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The Top Ten Conservative Idiots (No. 136)
November 24, 2003
London Crawling Edition

Curious George (1) went to London last week and presumably left still feeling curious since his handlers clearly don't want him to know what's going on outside his bubble. Rush Limbaugh (2) made his comeback, and funnily enough it appears that "sober Rush" ain't that much different from "drug-addled Rush." Meanwhile The Cable News Networks (3) were ejaculating with joy over the Michael Jackson arrest story. Yes, it's been a busy week for the conservative idiots - and that's not all. Steve Linnen (5) apparently likes a spot of naked photography, Clear Channel (7) are proving how fair and balanced they are, Zell Miller (8) is rocketing to the top of the bestseller lists (and it's all his own work, honestly), and the Claremont Institute (10) present their hypocrisy award. Enjoy, and as usual, don't forget the key!

1George W. Bush dumb dumb dumb dumb
For a few blissful days last week America was free of George W. Bush and the good people of the United Kingdom had to put up with him instead. Interestingly, Bush avoided the democratically-elected people's representatives in Parliament (too scared that the nasty British MPs might boo him) and instead headed towards an area he's much more comfortable with - royalty. Yes, when it comes to gadding about with well-to-do inbreds who are supposedly appointed by God, Bush fits right in. Yet even within the confines of the royal circle Our Great Leader was still shitting his pants about security, and for all the precautions that were taken they might as well have just encased him in concrete and wheeled him around on a cart. By hanging out with the royals, Bush at least managed to mostly avoid the enormous protests that filled the streets of London - although one or two reporters managed to slip a decent question past every now and again, such as, "What is your conclusion as to why apparently so many free citizens fear you and even hate you?" Bush's answer - "I don't know that they do" - pretty much sums up his complete lack of understanding of the world around him. Laura Bush was also on board the Good Ship Clueless, telling reporters, "We haven't seen that many protests. But we have seen many American flags and people welcoming us." Gee, I guess she didn't turn on the TV or look out of the window at any point during her trip then. So I'm sure Our Great Leader will return with wonderful stories of how much the British people loved him and welcomed him - just pay no attention to the 100,000+ protesters who toppled a giant effigy of him in Trafalgar Square.

2Rush Limbaugh hypocrisy hypocrisy hypocrisy drugs
Look out - he's back! After a quick jaunt through millionaires' rehab Rush Limbaugh returned to the airwaves last week, as pigheaded as ever and now apparently with added hypocrisy. But don't call Limbaugh a hypocrite, because he's got the world's best explanation for his behavior: "there are people who say I'm a hypocrite" he said on his show last week, because he took drugs while "telling people to lead a moral life." But - wait for it - "there's no hypocrisy... just because I was doing something that appeared to be contradictory... My behavior doesn't change right and wrong." Uh, so, you told people that drug addicts were scum who should be locked up while you were shoveling mountains of illegally-procured prescription painkillers down your fat throat and - hmm - not going to jail, but you're not a hypocrite because... uh, because you were doing something which "appeared to be contradictory" but you, uh - wait. How is this not hypocritical again? Fortunately Limbaugh's not out of the woods yet - it turns out that he's being investigated for laundering money to pay for his drug addiction, which is a federal crime. Mind you, he's got a good defense for this one too: "I was not laundering money. I was withdrawing money, for crying out loud." Yes, and telling people that drug addicts should go straight to prison while conveniently avoiding prison yourself doesn't make you a hypocrite either. Ooo-kay.

3The Cable News Networks dumb
Terrorist bombings in Turkey, more American soldiers dead in Iraq, at least 100,000 people march against George W. Bush in London, free trade protesters clash with police in Miami... not that you'd know much about any of this if you were watching CNN, MSNBC or Fox News last week - for the big three cable news networks, it was all Michael Jackson, all the time. As soon as the news broke that Jackson's Neverland Ranch had been raided, and that a warrant was out for his arrest on child abuse charges, the cable news channels went into overdrive. Terrorist bombings? Blah. Massive protests? Whatever. Clearly the cable news networks felt that the most important place to point their cameras last week was a local airport runway where Jackson was scheduled to arrive, and an empty police station parking lot where he was scheduled to do the perp walk. So dedicated were they to their precious airport and parking lot that they almost seemed irritated when it was time to break for a ten second newsflash about the not-so-important news of the day. "Another-soldier-dies-in-Iraq-al-Qaeda-may-be-to-blame-we-now-return-you-to-the-parking-lot." CNN even ran a segment with a psychologist for worried parents who don't know how to tell their kids about Michael Jackson. (Picture the scene... Mom: "Billy, now I know this might come as a bit of a shock to you, but I think you should know that Michael Jackson may be a child molester." Billy: Michael who? Mom: Michael Jackson. The King of Pop. Billy: stares blankly. Mom: Used to advertise Pepsi? Sang at the Superbowl? Billy: shakes head. Mom: Dangled his baby over a balcony? Billy: Whatever, Mom, I'm in the middle of a game of Grand Theft Auto.) What an enormous waste of everybody's time. Still, we'll only have to put up with it for the next, oh, year or so. Bah.

4The Weekly Standard (and others) excessive spin excessive spin
Oh my, it's true after all! Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein really were in bed with one another, so therefore the invasion of Iraq was completely justified! That's what you would have heard if you'd listened to, watched, or read the news from any of the right-wing media outlets last week. Why? Because the Weekly Standard recently published an article claiming that al Qaeda and Iraq "had an operational relationship from the early 1990s to 2003 that involved training in explosives and weapons of mass destruction, logistical support for terrorist attacks, al Qaeda training camps and safe haven in Iraq, and Iraqi financial support for al Qaeda." Phew, hot stuff. Shame it's all complete crap. The Standard based its article on a memo which came straight from the desk of one of Bush's propaganda ministers, Douglas Feith, head of the Pentagon's Office for Special Plans. The Standard's article was then immediately picked up by several Rupert Murdoch-owned outlets such as the New York Post and Fox News. But it wasn't long before the Pentagon had to distribute a press release stating that the "news reports that the Defense Department recently confirmed new information with respect to contacts between al-Qaida and Iraq... are inaccurate." Whoops. So did this stop the right-wing media in its tracks? Hardly. The Washington Times, New York Post, and the always-fair-and-balanced Fox News continued to rant about the memo all week, despite its official debunking. Still, since most Fox News viewers have probably already been suckered into believing that Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein are gay lovers, no big deal I guess.

5Steve Linnen arrest sex
Why am I not surprised that Columbus's recently-arrested "naked photographer" has turned out to be a Republican? And not just any Republican, but a deputy legal counsel for the House Republican Caucus in Ohio. Steve Linnen, a member of staff for House Speaker Larry Householder (R-Glenford) was arraigned last week on one count of gross sexual imposition and one count of kidnapping. It is suspected that Linnen is the infamous "naked photographer" who has ambushed women on 39 occasions and photographed their shocked expression as he waggled his naughty bits. Yup, the party of decency, morality and family values strikes again. I mean, just when you think they can't get any worse, one of them shows up flopping his cock around in public... whatever next?

6Richard Perle warmongering quid pro quo
Looks like Richard Perle was off his meds again last week, because the Pentagon's Defense Policy Board member strayed from the party line during a speech last week when he stated that "international law ... would have required us to leave Saddam Hussein alone." So, uh, you're basically admitting that the invasion of Iraq was completely illegal? How bizarre. It's probably also worth noting that according to a recent report in the Washington Post, Richard Perle heads a venture capital company called Hollinger Digital, which invested $2.5 million in a company called Trireme Partners. Trireme Partners plans to cash in bigtime on military and homeland security contracts, which shouldn't be too tough since their managing partner is - you guessed it - Richard Perle. How convenient. But let's face it - this kind of corrupt cronyism is exactly what the Bush administration stands for. Who the hell cares about the law when there's a fat profit to be made?

7 Clear Channel election stealing
Speaking of bribery and corruption, Clear Channel, the media empire which owns a majority of the country's radio stations and proudly calls itself the home of drug-addled hypocrite Rush Limbaugh, found itself in a spot of bother last week. It seems that the company has been giving expensive gifts to employees who earn $100,000 a year or more - if they agree to contribute to Clear Channel's right-wing political action fund. Is it illegal? Well, Clear Channel seems to think that the gifts-for-donations program "complies with a rule that says a company can spend up to one third of what it collects for employee incentives," although the Center for Responsive Politics calls it "a grey area." Whichever way you look at it, when one of the country's most powerful media organizations is literally bribing employees for donations to its right-wing PAC, you know that the idea of fair and balanced reporting has gone completely out the window. So can we finally bury the "liberal media" myth yet? Its rotting carcass is starting to stink the place up.

8 Zell Miller partisanship
Well would ya look at that? At the time of writing, Zell Miller's new cry-fest of a book A National Party No More is sitting at number four on the New York Times bestseller list. Congratulations Zell, you traitorous sellout. But hang on a minute, what's this? Do my eyes deceive me or is that a little (+) next to your listing? Surely not, because that would mean that your book has only gotten on the list because it's been bulk-ordered. You know, like all of Ann Coulter's books. Well, gee, congratulations, I guess. Seems the same rich conservatives who want to cheat Coulter's books to the top of the list are giving you a shot. Well done.

9 Thomas Dorr racism greed hypocrisy
So, you know how Republicans are always going on about pulling oneself up by the bootstraps, and how evil it is to give government handouts to those who won't pull their weight? Funny how so many of them turn out to be welfare queens themselves. Take Thomas Dorr for example, who was rejected by Senate Democrats as Bush's Agriculture Undersecretary last week. Turns out that back in 1999 Dorr made a speech at Iowa State University, where he claimed that the "most successful rural areas in Iowa were 'not particularly diverse' in their ethnic and religious backgrounds," according to the Omaha World-Herald. But it's not particularly unusual for Republicans to go on about how successful whites are compared to those lazy, shiftless minorities. What's more unusual, however, is to find them sucking the government teat while doing it. Apparently in 1996 Thomas Dorr had to repay $17,000 to the Agriculture Department - yup, the same Agriculture Department to which Bush wanted to appoint him - because two separate investigations revealed he had "misrepresented the nature of the farm's operations in papers filed the three previous years." Dorr was cleared of any criminal charges, but apparently "told a Senate committee two years ago that his family had done nothing out of the ordinary in structuring the farm to get the most government money possible." Damn those lazy, shiftless, welfare-grabbing, um... potential Agriculture Undersecretaries.

10The Claremont Institute dumb
And finally, you've got to feel sorry for the Claremont Institute for the Study of Statesmanship and Political Philosophy. See, despite Rush Limbaugh's recent troubles with drug addiction, procuring prescription narcotics illegally, and being investigated for money laundering, the Claremont Institute was all set to give him their Statesmanship Award last week. Unfortunately Rush has had to pull out, apparently "Because I must limit my travel for the remainder of this year." (What's up with that, Rush? Cops don't want you going too far out of their sight, eh?) But not to worry - the Claremont Institute brainstormed, and came up with a splendid solution. What do you do if you can't get a hypocritical drug-addict blowhard to top off your fancy dinner? Get the next best thing of course - a hypocritical gambling-addict blowhard. Yes, the famous moralist and Vegas casino-troll Bill Bennett replaced Rush Limbaugh at the Claremont Institute's dinner last week, so rest assured that the attendees still received a solid helping of mind-blowing bullshit to go with their steak and three veg.

The Top Ten is taking a break for the holiday next week, so we'll see you in two weeks time. Happy Thanksgiving!

The Top Ten Conservative Idiots is now on the radio! The ieAmerica Radio Network is currently broadcasting "Cuckoo Conservatives" - excerpts from the Top Ten read by 30+ year radio veteran Dean Randall. Dean has worked in broadcast markets from the Midwest to the west coast including an overseas hitch in Wellington, New Zealand, and most of his radio experience was spent as a morning show personality. He is currently employed by a local ABC TV affiliate and is active in politics on a local, state and national basis. Dean says, "My liberal roots went down and deep early when my father hosted a Minnesota state DFL rally in 1961. Ever since I have had a keen interest in politics and the Democratic philosophy and history." You can drop him a line at DeanRandall1@aol.com - and don't forget to tune into the ieAmerica Radio Network to hear "Cuckoo Conservatives!"

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