Top Ten Conservative Idiots (Week 25)
Silver Jubilee Edition
Well would you believe it, it's Week 25 already. To celebrate
we wanted to pop the cork off a nice bottle of Dom Perignon,
but sadly we had to make do with some sparkling wine out of
a cardboard box. Fortunately though, if you shake the box
real hard and shout BANG when you turn the plastic spigot,
you can achieve a similar effect. And hey - it doesn't really
matter whether it comes out of a box or a bottle. As long
as it gets you there, right? So let's see who's on the list
this week. We've got Tom Shortridge (1), for whom managing
Republican campaigns and taking nudie pics of underage girls
go hand in hand. We've got John Stossel (2), for whom kids
say the darndest things - as long as you ask them the right
questions. And we've got Katherine Harris (5), for whom partisanship
is a twelve letter word. Elsewhere you'll find Tom DeLay (6)
doing his best for inter-party relations, and Pat Robertson
(10) trying to buy his way into heaven. Enjoy!
Shortridge - NEW!
Weeks on chart: 1
- Tom Shortridge, a South Bay Republican campaign consultant,
was given three years probation last week. His crime?
Taking dubious photographs of teenagers. Shortridge's
attorney, Carl "Tony" Capozzola said his client
acknowledged that mistakes were made, but did not believe
the photographs of the 15- and 16-year-old girls were
sexual in nature. Which is odd, because the investigation
was started when a girl told police that her 16-year-old
friend was given $100 and a beer to model topless for
Shortridge. Apparently her friend told her that Shortridge
had "about 50 pictures of naked girls," of
the same age group. But of course Shortridge wasn't
up to anything fishy. They were, um... modeling shots...
officer. Shortridge could have gone to prison for six
years if he had been convicted of molestation, but he
pleaded "no contest" and was sentenced to
apologize to the girls and their parents, undergo psychiatric
counseling, perform 200 hours of community service,
and refrain from contact with girls under 18 unless
in the presence of another adult. His plea bargain (which
incredibly reduced three misdemeanors and a felony to
two misdemeanors) also assured that he would not have
to register as a sex offender. It's family values and
personal responsibility - conservative style!
Stossel - NEW!
Weeks on chart: 1
- Last week, ABC's John "Cheesemaster" Stossel
appeared on The O'Reilly Factor to smarmily defend
his new prime-time investigative special Global Warming
Doesn't Exist And All Your Kids Are Brainwashed
(I think that was the working title). For his special,
Stossel decided that the best way to illustrate that
global warming is all a big hoax would be to throw questions
like "There are no scientists who think global
warming is not occurring, right?" at ten-year-olds.
After the interview, the kids' parents became worried
that Stossel would manipulate the footage (duh), and
asked for the interview to be pulled. Uproar ensued.
Later in the week, Stossel was welcomed onto The
O'Reilly Factor by a simpering Bill O'Reilly, who
gently tossed him fluffy little softball questions.
Stossel wrung his hands, shrugged his shoulders, and
rolled his eyes in a sort of "oh, why me?"
kind of way as O'Reilly sycophantically sympathized
with him. Bill didn't even blink when Stossel said that
the global warming lies were being perpetrated by the
"totalitarian left." Ah, fair and balanced
coverage. That's what we like to see. Still, at least
O'Reilly doesn't have to play with the minds of small
children to achieve the results he's looking for. Unless
you count his entire audience of course.
Small Utah Towns - NEW!
Weeks on chart: 1
- Welcome to the wonderful Utah towns of La Verkin,
population 2000, and, um... Virgin, population 400.
These small rural burghs, located just west of Bumblefuck,
are home to a new uprising against those evil enemies
of freedom, the United Nations. Yes, La Verkin and Virgin
(sound like a pair of seventies TV detectives, don't
they?) plan to vote next month on ordinances that declare
the United Nations unwelcome within their town limits.
As if this wasn't forehead-graspingly stupid enough,
the ordinances would also ban the U.N. symbol on town
property, and residents who support the United Nations
must post signs that read "United Nations work conducted
here" (presumably so they can be rounded up later).
More fascinating Virgin facts: the town, whose residents
have described themselves as "freedom-loving, independence-declaring
folk" last year passed a law requiring each
head of household in the town to own a gun. (Cue duelling
Morris - NEW!
Weeks on chart: 1 - More lovely lies from
the conservative propaganda machine, this time courtesy
of the New York Post's Vincent Morris. "Hillary Hijacks
Senate Office," screamed the headline to Morris's breathless
"exclusive" last week, which pounded Hillary
Clinton for "grabbing" extra office space
since the Democrats won control of the Senate. Hillary
Clinton "is the only Democrat in the Senate to
get extra rooms since her party took control last month,"
fumed Morris. "The Democrats have had the gavel for
two weeks and the first thing they do is give Hillary
more space." If Morris had bothered to check his facts
before writing his little hit piece, he would have discovered
that according to Senate rules, Hillary now has exactly
the amount of office space that the state of New York
is entitled to. Prior to the Senate switchover, the
two extra rooms which belonged to New York were being
wrongfully occupied by Trent Lott. But now that Trent's
outta there and the rooms have been returned to their
rightful owner, it's apparently a "space grab."
Don't hold your breath for a correction any time soon
though - the New York Post aren't likely to let the
facts get in the way of a little Clinton-smearing.
Harris - RETURN!
Weeks on chart: 5
- Awww... can't someone just throw a bucket of water
over Ms. Harris and be done with it? (I'm melting!)
Last week the Mascara Marauder was shocked, shocked,
that the U.S. Civil Rights Commission released
a report which accused her and Jeb Bush of "presiding
over an election in which blacks were systematically
disenfranchised." Surely, exclaimed Katherine, surely
this is a bogus report! And why would it be a bogus
report, Katherine? Because the chair, Mary Frances Barry,
"was rooting for Al Gore." Harris blamed the commission's
"partisanship" on the fact that Barry supported Gore
in last year's election. Oh dear, Katherine. And everyone
hates you why? BREAKING NEWS JUST IN: Katherine
Harris announces that everyone who rooted for Al Gore
last year will be removed from Florida's voter rolls,
in order to prevent any more "partisanship"
from corrupting the voting process.
DeLay - NEW!
Weeks on chart: 8
- Tom was on Hardball doing his bit for bipartisanship
last week, suggesting to Chris Matthews that Dick Gephardt
and Tom Daschle are, and I quote, "almost good
friends with Saddam Hussein with their policies."
Whoa, way to engender mutual respect for one's fellow
politicians! That'll have them willing to compromise
with you on key issues, Tom. He later added, "we
have a president that is showing us principle and value
in his leadership and we greatly appreciate that."
Meanwhile, back on planet Earth, Bush's approval ratings
continued to slide gracefully down the shitter as the
public expressed their appreciation for his principles
and leadership. Ah, reality. It's a wonderful thing.
Abrams - NEW!
Weeks on chart: 1 - Yes,
George W. is a man of principle alright. The Bush administration
continued its jobs program for criminals last week by
appointing Elliott Abrams to a senior position at the
White House National Security Council. For those of
you not familiar with Mr. Abrams, in 1991 he pleaded
guilty to two misdemeanor charges of withholding from
the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the House
Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence his knowledge
of Oliver North's Contra-assistance activities. Abrams
was conveniently pardoned before trial by Bush Sr. -
obviously he knew something that poppy didn't want people
to hear. According to the White House, "Mr. Abrams
is eminently qualified for his new position. He is the
best person for the job." Well, that's good to
know. Note to self: for better job prospects, pad
out resume with "I pleaded guilty to withholding
information from Congress during an investigation into
selling arms to Iran."
Bloomberg - RETURN!
Weeks on chart: 2 - The media mogul (yawn)
turned politico sent out a campaign mailing last week
featuring a glowing quote from Rudy Giuliani. "He's
been able to run a business, run it successfully ...
exactly what the city of New York needs." Now let's
see what the quote actually said before it was
inserted into the mailing - see if you can tell the
difference: "He's been able to run a business,
run it successfully, if he can convey a more direct
and more honest approach, it might be exactly what the
city of New York needs." Did you spot it? Hmmm,
yes. Bloomberg's camp said the quote is "grammatically
correct" because of the ellipses. Grammatically
correct, maybe. Factually correct, well, we'll get back
to you on that one. Amusingly, Michael Bloomberg has
also been recently involved in a so far unsuccessful
battle over the domain name "MichaelBloombergSucks.com"
which he rather desperately wants to get back from the
current owner, Dan Parisi. Ha ha!
Hastert - NEW!
Weeks on chart: 1 - John McCain recently
wrote to House GOP members for whom he campaigned last
year, seeking their support on a campaign finance overhaul.
And last week Dennis Hastert had a little whining fit
on Face The Nation, complaining, "I think
Senator McCain shouldn't bully members of the House
of Representatives, I don't care what party they're
in. They ought to be able to make up their mind on what
piece of legislation they're going to pass based on
the merits.'' Obviously he completely missed the irony
of going on TV to try and bully McCain into not bullying
people. But if that hypocrisy isn't bad enough for you,
don't forget that Dennis Hastert is chief lackey of
Mr. Intimidation himself, Tom DeLay. In Idiots Week
24 we noted that GOP Congressmen lost a vote which would
allow the IRS to spend $30 million sending out letters
to taxpayers praising George W. Bush. So they stopped
the clock as time ran out while DeLay went around the
floor persuading key Republicans to change their
vote. Bullying? Making up their mind on the merits?
You decide. But obviously this passes Dennis Hastert's
own version of the Dan Burton Smell Test - although
frankly we're suprised he can smell anything with his
nose shoved that far up Tom DeLay's butt.
Robertson - RETURN!
Weeks on chart: 3 - And
finally: well oil be damned! (Sorry, couldn't resist.)
If you were wondering what the Reverend Pat did with
all the money he swindled out of little old Christian
ladies, wonder no more. Who knew that Pat Robertson
owned an oil
company? Last week, Robertson's company applied
to build a power plant in Baldwin Hills, CA, but he
may need a little help from the man upstairs. Apparently
Pat is having problems getting financing, and is blaming
"Big Oil" for frustrating his efforts. Better
ask your flock to start ponying up a little more cash,
Reverend! Now what was that line about rich men, camels,
and needles...? See you next week!
a Conservative for Next Week's List