lord? Can I get a "Hell yeah"? Whoops, sorry again.

 

Lord, I just don't understand. I know I'm not much of a businessman, or a leader, or a public speaker, or a humanitarian, or a foreign-policy expert, or a lover of nuance, or a deep thinker, or much of anything positive or life affirming that anyone can name, really. But I'm a darned nice guy. A "decent man." This is what everyone says. And I thought we had a deal.

 

I thought we had an understanding that if I took my narrow hypocritical bloody misinterpretations of the Good Book's teachings and spread them all over this planet like Johnny Ashcroft anoints himself in Crisco every night, I thought if I mocked the separation of church and state at every turn and brought a twisted version of your Word to the huddled masses who weren't blessed enough to be in me and my daddy's tax bracket, you'd sorta, you know, help me out a little.

 

Like, maybe you'd finally get this ugly Iraq quagmire thing taken care of for me. Maybe get those scary godless Islamic peoples to see the born-again light. And maybe in the process guarantee me a first-class seat on the glory train to salvation? Or at least a friggin' second term?

 

Hello? Lord? You still there? God's Own Party, remember? We're all about you, baby. Except for the blood and the tortures and the warmongering and the homophobia and the misogyny and the raping of Your glorious planet on a daily basis. Besides that, you rock!

 

So, again, before I rush off to bed so Laura can read me another page of "Goodnight Moon," I just gotta ask: What gives, Sir? I pray every night that you'll smite my enemies and hold back the heathen liberals and Democrats and also them idiot environmentalists, the ones who want to protect the forests and clean up the air and save the freakin' whales, when, hellfire, I ain't seen a whale here in D.C. since Teddy Kennedy cannonballed in Senator Leahy's pool. Haw! See? I still got my God-given sense o' humor! People love that hokey Texas crap! Bless me, Jesus!

 

But nothing seems to be working anymore. S'cuze my French, Lord, but dammit, why you lettin' that cheap Catholic wanna-be Kerry hone in on me? Why is that commie Michael Moore's 9/11 movie so damn successful, despite all of Uncle Dick's promises that the party would shut it down? Why is my "easy" little war only getting worse, and bloodier, and more confusing, and why is it giving me rashy itches in my nether parts? Why are my approval ratings slipping down lower'n an altar boy's pants in a Catholic rectory?

 

Don't you approve of my religious zealotry? Of how we slam Islam every day? Didn't you like it when I let Gen. William Boykin say, when talkin' about hammering them nasty Iraqis, that "my God is much bigger than their Allah," and it got splashed all over the Arab media? Two million Muslims hate me like a cancer, Lord! If that don't get me some bonus points in your book, I don't know what does.

 

And yet you're still lettin' scandal after scandal stain my pure, holy name. Rummy and his rape and torture, Wolfie and his Chalabi, Cheney and his Halliburton, Ashcroft and his Guantánamo Bay, Powell and his vial of anthrax, Rove and his very existence. Why, it's a gul-dang rogue's gallery of beady-eyed mean-ass misprision! Hey! Check it out! I said a neat word! Misprision! I wish I knew what it meant. You hafta save me, Lord. You have to pump up my poll ratings, get the damned liberal media off my back (but not Fox News! Never them), make the people believe again.

 

See, they're not falling for the fear crap quite so much anymore. The bogus Orange Alerts and terror warnings ain't having the same effect. They're seein' through the dumb-guy schtick. They ain't buying any of the 1,001 reasons we made up to launch war on Iraq. Seems most 'Murkins don't really like being internationally loathed, disrespected, mocked, being made into a sad global joke. Go figger.

 

Maybe it'll help when we "capture" Osama bin Laden just before election time, when we finally "discover" him in a remote hilltop cave deep in Afghanistan -- a.k.a., a secret basement somewhere in Jersey where we've had him stashed for months for just this occasion. You think that'll help? Rove says it's a lock. I ain't so sure.

 

I guess that's it for now, Lord. I'm getting' sleepy from all this hard thinkin'. Thank you for listening, Lord. I know you're up there, right now, waving a little American flag and admiring your NRA lifetime membership plaque and voting Republican and givin' them icky gay people some nasty STDs and completely ignoring the rest of this big scary unpronounceable planet. Gul-dang heathens!

 

You're the best, Lord. Bless me, one more time, OK? I'm gonna need it.

 

(Mark Morford. SF Gate)

* * *

 

Conservatives try to sabotage McCain's loss by asking Sarah to drop out
 

Sarah Palin, we are a better website because of you.

Kathleen Parker, a conservative columnist for the National Review Online, is calling for Sarah Palin to drop out of the race.

"Palin can save McCain, her party, and the country she loves. She can bow out for personal reasons, perhaps because she wants to spend more time with her newborn. No one would criticize a mother who puts her family first."

Sarah, darling, don't listen to that nasty slut Kathleen Parker. She has an ulterior motive- she's trying to get McCain in the White House. I'm not.

Seriously, Sarah Heath Palin, I can't live without you. Like Paulson to Pelosi, I'm on my knees, begging you to be my partner in comedy until Nov 4th, when Barack Obama sends you and the entire GOP back to Wasilla with gift baskets of condoms and rape kits.

Every word that shoots from your sarcastic yet uninformed mouth is a gift from God. (Or a witch!) And Sarah, you head my favorite family since the Brady Bunch. The adorably miserable Bristol, soldier-boy Track and his coke habit, the Christchild Trig, Piper the licker and Willow, the mysterious one. Don't get me started on the Eskimo husband Todd who keeps puttin' it in ya after all these years. Do you know how many Palin stories we've done? 234. Whoops, this one -235. Never mind. The number rises quicker than the debt clock.

Just today, new video emerged of your swimsuit walk in the Miss Alaska competition. Yes, you were a runner up in Miss Alaska, and yes, you will lose Miss Vice-President, but 23/6 has a more impressive crown, Miss Internet Traffic.

(Posted by: Laurie Kilmartin)

* * *

 

Prank call

[phone rings]

 
Palin: This is Sarah.

Avenger: Uh, yeah, uh, Governor Palin. . .

Palin: Hello!

Avenger: Just hold on for Sarkozy, one moment.

In the background, Palin: [Oh, it's not him yet (unintelligible) I always do that]

Avenger: Yes, yes, hello, governor

In the background, Palin: [I'll just have people hand it to me right when it's]

Avenger: Yes, hello, misses governor?

Palin: Hello, this is Sarah, how are you?

Avenger: Fine and you, this is Nicolas speaking, how are you?

Palin: Oh, so good, it's so good to hear you [giggle] thank you for calling us.

Avenger: Oh, it's a pleasure

Palin: Thank you sir. We have such great respect for you, John McCain and I. We love you, and thank you taking a few minutes to talk to me.

Avenger: I follow your campaigns closely with my special campaign adviser [not sure what name he says here] you know.

Palin: Yes, good.

Avenger: Excellent, uh, are you confident?

Palin: Very confident, and we're thankful that polls are showing that the race is tightening, and. . .

Avenger: Well, I know very well that the campaign can be exhausting, how do you feel right now my dear?

Palin: I feel so good. I feel like we're in a marathon, and at the very end of a marathon, you get your second wind, and you plow through the finish...

Avenger: You see, I got where I am in France because I'm real, and you seem to be someone who's real as well.

Palin: Yes. [giggle] Yeah. [giggle] uh, heh, Nicholos, we so appreciate this opportunity. . .

Avenger: You know, I see you as a president one day, you too. . .

Palin: [giggle] Maybe in 8 years.

Avenger: Well, uh, I . . . for you. You know, we have a lot in common because personally one of my favorite activities is to hunt too.

Palin: Oh, very good, we should go hunting together.

Avenger: Exactly, we should go try hunting by helicopter like you did, I never did that. Like we say in France [something in French]

Palin: I think we'd have a lot of fun together, as we're getting work done -- We can kill two birds with one stone that way

Avenger: I just love killing those animals, mm mm, take away life that is so fun.

Avenger: I'd really love to go as long as we don't bring your Vice President Cheney [laugh]

Palin: No, I'll be a careful shot.

Avenger: Yes, see, you know we have a lot in common also because except from my ass I can see Belgium, that's kind of ...

Palin: Well see, we're all next door to countries that we need to be working with, yes.

Avenger: Some people said in the last days that you weren't unexperienced enough in foreign relations, and you know, that's completely false. That's the thing I said to the prime minister of Canada
Steph Carse. . .

Palin: Well, he's doing fine too, and Yeah, when you come into a position underestimated, it gives you an opportunity to prove the pundits and the critics wrong, you work that much harder. . .

Avenger: I was wondering because you are so next to him, one of my good friends also the prime minister of Quebec Mister [Franc Ouvrier?] has met him recently did he come to one of your rallies

Palin: I haven't seen him at one of the rallies, but it's been great working with the Canadian officials in my role as governor. We have a great cooperative effort there as we work on all of our resource development projects. You know, I look forward to working with you and getting to meet you personally and your beautiful wife, oh my goodness, you added a lot of energy to your country with uhm with that beautiful family of yours.

Avenger: Thank you very much. You know my wife Cécilia would love to meet you, uh, you know, even thought she was a bit jealous today that I was supposed to speak to you today.

Palin: Well, give her a big hug from me.

Avenger: You know my wife is a popular singer and a former top model, and she is so hot in bed, she even wrote a song for you.

Palin: Oh my goodness, I didn't know that.

Avenger: Yes, in French it's called [says something in French] or if you prefer in English, Joe the plumber, [singing] it's his life, Joe the plumber...

Palin: Maybe she understands some of that unfair criticism, but I bet she is such a hard worker too, and she realizes you just plow through that criticism, and. . .

Avenger: To be sure, I don't quite understand the phenomenon Joe the plumber, that's not your husband?

Palin: That's not my husband, but he's a normal American who just works hard and does not want government to take his money.

Avenger: Yes, yes, I understand, we have the equivalent of Joe the plumber in France, it's called [says something in French]

Palin: Right, that's what it's all about, is the middle class, and government needing to work for them, you're a very good example for us here.

Avenger: Uh, I see a bit about NBC even Fox News was not an ally sorry about as much as usual.

Palin: Yeah, that's what we're up against.

Avenger: I must say Governor Palin, I love the documentary they made on your life, you know uh, Nailin' Palin. . .

Palin: Oh good. Thank you. Yes.

Avenger: That was really edgy.

Palin: Uh, well good. [giggle]

Avenger: I really loved you, and I must say something also governor. You've been pranked. By the Masked Avengers. We are two comedians from Montreal.

Palin: Ohhhh, have we been pranked? And what radio station is this?

Avenger: This is for CKOI in Montreal.

Palin: In Montreal? Tell me the radio station call letters.

Avenger: C-K - hello?

[unintelligible talking in the background]

Avenger: If one voice can change the world for Obama, one [unintelligible] can change the world for McCain.

[unintelligible talking in the background]

Palin's staff member: I'm sorry, I have to let you go, thank you.

 

 * * *

 

 I can fly this plane just fine, darn it!

 

Why, hello there, folks! May I call you "folks"? I'll be your pilot today. What? Am I "qualified" to fly this jalopy? You betcha! Why? Because I'm a mom, that's why. No, I don't know what all these switches and handles and whatnot are. I don't CARE what they are, to tell ya the truth. The important thing is that I'm ready, I'm willing, and (wink) I'm eager as heck to get the job done! THAT'S what matters.

Doncha think? O-kay then. Here we go!

Whoops! Whew. That's a lotta noise. And just a teeny bit of fire back there. But what the heck, right? It's fuel, and energy happens to be my specialty.

What? Who's that fella yellin' over the radio? Air traffic control? Well, who the heck cares? No, honestly, really: Who cares? I sure as heck don't, and I don't think my passengers do either.

What's my heading? What's my heading? We're on the right track and we know where we want to go, that's for darn sure.

No, I'm not going to give you my "bearings," or whatever it is you call those little numbers. Look here, Buster, I might not answer those questions the way you or the other pilots might like. But you know what? I'm going to talk straight to my passengers here, without the filter of any darned air traffic controllers or FAA or whatever the heck you all are calling yourselves now.

I mean, how good can you all be at your jobs, anyhoo? There are just heck of a lot, I mean a HECK of a lot of plane crashes all the darn time. So real people like me and my passengers figure it's time for some fresh air in this whole flying business anyway.

What? What are you saying there in your fancy-dancy tower down there? We don't have towers like that on Main Street in Wasilla, buster, you can bet your life. Nope. Just a whole heck of a lot of common sense, which is all too rare in this world today, doncha think?

And don't you think that if I can handle a crying baby and ban a book and milk the federal government for all the pork my little town can hold then I can fly your darn little airplane, for crying out loud?

What? are you TALKING again? Saying that most crashes are due to pilot error? Like, because the pilot didn't KNOW stuff?

There you go again with your LOOKING BACK. We'd rather look FORWARD where I come from. But then, heck, I guess that's just the darned difference between you and us, isn't it? But you're a good talker, though. I'll give ya that.

Why aren't I changed my heading to zero-one-niner as instructed? Because I'm the mommy, that's why, Mr. Smarty-Pants. I think I've got enough sense to know when to turn a darn airplane.

What's that? Raise flaps? Raise FLAPS? Raise flaps or we'll CRASH? There you go again, raising the white flag of surrender just when we ....

..... [static] ...

Wait. Wait. Team, I think we found a couple survivors. They're in critical condition -- looks like they'll need surgery right here at the crash site. But a routine depressurizing of the skull should save this guy's life. Can we get the neurosurgeon over here stat? Here she is. Thank God. We got the expert here just in time.

Oh, heck. Ouch. That's gotta hurt, right? No, I didn't go to any fancy-dancy medical school but I'm a Mom so believe-you-me I've seen a booboo or two in my day and if somebody around here just has a sharp thimgamajig we'll have you fixed up in a jiffy. Don't worry. This won't hurt a bit!

(RJ Eskow)

* * *

 

Palin Offers Thankfulnesses

 

In order to celebrate Thanksgiving, Alaska Governor Sarah Palin today issued what she called "my list of thankfulnesses":

(Andy Borowitz is a comedian and writer whose work appears in The New Yorker and The New York Times, and at his award-winning humor site, BorowitzReport.com.)

 

* * *

 

Interview With God: God Returns! America Saved!

Supports Bush 100 Percent

 

God has returned to America.

His interest in this nation and its people is the subject of much discussion here in this country mainly from those disgruntled Americans who, in the 2004 national elections, lost to God’s choice, President George W. Bush.

Anyway, the losers can’t figure out why God cares about this place.

After all, they say, Earth is located in the outer realm of the Milky Way galaxy—the Orion Arm to be exact---along with the 100 billion stars and billions of other objects that make up the Milky Way. The Milky Way is one of at least 125 billion other galaxies that are known at the present time. All of which is to wonder why God bothers with Americans and, more interestingly, how God covers the unfathomable distances between galaxies.

God consented to an interview on this matter and visited me at my home in Virginia.

As for travel, God said that it has to do with String Theory, multiple dimensions and changing space. On his enthusiasm for America, God claimed that the most faithful are the most malleable -- an American trait he likes--and it’s easier being God when there are a majority of unquestioning subjects. And besides, God said he likes the support he is getting in the USA these days and figures that the separation of church and state will finally end under President George W. Bush.

God is Fashionable, Can Bench Press a Galaxy

God is as white as fresh snow, wears a flowing sparkling gown, a well trimmed white beard, and holds a golden staff. In short, he looks like Gandalf in the Lord of the Rings series.

God is 12 feet tall and 1000 pounds of solid muscle. He can bench press a galaxy while at the same time willing the creation of millions of different species on planets all over the universe

And, of course, he is proficient in the use of all types of firearms. God points out that he has multiple personalities just as the universe has multiple dimensions and that he really is the One God.

For example, in America he is the Judeo Christian God and in other countries he could be Allah, Brahma or Buddha. God said that he is like a Swiss Army Knife -- multifunctional for all occasions. He said there are billions of species like us but that “the Americans have impressed me with their audacity to think I’m on their side.”

Why has God paid a visit to America?

Polls show that over 90 percent of Americans believe in God. In the early 1950’s they inscribed In God We Trust on all their currency to show the Communists of the day that they were not atheists. In times of national crisis such as 9/11 or the attempted removal of “under God” in the American Pledge of Allegiance, Americans will gather together in public to sing God Bless America or recite the Pledge with an ending emphasis on Under God. And God said he is most pleased that 70 percent of Americans believe that Darwin and Wallace’s Theory of Evolution is false.

Creationism “is the way to go” he said. He is thrilled that many US Senators and Congressmen are introducing legislation on God’s behalf and that President Bush authorized the filing of legal briefs in support of displaying the Ten Commandments in public institutions.

God Discovers Pentagon Plot, Endorses Cycle of Violence

God was not pleased with the two-earner trend in America. He said that women need to be home with the children because “you don’t want those strangers in day care guiding your children.”

God was visibly upset over the subject of abortion, gay marriage, and the sexification of America. He indicated that the country needed to be purified of these sins and that he had confidence in the good people running America would set things straight. He noted that there was some merit in women in the USA wearing burkas in public or at least veils.

God joked about Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld’s plot to drug him and extract information on the technology he uses to traverse the vast distances of the universe. “Rumsfeld and the Flag Officers over in the Pentagon thought they could develop me as a weapons system,” he said. “I just love that American attitude, by golly”.

But admire that attitude as he did, God said that Rumsfeld and his plotters had crossed the line and that, “at this moment they are no longer relevant.” Later I learned that Rumsfeld was giving one of his “stuff happens” briefings and it was being televised on national television. The videotape showed that Rumsfeld was in mid-sentence “freedom is…” and then, poof!, he was gone. Rumsfeld’s opponents called it a miracle but I was saddened because there was no better liar and ruthless Washington, DC operative than Rumsfeld. I admired his clarity of purpose. But, God had his reasons and who was I to argue with him.

The elimination of the plotters led God to say that there’s no problem with the endless cycle of violence. “It’s what makes God tick. The universe depends on it.  It’s what makes life worth living. I like high stakes and life is the highest of them all.

Life and death games must be played whether on the streets of America or the slums of Iraq.” He said, for example, that he applauded the beheadings of foreigners in Iraq as well as the killing by the US military of anything that moved in Fallujah.

God said that President Bush should continue his Global War on Terror and the militarization of the world. But he pointed out that Americans shouldn’t flatter themselves too much.

“Today I’m with you and tomorrow I could be against you. I could take this planet and toss it into the sun. What do a billion lives mean to me when I can create a billion more to play with?”

God Finds Comedy in Government, Media

God indicated that Comedy Central television has nothing on the politicians, military commanders and business leaders that appear on “the serious” channels like CNN, Fox, NBC, CBS, ABC and their assorted affiliates. When you know they are lying is when it most hilarious, according to God. Besides, Americans like their lies and myths and there is nothing wrong with that, he pointed out, “After all they think I’m some peaceful divinity.”

“And so what if the military tried to make heroes out of Jessica Lynch and Pat Tillman. Of course the Pentagon was lying. But they know most Americans believe whatever the Pentagon’s storyline is. What do you expect from a people that put a floating eyeball and pyramid on the back of their currency [one dollar bill]?”

God pointed out that these are the days of unaccountability in America and that everyone should take advantage of “life in the big lie.” Truth is out and religion is in, according to God.

He said when he reads the major newspapers like the Washington Post and the New York Times; he ignores the comic section because the comedy is on the front page and editorial page. “But the most humorous moments for me came when President Bush was on TV telling Iran not to interfere in the Iraqi elections. I laughed till I cried. Imagine that. Bush knows his country has, over the decades, meddled in more elections [Georgia, Ukraine, most recent for example] than any other country. And then in another speech, Bush was telling his audience that they found Saddam in a hole in Iraq. No one pointed out that Bush was holed up in a bunker out West on 911.” God began laughing uncontrollably but pointed out that Bush was his man. “You have to lie to lead, “ God said, “and this group of leaders running your country, including Democrats, are the best I’ve seen in a dozen galaxies.”

God said that Americans will always believe in him. “You remember when I said the truth is out and religion is in. Look, violence, lying cheating, killing, hustling are just part of life. There’s no peace in this universe and that’s the truth. And no, there is no Satan. That’s simply a fairy tale. I’m the damn Creator, I ought to know. People try so hard to cover their violent natures and stench with words like freedom and democracy, and with fancy clothes and perfumes. They portray their enemies as vile but that is just looking in the mirror and not liking what they see. And you all want power. I’ll tell you, if you accept Me, it’s a lot easier to live in this violent world. I take responsibility for you. You are absolved.

Again, I point out to you that a life or a billion lives mean nothing to me. I have destroyed whole galaxies and a billion species at the snap of a finger. I let my own son be nailed to a cross not to save you but because he was preaching non-violent nonsense. I thought I’d leave him on Earth but he is my son—though not the only--and he is coming around to my way of thinking.”

God was getting impatient, but I had to ask about free will.

“Whether you accept me or not, you are created in my violent image. Look around you. All things are created and die in a never ending violent cycle. War, disease, genocide, crime, drugs, hate, love, laughter, sacrifice, honor-- these are all designed into the universe I made. Do you have any reason to believe you can change anything? Just be thankful I’ve taken a liking to you. ”

Whew! Good thing President Bush has an open line to God.

(John Stanton is a Global Research Contributing Editor. He is a Virginia based writer specializing in national security and political matters. He is the author of America 2004: A Power But Not Super and co-author of America’s Nightmare.)

 

* * *

 

Palin Hoping to be Named Ambassador to Africa

 

Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska has reached out to President-elect Obama's transition team to indicate her interest in being named "ambassador to the nation of Africa," the governor confirmed today.

Gov. Palin said that although she had planned to continue in her position in Anchorage, she was willing to leave the governorship "because Africa is just such a darned important country."

"I have always been very, very interested in the nation of Africa, partly because of it being located where it is," she said. "If you are standing in Africa and you look real close, you can see South Africa."

She added that she had received phone calls encouraging her to vie for the post, including one from French president Nicholas Sarkozy.

In other news from the Palin family, Bristol Palin's fiancé Levi Johnston said he was "totally stoked" about Tuesday night's election returns, calling the results "definitely a game-changer for me."

"The election of Barack Obama means different things to different people," he said. "To me, it means freedom, dude!"

(Andy Borowitz)

* * *

 

 Silverware Pattern

 

Good morning. I hope you all enjoyed the holiday reception at the White House as much as Laura and I enjoyed it. We took an inventory of the silverware, and this year only a few pieces were missing. So like if you see Gregory, tell him to bring them back. [Laughter]

-- President Bush at today’s press conference (referring to NBC's David Gregory)

I love meeting with the Members. For those of you who have been to our office, thanks for coming. For those of you that have not been to our office yet, you're coming. Just don't take any silverware. [Laughter]

-- President Bush, February 2, 2001, two weeks after taking office; remarks at the Republican Congressional Retreat in Williamsburg, Virginia

It's good to see my old fellow owner, "the Boss." [Laughter] What a record you've had -- a man who demands excellence and oftentimes gets it. [Laughter] But thank you for coming, George. I know the real boss of the Yankees is here, too, Arthur Richman. [Laughter] How are you, Arthur? Good to see you. I told you one of these days we would get to the White House. Just don't take any silverware, Arthur. [Laughter]

-- President Bush, May 4, 2001, referring to Yankees owner George Steinbrenner and senior advisor Arthur Richman during remarks honoring 2000 World Series Champion New York Yankees

Thank you all for coming. I'll see you Thursday, coats and ties. [Laughter] This year, Gregory, don't take any silverware. [Laughter]

-- President Bush, December 15, 2003 press conference; referring to upcoming holiday party

I want to thank Bob Wallace, the executive director. He spends a lot of time in the Oval Office. I'm always checking the silverware drawer. [Laughter]

-- President Bush, August 22, 2007, referring to VFW executive director Robert E. Wallace during remarks at Veterans of Foreign Wars National Convention in Kansas City, Missouri

As you know, this is the second time that we've had editorial cartoonists here during this term. Last May I had some of you over for lunch. We're still looking for the missing silverware. [Laughter]

-- President Ronald Reagan, May 7, 1987; remarks to Members of the American Association of Editorial Cartoonists

(Brian Williams)

 

* * *

 

Who runs Hollywood? C'mon.

 

I have never been so upset by a poll in my life. Only 22% of Americans now believe "the movie and television industries are pretty much run by Jews," down from nearly 50% in 1964. The Anti-Defamation League, which released the poll results last month, sees in these numbers a victory against stereotyping. Actually, it just shows how dumb America has gotten. Jews totally run Hollywood.

How deeply Jewish is Hollywood? When the studio chiefs took out a full-page ad in the Los Angeles Times a few weeks ago to demand that the Screen Actors Guild settle its contract, the open letter was signed by: News Corp. President Peter Chernin (Jewish), Paramount Pictures Chairman Brad Grey (Jewish), Walt Disney Co. Chief Executive Robert Iger (Jewish), Sony Pictures Chairman Michael Lynton (surprise, Dutch Jew), Warner Bros. Chairman Barry Meyer (Jewish), CBS Corp. Chief Executive Leslie Moonves (so Jewish his great uncle was the first prime minister of Israel), MGM Chairman Harry Sloan (Jewish) and NBC Universal Chief Executive Jeff Zucker (mega-Jewish). If either of the Weinstein brothers had signed, this group would have not only the power to shut down all film production but to form a minyan with enough Fiji water on hand to fill a mikvah.

The person they were yelling at in that ad was SAG President Alan Rosenberg (take a guess). The scathing rebuttal to the ad was written by entertainment super-agent Ari Emanuel (Jew with Israeli parents) on the Huffington Post, which is owned by Arianna Huffington (not Jewish and has never worked in Hollywood.)

The Jews are so dominant, I had to scour the trades to come up with six Gentiles in high positions at entertainment companies. When I called them to talk about their incredible advancement, five of them refused to talk to me, apparently out of fear of insulting Jews. The sixth, AMC President Charlie Collier, turned out to be Jewish.

As a proud Jew, I want America to know about our accomplishment. Yes, we control Hollywood. Without us, you'd be flipping between "The 700 Club" and "Davey and Goliath" on TV all day.

So I've taken it upon myself to re-convince America that Jews run Hollywood by launching a public relations campaign, because that's what we do best. I'm weighing several slogans, including: "Hollywood: More Jewish than ever!"; "Hollywood: From the people who brought you the Bible"; and "Hollywood: If you enjoy TV and movies, then you probably like Jews after all."

I called ADL Chairman Abe Foxman, who was in Santiago, Chile, where, he told me to my dismay, he was not hunting Nazis. He dismissed my whole proposition, saying that the number of people who think Jews run Hollywood is still too high. The ADL poll, he pointed out, showed that 59% of Americans think Hollywood execs "do not share the religious and moral values of most Americans," and 43% think the entertainment industry is waging an organized campaign to "weaken the influence of religious values in this country."

Description: http://articles.latimes.com/images/pixel.gifThat's a sinister canard, Foxman said. "It means they think Jews meet at Canter's Deli on Friday mornings to decide what's best for the Jews." Foxman's argument made me rethink: I have to eat at Canter's more often.

"That's a very dangerous phrase, 'Jews control Hollywood.' What is true is that there are a lot of Jews in Hollywood," he said. Instead of "control," Foxman would prefer people say that many executives in the industry "happen to be Jewish," as in "all eight major film studios are run by men who happen to be Jewish."

But Foxman said he is proud of the accomplishments of American Jews. "I think Jews are disproportionately represented in the creative industry. They're disproportionate as lawyers and probably medicine here as well," he said. He argues that this does not mean that Jews make pro-Jewish movies any more than they do pro-Jewish surgery. Though other countries, I've noticed, aren't so big on circumcision.

I appreciate Foxman's concerns. And maybe my life spent in a New Jersey-New York/Bay Area-L.A. pro-Semitic cocoon has left me naive. But I don't care if Americans think we're running the news media, Hollywood, Wall Street or the government. I just care that we get to keep running them.

(Joel Stein. LA Times. 2008)

 

* * *

 

Open Letter To Kansas School Board

 

Anyone hear of Flying Spaghetti Monsterism as another Intelligent Design theory to be taught in schools? It started in response to the Kansas school board elected to teach ID along side evolution. Here’s a snippet of the letter sent to the KS school board that started this movement:

“I am writing you with much concern after having read of your hearing to decide whether the alternative theory of Intelligent Design should be taught along with the theory of Evolution. I think we can all agree that it is important for students to hear multiple viewpoints so they can choose for themselves the theory that makes the most sense to them. I am concerned, however, that students will only hear one theory of Intelligent Design.

Let us remember that there are multiple theories of Intelligent Design. I and many others around the world are of the strong belief that the universe was created by a Flying Spaghetti Monster. It was He who created all that we see and all that we feel. We feel strongly that the overwhelming scientific evidence pointing towards evolutionary processes is nothing but a coincidence, put in place by Him.

It is for this reason that I’m writing you today, to formally request that this alternative theory be taught in your schools, along with the other two theories. In fact, I will go so far as to say, if you do not agree to do this, we will be forced to proceed with legal action. I’m sure you see where we are coming from. If the Intelligent Design theory is not based on faith, but instead another scientific theory, as is claimed, then you must also allow our theory to be taught, as it is also based on science, not on faith.

Some find that hard to believe, so it may be helpful to tell you a little more about our beliefs. We have evidence that a Flying Spaghetti Monster created the universe. None of us, of course, were around to see it, but we have written accounts of it. We have several lengthy volumes explaining all details of His power. Also, you may be surprised to hear that there are over 10 million of us, and growing. We tend to be very secretive, as many people claim our beliefs are not substantiated by observable evidence. What these people don’t understand is that He built the world to make us think the earth is older than it really is. For example, a scientist may perform a carbon-dating process on an artifact. He finds that approximately 75% of the Carbon-14 has decayed by electron emission to Nitrogen-14, and infers that this artifact is approximately 10,000 years old, as the half-life of Carbon-14 appears to be 5,730 years. But what our scientist does not realize is that every time he makes a measurement, the Flying Spaghetti Monster is there changing the results with His Noodly Appendage. We have numerous texts that describe in detail how this can be possible and the reasons why He does this. He is of course invisible and can pass through normal matter with ease.

I’m sure you now realize how important it is that your students are taught this alternate theory. It is absolutely imperative that they realize that observable evidence is at the discretion of a Flying Spaghetti Monster. Furthermore, it is disrespectful to teach our beliefs without wearing His chosen outfit, which of course is full pirate regalia. I cannot stress the importance of this enough, and unfortunately cannot describe in detail why this must be done as I fear this letter is already becoming too long. The concise explanation is that He becomes angry if we don’t.

You may be interested to know that global warming, earthquakes, hurricanes, and other natural disasters are a direct effect of the shrinking numbers of Pirates since the 1800s. For your interest, I have included a graph of the approximate number of pirates versus the average global temperature over the last 200 years. As you can see, there is a statistically significant inverse relationship between pirates and global temperature.

In conclusion, thank you for taking the time to hear our views and beliefs. I hope I was able to convey the importance of teaching this theory to your students. We will of course be able to train the teachers in this alternate theory. I am eagerly awaiting your response, and hope dearly that no legal action will need to be taken. I think we can all look forward to the time when these three theories are given equal time in our science classrooms across the country, and eventually the world; One third time for Intelligent Design, one third time for Flying Spaghetti Monsterism, and one third time for logical conjecture based on overwhelming observable evidence.

Sincerely Yours,

Bobby Henderson, concerned citizen.

* * *

 

  Mitticisms: "Martin Luther King

 

Earlier this month, in a speech defending the racist, uhm, quirks of his proud but secret religion, Mitt Romney declared:

"I saw my father march with Martin Luther King."

So, well, that's that. Except, according to a report in the Boston Phoenix, it turns out that depends on what your definition of "saw" is. And "march." And "with." And "Martin Luther King."

Because it never happened.

"A spokesperson for Mitt Romney now tells the Phoenix that George W. Romney and Martin Luther King Jr. marched together in June, 1963 -- although possibly not on the same day or in the same city." ... Romney spokesperson Eric Fehrnstrom suggests that these two were part of the same "series" of events, co-sponsored by King and the NAACP, and is thus consistent with Romney's claim that 'I saw my father march with Martin Luther King.'" 

Mitt, Fehrnstrom explains, was speaking "figuratively."

Although they never marched together, they did march separately. In that they were both in Michigan and ambulatory at the same time. And, by "the same time," I mean "different times."

Except, if you read the Phoenix story, George Romney didn't actually "march" anywhere. But he was present at an event. Where King was not. And Mitt never "saw" it, because he was doing missionary work in France.

WHAT MITT MEANT:

We can all agree that George Romney and Martin Luther King were both alive in June, 1963.

UPDATE:

The Romney campaign is still looking for an event where George Romney might have marched with Martin Luther King. Romney seems to have been at King's funeral, but that doesn't count, since Baptists don't believe the dead walk and we don't know what Mormons believe. Mitt would tell you, but then he'd have to kill you, and rebaptize you against your will.

Another helpful lead from Team Mitt? The event where Mitt Romney might have seen his father marching with Dr. King and/or kissing Santa Claus occurred somewhere between 1963 and 1968.

So Mitt might not have been ministering to the French; he might have been in high school, to see it, if it happened or not, which is anybody's guess.

And a clarification from the candidate himself:

"When we say, 'I saw the Patriots win the World Series, it doesn't necessarily mean you were there -- excuse me, the Super Bowl. I saw my dad become president of American Motors. Did that mean you were there for the ceremony? No, it's a figure of speech."

It's basic etymology. When a man says: "I saw," you should know it's just an expression. For "I didn't see."

Except the American Motors comparison doesn't really work. Presumably there are pay stubs from that. Because presumably it really happened. A more precise analogy would be: "I saw my dad invent the internal combustion engine."

With Medgar Evers.

Your family might believe it. But it doesn't make it even figuratively true.

(Chris Kelly)

 

* * *

 

Their God is Bigger than our God

 

 

Gosh, we haven't heard much from God lately, have we? I'm wondering why that is. His mouthpieces in America -- who always seem so sure of themselves, so sure that they alone hear God speaking, and so willing to share His wisdom with the rest of us -- have gone strangely quiet of late.

 

Remember when 9/11 happened and Jerry Falwell put it all into perspective for us? There we were thinking it had something to do with Islamic fundamentalism or US imperialism or something, but Falwell set us all straight, saying to Pat Robertson, "I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way, all of them who have tried to secularize America. I point the finger in their face and say 'you helped this happen.'" Mr. Falwell went on to thunder that it is these elements "which have attempted to secularize America, have removed our nation from its relationship with Christ on which it was founded. I therefore believe that that created an environment which possibly has caused God to lift the veil of protection which has allowed no one to attack America on our soil since 1812."

 

Okay, glad we got that straightened out. But it's breathtaking, isn't it, to think of People For the American Way being behind 9/11? So it was Norman Lear all along, not Osama! This kinda stuff goes on all the time, of course, and George W. Bush as well as legions of his followers believe that he was anointed by God to rule America and the world. To the extent they even think about it, they are startled to learn that others, particularly in the Mid-East, have somehow missed the joy and glory of their grand vision. One of my personal favorites in this all too rich vein is the Middle East peace prescription offered by Billy's son, Franklin Graham, suggesting that Muslims and Jews should simply try "surrendering their lives to the Lord Jesus Christ and having their hearts changed by the Holy Spirit." It all seems so simple when you think of it that way. Hey, why can't we get talent like that in the State Department?

 

Like I said, this stuff goes on all the time. Franklin once inadvertently sent me a fundraising letter which began with the line "Our God is indeed an awesome God!" I know it was meant as a joyous declaration of fact, but why did it seem like he was trying harder to convince himself than he was me? Franklin, whose daddy shared anti-Semitic laments with presidents in between offering them political cover and providing personal relief to their consciences, heavily laden as they were with dirty tricks and war crimes, also gave us the geo-strategically helpful line in which he described Islam a "very evil and wicked religion". How many GIs will have to die just for that little bit of anti-diplomacy alone?

 

Still, without a doubt the finest single exemplar of such thought comes to us courtesy of Lieutenant General William G. "Jerry" Boykin, whom the Bush administration made deputy undersecretary of Defense for intelligence in 2003, and gave responsibility for tracking down the likes of Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein.

 

The Bush family is, of course, famous for its loyalty demands, but General Boykin made John "kiss-up, kick-down" Bolton look as irreverent as a fart in church by comparison when he said of W, "He's in the White House because God put him there". Which is so weird, anyhow, because God kept telling me throughout the 2000 campaign that He was a Nader man, through and through. Boy, was I wrong. No wonder these guys are so sure of their direct pipeline to the Almighty. Nevertheless, that was hardly the General's most controversial statement. This is the guy whose astonishing remarks managed to recruit a whole new generation of terrorists with just two lines. "I knew my God was bigger than his. I knew that my God was a real God and his was an idol." Boykin said in a speech discussing his battle against a Muslim warlord in Somalia.

 

Not even George W. Bush manages to say things this dumb. He just hires people like Boykin to do that.  (. . .)

 

(David Michael Green)

 

 

* * *

 

STEPHEN COLBERT:

Thank you, ladies and gentlemen. Before I begin, I've been asked to make an announcement. Whoever parked 14 black bulletproof S.U.V.'s out front, could you please move them? They are blocking in 14 other black bulletproof S.U.V.'s and they need to get out.

Wow. Wow, what an honor. The White House correspondents' dinner. To actually sit here, at the same table with my hero, George W. Bush, to be this close to the man. I feel like I'm dreaming. Somebody pinch me. You know what? I'm a pretty sound sleeper -- that may not be enough. Somebody shoot me in the face. Is he really not here tonight? Dammit. The one guy who could have helped.

By the way, before I get started, if anybody needs anything else at their tables, just speak slowly and clearly into your table numbers. Somebody from the NSA will be right over with a cocktail. Mark Smith, ladies and gentlemen of the press corps, Madame First Lady, Mr. President, my name is Stephen Colbert and tonight it's my privilege to celebrate this president. We're not so different, he and I. We get it. We're not brainiacs on the nerd patrol. We're not members of the factinista. We go straight from the gut, right sir? That's where the truth lies, right down here in the gut. Do you know you have more nerve endings in your gut than you have in your head? You can look it up. I know some of you are going to say "I did look it up, and that's not true." That's 'cause you looked it up in a book.

Next time, look it up in your gut. I did. My gut tells me that's how our nervous system works. Every night on my show, the Colbert Report, I speak straight from the gut, OK? I give people the truth, unfiltered by rational argument. I call it the "No Fact Zone." Fox News, I hold a copyright on that term.

I'm a simple man with a simple mind. I hold a simple set of beliefs that I live by. Number one, I believe in America. I believe it exists. My gut tells me I live there. I feel that it extends from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and I strongly believe it has 50 states. And I cannot wait to see how the Washington Post spins that one tomorrow. I believe in democracy. I believe democracy is our greatest export. At least until China figures out a way to stamp it out of plastic for three cents a unit.

In fact, Ambassador Zhou Wenzhong, welcome. Your great country makes our Happy Meals possible. I said it's a celebration. I believe the government that governs best is the government that governs least. And by these standards, we have set up a fabulous government in Iraq.

I believe in pulling yourself up by your own bootstraps. I believe it is possible -- I saw this guy do it once in Cirque du Soleil. It was magical. And though I am a committed Christian, I believe that everyone has the right to their own religion, be you Hindu, Jewish or Muslim. I believe there are infinite paths to accepting Jesus Christ as your personal savior.

Ladies and gentlemen, I believe it's yogurt. But I refuse to believe it's not butter. Most of all, I believe in this president.

Now, I know there are some polls out there saying this man has a 32% approval rating. But guys like us, we don't pay attention to the polls. We know that polls are just a collection of statistics that reflect what people are thinking in "reality." And reality has a well-known liberal bias.

So, Mr. President, please, pay no attention to the people that say the glass is half full. 32% means the glass -- it's important to set up your jokes properly, sir. Sir, pay no attention to the people who say the glass is half empty, because 32% means it's 2/3 empty. There's still some liquid in that glass is my point, but I wouldn't drink it. The last third is usually backwash.

Okay, look, folks, my point is that I don't believe this is a low point in this presidency. I believe it is just a lull before a comeback. I mean, it's like the movie "Rocky." All right. The president in this case is Rocky Balboa and Apollo Creed is -- everything else in the world. It's the tenth round. He's bloodied. His corner man, Mick, who in this case I guess would be the vice president, he's yelling, "Cut me, Dick, cut me!," and every time he falls everyone says, "Stay down! Stay down!" Does he stay down? No. Like Rocky, he gets back up, and in the end he -- actually, he loses in the first movie.

OK. Doesn't matter. The point is it is the heart-warming story of a man who was repeatedly punched in the face. So don't pay attention to the approval ratings that say 68% of Americans disapprove of the job this man is doing. I ask you this, does that not also logically mean that 68% approve of the job he's not doing? Think about it. I haven't.

I stand by this man. I stand by this man because he stands for things. Not only for things, he stands on things. Things like aircraft carriers and rubble and recently flooded city squares. And that sends a strong message: that no matter what happens to America, she will always rebound -- with the most powerfully staged photo ops in the world.

Now, there may be an energy crisis. This president has a very forward-thinking energy policy. Why do you think he's down on the ranch cutting that brush all the time? He's trying to create an alternative energy source. By 2008 we will have a mesquite-powered car!

And I just like the guy. He's a good Joe. Obviously loves his wife, calls her his better half. And polls show America agrees. She's a true lady and a wonderful woman. But I just have one beef, ma'am.

I'm sorry, but this reading initiative. I'm sorry, I've never been a fan of books. I don't trust them. They're all fact, no heart. I mean, they're elitist, telling us what is or isn't true, or what did or didn't happen. Who's Britannica to tell me the Panama Canal was built in 1914? If I want to say it was built in 1941, that's my right as an American! I'm with the president, let history decide what did or did not happen.

The greatest thing about this man is he's steady. You know where he stands. He believes the same thing Wednesday that he believed on Monday, no matter what happened Tuesday. Events can change; this man's beliefs never will.

As excited as I am to be here with the president, I am appalled to be surrounded by the liberal media that is destroying America, with the exception of Fox News. Fox News gives you both sides of every story:  the president's side, and the vice president's side.

But the rest of you, what are you thinking, reporting on NSA wiretapping or secret prisons in eastern Europe? Those things are secret for a very important reason:  they're super-depressing. And if that's your goal, well, misery accomplished.

Over the last five years you people were so good -- over tax cuts, WMD intelligence, the effect of global warming. We Americans didn't want to know, and you had the courtesy not to try to find out. Those were good times, as far as we knew.

But, listen, let's review the rules. Here's how it works: the president makes decisions. He's the Decider. The press secretary announces those decisions, and you people of the press type those decisions down. Make, announce, type. Just put 'em through a spell check and go home. Get to know your family again. Make love to your wife. Write that novel you got kicking around in your head. You know, the one about the intrepid Washington reporter with the courage to stand up to the administration. You know - fiction!

Because really, what incentive do these people have to answer your questions, after all? I mean, nothing satisfies you. Everybody asks for personnel changes. So the White House has personnel changes. Then you write, "Oh, they're just rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic." First of all, that is a terrible metaphor. This administration is not sinking. This administration is soaring. If anything, they are rearranging the deck chairs on the Hindenburg!

Now, it's not all bad guys out there. Some are heroes: Christopher Buckley, Jeff Sacks, Ken Burns, Bob Schieffer. They've all been on my show. By the way, Mr. President, thank you for agreeing to be on my show. I was just as shocked as everyone here is, I promise you. How's Tuesday for you? I've got Frank Rich, but we can bump him. And I mean bump him. I know a guy. Say the word.

See who we've got here tonight. General Moseley, Air Force Chief of Staff. General Peter Pace, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. They still support Rumsfeld. Right, you guys aren't retired yet, right? Right, they still support Rumsfeld.

Look, by the way, I've got a theory about how to handle these retired generals causing all this trouble:  don't let them retire! Come on, we've got a stop-loss program; let's use it on these guys. I've seen Zinni and that crowd on Wolf Blitzer. If you're strong enough to go on one of those pundit shows, you can stand on a bank of computers and order men into battle. Come on.

Jesse Jackson is here, the Reverend. Haven't heard from the Reverend in a little while. I had him on the show. Very interesting and challenging interview. You can ask him anything, but he's going to say what he wants, at the pace that he wants. It's like boxing a glacier. Enjoy that metaphor, by the way, because your grandchildren will have no idea what a glacier is.

Justice Scalia is here. Welcome, sir. May I be the first to say, you look fantastic. How are you?  [After each sentence, Colbert makes a hand gesture, an allusion to Scalia's recent use of an obscene Sicilian hand gesture in speaking to a reporter about Scalia's critics. Scalia is seen laughing hysterically.] Just talking some Sicilian with my paisan.

John McCain is here. John McCain, John McCain, what a maverick! Somebody find out what fork he used on his salad, because I guarantee you it wasn't a salad fork. This guy could have used a spoon! There's no predicting him. By the way, Senator McCain, it's so wonderful to see you coming back into the Republican fold. I have a summer house in South Carolina; look me up when you go to speak at Bob Jones University. So glad you've seen the light, sir.

Mayor Nagin! Mayor Nagin is here from New Orleans, the chocolate city! Yeah, give it up. Mayor Nagin, I'd like to welcome you to Washington, D.C., the chocolate city with a marshmallow center. And a graham cracker crust of corruption. It's a Mallomar, I guess is what I'm describing, a seasonal cookie.

Joe Wilson is here, Joe Wilson right down here in front, the most famous husband since Desi Arnaz. And of course he brought along his lovely wife Valerie Plame. Oh, my god. [looks horrified] Oh, what have I said? I -- Je- minetti (sp?). I am sorry, Mr. President, I meant to say he brought along his lovely wife Joe Wilson's wife. Patrick Fitzgerald is not here tonight? OK. Dodged a bullet.

And, of course, we can't forget the man of the hour, new press secretary, Tony Snow. Secret Service name, "Snow Job." Toughest job. What a hero. Took the second toughest job in government, next to, of course, the ambassador to Iraq.

Got some big shoes to fill, Tony. Big shoes to fill. Scott McClellan could say nothing like nobody else. McClellan, of course, eager to retire. Really felt like he needed to spend more time with Andrew Card's children. Mr. President, I wish you hadn't made the decision so quickly, sir.

I was vying for the job myself. I think I would have made a fabulous press secretary. I have nothing but contempt for these people. I know how to handle these clowns. (…)

[Re-Improved Colbert transcript by Frederick blogger (Daily Kosh)]

 

* * *

 

Iraq Study Group Report To Be Made Into Opera


CD 1:

1. "Rise of the Vulcans; The Neocon Two-step" (Cheney/Rumsfeld/Perle/Wolfowitz and the Neocon chorus)
2. "Bring it On! Bring it On!", (Bush/Neocon chorus)
3. "Who would Jesus Bomb?" (Bush/Dobson/Falwell/Haggard)
4. "Saddam, You Tried to Kill My Daddy; Just a Tiny Drop of Oil" (duet)(Bush/Cheney)
5."Gonna Have My Yellowcake and Eat it Too" (Cheney)
6. "Sixteen Little Words" (Powell/Rice)
7. "Liberators and Flowers" (Rumsfeld)
8. "The Patriot Act; Seize the Day", (Cheney/Rove)
9. "Watch What You Say" (Fleischer/ The Press Corps chorus)
10. "Are You With Us or A Traitor?" (Rove)
11."Lean but Mean" (Rumsfeld)
12. "But, But, But" (The Democrats' chorus)
13. "Never Criticize Your President" (Lieberman)

CD 2:
1. "With A Guy Like You" (Bush/Cheney/Rove/Chalabi)
2. "Last Throes" (Cheney)
3. "The Boogeyman's Gonna Get Ya!" (Cheney)
4. "Got All Those Ducks in a Row" (Rove, Diebold chorus)
5. "But, But, But" (reprise); Abu Ghraib" (The Democrats' chorus, the Press Corps chorus)
6. "Stay the Course!" (Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld)
7. "I'm the Decider" (Bush)
8. "Stand Up, Stand Down" (Bush, The Generals' chorus)
9. "About to Turn That Corner" (Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld/Rice/Rove/Lieberman and the Neocon chorus)
10. "Vote, Vote, Vote" (Cheney/Rove/Bush/the Democrats' chorus)
11. "I have Bad News" (Rove)
13. "Forget About It" (Kissinger)
12. "Poppy" (G.H.W. Bush/James Baker/Brent Scowcroft)
13. medley: "Stay the Course" (reprise); "Last Throes" (reprise);"But, But, But" (reprise)"Forget About it" (reprise) (The Neocon chorus, The Press Chorus, The Generals' chorus)
14. Finale: "Does Anybody Know What To Do?" (ensemble)

(posted by:pinko)
 

 

* * *

 

Bush at the Pearly Gates

 

Einstein dies and goes to heaven. At the Pearly Gates, Saint Peter tells him, "You look like Einstein, but you have NO idea the lengths that some people will go to sneak into Heaven. Can you prove who you really are?"

Einstein ponders for a few seconds and asks, "Could I have a blackboard and some chalk?"

Saint Peter snaps his fingers and a blackboard and chalk instantly appear. Einstein proceeds to describe with arcane mathematics and symbols his theory of relativity. Saint Peter is suitably impressed. "You really ARE Einstein!" he says. "Welcome to heaven!"

The next to arrive is Picasso. Once again, Saint Peter asks for credentials. Picasso asks, "Mind if I use that blackboard and chalk?" Saint Peter says, "Go ahead." Picasso erases Einstein's equations and sketches a truly stunning mural with just a few strokes of chalk. Saint Peter claps. "Surely you are the great artist you claim to be!" he says. "Come on in!"

Then Saint Peter looks up and sees George W. Bush. Saint Peter scratches his head and says, "Einstein and Picasso both managed to prove their identity. How can you prove yours?"

George W. looks bewildered and says, "Who are Einstein and Picasso?"

Saint Peter sighs and says, "Come on in, George."

 

* * *

George Bush and the Queen

 

While visiting England, George Bush is invited to tea with the Queen. He asks her what her leadership philosophy is. She says that it is to surround herself with intelligent people.

Bush asks how she knows if they're intelligent.

"I do so by asking them the right questions," says the Queen. "Allow me to demonstrate."

Bush watches as the Queen phones Tony Blair and says, "Mr. Prime Minister, please answer this question: your mother has a child, and your father has a child, and this child is not your brother or sister. Who is it?"

Tony Blair responds, "It's me, ma'am."

"Correct. Thank you and good-bye, sir," says the Queen. She hangs up and says, "Did you get that, Mr. Bush?"

Bush nods: "Yes ma'am. Thanks a lot. I'll definitely be using that!"

Bush, upon returning to Washington, decides he'd better put the Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to the test. Bush summons Jesse Helms to the White House and says, "Senator Helms, I wonder if you can answer a question for me."

"Why, of course, sir. What's on your mind?"

Bush poses the question: "Uhh, your mother has a child, and your father has a child, and this child is not your brother or your sister. Who is it?"

Helms hems and haws and finally asks, "Can I think about it and get back to you?"

Bush agrees, and Helms leaves. He immediately calls a meeting of other senior Republican senators, and they puzzle over the question for several hours, but nobody can come up with an answer. Finally, in desperation, Helms calls Colin Powell at the State Department and explains his problem.

"Now lookee here, son, your mother has a child, and your father has a child, and this child is not your brother or your sister. Who is it?"

Powell answers immediately, "It's me, of course."

Much relieved, Helms rushes back to the White House, finds George Bush, and exclaims, "I know the answer, sir! I know who it is! It's Colin Powell!"

And Bush replies in disgust, "Wrong, it's Tony Blair!"

* * *

 

 W.M.D. in Iran?

 

TIM RUSSERT: Mr. Vice President, welcome to “Meet the Press.”

 VICE PRESIDENT DICK CHENEY: Good morning, Tim.

 RUSSERT: How close are we to war with Iran?

 CHENEY: Well, I think we are in the final stages of diplomacy, obviously. We have done virtually everything we can with respect to carrots, if you will. It’s time for squash. Not to mention mushrooms, clouds of them.

 RUSSERT: But you squashed Iraq and that didn’t work out so well.

 CHENEY: Iraq will be fine, Tim. It just needs a firmer hand. We learned that lesson. We’re not going to get hung up on democracy this time. (Expletive) purple thumbs.

 RUSSERT: Isn’t Secretary Rice still pushing carrots for Iran?

 CHENEY: The more carrots Condi feeds ’em, the better they’ll be able to see the bombs coming.

 RUSSERT: First you threatened to take action if Iran built a nuclear weapon. Now you’re threatening to take action if Iran knows how to build a nuclear weapon. What’s next? You threaten to take action if Ahmadinejad dresses up as a nuclear weapon for Halloween?

 CHENEY: Well, the difficulty here is, each time he has rejected what he was called upon to do by the international community. I’m not sure now, no matter what he says, that anyone would believe him. He’s pretending he doesn’t have W.M.D., just like Saddam.

 RUSSERT: But Saddam didn’t have W.M.D.

 CHENEY: He did, Tim.

 RUSSERT: He did?

 CHENEY: Ever wonder what happened to them?

 RUSSERT: What happened to them?

 CHENEY: Think about it, Tim.

 RUSSERT: The New York Times reported yesterday that the suspected nuclear reactor in Syria bombed by Israeli jets was well under construction in 2003, the same year we went to war with Syria’s neighbor Iraq. Did we go after the wrong country?

 CHENEY: Syria is not a country, Tim. It’s a way station run by an eye doctor.

 RUSSERT: Conservatives are tossing around some lock-and-load language. The president is talking about Iran sparking a “nuclear holocaust” and World War III. Giuliani adviser Norman Podhoretz thinks we’re in World War IV. Shouldn’t you at least give the new sanctions against Iran a chance to work?

 CHENEY: Oh, we have, Tim. The sanctions were announced Thursday. It’s now Sunday. I think things have gotten so bad inside Iran, from the standpoint of the Iranian people, my belief is we will, in fact, be greeted as liberators.

 RUSSERT: But what if your analysis is not correct — again? Let’s put up on the screen part of an interview The New York Times’s Thom Shanker did with the new chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Adm. Mike Mullen: “With America at war in two Muslim countries, he said, attacking a third Islamic nation in the region ‘has extraordinary challenges and risks associated with it.’ The military option, he said, should be a last resort.” Your own chairman of the Joint Chiefs does not think the military can handle a third war.

 CHENEY: If Admiral Mullen wants to be Admiral Sullen, that’s his business. I’m not going to be a defeatist or question the courage of our fighting men.

 RUSSERT: Critics say that if you attack Iran, there will be riots in every Muslim capital, the Iranians will flood Iraq with more explosives and money for the Shiite militias. They say you’ll only end up making more enemies for America, and our troops.

 CHENEY: Why don’t we just give the Islamofascists Sudetenland, Tim? Peace in our time.

 RUSSERT: The Europeans are upset that you might start another war in their backyard.

 CHENEY: (Rolling his eyes and muttering under his breath) Eurappeasers.

 RUSSERT: An Iranian spokesman dismissed the new U.S. sanctions as “worthless and ineffective” and said they were “doomed to fail as before.” And Gen. Mohammad Ali Jafari, the head of Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards — a group you have accused of proliferating weapons of mass destruction — also warned that his forces would respond with an “even more decisive” strike if attacked.

 CHENEY: Don’t worry about General Ali Baba, Tim. We gave the Israelis his home address.

 RUSSERT: How will you even know where to bomb, given that all the experts say the Iranians have hidden their real nuclear facilities underground?

 CHENEY: Can you say magic carpet bombing, Tim? We didn’t build those bunker busters just to stack ’em up in a warehouse in North Dakota.

 RUSSERT: It’s so close to the next election, Mr. Vice President, shouldn’t you just keep on the diplomatic track and let the next president make this decision?

 CHENEY: You really want Rudy Giuliani playing with the nuclear button, Tim? Now, that’s insane.

(Maureen Dowd.  NYT)

* * *

 

Mitt Romney’s Jesus is Just as Good as the Leading Brand

 

A lot of people think Mitt Romney chose to give his religion speech this week because he's afraid of the Rev. Mike Huckabee. (A man whose main qualifications for the Oval Office are a personal relationship with Jesus and the ability to lose weight.) Mike is breathing down Mitt's neck in Iowa, which can't be pleasant, because bulimics have terrible breath.

I think there's a simpler explanation and, touchingly, it has to do with faith. Mitt Romney made his religion speech during Hanukkah because he's the only candidate oily enough to burn for eight days.

If you missed the speech, it can be summed up pretty simply: He proclaimed the right of every American to freely and openly practice any religion, including his own, about which he won't divulge a single detail, even if you killed his children right in front of him, one after another.

And he doesn't care which of you atheist bastards and Islamic jihadists know it.

Now just give me your vote, and stop bothering me with all these questions. I've spent a lot of money. --

It got a little slippery there for a second, what with name-checking Kennedy and Lincoln - who you'd think would have less to say about religion and more about gun control - but it came down to this:

1- Mitt loves religious freedom.

2- You love religious freedom.

3- Religious freedom is being threatened by atheists and people who ask Mitt a lot of fool questions about his relatives in the Star System Kolob.

4- If Mitt answers these questions, the ACLU will come to your town and kick over your crèche.

5- As long as we all love Jesus (or something more or less Jesus-ish) we can agree to disagree about the details.

6- If we disagree about the details, Jihadists will come and unstrenghen your family.

7- Wasn't it cool when George Bush Sr. crashed his plane and got picked up by that submarine?

8- I swear this was Mitt's opener.

9- Hey, George Bush is patriarchal and fell from the sky. Why don't we worship him?

Okay, to you and me it's all just the same old runny dogshit. You weren't going to vote for him anyway. Because you're reading a website, and computers work because of science. But did Romney make the sale to the evangelical values voters, the ones who pray people like us get struck down by a just and loving God, and it's painful and slow, and the sooner the better?

I don't think so.

Here's the difficult passage, the one Mitt raced through like the side effects of Nasonex:

There is one fundamental question about which I often am asked. What do I believe about Jesus Christ? I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the Savior of mankind. My church's beliefs about Christ may not all be the same as those of other faiths. Each religion has its own unique doctrines and history. These are not bases for criticism but rather a test of our tolerance. Religious tolerance would be a shallow principle indeed if it were reserved only for faiths with which we agree.

In other words: I'm glad you asked that question. I'm not going to answer it. As a tribute to this great land of ours.

Because here's the thing that Mitt Romney can't say: The Mormon Jesus has about as much in common with Jesus of Nazareth as the Los Angeles Kings have with King Tut. They have the same name, kind of, and that's it.

The Gospel Jesus lived in Galilee. The Mormon Jesus lived in Albany. (Where he fought the Indians. Because he wasn't just the Lamb of God, he was also the Last of the Mohicans.) Mormon Jesus? Three wives, a planetful of kids. Gospel Jesus? Living alone and loving it.

It doesn't even have the theological weight to be heresy; it's a simple case of mistaken identity.

And I know that sounds like I'm being flip, but that's only because I don't care. But if it matters to you, it really, really matters.

Mitt Romney wants Christians to think that Mormonism is just another "brand." (He called it a brand earlier this week, in Manchester. Which is how most really devoted people talk about their faith.) But most Christians are pretty brand loyal. It's kind of important to them. They didn't just choose their church for the parking. They like to think they've put some thought into it.

Evelyn Waugh thought that the difference between the real church (Roman Catholicism) and some fake-o crap (Anglicanism) was so obvious that if you couldn't figure it out, it was your problem. He said that trying to explain it was like trying to teach an Australian about architecture.

Mitt Romney doesn't want to explain anything. He just wants to blur the distinctions, change the subject, and make the sale.

Mitt Romney isn't proud of his faith. If he were, he wouldn't react to questions about it like he'd just been asked to describe his parents having sex.

He could put this whole thing to rest by answering one question about his Jesus, just so we know we've got the right guy: Was he Satan's brother? If the answer is "yes" -- and the Book of Mormon says it is -- Mitt and Pat Robertson are talking about two totally different Middle Eastern drifters.

See where profiling will get you?

(Chris Kelly)

* * *

 

YOU KNOW YOU'RE QUALIFIED TO BE VICE-PRESIDENT

 

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when you name your favorite gun "Trig".

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when you believe the Bush Doctrine works out of the local nail shop and specializes in hot-waxing.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when a "voice in your head" tells you to ban most of the pages from the library's atlas.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when you deep fry your polar bear in crude oil that you drilled yourself.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when your underage teen daughters get their sex education from the instructions on the back of a bible.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when the only charitable organization you contribute to is the NRA.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when your schedule revolves around five daily rapture breaks.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when the only war you have any knowledge of is with a guy who won't fire your ex-in-laws.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when you compare yourself to animals.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when Republicans believe you can lie with the best of them.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when "token" is something you believe gets you on a bus.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when your dentist tells you he's going to have to "drill" and you pee your pants a little with excitement.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when your doctor prescribes "pork" as a cure-all for that constant feeling of hunger.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when you need air-conditioners in every room but you think it's because someone keeps closing the refrigerator door.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when the only real requirement from your boss, is that you know how to change diapers... errr, Depends.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when you use a helicopter to hunt down the father of your daughter's illegitimate child.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when you believe the petrified mastodon tusk on your desk was created with the rest of the world 4,000 years ago.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when you want to kill almost everything in sight, but you refer to yourself as "pro life".

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when every day is high-school reunion day.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when you can't satisfactorily answer prepackaged questions posed by one of the lamest MSM mouthpieces available.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when you are openly reviled by women whose standard mantra was "give me a woman - any woman".

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when so-called "Democrats" believe you are so special that nobody should mock and laugh at you... and deride your complete clown performance.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when your so-called "boss" has the life expectancy of a fruit fly.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when your recent flight over Canada qualifies as your International Experience.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when your recipe for deep-fried polar bear heart is your most endearing contribution to American culture.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when you believe the strings that have been tied to your arms and legs are a new fashion accessory.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when you charge taxpayers extra every night you sleep in your own bed.

You know you're qualified to be Vice-President when you can smile and sneer at the same time.

(posted September 15th, 2008 3:40 pm)

 

* * *

 

McCain's Playbook: Hate, Fear and Caveman Politics

 

Even the briefest of surveys of the supporters gracing McCain's events underscores the kind of red-meat appeal he's making. Immediately after his speech in New Orleans, a pair of sweet-looking old ladies put down their McCain signs long enough to fill me in on why they're here. "I tell you," says one, "if Michelle Obama really doesn't like it here in America, I'd be very pleased to raise the money to send her back to Africa."

    The diminutive and smiling old lady's friend leans over. "That's going a little too far, dear."

    "Too far?" says the first. "Farrakhan is saying they were brought here against their will, and their bodies are still feeding the sharks at the bottom of the sea! I mean, really!"

    "OK, sharks still eating bodies," I say, writing it all down. "Could I have your name, ma'am?"

    "Janice Berg," says the first old lady. "And lest you think I'm Jewish, the name comes from Norway. Berg is 'mountain' in Norwegian. I'm part German, part French myself."

(…)

Cindy Oestriecher, a McCain supporter who turned out for his speech in New Orleans, is stumped when I ask her for an example of Obama's lack of patriotism. "What was that thing about anti-American?" she asks a friend. "What were they referring to?"

    "What thing?" asks the friend.

    "People were talking about that thing, that anti-American thing," Cindy says, frowning.

    "You mean about the flag, the thing on the Internet?" the friend replies.

    "Yeah, I guess," says Cindy. "The anti-American thing." "That bothers you?" I ask.

    "Of course it does!"

    "But you don't even know what it is," I say. "You just know that someone else said he was anti-American. You don't even know who it was that said it!"

    She shrugs.

(…)

A few paces away, I catch up with a man named Ron Saucier and a woman who would only identify herself as Mary. Ron says his problem with Obama is the integrity thing. "He exaggerates too much," Ron says. "He's not honest."

    "OK," I say. "What does he exaggerate about?"

    "Well, like that time he was saying he had a white mother and a white grandmother," he says.

    I ask him how this is an exaggeration.

    "Well, he was saying ..." he begins. "As if that qualifies him to ..."

    Despite my repeated prodding, Ron seems unable or unwilling to say aloud exactly what he means. Finally, his friend Mary, a grave-looking blonde with fierce anger lines around her eyes, jumps in, points a finger and blurts out one of the all-time man-on-the-street quotes.

    "Look, you either are or you aren't," she says.

    "And he aren't," Ron says, nodding with relief.

 (Matt Taíbbi. Rolling Stone Magazine)

When Will Jesus Bring The Pork Chops?

THEY CAME FROM OUT OF THE SKY (12)

I find it discouraging – and a bit depressing – when I notice the unequal treatment afforded by the media to UFO believers on the one hand, and on the other, to those who believe in a invisible supreme being who inhabits the sky. Especially as the latter belief applies to the whole Jesus-Messiah-Son-of-God fable. [...] Granted, the world of UFO belief has its share of kooks, nuts and fringe people, but have you ever listened to some of these religious true-believers? Have you ever heard of any extreme, bizarre behavior and outlandish claims associated with religious zealots? Could any of them be considered kooks, nuts or dingbats? A fair person would have to say yes. [...] I offer one version of a typical television news story heard each year on the final Friday of Lent: [...] “Today is Good Friday, observed worldwide by Jesus buffs as the day on which the popular, bearded cultural figure, sometimes referred to as The Messiah, was allegedly crucified and – according to the legend – died for mankind's so-called sins. Today kicks off a 'holy' weekend that culminates on Easter Sunday, when, it is widely believed, this dead 'savior' – who also, by the way, claimed to be the son of a sky-dwelling, invisible being known as God – mysteriously 'rose from the dead.' “According to the legend, by volunteering to be killed and actually going through with it, Jesus saved every person who has ever lived – and every person who ever will live – from an eternity of suffering in a fiery region popularly known as hell, providing – so the story goes – that the person to be 'saved' firmly believes this rather fanciful tale.” That would be an example of unbiased news reporting. Don't wait around for it to happen. The aliens will land first.

(George Carlin. ISBN 1-4013-0821-X)  

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