It's really funny if you get the joke with today's subject. If not, then you don't remember who made the song.
Just to get us all on the same page, here, I'm going to tell you the best joke I heard about recent events. It's kind of highbrow, so if you don't get it... well, it's your loss as usual:
"Musical group The Animals would like to retract their statement. There isn't a house in New Orleans."
Yeah, nothing quite like a "House of the Rising Sun" reference to brighten everyone's day. Oh, sure, it's been a couple of weeks since Katrina And The Waves hit New Orleans, so there might actually be some people other than myself who found that to be funny; or would, if they'd ever heard the song before. By the way, I'm quite aware that I'm going to burn in hell, and I'm going to do it for a lot more than a little mockery of hurricane-stricken communities in the south.
In a stunning turn of events... well, I have to quote this directly, so no one thinks I'm taking anything out of context. George Bush, of all people, said, "Two other points I want to make is, one, we can all pitch in by using -- by being better conservers of energy. I mean, people just need to recognize that the storms have caused disruption and that if they're able to maybe not drive when they -- on a trip that's not essential, that would helpful. "
That's right. George Bush said we should conserve energy! This runs completely counter to his administration's policy of destroying the earth as quickly as humanly possible, short of a nuclear exchange (which is still an option, though). And, if you're a staunch Republican (or otherwise misguided Bush supporter) and you think energy conservation has always been part of the Bush regime... er, administration's energy agenda, let's just flash back to a press briefing from May 7, 2001:
Q Is one of the problems with this, and the entire energy field, American lifestyles? Does the President believe that, given the amount of energy Americans consume per capita, how much it exceeds any other citizen in any other country in the world, does the President believe we need to correct our lifestyles to address the energy problem?
MR. FLEISCHER: That's a big no. The President believes that it's an American way of life, and that it should be the goal of policy makers to protect the American way of life.
Now, I could have just cut it off at the point where Ari Fleischer said, "That's a big no," and it would have been funny and it would have been fine, but Ari just jumped in the hole and kept on digging. See, back then, the agenda was to find alternative sources of energy, and they had big hopes for nuclear (or NOOK-yuh-luhr, if you're down with the Bush administration), but that just fizzled out like a chain-reaction at Three Mile Island. So here we are, four years later, with three-dollar per gallon gas prices, which are here to stay,
Cut back to 2001, the same press conference:
Q Ari, you've sent a pretty clear signal that there doesn't seem to be anything in the short term the President is inclined to do, even if gas prices go to $3 a gallon in prices like California and the Midwest. Does that mean that he feels gas prices going to $3 a gallon would not imperil the economy, would not imperil the recovery that we may be in now?
MR. FLEISCHER: There will be things that can be done in the short term to affect conservation, for example. There will be a series of actions that can be short-term helpful to America's broader energy needs. But the focus of this program is going to be what the American people have been looking to Washington to do for so long, which is to demonstrate long-term leadership. If five or 10 years ago people in Washington had focused on these issues, the United States would not be in the position it's in today.
Here we are, four years later... still in the same position we were in back in May of 2001, completely bereft of the long-term leadership that Ari Fleischer called for, let alone whatever nonexistent energy program he was pushing. It reminds me of "the President's secret plan to fight inflation" episode of The West Wing, which I would italicize, but -again- I can't seem to figure out how to put those little icon doohickeys in my blog creation screen. I blame Windows.
In any case, I think George Bush has really turned a corner, and he'll be hugging trees on national television before the end of the year.
In other news Tom "The Hammer" DeLay has stepped down as House majority leader for conspiring to funnel illegal corporate campaign contributions into the state's 2002 legislative elections. When these charges were brought against DeLay, I think that I wasn't the only one of the American people who was actually shocked that, yes, that is against the law, and I wasn't actually living in the dystopian society of... oh, well, I still am, but except for that one part.
With a name like Tom "The Hammer" DeLay, I'm surprised he hasn't taken up professional wrestling as a side-job.
Looking over Slate.com's short-list of potential nominees to replace Sandra Day O'Connor's vacant position in the Supreme Court, we have Karen Williams, who said terrorism-suspect Zacharias Moussaoui didn't have the right to call witnesses to testify on his own behalf. Thankfully, the rest of the court decided that an individual's right to a fair trial outweighs the government's war-making and public-relations duties. And then we have Alice Batchelder, who rejected an appeal by a man whose IQ was one point above the limit for mental retardation, and then pointed to the fact that he had held a job, had a driver's license, and served in the military, which goes to show that we're really picking the cream of the crop for our armed forces.
This country is screwed, I'm telling you.