Friday, March 26, 2004

TODAY'S TOP FIVE: Getting Slapped by Richard Simmons is the New Getting Slapped by Zsa Zsa Gabor.

Two If By Sea I realize that I'm setting myself to look like a total ass (so what else is new?), but have you noticed that the "gates of Hell"-style reprisal for the killing of Hamas founder Ahmed Yassin has been pretty pathetic so far? I mean, the Palestinians have lobbed some useless mortar rounds at Israel, tried and failed to induce a teenager to become a body bomb, and now have launched an abortive "sea attack." In a move oddly reminiscent of something Cobra would do, "Armed Palestinians in wetsuits and flippers emerged from the Mediterranean and fired toward a beachfront Israeli settlement in the Gaza Strip." Hamas, which claimed responsibility for dispatching the frogmen, promise it is just a taste of "earthshaking operations to come": Watch out, Israel, they've acquired an Acme Products catalogue and are ordering a giant catapult!

I'm Sure We Can Get Answers from the New, Murderous, Voodoo Government 15 Caribbean nations are demanding that the U.S. explain itself in light of former Haitian leader Jean Aristide's charges that he was forced from power by American manipulation. While I share the nations' desire to get to the bottom of this sordid episode, I also suspect that a forthright U.S. response is about as likely as Beyonce answering one of my many letters. In other words: A just universe demands that it should happen, but it probably won't.

Gasp! (Thud) (Faints from Surprise) I hope you don't have a heart condition, because here's a potentially lethal shocker: "With fewer than 100 days to go before Iraq resumes its sovereignty, American officials say they believe they have found a legal basis for American troops to continue their military control over the security situation in Iraq." Would that "legal basis" be something along the lines of "we have a big fucking army in the country, and what are you going to do about it"? The real surprise here is that people are still maintaining the transparent fiction that Iraq will "resume its sovereignty" in July. If by "resume its sovereignty" you mean "continue to take orders from Paul Bremer as if nothing has changed," you're dead on, Pedro.

That's So Funny I Forgot to Stop Bleeding to Death Here at the MLWL, we have always hated those stupid dinner events for the Washington press corps and politicians where everyone gets together, yuks it up, and gets the message across that, despite appearances of partisan rancor, We're All in the Same Boat (they are: They're rich, you're poor, they know it, you don't seem to). It's my opinion that if one of these things was suddenly vaporized along with everyone in it, the net effect on our public discourse would be an immeasurable improvement. Not David Corn, though; the liberal author of "Bush Lies" was at a recent dinner where the current occupant of the White House spoke, and Corn wants us to know that, as a rich dude in the national press corps, he normally loves these things. Not this time, though. You see, at this dinner, George W. Bush showed a side-splittingly hilarious slide show of him "searching" for weapons of mass destruction in the White House. Ha! Ha! Thousands of people are dead, and now it's a funny joke for the insider class! Unlike others at the dinner, Corn was so outraged it nearly spoiled his entree: "Disapproval must have registered upon my face, for one of my tablemates said, 'Come on, David, this is funny.' I wanted to reply, Over 500 Americans and literally countless Iraqis are dead because of a war that was supposedly fought to find weapons of mass destruction, and Bush is joking about it. Instead, I took a long drink of the lovely white wine that had come with our dinner." You see that? He was so mad he took a long drink of lovely white wine; everyone knows you're supposed to sip it! If Corn was really thinking about this, he would realize that all these dinners are obscene in precisely the same way: they turn real politics into in-jokes for the in-crowd, while for those of us who won't ever be on the guest list the issues at hand are never funny.

This Week's "Thank God It's Friday" Special From the folks at Defective Yeti, here's a handy, labor-saving diagram that absolves you of the need to pay attention to the 9/11 hearings from here on out: