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The Top Ten Conservative Idiots (No. 73)
June 24, 2002
Drip, Drip, Drip Edition

Our hero, George W. Bush, makes the list no less than three times this week. That's not too shabby for a guy who's never really excelled at anything by himself. Anyway, you can find him at numbers 1, 2 and 4. Not to be outdone, brother Jeb manages to sneak in at number 10, although we really expect more from someone who shares DNA with Dubya. Try harder next week Jeb! Elsewhere, we see the Christian Right (3) cozying up to the Axis of Evil, the EPA (7) deciding that toxic sludge is good for fish (yes, that's right), and the FEC (9) helping the rich get on with the business of screwing the poor. It's a mighty list this week, so enjoy! (And as usual, don't forget the key.)

1George W. Bush covering your ass covering your ass excessive spin excessive spin
The big news last week was that the National Security Agency had intercepted communications on September 10 that said "tomorrow is zero hour" and "the match begins tomorrow." Sadly, however, the communications were not translated into English until September 12. This is the latest in a string of revelations indicating that the government had substantial evidence about the September 11 attacks before they happened. Instead of expressing shock and dismay about the latest news, the Bush Administration instead decided to make leaks the issue. Said Ari Fleischer: "The president has deep concerns about the inappropriate disclosure of information that can compromise both sources and methods and potentially interfere or harm America's capacity to fight the war against terror." Blah, blah, blah, whatever. The truth is that Bush is scared shitless that the country might actually put two and two together. As the bad news continues to drip, drip, drip, the administration will continue to spin, spin, spin.

2George W. Bush fiscal irresponsibility fiscal irresponsibility
Next time a conservative dittomonkey starts berating you about taxes, deficits, balanced budgets, and Laffer curves, bust out this handy factoid, courtesy of the fiscal wizards in the Bush Administration: The federal budget deficit for the month of May 2002 was $80.63 billion, the worst montly deficit ever in the history of the United States. Three words: Bush Tax Cuts. Way to go, Trifecta-boy! And if those dittomonkeys try to explain this away as a necessary consequence of the War on Terra, bust out this, equally handy factoid: The previous record was from August of 2001, exactly eleven days before the War on Terra even started. Of course, the conservative idiots will blame Clinton, using their patented "give the previous party credit" formula. Here's how it works: Excellent Clinton Economy = Reagan's fault. Crappy Bush economy = Clinton's fault. So, when a Democrat is elected in 2004 and the economy turns around again, who gets the credit? George W. Bush, of course!

3The Christian Right religious nut religious nut helping the terrorists
They say politics makes strange bedfellows. And here are some bedfellows that (to be honest) aren't really that strange at all. It seems that conservative Christians in the United States have put aside decades of anti-Arab bigotry to join forces with hard-line Islam in the fight against liberalism. (And they said Johnny Lindh was a liberal. Puh-leeeze.) The target of their unholy alliance is the UN, which they perceive to be expanding rights to gays, women, and children. (Yes, children.) According to the Washington Post, conservative Christians have "cultivated fresh links with a powerful bloc of more than 50 moderate and hard-line Islamic governments, including Sudan, Libya, Iraq and Iran." Said one conservative activist, "We have realized that without countries like Sudan, abortion would have been recognized as a universal human right in a U.N. document." Yes, thank God for countries like Sudan. I seem to remember that Bill Clinton lobbed a few cruise missles at Sudan back in the day. Perhaps that explains why the fundies are all trying to be their friend.

4George W. Bush lazy lazy lazy lazy lazy
When a suicide bomber blew up a bus in Israel last week, killing a number of civilians, it was approximately 1:00AM back in Washington, DC. It was the deadliest suicide attack since Bush took office, but the White House staff decided not to wake Bush, who was sleeping at the time. Apparently peace in the Middle East is not nearly as important as Dubya's beauty sleep. "The sad fact is, after so many of these, as horrible as they are, the 10th and the 20th and the 30th just don't have the same emotional impact as the first," said Ari Fleisher. He added, "And besides, the president was dreaming that he was a little naked cherub flying through a magical land of unicorns and fluffy clouds. He gets very cranky when the staff interrupts what he calls 'important presidential business in nighty-night land.'"

5Jeannemarie Devolites arrest
And here's yet another tale of corruption from the Party Of We Know How To Bring Up Kids Better Than You Do. It was reported by the Washington Post last week that the daughter of Virginia Delegate Jeannemarie Devolites (R-Fairfax) was sentenced to "more than nine years in federal prison for her role in a gas-station robbery in Fairfax City that authorities said was one of a string of armed holdups in Virginia and New York last summer." Chalk up another victory for conservative family values!

6Scaremongering GOP Granny-Robbers partisanship greed
And the morality tales just keep on rolling in. Last week the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel reported that various GOP organizations are returning $38,000 that they strong-armed out of an 82-year-old lady with dementia, after her family discovered she had no recollection of sending money to the groups. The woman responded to a direct mailing, and once the groups realized that they'd gotten a "live one" - someone who would donate money - they upped the mailings until she was receiving "dozens of letters a week." For six months the College Republican National Committee, Republican Strategy Headquarters and other GOP groups bombarded the poor woman with scaremongering letters which were addressed to her by name and said things like, "Rush me back $300 right now... if we delay then the Rule of Law may be dead and America may turn into a Communist police state." Obviously terrified, she wrote dozens of checks. So next time you hear the Republicans talking about "Democratic scaremongering," just remind them of this sick little episode...

7The Environmental Protection Agency anti-environment anti-environment anti-environment dumb
"EPA says toxic sludge is good for fish" announced the Washington Times last week - a piece of trivia that we bet you didn't know before George W. Bush weaseled his way into the White House, right? Yes, a recent internal Environmental Protection Agency document came to the stunning conclusion that it is not a "ridiculous possibility" that toxic sludge "actually protects the fish in that they are not inclined to bite [fishing lines] ... but they go ahead with their upstream movement and egg laying." Isn't that amazing? So let's get this straight - people don't fish in areas polluted by toxic sludge, so the fish are actually better off? We'll leave the punchline to Rep. George P. Radanovich, who in response to the EPA's conclusion said, "To suggest that toxic sludge is good for fish because it prevents them from being caught by man is like suggesting that we club baby seals to death to prevent them from being eaten by sharks." [EPA's note to self - club more baby seals]

8Saudi Arabia helping the terrorists helping the terrorists
"You're either with us or against us!" Or you're Saudi Arabia, in which case you're with us and against us! Last week it was announced that our great allies in the so-called war on terror are refusing to hand over 13 Al Qaeda suspects who have been accused of plotting to blow up a US plane at a military base near Riyadh. Now correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't not giving up Al Qaeda members the very reason we bombed the shit out of Afghanistan in the first place? Oh, but I forgot - the Taliban weren't being very cooperative when it came to oil negotiations. So as long as the Saudis keep that black gold flowing, ol' Dubya won't have to drop a daisycutter on their asses. Or at least, it certainly seems that's the way the "war on terror" works, doesn't it?

9 The Federal Election Commission election stealing partisanship screwing the poor
So Congress passed campaign finance reform, and Bush signed it into law, which means we're going to get campaign finance reform right? Not so fast there, bucko. The Federal Election Commission is turning the new campaign finance laws into real-life regulations, and in so doing they are opening a number of loopholes. Case in point is a regulation which narrows the ban on soft money, a central part of the legislation. According to a bipartisan group of federal lawmakers, candidates will be able to "continue to raise soft money for the state parties using careful language or a 'wink and a nod.'" In other words: Candidates can still raise soft money in certain circumstances, as long as they don't actually say the magic words, "cough up some soft money." This would re-open the floodgates of corporate and special-interest soft money, which were so recently closed. Our electoral system returns to the status quo ante: Regular people like us get screwed by the fat-cats.

10Jeb Bush pandering dumb
And finally, it looks like Dubya isn't the only stupid person in the Bush family - brother Jeb seems to be cut from the same cloth. While addressing an audience of 300 Florida high-school girls last week, Governor Jeb made this very admirable statement: "It's about time a woman became governor of the state of Florida." Of course, this is one of the more transparent GOP panders we've seen, considering their party's contempt for women's concerns. But the real kicker, of course, is that Jeb seems to be wishing himself out of a job. Janet Reno's campaign issued a statement that they "couldn't agree more" with Jeb. The governor sheepishly issued a statment clarifying that he did not actually want to see a woman become governor this year, despite what he said when he was trying to win the adulation of a roomful of adolescent girls. See you next week!

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