The Wiping of the Presidential Ass:
As we machete through the jungle of this long, long, long, so goddamn, so painfully fucking long election, perhaps a question voters ought to be concerned with is this: do we want a president who needs to have his ass wiped? See, when babies, toddlers, even pre-schoolers take a shit, they either need to have a grown up wipe completely for them or to check to see that they've wiped well enough. And certainly, with his overwhelming need for his pillow (see Monday, March 22's entry), his food tasters, his security perimeter wherever he visits or speaks, his lack of press conferences, and more have established George W. Bush to be the Toddler-in-Chief: protected, getting into trouble whenever he takes a few steps on his own, not wanting anyone to play with his toys unless he knows he'll get punished for not sharing.

The Toddler-in-Chief is going to be able to have his hand held when he "visits" with the 9/11 commission behind closed doors and not under oath. See, as part of the deal that allowed house negro Condi Rice to testify is this, from the letter, "the deal" made by White House counsel Alberto "I Already Feel the Fires of Hell on My Toes" Gonzales: "[T]he President and Vice President have agreed to one joint private session with all 10 Commissioners." There it is: George will get to sit on Dick's lap and be told to be quiet when he talks out of turn. It's a fuckin' joke, isn't it? What's the fear in them appearing separately? They seem to have no trouble fitting every fundraiser, including the combined Crack Whores/Corporate Lobbyists for Bush/Satan, into their schedules. But let's not be that charitable: let's instead say that Rove, Hughes, et al have decided that nothing could be worse than having Bush sitting there in his stinky diaper, the commissioners holding their noses at the stench, with no one to change the President's Pampers.

A P.S. to this: Daddy Bush was decalcified and sent out to speak on Jr.'s behalf, getting "emotional" about everyone beating up on his boy. One always has to cringe when a Yale-educated, mansion-living, Daddy's fortune-spending faux average guy talks about the "elite" of this country. And one must cringe even more when the President needs his Daddy to fight his battles for him.


They Don't Call Him "Dick" Clarke For Nothing:
Man, the Rude Pundit wants to fuck Richard Clarke, the former White House counterrorism chief, now bestselling writer and whipping boy for right wingers everywhere. Not only does Clarke look and sound like Jack Bristow, uber-superspy on the TV show Alias, but Clarke is not backing down, unlike Paul O'Neill, who at the first sign of trouble retreated into lofty retirement. In fact, the Rude Pundit admires Clarke so much that he'd blow the old bureaucrat and take the chowder in appreciation of Clarke's devastation of the myth of George Bush as a great warrior leader. It takes big fuckin' balls to do what Clarke did, and those balls will get all the attention they deserve during his hummer of glory.

Clarke gets out there, tells his story in a book, Against All Enemies, currently #2 on Amazon, just behind Moveon.org's book about how to love America, and stands tall against the vicious, viscous assault and sliming by the Bush Administration and its lackeys. But Clarke is one badass motherfucker, someone who stands naked in front of the raging winds and gets a hard-on from the turmoil. Senate Majority Leader and noted cat killer Bill Frist gets up in front of the Senate, making one of those Joe McCarthy-like speeches that the Republicans are getting so fuckin' good at, joining fellow Republicans in calling for previously classified testimony by Clarke to be declassified so he can be shown to contradict himself. Clarke's reaction? To bend Bill Frist over the podium and fuck him like the Southern belle bitch Frist is. "Let's declassify all of it," Clarke threw down on Meet the Press this weekend. He even challenges house negro Condi Rice to open up the e-mails he sent her urging her to take his anti-terrorism plans seriously pre-9/11.

Of course that's not gonna happen. But it takes balls of steel and a cock of iron to say that. And, perhaps most frightening to those in power, it means that Clarke knows he's telling the truth. So, pussies that they are, the White House is not going to declassify anything other than what they believe contradicts Clarke's testimony (last paragraph of the linked article). And, now that the sideshow of getting Rice to testify under oath is over (she ain't gonna admit jack shit, just like Powell, Tenet, etc.), the Administration can get back to trying to destroy Clarke, calling him unbalanced, angry, vengeful, and, as Wolf Blitzer "reported," a little "weird" in his personal life.

The Rude Pundit doesn't care. Clarke can be crazy as a shithouse rat, ready to nuke his neighbor's dog for crapping on his lawn, and into fucking paraplegic survivors of toxic waste dumps. None of that means he's wrong. None of that means he lied. The devil, though, is in the media, and if they want to, they can turn Clarke into the crazy, dog-nuking, paraplegic fucker instead of a servant of the American people for over thirty years who simply wanted to save our country from those who disdain the freedom of its citizens.


Three pieces from the mail:
The Rude Pundit is having Monday issues. Enjoy.

More Tales of Bush's Economic Superhighway of Gloom and Doom:
From Jeff, a former employee of, well, one assumes it ain't the Postal Service or FedEx:
"Ah yes, the world's "most admired company" has gone on its usual round of quarterly layoffs. Monday, I was given my your position has been eliminated" notice -- just after returning from a week long vacation in Florida. Never mind that I got to work two days of my vacation because my department has been cut so thin as to not allow vacation coverage. Never mind that my job has, by indirect definition, been moved to Canada. Never mind that this "most admired company" has been shipping jobs to India by the truckload until they discovered that most Americans opposed this sort of outsourcing.

"And not so strangely, the world's "most admired company" has stepped up its efforts to rid itself of its most high paying, non-managerial jobs. This company is known for its pragmatism; it didn't get to where it is today by following trends. No, they learned several years ago that most Americans don't particularly like talking to Indian call center personnel who claim to be in "New Jersey". They also learned that this outsourcing (i.e. cost-cutting) measure doesn't work so well when the foreign country's infrastructure is not prepared for the influx of companies that are starting operations there. They also learned that with this upcoming election, the outsourcing of jobs will be serious issue. Which is why they are trying their best to dump as many high-paying (non-managerial) jobs to other countries before our government finally passes laws to curb this kind of corporate behavior. Call me a cynic, but you'll see a lot more of this happen between now and November 2004.

"Look for a marked increase in layoffs in the coming months. I believe most large corporations know their boy Dubya is living on borrowed time. As such, they are hurriedly trying to dump as many white-collar, technical IT jobs as they can before they are prevented from doing so. I wouldn't expect any different from a corporate culture that lives and dies by the quarterly numbers. Dow Jones uber-alles, after all."

Goddamn, That's One Hot Christian:
From astute observers Pete and Karen:
"We were in a shopping center parking lot the other day and saw a window decal on another car that left us speechless. It was an image of a fantasy prayer meeting of GW Bush, Abraham Lincoln, and George Washington. Bush is in the center, leading the other two in prayer, heads bowed. The artwork is kitsch dreck.

"The decal was issued by a (surprise) wiggy right wing Christian outfit.
Here's the image which will lead you to the group, the "Presidential Prayer Team."

"We found the artist's own website. And, surprise, he seems to like painting hunky guys with their shirts off."

The Rude Pundit knows that the artist would say that lots of religious imagery, from Michelangelo to Carravaggio, featured such ripped figures, but Michelangelo and Carravaggio were, well, gay.

From Rude Two - You Know You're the Worst President in U.S. History When . . .:
Terrorists support President Bush and want him to be re-elected.

As Ted Striker, hero of the film "Airplane!" put it, "The foot's on the other hand now" (or something like that -- the Rude Pundit isn't a fucking quote machine). But here it is: Terrorists are now rooting for President Bush to win, citing his inept handling of the "War" on terror. "[It is] not possible to find a leader "'more foolish than you (Bush), who deals with matters by force rather than with wisdom.'"

Addressing President Bush, the group said: "Kerry will kill our nation while it sleeps because he and the Democrats have the cunning to embellish blasphemy and present it to the Arab and Muslim nation as civilization."

"Because of this we desire you (Bush) to be elected."

Yes, the war on terror has done a 180, and now those who once used phrases like "If you oppose war, you oppose America," are now being supported by terrorists. How comforting.


Yuk It Up, Boy Bush:
Imagine if Bill Clinton had walked out at the Radio and Television Correspondents Association dinner, where Presidents traditionally poke fun at themselves, and stuck a cigar in his mouth and said, "Mmmmm, tastes like kosher pussy." Imagine if he had showed slides of himself sitting on a toilet, using legal documents to wipe his ass, and said, "That's where the Rose Law Firm documents went." Imagine if he showed a slide of Al Gore in a blue dress and said, "I told Monica it made Al look fat, but I jacked off on him anyways." Imagine the hue and cry. Imagine the outrage. Tom DeLay would have been burning down the Congress to censure him. If the members of the press had laughed, all anyone would say is how their laughter confirms that the media really is "liberal."

So you get the idea of why, when George W. Bush spoke at the dinner this week, it was perhaps, in the best possible spin, in poor taste for him to show slides of himself searching the Oval Office while Bush narrated, "Those weapons of mass destruction have got to be somewhere." He made the joke three times in his "performance." And perhaps you might understand why John Kerry and an American vet of this war are a wee bit upset. And you might wonder how out of touch the press is when the majority of the people in the room laughed at the "joke," as David Corn describes. And maybe you can wonder just how out of touch the President, his people, and the Republicans defending the remarks can be if they think this is such a laughing matter.

But, instead, let's put it this way: Bush's performance is actually an admission of something his administration has refused to say: that they will never find the alleged WMDs, that they are as big a fantasy as the joke photo - the search as set-up for the punchline. And what a punchline. As recently as last week, Donald Rumsfeld and others in the White House have been insisting that David Kay was speaking too soon, that Iraq is plenty big, and that the weapons could still be out there. How can anyone in the administration say that now that even they feel free to joke about the falsehood of the major reason they gave for consigning 600 American soldiers to death in the sandy streets and highways of Iraq?


Lives in the Balance:
New Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Jackson Browne, prior to his goatfucking moment of smacking around Darryl Hannah, released one of the unacknowledged great albums of the Reagan era, Lives in the Balance. A reaction to Reagan's policies in Central America and elsewhere, the 1986 album is a vicious indictment of American aggression. In the song "For America," Browne sings: "The thing I wonder about the Dads and Moms/ Who send their sons to the Vietnams/ Will they really think their way of life/ Has been protected as the next war comes?"

Even more prescient for our current situation, nearly twenty years on, is the title song. You can read the whole thing at the above link, but here's something from the final verse: "They sell us the President the same way/ They sell us our clothes and our cars/ They sell us every thing from youth to religion/ The same time they sell us our wars/ I want to know who the men in the shadows are/ I want to hear somebody asking them why/ They can be counted on to tell us who our enemies are/ But they're never the ones to fight or to die." The more things change. . .

The Rude Pundit was reminded of this because of the stunning opening statement by Richard Clarke yesterday in his public hearing before the 9/11 Commission. When Clarke said, "I also welcome the hearings because it is finally a forum where I can apologize to the loved ones of the victims of 9/11. To them who are here in the room, to those who are watching on television, your government failed you, those entrusted with protecting you failed you and I failed you. We tried hard, but that doesn't matter because we failed. And for that failure, I would ask -- once all the facts are out -- for your understanding and for your forgiveness," it was the first time anyone stopped the buck. No one, not the President, not George Tenet, not (let's be honest here) Bill Clinton, actually has stepped forward and said, "You can blame me."

As the White House and their lackeys in the Congress, on the commission, and on Fox (Bill O'Reilly, the Rude Pundit is gunnin' fer you tomorrow) attempt to destroy the reputation of the man who has said so publicly and so clearly that mistakes were made and that the Iraq war was the mistake of an obsessive group of policy makers, we need to remember that this whole thing is about real, actual lives. Most of the news shows and editorials are focused on the political cost to Bush's re-election bid, but, goddamnit, in the end, this is about 3000 Americans and foreigners killed here, hundreds of dead Americans in Iraq, and thousands of dead Iraqis. And so many people saying that none of this needed to happen. Instead of making so damn sure that Richard Clarke is seen in the world as an unbalanced liar, instead of combing the sound bite archives for anything that can impeach his credibility, instead of the press being complicit in this smear attempt, how about instead saying that maybe, just maybe we can say that there's a good chance that at least some of what he's saying is true. And maybe, just maybe, we can save some lives by listening.

Two more soldiers dead today. Too many Iraqis to bother counting anymore.

No jokes today. Too sick to be jokey. Too bludgeoned by the frightening sight of the increasingly emaciated Condi Rice seeming as if she's about to choke on her own bile.


Fuck Everyone:
The Rude Pundit is sick. Back tomorrow. And do not send the Rude Pundit kind get well words. Time is better spent visiting old people and/or strip clubs.


Karl Rove's Sodomizin' Stormtroopers:
God, how the roads of Washington are littered with the anally-violated bodies of those who cross the Bush Administration and Karl Rove's Sodomizin' Stormtroopers. Dressed in black outfits, with black helmets and large black strap-ons, the Sodomizin' Stormtroopers are sent out, like flying monkeys, to ass-fuck anyone who dares question the word of George Bush and his minions. Ask former weapons inspector Scott Ritter, entrapped in an online chat with an "underage girl" and arrested at a diner, handed over to the SS, who roughly fucked the mainstream credibility out of him. Ask Paul O'Neill, who dared to say that Bush was a shallow, uninterested leader. Characterized as a kook who was unworthy of his Treasury Secretary position, Rove dispatched the SS to bend him over a stack of classified documents and fuck him until his ass bled and he cried that he would disappear. That'll teach him to cavort with Bono. The SS takes photos that they send to Sean Hannity, Bill O'Reilly, and others so that they can giggle at the bleeding sphincters of those who have met the fate of a Rovean rogering. Colin Powell is a tough bastard, still able to stand up after all the ass fuckings he's received. And now, oh, delicious rectum, they're at it again, going after Richard Clarke, who had the temerity of having fairly unimpeachable credibility in being in the inner circle of national security in the two decades prior to 9/11.

So, having seen the semen-stained asses of others, why would Richard Clarke write his book? Why would he say all the things he has said, about the monomaniacal heights of Rumslove's obsession with Iraq, about Condi's inexperience, about the unmitigated evil that is Dick Cheney, about the way in which the Republican's gleeful obsession with Clinton's cock was one of the essential reasons that 9/11 happened, about the way in which the President pressed him to connect 9/11 to Iraq despite all evidence to the contrary? On 60 Minutes, Clarke admitted that he knew the fate that awaited him. When he said, "I'm sure they'll launch their dogs on me," you could see in his eyes that he knew the Stormtroopers had already sanded the strap-ons for rough anal insertion. Leslie Stahl looked almost sympathetic when she asked if he should be loyal to the President and Clarke answered that he should proabably think about the safety of the country first.

Let's remember a couple of things here: when one takes an oath of office as a federal appointee, one is asked to uphold the Constitution, not the President: ''I, [name], do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God." Sure, it's idealistic to think that one won't back one's employer, but let's be clear here: a public official's first duty is to the Constitution and all that that implies. It ain't to be loyal to a particular president or party. It's why Clarke could be well-regarded in three administrations prior to this Bush.

And when pundits and administrators ask, "Why wait till now, when there's an election going on?" as they are doing consistently now, part of the answer is, "No, shit, he wants to sell books." But the other, rather interesting and more complex answer, is found is yesterday's piece of crap article by Judith Miller that was buried by the New York Times: the "manuscript was screened for classified information by White House lawyers before its publication." One might wonder how long such a screening takes, considering what happened with the Paul O'Neill. One could say that perhaps Clarke, sensitive to national security, wanted to make sure that he didn't disclose classified info, and, perhaps, that process of being careful to protect the nation and the Constitution, takes time. After all, he didn't leave the administration until a year ago. And maybe, just maybe, Clarke wrote the book for that very reason: he might have worked at the discretion of the President, but he owes his allegiance to the country, not the man, something Bush and his people forget at every turn of a lying word.

It doesn't really matter, though. Rove's SS is out in full force, denouncing Clarke, picking the location for the ass fucking so that it's as public as possible. Hell, wasn't it just so cute when Scott McClellan called Clarke's book "Dick Clarke's 'American Grandstand'"? God, those witty motherfuckers.

Whoever comes out next against the Bushkoviks better be careful: the SS can make it a short, effective ass fucking or a long, drawn out reaming. The Sodomizin' Stormtroopers are waitin' for the word from Rove on how to go after David Kay or Hans Blix, neither of whom was shilling for a book when they defied the will of Bush (yes, Blix has a book out now, but that's a recent development). Don't you worry, America. Rove's SS will make every thing grey all nice and black and white once again.

From Richard Clarke on PBS's Newshour: "This book would have come out three months earlier if the White House hadn't taken three months to clear it." 'Nuff said?


Could George W. Bush Be Any More of a Pussy?:
The Rude Pundit will be getting to the whole Richard Clarke debacle in a little while, but this article by Elisabeth Bumiller in today's New York Times cannot go without comment. In one of her "White House Letter" columns, Bumiller writes about George Bush on the campaign trail this time versus George Bush on the campaign trail in 2000. Mostly, it seems, he just has a ton of perks, like, say, Air Force One, with a new big screen television on board that gets ESPN (at taxpayer expense, no doubt). But Bush loves the comforts of his home. As Bumiller points out, back in 2000, while campaigning, Bush "brought along his feather pillow, complained about having to sleep in hotels and missed his cats. He wanted to be president, all right, but he also wanted to wake up in his own bed in the governor's mansion in Austin, Tex., and pad downstairs for the comforting ritual of fetching the newspapers and making coffee." And while Bumiller goes to some unintentionally (?) funny lengths to demonstrate how Bush likes being out among the people this time around, she says, "Although he is already traveling, eight months before the election, to two, three and four states a week, the president demands that they be day trips so he can be back at the White House in time for dinner and, of course, a night with his feather pillow in his own bed."

Okay, a lot of the jokes here are just obvious. It is almost impossible to read the entire article and not wonder if it was written for The Daily Show. But you can't make this kind of shit up. Now, the Rude Pundit is no Charles Krauthammer. He's not a Harvard-educated psychiatrist cum conservative lapdog columnistwho can make snap judgements about the sanity of politicians like Krauthammer seems so adept at doing (a la his comments on Howard Dean and others). However, Bumiller's article does seem to pretty much point out a couple of things that can be boiled down to this: George W. Bush is a pussy who needs his binky in order to sleep. He's like Leo Bloom from The Producers, who would break down without his blue blanket.

Seriously: how can anyone pretend, in any way, to be a tough guy terror fighter when he needs to be home to sleep with his feather pillow every night? Really, and, c'mon, what the fuck? How in any way, shape, or form can the Bush campaign attack John Kerry for his wealth and patrician ways when the President of the United States needs his wubby or he has a hissy?


More Tales From the Bush Superhighway of Economic Doom:
Today's tale comes from someone other than an ex-dot-com-er. This is not to reduce the economic pain suffered by people in the tech industries. The Rude Pundit just wants the stories to come from all over the dessicated states of Bush's America. The minimally-edited story from the maritime industry by Jeffrey:

"I have just recently entered the maritime industry as an officer. I spent 4 years at a maritime academy earning my degree and license that allows me to sail as a ship's officer. It's a skilled job that requires extensive training and practical experience. The goal of the academy was to prepare me for an officer's position on larger ships, preferably those over 500 gross tons. Sadly there are few jobs available on the larger ships. Foreign competition, particularly from under-qualified officers and crews, and companies, who have chosen to register their vessels in countries where regulations are lax or non-existent (aka 'flags of convenience'), have virtually gutted the U.S. maritime industry. Less than 2% of our overseas imports or exports are carried on U.S.-flagged and U.S.-crewed vessels.

"Although I thankfully have a job that does allow me to utilize the skills I learned, I've been relegated to smaller and more potentially dangerous vessels. There is a drawback, however. The Coast Guard states that in order to upgrade my license I must have a year of 'sea time' on a vessel of 500 gross tons or more. With U.S. vessels of this size disappearing, I am essentially stuck with what I have right now. The only vessels that the fucks in the Bush Administration are concerned with right now are ones with cruise missiles on them. And since the Administration has shown absolutely no concern with the American maritime industry, other than port security(which is laughable at best), don't expect us to be around too long in the future."

As usual, the Rude Pundit does not vouch for the truthfulness of the story. But, as usual, it seems on target.

Seth Farber of the Talking Dog tells his unemployment sorrow story here. It's a tale that directly points the finger at the Bush Administration for the post-9/11 reaming out of the job market.

Follow-Up on Iraq War 2004 (Same As It Ever Was):
You remember Mohammed Saeed al-Sahhaf? Sure, you do. The former Iraqi information minister? The one who fiddled while Baghdad burned, saying that Iraq was slaughtering Americans as bombs blew up in the background? Yeah, now you got it.

Doesn't the Bush administration seem that way these days? When CNN was carrying Dick Cheney's speech at the Ronald Reagan library, where he mocked John Kerry's attacks on the administration, where he talked about how great things were going to be in Iraq, the news network split the screen to show the aftermath of the Baghdad bombing. So Cheney's saying, "By helping nations to build the institutions of freedom, and turning the energies of men and women away from violence, we not only make that region more peaceful, we add to the security of our own region" and we're seeing the burning hotel and apartments.

Oh, how we all laughed at al-Sahhaf when the pictures demonstrated how obvious his lies were. Oh, how we should cower that our own government offers nothing better.


Yee-Haa! It's Good To Have Cowboy in the White House!:
Motherfuck, gawtdam, and son of a bitch, if shit ain't blowin' up real good and purty over in I-raq. Here we are, one year in, one year from the big motherfuckin' Baghdad/Basra burn-down, the shock and awe, bitches, where craven pussy Iraqis would cower their brown asses under their brown mamas' burqas and shit brown shit out of their brown asses. Hee-haw!

Hey, John Kerry, you wanna campaign commercial? Here it is: where in March 2003, the Baghdad skyline looked like this, now, in March 2004, it looks like this.

It's goddamn disgusting to watch Bush, Cheney, and the empty zombified shell of Colin Powell traverse the country and try to act like they're so triumphant that monuments should be built to glorify Bush. Next thing you know, they'll be telling us to name our kids George or Rummy. Here's Dick "You Heard My Name Right" Cheney yesterday on "national security," which for some reason the Bush administration still insists involves Iraq. Cheney starts with the lie: "Had the decision belonged to Senator Kerry, Saddam Hussein would still be in power today in Iraq," a line which ignores the fact (and notice that word: fact) that Kerry voted for the war (spin that the way you like, but the fact is that Kerry voted to give Bush the power to go to war).

And here's the preening fratboy cheerleader Bush, talking a couple of days ago at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce: "Now we're marching to peace. We're marching to peace. A free Iraq is going to help change the world. A free Afghanistan is changing the world. The world is becoming more peaceful." He was actually spouting this after the Madrid bombing. "Decorum" is something that eludes Bush. And reality, or facts, just keep bitin' Bush on his ass. One wonders if this is a photo of freedom. Or just another kind of slavery.

And, man, Bush shouldn't have pissed-off John McCain all that time ago, because he refuses to toe the line. On today's Today show, McCain, calling on a real debate over real issues that matter to real people in this election, said, "I do not believe that [Kerry] is necessarily weak on defense." McCain is a tough motherfucker. Shit, fuck running as Kerry's running mate. He and Max Cleland should run (and the Rude Pundit uses that verb euphemistically here) on the "Fuck You - We Got Our Shit Blown Up For Our Country" ticket. And just let anyone try at that point to say these guys are weak on defense.

One year on, and Iraq is limping along like a stray cur shot full of b.b.'s by little boys, waitin' for some kind person to put it out of its misery. But instead, everyone keeps pointing at it and saying, "Christ, that's a shame, someone should help that dog" or "See? What a strong dog, walking with all those wounds." Poor mongrel. No one knows what to do, so it'll just curl up and die.


Lying Is a Matter of Degrees:
Let's return to our favorite gay male couple, Ron and Dave. (Long-time readers will remember them from a previous entry; new readers can enjoy their travails by heading to the archives and reading the December 4, 2003 entry.) Ron and Dave are back together. They even went to San Francisco and got married, although they live in legal limbo. Everyone's happy to see Ron and Dave as a couple again: there was too much turmoil on the streets of Chelsea as to who was gonna be whose friend. Too much of a chance of dating Dave and awkwardly running into Ron and his date at a club. Yep, Ron and Dave think they've worked it all out and are in it for the long haul. But Ron, oh, Ron, he's got such a problem. You see, Ron still can't get enough cock. Dave's gotten better in the sack, but Ron wants more. He wants to fuck and get fucked all the time. He's voracious. He could have a cock in each hand, one in his mouth and one in his ass and he'd still want more. So he's pretending to go on out of town business trips when, truth be told, he's heading to Cherry Grove or Fire Island for liaisons with dozens of different guys. And he comes back home and lies to Dave. He lies so clearly to those who see from the outside, but he lies so well that Dave is mostly fooled, although he's got suspicions. One night, when Ron is on a "business trip" (actually, a cabin in Saugatuck, Michigan, with an accountant from J.P. Morgan), Dave is out at a bar, having a beer. He sees a guy eyeballing him and it gives him a thrill. He hasn't been checked out in a while. He starts to chat the guy up and, finally, guilt-free, he gives the guy a kiss, but says he's seeing someone. Ron comes back. He gets a call from a friend who says he saw Dave kissing another guy at a bar. Ron confronts Dave with this adulterous behavior (they are, after all, married). Dave says he didn't do it, but, pressed by Ron, who is now on a vicious drunk from all the Pinot Grigio he's been drinking, Dave denies it. "Ah-ha!" Ron yells. "You are a liar! I have evidence!" Now Dave is pissed. He turns it around. "Where have you been going, Ron? Why have I seen receipts from the Ice Palace? And why do you have so many trips to Provincetown?" Ron is caught. He's been lying. But instead of admitting it, he tries for the moral high ground. He accuses Dave again of lying, asking him how many more things he's lied about.

The moral question of the day is this: who has told the worse lie? Who has done the most damage? Who has made their life irreparably bad?

As Bush and Kerry fling accusations of lying back and forth at each other (an image created on the front of the New York Daily News is shorthand for the stupid), it helps to put this in a bit of context: what are the total effects of the lies told by any candidate in his/her career? (And we can broaden the definition of "lies" to "says one thing and does another.") Let's say that everything Bush and Kerry are saying about each other is true. This is just for fun. Let's say it's all true. That Kerry's vote against the funding bill wasn't a vote against a bill that would be paid for by future generations in comparison to a bill that fully funded the Iraq war through a rollback of taxcuts, but it was a vote against supporting the war effort. That Kerry lied when he said that foreign leaders supported him. That Kerry does flip-flop on issues. Let's just assume that's all true.

How does that balance with the lies of the Bush administration? If you say that Bush lied about WMDs, lied about tax cuts, lied about job growth, lied about the ease of the transition in Iraq, lied about wanting to get to the bottom of 9/11, lied about wanting to find out who outed Valerie Plame, lied about the cost of the Medicare bill, and on and on, how do the lies balance? How does the scale tip?

Isn't it obvious that Ron's lies are far, far more damaging than anything that Dave even has to lie about? Ron's behavior and his lying about it could get someone killed. Dave's lies just hurt feelings. Poor Dave. Ron is already out there, trying to make himself morally superior, magnifying Dave's minor league failures, when his own lies are a tangled web of hatred and dishonor and insecurity.


Why Rush Limbaugh Should Be Force-Fed His Own Liposuctioned Fat:
Goddamn and Jesus Christ, oxycontin is great shit. You take the tabs and crush 'em down and snort 'em, gettin' that feelin' of euphoria so fuckin' fast that you just wanna fuck your engineer. Or you've already moved on to shootin' the shit up, in your thigh. The cool thing about oxycontin is how fuckin' good you feel about yourself when that warm, liquid sensation pours over your body, like when your manservant microwaves the oil before lubing up your belly. And you feel so fuckin' good that you think you're king of the motherfuckin' world, and everyone around you is wrong because you just feel so got-damn right. If you went to a bar, you might come on to the hottest chick there because you think you're so fuckin' hot and your cock is three inches bigger than it is. Or, if you're on the way down, if the crash is happenin' before you get to your next tab, you might pick a fight with the weakest pussy in the bar so you can kick his ass and feel so fuckin' good about yourself, enough to give you the rush until you get back to the bathroom and freebase that shit.

So Rush Limbaugh has decided to beat up on the 9/11 widows and familes. Maureen Farrell does a great job of summarizing Pleghmball's bullshit on Buzzflash. Or you can read the unedited horror in Limbaugh's own transcript. See, according to Limbaugh, the 9/11 widows who have said that showing the casket of a dead family member being pulled from the wreckage of the World Trade Center as part of a shill to get the President re-elected is perhaps desecrating the memory of the dead are tools of the Democratic party. Limbaugh says, "These women sound like campaign consultants, not grieving family members, and I was reluctant to make this charge," but he does, calling it "hateful":"I do not know this kind of hatred; I don't know this kind of venom; I don't harbor it; I never have; I don't know what it's like to be governed by this kind of rage, and I don't know what life must be like when it is. I cannot relate. I cannot relate to being obsessed with rage and hatred."

Of course Limbaugh can relate to this hatred. His program is all about a fat abused kid who gets to beat up on people who can't see his chins bobble when he spews his hatred: from Rush, the man who loves: "[Democrats are] a little bunch of Chihuahuas yapping at the heels of everybody, but their team is filled with a bunch of gorillas and lions and tigers called the mainstream press." This is a man who has no "rage," but calls John Kerry a "clown" and a "sick puppy" (apparently, Limbaugh's metaphors are limited to those that you can find at a zoo). This is a man who used to have a regular segment called "Radio Abortions," where he would "abort" listeners with the sound effect of a vacuum and a screaming baby. People used to call his show and say, "Rush, abort me!" He is a self-serving, self-hating bullshit artist, as we all know, but, more importantly, he is a sham.

And we know that because in his own words he backtracked on his defense of Howard Stern. After saying on his show that he "never listened" to Stern, but he felt like the FCC's attack on Stern was a blow to free speech, which could, after all, affect him some day, Limbaugh felt compelled to write an editorial taking back his support in order to give support to Clear Channel and the "free market." But, like a dope addict in the middle of a heroin bender where the addict thinks he is making clear connections in his thoughts, in the same editorial, he decries those who attack The Passion of the Christ by comparing it to the left's defense of Andres Serrano's Piss Christ, a photograph from 1989.

Yep, oxycontin is a great drug - it compresses time, making things years apart seem relevant, making subjects leap from sense to nonsense seem sensible.

Of course, as usual, Limbaugh is wrong about his statements that the Heinz Foundation was behind the 9/11 widows or that they were tools of the Democrats. Monica Gabrielle and Kristen Breitweiser, the aformentioned widows, point that out in letters on their group's website. So far, neither Limbaugh, nor any of the other conservative fucks who attacked those who have suffered, still suffer, and will continue to suffer who dared to question our President, have apologized.

"Hillbilly heroin" is fine, fine drug. It's constant use eliminated all pain, all bad thoughts, all conscience. All those burdensome things that get in the way of our egos displaying themselves, splayed like a Shanghai stripper or a gutted cow.


"Madrid" Is Spanish For "Democracy":
George Bush and Tony Blair must have gotten the servants to clean their undies yesterday after the results of the election in Spain became a clear rebuke to the war in Iraq. With the Socialist party whipping ass, the new Prime Minister Zapatero says he'll get Spanish troops out of Iraq in July if the U.N. doesn't take it over. And he says, in essence, Iraq is bullshit - let's fight the terrorists. Think about this for a second here: three days after a massive terrorist attack, Spain held national elections. Compare that with the much-quoted opinion of former General Tommy Franks, who claimed in a couple of months ago in that bastion of political argument, Cigar Afficionado magazine (or, as the Rude Pundit prefers to call it, "Gee, I love sucking cocks, but I don't wanna seem gay, so I'll suck, suck this big ass stogie instead" magazine), that if a WMD attack were to occur, we might suspend the Constitution here in the U.S.

Already, the story of Spain is being spun in this way: Al-Qaeda scared Spain into running from Iraq with its tail between its legs, bitch-slapping them with the bombings, and all those fucking paella-eating, sangria-sippin' Spaniards punked out and turned yellow. CNN's American Morning Question of the Day was "Do Spain's election results mean the terrorists are winning?" Jack Cafferty, who always looks like he has to burp and fart at the same time, read the e-mails, many of which agreed with the leading question: Yep, if you exercise your democratic rights to get rid of a government who acted against the interests of the majority of the people, you are assisting the terrorists. USA Today tries to have it both ways in this editorial. Watch the way this plays out. Chances are what we'll hear is that the Spanish people were runnin' scared, like from bulls in Pamplona, and that we Uhmerkans would rally around our leaders in case of another attack, and that, horror of horros, Georgie boy would be guaranteed four more unfettered years tp inflict gloom, violence, and poverty.

But maybe, just maybe, we can spin it this way: Madrid showed what a farce the war on terror is at this point. The well-worn question is what would have happened if we used those billions of dollars to actually go after, well, terrorists. And the Spanish people know this. They opposed us. They opposed the war. And when it came home, they decided, after a stunning show of national unity in the 2 million Spaniard march, to show that democracy means that leaders have to answer for their actions. And if you behave like a crazed megalomaniac with no concern for the will of the people, then the people have a right to dump said megalomaniac on the street. The voters of Spain only had a couple of days to process what happened to them - no time for real spin to be done. And they opted out. And if you hear members of our government decry the Spanish elections, then you will know for sure that they regard democracy only as so much rabble-rousing against the elite, who know better than the people what's good for the people.

So maybe, just maybe what we can learn from Spain is that democracy can work. And bombs are the inverse of peace, and both are issues for the electorate to continue. If you're gonna run an election on how safe you make a people and the world, don't be surprised when reality bites you in the ass.


The Bush Superhighway of Exile and Gloom (an Expansion of the Superhighway of Economic Doom):
No stories of economic woe this week, but the Rude Pundit finds it fascinating how many people have leapt on the idea of abandoning the U.S. And considering articles like this, from the Wall Street Journal, about the use of the military in "domestic intelligence gathering," maybe, just maybe, it's time to make friends with a Canadian. With the usual editing, here's a couple of comments from readers:

From Charles: "My wife and I are two elderly parents in declining health who also fantasize about leaving. But where can you go to escape the wrath of the Bushies? Even Barbara Boxer is caving in. It is sad.

"We lived and worked many years in the post war FRG (West Germany). We could never feel totally comfortable with our German friends and neighbors in regard to the Holocaust. Why did ordinary good Germans let things get to to point where they lost control of what Hitler was doing? Now we are much more understanding. Also we see now why so many Jews and others waited too long.

And Mike: "Though I have a job and it seems to show encouraging signs of being stable for at least another year or two, I realize I'm one of the fortunate few. I work in I.T., one of those whose entire niche is being shipped overseas by greedy
Republicans intent on maximizing shareholder profit. Oh, of course these soulless little fucks package that as 'keeping our business competitive' or 'saving our company' - you wouldn't believe the pro-outsourcing HORSESHIT I have to wade through in the daily technical newsletters I subscribe to, churned out by pro-corporate whores intent on proselytizing to the masses on how moving American technology jobs overseas is a good thing for us all.

"Even though I HAVE a job, I've fantasized about leaving this country for the past two years; to relocate to either Canada or Europe. Not just due to the shitty Bush administration, but the shitty attitude overall in this country that's letting these assholes get away with holy murder. Yeah, there's a mobilized citizenry made up of smart folks who see what's going on, but when the bulk of the population are dumbassed reality-TV-watching NASCAR fucks with their noses firmly planted between Bush's butt cheeks because he promises them a crumb or two in the form of a 'tax cut,' well, I think it's pathetic that these people could allowed to cast votes in a system which might affect my life or that of my kids. I don't want their garbage conservatism, their garbage 'gimme gimme gimme me first, me me me' attitudes or their garbage religion being pushed on my loved ones - I thought that was the definition of freedom, but they seem to define freedom as not having to pay taxes, to be able to wave guns around and pick on gays and blacks and liberals.

"So, even for those of us who are employed the thought of relocating elsewhere thanks to the dumbing down of America - which the GOP capitalizes upon to remain in power - can be mighty appealing."

No vouching for the reality of these, but a comment or two here: The Rude Pundit has, indeed, thought about the possibility of abandoning the U.S. should Bush win re-election. He is not alone in this. And he's rather fond of Toronto. But, goddamnit, every time he thinks about it, he thinks, "No, fuck them. That's what they want, the cocksuckers in power. Just like back during the Vietnam protests, just like back during the civil rights era." The worst fucking thing one can do is run because then no none is left to fight for those who can't run. The Rude Pundit is a superhero, he thinks, with a cape and a strap-on, ready to sodomize his enemies and give sex fantasy images to those who watch while he flies above.

But, then again, the gut bravery passes when you read shit like this. And the election approaches, slowly, snail-like, with all the slime left in its wake as it inexorably gets closer. And even Toronto gets warm in the summertime.

Send your stories of exile, doom, gloom, unemployment, and the misery of living in the era of the Bush to: rudepundit@yahoo.com.

Next week: More Bush ads, more crooked lies. And "civil union" sounds so gay.


Yeah, But What If They Are Crooked Liars?:
Once again, demonstrating that they have absolutely nothing to campaign on (and less and less all the time), the Republican party is shocked, shocked that John Kerry, in an "off-mike" moment in Chicago, said, "These guys are the most crooked, you know, lying group I've ever seen. It's scary." Marc Racicot of the Bush/Satan campaign, in calling for Kerry to apologize, is reacting as if Kerry had said, "Goddamn these fucking Republican pig fucks and their horseshit-filled media whores who do their bidding are so full of bile and hatred for America, democracy, and the people that they would lie more than a 50 cent a fuck Thai hooker in order to achieve their goals of bloating their corporate largesse like so many dead pig corpses left in the sun until they burst and their fetid, putrid scent overwhelms all those around until they vomit endlessly. Jesus Christ, what a load of shit they have fed us, what a simpering little pussy of a leader, what bunch of hate-filled, evil, depraved motherfuckers whose idea of the truth is to create an acid bath of lies they can use to burn the truth out of the body politic. Who the fuck do these rat shit cockmongers who can't get erections unless they smell the burning flesh of brown and black skinned children think they are? Get Dick Cheney out here and I'll fuck him in the ass until his pacemaker pops out and I'll keep fucking his corpse until it falls to pieces and then we'll toss the pieces to the execs at Halliburton so they can burn it, burn it in Iraqi and Libyan oil, and send its screaming soul to the hell that created it. And who the fuck is this man, this Bush, this President, who believes he is so vastly superior to us that we shouldn't call him out on all of the vicious anger and repressed sexual frustration that he is imposing on this country? Christ, I'd love to shitcan this whole election and just whip the living shit out that little smirking fuckface live on pay-per-view. But then I wouldn't be able to wash the piss smell of evil off of my knuckles for weeks."

So, like, you know, if Kerry had said that, then maybe, just maybe, Racicot would have a point.

But only maybe. And if Racicot could prove Kerry wrong.


Death Knocks:
There's nothing sweeter than the sound of the bleating death cries of the Bush Administration. They've gotta be feeling it in their bones about now: the rattling chill of mortality, the horrible, nauseating pit of the stomach knotting at the knowledge that they stretched their credibility so far and they are now paying the consequences. Goddamn, the sweet, sugary taste of their tears, the masturbatory pleasure of watching them fall, the pure glee, like a 35 year-old virgin getting her first good fucking, as we watch the fall, watch the fall.

How else do you explain the utter chaos in the Bush campaign and the GOP? They're filing FEC complaints to stop left wing organizations from running anti-Bush ads, although one wonders what the NRA thinks about that attempt to silence advocacy groups. The poll numbers are dropping, not stabilizing, and Bush has lost the trust of the people. Any time Bush touts the "good" of his tax cuts, he's undermined by the facts, like the CBO's report that, well, the tax cuts are a sham. Bush, and what else can we call it?, flip-flopped on his meeting with the 9/11 commission (like he flip-flopped on the commission's creation itself). And, really, nobody gives a damn what he says about a vote John Kerry made to cut intelligence spending by 1% back in the mid-90s. (Slate's Fred Kaplan has done solid reporting about this and other attacks on Kerry.) And even when he talks about his "record," as he will today in Ohio, Bush just sounds so empty, so much a fool, so dead in the water, like the marriage amendment (which is being attacked by Log Cabin Republicans in an upcoming ad) , like Bush's push to make his tax cuts permanent, like his presidency.

Watch all the poker shows on ESPN now. It's the thing every gambler knows - you go all in on a single hand and sometimes you lose and you're sent home, pockets empty, disgraced, looking like an idiot. And the Bush Administration when all in on Iraq and WMDs. But seemingly sure bets, like four-of-a-kind, always have hands that beat them. And once you lose, your skills are called into question.

Watch the President these days. He's visibly rattled, looking older, older by the minute, like Dorian Gray. Because he knows - he's lost us. We don't look at him as the man on the pile of WTC rubble. We look at him as the wimpy ex-cheerleader drunk who led us into a corrupting of democracy and America. And when he speaks, there's nothing he can say that can get around objective reality. There's no spin to put on things that everyone knows - no jobs, no WMDs, a culture war that no one wants but a few fundamentalist nuts. (It doesn't help that a recent poll shows that the majority of Americans support John Kerry on civil unions for gays.) And reality will, like death, bite you on the ass every time.

Death is knocking at the White House, dragging behind it the corpse of the first Bush administration. And, like father, like son, so will this one be dragged off in disgrace. God, let's enjoy its screams.

Until, you know, they drag out Osama.


It's Gonna Take a Tall Man:
Oh, the anal probling that John Kerry is undergoing right now. Oh, the colonscopy that he must endure. As Republicans seek anything, man, fuckin' anything to bring down this tall, tall man who's actually givin' the war President a contest. Bush is out there, man, flailin' about like that waiter on The Sopranos that Christopher hit in the head with a brick. Here's the Prez, trying his best not to quiver his bottom lip, attacking Kerry for Kerry actually thinking that after the Cold War, maybe we could cut defense spending. Bush spends an awful lot of time probing Kerry's records for these "flip-flops," "waffles," and changes of heart. (The Kerry campaign would do well to check out this list of Bush's flip-flops at Daily Kos.)

Other spawns of the Rovean hell of the Bush/Cheney campaign are attempting to eviscierate the tall man. Citizens United, a group of vicious attack bitches, is going to start running its parody of the Mastercard "Priceless" ad about John Kerry, attempting to demonstrate that the tall man is, well, rich: "Massachusetts Senator John Kerry. Hairstyle by Christophe's $75. Designer shirts: $250. Forty-two foot luxury yacht: $1 million. Four lavish mansions and beachfront estate: Over $30 million. Another rich, liberal elitist from Massachusetts who claims he's a man of the people. Priceless." You get it, you fuckin' yahoos and NASCAR droolers? Kerry is rich and from the East Coast, unlike, say, Bush, who's, well, rich and from the East Coast. It's just goddamn embarassing to see the President, in the guise of his "official duties" prancing around a rodeo. There's clowns and horses there. Bush had to be scared shitless. (Kerry's best line this week was about this: "If the president of the United States can find time to go to a rodeo, he can spend more than one hour before the [9/11] commission."

And there's the noxious bit of worm spittle from Gary Aldrich, where the former FBI agent, now lackey of the right wing sodomizin' machine, derides the tall man's heroism in Vietnam as being not all that heroic in killing a Vietnamese soldier to save a fellow American because "evidence suggests the Vietnamese soldier had previously been wounded by a 50-caliber round." Because, you know, there's so much you can be sure of when you're leapin' off a boat in the middle of a battle to rescue someone.

The sad thing about Bush is the lack of self-awareness. He doesn't understand that a reasonably well-trained chimp could be nominated by the Democrats, and that chimp would be ahead of him in the polls right now. Re-elections are not about the opponents of the incumbents. Re-elections are about the person in office. By Bush making his campaign speeches so much about Kerry, he's demonstrating how empty his presidency has been - how devoid of success, how devoid of ethics, how it's just so many lies - Bush is like a wifebeater who tells his wife that he loves her and won't she please take him back? Even if he promises he won't smack her again? Nope, it's all lies. And Bush is the pathetic center of the lies - and he will try to take down all of us into his mire of hate and retribution before it's all over.

It'll keep comin', you know. All of the accusations, all of the probing. There will be lies and distortions. But here's the deal: Kerry's a tall man. And tall men stand above all of those who crawl around on the ground, picking up the rocks and dirt that fall off the shoes of the tall men.


Facts Are For Suckers:
Much, much, much has been written on how the Bush Administration regards facts in the same way that an AIDS-ridden crack whore regards condoms: why bother with them now? Check out Eric Alterman's latest column at the Center for American Progress.

While much, much, much ink and many, many, many hours of video have been spilled over the egregious, despicable, verminous, bottom-dwelling use of actual 9/11 images (and faux firefighters) in two of the Bush/Cheney ads, relatively little has been said about the third ad, the one that features George and Laura and images of, one presumes, actors acting like workers and average people. (It begs the question of whether or not real workers could even be found.) Here's the script in all its odious glory, missing, of course, the oh-so-cute sound of the inability of Bush to pronounce the "America" as a word with four syllables (the Rude Pundit doesn't know about you, but he doesn't live in "Uhmerka" and he is not an "Uhmerkan," but maybe that's the planet Bush lives on since he sure as shit doesn't live here or maybe it's a weaselly way of getting out of any of his claims since he can say, "I wasn't talking about 'A-mer-i-ca,' I was talking about 'Uhmerka,'" but we digress):

President Bush:
One of the things that must never change is the entrepreneurial spirit of America. This country needs a President who clearly sees that.

Laura Bush:
The strength, the focus, the characteristics that these times demand.

President Bush:
And as the economy grows, the job base grows and somebody who's looking for work will be more likely to find a job. I know exactly where I want to lead this country; I know what we need to do to make the world more free and more peaceful. I know what we need to do to make sure every person has a chance at realizing the American dream. I know what we need to do to continue economic growth so people can find work, to raise the standards at schools so children can learn, to fulfill the promise to America's seniors. Americans are hard working, decent, generous people. I'm optimistic about America because I believe in the people of America.

Now, this begs so many fucking questions it's hard to even get one's mind around it. First, the obvious question, which is if Bush knows "exactly where I want to lead the country," and knows all the other shit he claims to know, why doesn't the fuck doesn't he deign to share it with us? Because this is par for the course with Bush: we know, but don't you worry your poor little heads about it. When we feel we can reveal it to you, we will. Noblesse oblige, motherfuckers. And divine right of kings. We govern upon you.

Other questions? So, like John Kerry doesn't see the entrepeneurial spirit? So, like that job report that showed virtually all the jobs created by the "economy" last month were created by the government, which, as far as the Rude Pundit can tell, is not supposed to be in the entrepeneurial business? And, so, like, if Bush knows what to do, why the fuck hasn't he done it so far? Or is what Bush "knows" wrong, like so many other "facts" Bush claims to have known in the past?

And the commercial itself, with its Aaron Copeland meets a pussy piano player sentimental music, with its multiculti images of an America that has nothing to do with the America Bush has created. This is not America. In fact, it is Uhmerka, a place where values are defined by those in charge, not by those who vote.

But, fuck, and, why not, who cares? As long as the Republicans have a line they can stick by until it stays in your head like the Oscar Meyer Weiner song. Here's the line: "President Bush has provided strong moral leadership for America in historic times," from a press release from Tom "Tony Montana" DeLay.

And vague variation #1: "The President has provided steady leadership in remarkably changing times," from Rep. Henry Bonilla of Texas. Ditto from Terry Holt: "President Bush has provided steady leadership."

Vague variation #2 from the Missouri Senate President Pro Tem: "President Bush has proven his ability to be a steady leader in changing times." That one is from the "statement" of Missouri Republicans endorsing Bush.

From David Dreier of California on February 26: "President Bush has provided our country with steady leadership in times of historic change." And a February 25 "statement" from Minnesota Rep. Gil Gutknecht: "President Bush has been a strong leader for America during these times of historic change." From Ohio Rep. Ney, who throws it all in: "President Bush has provided steady and strong leadership for America as we face great challenges in these historic times."

So far, on this hit parade, all of the quotes have come from press releases of the Bush/Cheney campaign. Christ, you'd almost think these "releases" were written for all these honorable citizens. Terry Holt also tried this out on CNN on February 17: "We think the president has been a strong and steady leader during dangerous and changing times."

Remember, unlike other times, these are "historic" and "changing." Every other time? A wallow in sameness and tedium. And Bush is "strong" and "steady," unlike that batshit insane pussywhipped cocksucker that wants his job, right? Right?

And through it all, we out here, in the real world, not the fantasy world of the Bush ads, we who live the historic, changing times, in the actual America, know every time we see Bush's face: he lied, he lies, he'll keep lying.


Takin' the Weekend:
A brief word here: if you've been chomping at the bit lately for liberal talk radio, Howard Stern has apparently decided to make it his mission that Bush not be re-elected. Sure, there's still anal sex jokes, but, really, who doesn't love a good sodomy joke. For three hours on Friday, Stern went non-stop on the corporatization of the White House (through, of course, Clear Channel's connections to Bush), the religious right's attempts to control the agenda of the country, and more. It was stunning, laced with insight, and it was wider dissemination of information that we've been trying to get out for years. (Stern refuses to call himself "liberal," but he says he has had a political conversion.) Check out the summary here.
Back Monday.


More Tales From the Bush Superhighway Of Economic Doom - A Government Employee:
Another Friday, more bad news for all the unemployed and underemployed in America, including those who no longer seek work or have lost their benefits: While the "economists" in the Bush administration were predicting over 120,000 jobs to be created in February, apparently they were off the mark by 100,000. Oh, and the January and December numbers were wrong: about 25,000 less jobs were created in those months than first thought. Whee, how fun an economic recovery is for the rich. And here's a (minimally edited) story for the rest of us, from reader R:

"I've been a probation/parole officer for 7 1/2 years. Last year, I decided to try to get into federal government, via DHS/Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services. Suprisingly, starting at a GS-7 [RP note: a low-ranking federal position] was a RAISE from what I was making with my State agency. Universally, Federal employment is considered 'better' because of the consistent cost of living raises (in my state, we haven't had one in 4 years), and opportunities to move up into higher paying jobs or supervisory jobs.

"So I get this job with USCIS. After 6 months there, the jackass in charge of my section flies in from Washington D.C., and tells us that the plan for us in the near future is to 'contract' our jobs out, thus removing us from government employment. That afternoon, I called my old agency back to get on a rehire list. I have/had a good reputation with them, and in January, I got my job back.

"So, once again, I'm a PO with little potential of cost of living raises, or raises for expertise/experience. The upside is my employment is secure. I feel VERY lucky to be back...especially after what I've been seeing/reading/hearing. The Feds intend to 'contract' out more jobs. In fact, Republicans at all levels want to line their pockets with government green by having their buddies start up temp companies that provide services that government employees used to do/still do.

"The 'contract' service that was going to boot me from my job would have dropped my pay from $16/hr to, at best, $10/hr. Benefits and potential for retirement would have gone out the window. No promotions, no raises or cost of living either. Once a contract is bid, the pay remains the same for the workers until the end of the next contract. Then, if the company owner is still pals with whoever is in charge, they may renew the contract or put it out for other competitive bids (wink...wink). If they aren't, everyone is screwed.

"So far, government-wide, contract services have not been doing a better job than full-time civil service workers: usually poor customer service, higher turnaround, less expertise/training, etc. Effectively, it hurts the average consumer of a service (U.S. citizens), but it 'saves' money to government in general. However, the amount paid to these private corporations ais equivalent to what government workers are paid, including benefits. The only 'savings' established is in regard to the Government not paying pensions/retirement. Consider this, when these people who are pensionless/benefit-free are ready to retire, and in need of continued medical care, who is going to pay? The taxpayer, at the County, State, or Federal Level. We've simply moved the cost around so someone's buddy can get paid for the here and now.

"We've corporatized our government, and sevices decline. Consider one of the major problems people have encountered with contract services: they are NOT accountable to the public. They are NOT a public service agency, and their records are NOT public. They have the same rights as any other corporation. This process lends itself to huge problems. And in an ethereal sense, it is taking government away from the 'people,' and putting it into the hands of a private company. Some would call this 'oligarchy.' Anyhow, in my state, we have a would-be Republican gubernatorial candidate already talking about slashing state jobs. Where does everyone think services will come from then? The answer: private vendors. This is a trend that government employees will face in all levels of government. So when I read stories about how people are laid-off and have to find lower paying jobs, this will be classic.

"Those of us that are unionized are preparing to fight it, but so many people have been bamboozled by Republican propaganda that they may act way too late."

As usual, the Rude Pundit can't vouch for the facts of the story, but it seems sadly, sadly true. Again.

Let's keep this going. Send your tale of being stalled and runover by a semi on the superhighway to: rudepundit@yahoo.com.


Meet the Bush:
Now, the Rude Pundit is no ad exec. He isn't trained in the art of writing commercials, he doesn't know the ins and outs of the "industry," he would rather lick broken glass while kneeling on rice than create the gag-inducing lies and bullshit of political spots. But someone's gotta be able to do a better job than the putrid first batch of campaign ads for Bush/Cheney. 'Cause one ad begs a whole fuck of a lot of questions and another seems to be a tribute that oh-so-cute ghost from the beloved bit of comics page spittle, Family Circus: Not Me.

Remember Not Me? Precious little dead thing who showed up to commit mischief that the parents would blame on the children, who would claim it was "Not Me" who broke the vase or plunged the economy into crippling deficits. Oops. Sorry, that wasn't little Jeffy. It was little Georgie, whose ad "Safer, Stronger" may as well have him standing there in shorts, hands behind his back, rocking on his heels, declaring that he didn't do it. Here's the script in all its putrescence, minus the manipulative, gratuitous images of 9/11 (which have already been justly and soundly criticized):

"January 2001: The challenge:
An economy in recession.
A stock market in decline.
A dot com boom....gone bust. Then...
A day of tragedy. A test for all Americans.
Today, America is turning the corner.
Rising to the challenge.
Safer, stronger.
President Bush. Steady leadership in times of change."

You may wonder, "Gee, I seem to remember peace, a huge budget surplus, and the potential for the world to become a better place," and this is why you are not an ad exec. The end of the Clinton era was a huge relief from the excesses of solid stewardship and blow jobs. Historical revisionism aside, the craven cowardice of the ad is strikingly hubristic: it ain't my fault. It's just taken me three years to get a handle on the huge pile of shit this country was. Oh, and remember how more than half of you voted to continue that nightmare back in 2000? You were all fucking stupid. And thank God you all have short memories.

Remember: Not Me, say P.J., Dolly, Jeffy, and Georgie.

Tomorrow: Another Day, Another Ad.

(Brief post from being out of town)


Compromise? We Don't Do No Stinkin' Compromise:
The owners of Smith & Wesson, Remington, and other gun factories must have been sobbing in their martinis yesterday, comtemplating heading to Haiti to freely shoot darkies to get over the pain of the Senate vote. Oh, how sad a day it was, with the Senate Republicans having to sit there, in their house, motherfuckers, and listen as the Democrats and some wayward members of their own party strayed from the NRA/White House line and actually voted to amend the "don't-sue-us-we-just-makes-em-we-don't-shoots-em" bill. And what ridiculous, wacky, left wing, take the guns out of Charlton Heston's cold(er) dead(er) hands nonsense did the liberals put in the bill? An extension of a ban on assault weapons (which barely worked anyways), background checks at gun shows, and trigger locks. Those bastards. So Republicans killed the bill, with the blessing of the White House. And, strangely, in the insane world of guns and politics, this was a victory for gun control advocates.

Oh, but there's gonna hell to pay. The dickless wonders at the NRA, who have such small cocks that they only time they feel anything hard in their hands is when they're lubing their barrels, have threatened to keep score, baby, and unleash the hell of the yahoos upon those who crossed them, like, say, John McCain.

This is politics, Republican-style. The right wing of the party, like good fundamentalists, never see a need to compromise. And Democrats, knowing this, passed popular amendments that killed an awful bill. The Rude Pundit welcomes this show of balls on the part of the Senate Dems, even as that puissant little coward Tom Daschle humps the leg of the majority leader every chance he gets.

More tomorrow on John Kerry: a tall man can give a big ass-whuppin.
Next Update Tonight
The Rude Pundit is on the road. Buzzflashers, scroll down for the Bush and democracy entry, but, please, stay and enjoy all the rudeness. And come back tonight for: Compromise? We Don't Do No Stinkin' Compromises - Republicans and Their Love of the Long, Hard, Powerful Gun.


And, in a Brief Follow-Up, Hell Disgorges One of Its Own:
What the fuck, huh? Man, the Rude Pundit can't wait for that Tonton Macoute retro shit to kick it old school.
Democracy, Bush Style:
What a concept, huh, democracy? The idea that people elect their representatives, who will then attempt to do good by the people who elected them. And if the elected fuck up? In an ideal democracy, they get voted out of office. In the real world, there's all kinds of mitigating factors: money, media savviness, manipulation. But, as a concept, democracy is quite a lovely thing, and it's no wonder that we celebrate whenever democracy occurs in places where it had previously been denied.

Except for the downside: sometimes people get elected who other countries dislike. We can see exhibit A in our own President. Much of the rest of the world absolutely, freely, exhiliratingly hates him, much like the mongoose hates the cobra. So vicious and angry is this world hatred towards Bush that he is unsafe to travel in many places. He is seen as a reckless war criminal, hurtling the U.S towards oligarchy and plunging the world economy into chaos in order to please his financial backers. And, really, can we blame the rest of the world? Isn't there a point where the world may just be right? But the thing is, and here's the really big difference, the rest of the world is waiting anxiously on the results of the upcoming election, trusting that democracy will be the means by which a nation rights itself in the eyes of the global community. Check out this on the Canadian magazine Maclean's attempt to influence our elections with ill wishes for Bush. Or these views from Europe. Notice: these countries do not appear to support the armed overthrow of a government they dislike.

Ahh, but these countries are not the United States, and, because the Bush administration could give a rat's ass less what anyone else thinks, the U.S. was and is actively engaged in activities to overthrow legally elected leaders. No, Jean-Bertrand Aristide was not the model of a freedom-loving President in Haiti, but, you know, he was elected in 2000, in an election that was deemed fair, probably more fair than the U.S. election that year. And now, with allegations that Aristide was kidnapped and forced to leave Haiti, and with the fact that former death squad members are now taking control of the country, one pretty much can assume that this is another sad chapter in the Republicans' deplorable relationship with Haiti, especially since the Repubs viewed Aristide as too leftist back in the day (1992). (And this doesn't even address the "help" the Reagan adminstration gave to Baby Doc Duvalier before he became a liability.)

And, of course, there's Hugo Chavez in Venezuela. Elected in 1998 with 56% of the vote, Chavez is the old school kind of elected leader the U.S. hates, one who consorts with countries we don't think he should consort with and one who follows through with his socialist rhetoric. See, Chavez believes the government has a role in making the lives of the poor better. So the U.S. had to back a coup to get him ousted when Chavez turned on the oil companies in Venezuela. Problem was, in 2000, Chavez was elected under a new constitution with 80% of the vote. Hard to fuck with those numbers, ones that a presidential candidate in the U.S. would sell his mother to Arabs with an old lady fetish to get. In one of those beautiful, wish we were there kind of moments, Chavez recently called Bush an "asshole," and he has threatened to cut off oil trade with the U.S. Is this the most stable way to run a democracy? Nope. But who are we to tamper with the will of the people?

Ahh, if you answered, "Why, the U.S. shouldn't tamper with the will of the people in a democratic society," then you haven't been paying attention. Wait and see, wait and see, when Iraq decides it wants to be an Islamic republic. It's gonna be messy. "Democracy" is a concept. It is not a hard and fast rule. It is a baby, with shit-filled diapers, compared to things like dictatorship and thuggery. We know that Bush does not care for the vicissitudes of democracy. We know that he doesn't believe in the "people" to make up their own minds. We know that the vote and the will are anathema to the will to power of the Republican leadership.


Why Andy Rooney Should Sodomize Bill O'Reilly With a Microphone (A Variation on the "Sodomize Bill O'Reilly" Series):
Don't fuck with Andy Rooney. Tough old cranky sonuvabitch, that guy. Was in WWII, has fucked up the shit of more presidents than most Americans can name, stayed on through accusations of racism, sexism, whatever. Just like with Helen Thomas, you do not fuck with Andy Rooney 'cause he will fuck you right back. The Rude Pundit has heard tales, of the Japanese scalps Rooney keeps in a lockbox in his office to show underlings whenever someone crosses him. He has heard of the time that Rooney beat the shit out of Chet Huntley in a barroom brawl that spilled onto the streets of Manhattan over whether or not Ike was a pussy as President. Oh, how Huntley learned his lesson: don't mess with the brass balls of Rooney. Goddamn, the history, the history of Andy Rooney's balls. How he roughly fucked Barbara Walters in the backroom of an ABC exec's office while Harry Reasoner, sobbing, masturbated furtively in the corner. How, when Mike Wallace tried to get him booted from 60 Minutes, Rooney took him into the CBS mail room and yanked down his pants and beat Wallace's ass red with a belt in front of all the interns. Wallace has never recovered and still insists on being photoshopped into the yearly 60 Minutes publicity shot.

So, really, and, c'mon, what chance does Bill O'Reilly have?

Last week, on 60 Minutes, Rooney took on Pat Robertson and Mel Gibson for claiming that God has spoken to both of them. To Gibson, Rooney posed this question: "How many million dollars does it look as if you're going to make off the crucifixion of Christ?" (The answer, we now know, is "a fuck of a lot.") Bill O'Reilly, seeing a chance to beat up an old man, offered Rooney to come on his Fox "news" show to defend his position. O'Reilly had conducted a scrotum-licking interview with Gibson, who, O'Reilly acknowledges, has optioned O'Reilly's "novel." Rooney declined; instead, Rooney offered for both of them to go on Larry King Live, which O'Reilly, like a good bully, declined. So O'Reilly is left to denigrate Rooney, in his "Talking Points" from Feb. 27. O'Reilly sees Rooney as part of a liberal media conspiracy to destroy Mel Gibson; he played clips of Rooney on Don Imus's radio show where, to Rooney's credit, he didn't just call O'Reilly "the worst interviewer there is;" Rooney was also self-effacing, saying, "I don't want to go on there and get killed." But O'Reilly is a simpering fuck, smirking and pandering to his "audience," mocking old men and demanding their presence in his court. Christ, on billoreilly.com, O'Reilly's poll is a "Yes" or "No" to whether Andy Rooney should retire. Why? Is Rooney too old? Or too unafraid of one-note propagandists masking as "journalists"?

But O'Reilly better watch his back. Rooney, old though he may be, is not a man to be fucked with. The Rude Pundit hears he's lubing up a particularly large microphone for rough insertion into O'Reilly's rectum. You can bet Rooney won't stop jamming it up there until O'Reilly says, "I'm your bitch, Andy, please keep fucking me with that diaphragm mike." Oh, like so many before him, O'Reilly will learn, he will learn his lessons, he will learn his place, on his knees before Rooney.