The Top Ten Conservative
Idiots (No. 158)
June 7, 2004
Chalabi Damned Edition
We're back after our holiday break, and it's certainly been an eventful couple of weeks. George W. Bush (1) went to Europe, but before he left he found time to "distance himself" from former buddy Ahmed Chalabi after Chalabi apparently passed sensitive information to the Iranians which he received from The White House Mystery Drunk (2). Meanwhile Kelli Arena and John Ashcroft (3) spread some unpleasant propaganda, Enron (4) was thoroughly embarrassed, and Trent Lott (6) weighed in on the Abu Ghraib scandal. Elsewhere, Dana Rohrabacher (7) has lost his mind, Team Bush (9) has really gone negative, and Donald Rumsfeld (10) is getting shit from his wife. Enjoy, and as usual, don't forget the key! PS. If you're looking for stories about Ronald Reagan in this week's edition, he "ended communication" a little too close to our deadline. Tune in next week for coverage of the fallout of St. Ronald's passing.
Remember Ken Lay? George Bush doesn't. When Enron imploded back in 2002 (more on that later in this issue), Our Great Leader pretended that he had no idea who this so-called "Ken Lay" was (see Idiots 50) despite the fact that Ken Lay was one of his best buddies. And now he's at it again - since it was announced that the Pentagon's top man in Iraq Ahmed Chalabi was reportedly spying for the Iranians, Bush has done his level best to "distance himself" from his former pal. At a news conference last week he said, "My meetings with him were very brief. I think I met with him at the State of the Union and just, kind of, working through the rope line, and he might have come with a group of leaders." Oh really? I guess you must have been shitfaced every time he exercised his Oval Office privileges then. Or perhaps you didn't notice him sitting behind your wife at the State of the Union Address this year. Or perhaps it slipped your mind that you've been paying his group hundreds of thousands of dollars a month for the last several years (see Idiots 145). In fact, it kinda makes you wonder whether Bush will be denying the existence of Donald Rumsfeld before long. "Hmm, yeah, the name rings a bell. I think I may have spoken with him once or twice..."
White House Mystery Drunk
CIA chief George Tenet quit last week, and the question on everyone's lips is "Did he fall or was he pushed?" Why the CIA director would resign "for personal reasons" five months before a general election is a conundrum to most people, and obviously we shall see how this plays out politically in the coming weeks. But Tenet's resignation wasn't the biggest conundrum of the week. Since it was revealed that Ahmed Chalabi passed secrets to the Iranians, a fascinating guessing game has gripped Washington: who was the mystery drunk that told Chalabi that the CIA had broken the Iranian spy service's secret communications code? The New York Times reported last week that in a cable to Tehran, an Iranian official "recounted how Mr. Chalabi had said that one of 'them' - a reference to an American - had revealed the code-breaking operation, the officials said. The Iranian reported that Mr. Chalabi said the American was drunk." And so, as a service to our readers, we are proud to present:
The Top Ten Conservative Idiots White House Mystery Drunk Fact Sheet
it Donald Rumsfeld?
At press conferences Rumsfeld is frequently seen waving his hands in the manner of someone frenetically describing last night's basketball game to the bartender. He is also in the habit of asking himself questions and then answering them: "Will Kobe Bryant's trial affect his performance in the finals? Hard to say. Will the Lakers take down the Pistons this year? You bet."
Favorite tipple: Rum Shooter.
Chance of being Mystery Drunk: Good.
Known as the "Prince of Darkness," Perle is the kind of drinker who sits by himself at the end of the bar and looks like a respectable old gentleman until you realize he'd been getting quietly wasted all night. If the only free seat in the entire bar is the one next to him, think twice before sitting in it, unless you want to hear long, incoherent stories about how much better things were when "the blacks knew their place."
Favorite tipple: Bloody Mary.
Chance of being Mystery Drunk: Excellent.
A staunch fundamentalist Christian, there's about as much chance of John Ashcroft being the White House mystery drunk as there is of the next leader of Iraq dying of natural causes. Anointing himself with Crisco and believing that calico cats are minions of the devil, yes. Getting drunk and giving away important national security information, no.
Favorite tipple: Holy Water.
Chance of being Mystery Drunk: Zero.
His permanent scowl constantly suggests that he may be about to ask the age-old bar-room question, "Are you looking at my girlfriend?" (Immediately followed, of course, by the dreaded, "Why not? Are you saying there's something wrong with her?") However, since Dick suffers from a chronic heart condition his doctors will have surely suggested that he not drink alcohol.
Favorite tipple: Barbecue Sauce.
Chance of being Mystery Drunk: Unlikely.
She spiked the punch back at the senior prom, and now she's the National Security Advisor. At dinner parties, Condoleezza likes to hit the sauce early and usually ends up being carried out to a cab by midnight. She has occasionally been known to mistake the president for her nonexistent husband. But is she the White House Mystery Drunk?
Favorite tipple: Whatever's in the liquor cabinet.
Chance of being Mystery Drunk: Impressive.
George W. Bush?
He chokes on pretzels, falls off mountain bikes and Segways, has a problem with umbrellas, can barely speak without slurring his words, and can't appear to find his ass with both hands - but did George W. Bush pass crucial top-secret information to Chalabi? Only if you believe that his administration actually gives him access to crucial top-secret information.
Favorite tipple: Coors Light poured through a plastic tube.
Chance of being Mystery Drunk: Drunk, yes. Mystery, no.
Arena (and John Ashcroft)
In a recent CNN segment, Justice Correspondent Kelli Arena made a staggering claim: that al Qaeda endorses John Kerry for president. During Arena's videotaped report, which discussed whether al Qaeda might attack the U.S. again before November's elections, she commented, "Neither John Kerry nor the president has said troops pulled out of Iraq any time soon. But there is some speculation that al Qaeda believes it has a better chance of winning in Iraq if John Kerry is in the White House." Oh really? Speculation by whom? Well how about Bush's Attorney General John Ashcroft. A couple weeks ago Ashcroft announced that the terrorists were definitely attacking this summer and we're all going to die, so duck and cover, run to the hills, all that good stuff. (Incidentally this was all news to Tom Ridge, who had no idea what Ashcroft was talking about). But during that announcement, Ashcroft said, "The Madrid railway bombings were perceived by Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda to have advanced their cause. Al Qaeda may perceive that a large-scale attack in the United States this summer or fall would lead to similar consequences." Got it? If there's another major attack, make sure to vote for the guy who let it happen. Otherwise, uh, the terrorists have won. Now, we expect this kind of utterly contemptible bullshit from Ashcroft, but to hear it bastardized into "there is some speculation that al Qaeda believes it has a better chance of winning in Iraq if John Kerry is in the White House" is really quite... what am I saying. Obviously we expect this kind of utterly contemptible bullshit from CNN as well.
CBS News dropped a bomb on Enron last week after they obtained audio tapes of Enron traders discussing such entertaining subjects as how Ken Lay "fucks California," how Enron stole money from "Grandma Millie," and how Grandma Millie, um, "wants her fucking money back for all the power you've charged right up, jammed right up her ass for fucking $250 a megawatt hour." Yes, after years of allegations that Enron was deliberately defrauding the state of California by causing a massive energy crisis, the evidence was made public last week, and it wasn't pretty. The energy company's traders were caught ordering power plants to be shut down and gloating about a huge forest fire which closed a major transmission line into California, as well as suggesting that they would "love to see Ken Lay Secretary of Energy," and dreaming about how "When this election comes Bush will fucking whack this shit, man. He won't play this price-cap bullshit." Funnily enough, Bush gave a speech during the energy crisis in which he said, "We will not take any action that makes California's problems worse and that's why I oppose price caps." Hmm... isn't that called "aiding and abetting?" See, former governor Gray Davis was trying to get Bush to impose price caps on electricity in California, but Bush refused. Meanwhile Our Great Leader's surrogates were running attack ads accusing Davis of failing to protect Californians from rising power prices (see Idiots 24). And finally, Davis was ousted by groping Austrian beefcake Arnold Schwarzenegger, who coincidentally met with Enron executives during the energy crisis (Schwarzenegger says he doesn't remember the meeting, of course). What a disaster.
Is anyone surprised to learn that a recently-discovered Pentagon email may confirm that Dick Cheney actually "coordinated a huge Halliburton government contract for Iraq," despite denying any interest in his former company? Anyone? Hands up if you think that there is absolutely no connection between Vice President Cheney, Halliburton, and the invasion of Iraq. Yes, you sir. You at the back. Sorry sir, you'll have to speak up. No, I'm sorry, I don't understand you. What's that? I'm a fucking what? Un-American what now? I'm sorry sir, it's hard for me to understand what you're saying. Slow down. Take a deep breath. Wipe your chin. Oh dear, he's passed out. Anyone else?
It's been a while since the Mississippi Hair-Helmet last cracked the Top Ten - I guess it's harder to get noticed after you've been forced to resign from your leadership position in disgrace. But he's back with a vengeance this week, all thanks to the Abu Ghraib prison scandal. And guess what? Trent is firmly on the side of the wingnuts who believe that torturing Iraqis is not a big deal. What a surprise. Trent is uncomfortable with the "physical perversion" aspect of the torture, but doesn't have a problem with the dog attacks, and the, uh, deadly beatings. "Hey, nothing wrong with holding a dog up there, unless the dog ate him, scared him with a dog," said he during an interview. Uh, Trent, the dog did "eat him" you moron. When asked about prisoners who had died from beatings at Abu Ghraib, Trent compassionately responded, "This is not Sunday school; this is interrogation; this is rough stuff." Fortunately Trent did show a little sympathy for the 70%-90% of the Abu Ghraib prisoners who by the Red Cross's estimation were innocent civilians. Some of the prisoners "should not have been prisoners in the first place..." said Trent. Hang on - there's more. "...probably should have been killed." Ah, okay. You know what though? I bet if Strom Thurmond were president we wouldn't have had all these problems.
Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) is a fucking idiot. How big of an idiot is he? A very big one. Appearing on CNN's Crossfire last week, Rohrabacher blamed the Democrats in general and Al Gore in particular for September 11. Said he on CNN's Crossfire, "It's the Democratic Party and of course it's Al Gore, who knows a lot about incompetence, I might add, that got us into this mess; 9/11 was on the way; 9/11 was on the way by the time President Bush was inaugurated." Hmm, that's odd. See, Dana Rohrabacher used to be a pretty big fan of Osama bin Laden's protectors, the Taliban. How big of a fan? Well, a very big one. According to a 2002 report in the OC Weekly, Rohrabacher "lobbied shamelessly for the Taliban" during the 1990s. In 1996 he wrote an article claiming that the "Taliban could provide stability in an area where chaos was creating a real threat to the U.S." Later in the article he claimed that the Taliban were "not terrorists or revolutionaries," that media reports of the Taliban's nutjob religious fundamentalism were "nonsense," and that they posed no threat to the United States. Look - here's a picture of him in Afghanistan back in 1988!
Mind you, on September
11 Rohrabacher did stand before a microphone and say "Iíve been begging
people to do something about Afghanistan, and I said if we didnít do anything
about the Taliban, we would pay a dear price." So there's always the possibility
that's he's severely mentally ill.
Actually it kinda makes you wonder why they let him go on television.
Whoops - looks like the GOP's latest outreach to Latino voters has been a bit of a flop. On their website, the Republicans have a page where Spanish-speakers can sign up for email newsletters "about the topics that most interest you." The page asks interested parties for their name, email address, telephone number - typical demographic information. Then they ask what your job is. Which is fine, provided you're a) war veteran or retired military, b) teacher or educator, c) senior citizen, or d) farmer or rancher. Because those are the only choices - there's not even an option for "other." Come on GOP, you can stereotype better than that. How about including some options for fruit-picker, or taco-vendor, or bullfighter? Morons.
The Washington Post reported last week that Team Bush is "making history" with an election campaign of "unprecedented negativity," and that the "ferocious Bush assault on Kerry this spring has been extraordinary, both for the volume of attacks and for the liberties the president and his campaign have taken with the facts." So far Bush has aired almost 50,000 negative attack ads against his opponent, 75% of his advertising. In contrast, Kerry's ads are 73% positive. According to Brown University professor Darrell West, "Bush's level of negative advertising is already higher than the levels reached in the 2000, 1996 and 1992 campaigns." And according to the Post, "The campaign ads, which are most scrutinized, have produced a torrent of misstatements." All of which is quite interesting in the context of an interview Bush gave to David Horowitz back in 1999, where, when asked if he had the potential to "reshape the political landscape," he responded, "In the course of the campaign, it's the first thing I want to do. The second is to elevate the discourse. I'm not going to participate in the old Washington, D.C., game of gossip and slander." My, how times have changed. That sounds spookily to close to a... dare I say it... flip-flop?
And finally, according to the BBC, Donald Rumsfeld reports that his wife "often needles him about the whereabouts of Osama Bin Laden - often just after they wake up." Rumsfeld said, "When I walk out of the bedroom in the morning, my wife frequently rolls over and says, 'Where's UBL?'" Crikey. Can you imagine that? I mean, you're one of the guys in charge of country, 9/11 happened on your watch, the man responsible has disappeared, and your wife nags you about it every morning when you get up? Geez, how much more of that is Rumsfeld gonna be able to take before he flips out one morning and yells, "HOW MANY DAMN TIMES DO I HAVE TO TELL YOU? HE'S IN THE BASEMENT AND HE'S NOT COMING OUT UNTIL OCTOBER." See you next week!