Jackson Trial Nixes Tradition
Papal Conclave Party Moves To The Netherlands
Vatican officials announced today that the 'Boys Night Out' party, the long-standing, traditional pre-conclave bash has been moved to The Netherlands due to the extended trial of Michael Jackson.
With Pope John Paul II's failing health, the Papal Party Planner had booked Jackson's Neverland Ranch over three-years ago. However, with the trial still in-session, alternate plans were put in place that will have the College of Cardinals whooping it up in Amsterdam this weekend, before beginning the conclave to select the new Pope on Monday.
Many of the cardinals were disappointed.
Speaking for the group, Cardinal Bernard Law said that "…we were really looking forward to Neverland. We have heard so much about it and were very excited about going there".
A Neverland Ranch spokesperson, who confirmed the booking and indicated the group was still welcome, admitted that there wasn't much of a 'party atmosphere' at Neverland while the trial is still going on.
'Boys Night Out is steeped in tradition as a pre-conclave event.
Before the advent of air travel, the Vatican would rent out the Coliseum for 'Boys Night out'. Copious amounts of food and wine were consumed and the Cardinals partied for days.
In 1963, following the death of Pope John XXIII, the conclave members flew to Las Vegas and there was speculation that Pope Paul I's papacy was the result of a lost wager.
Pope John Paul II's 'Boys Night Out' was held in Monte Carlo.
Amsterdam officials were excited by the news that they would be hosting the pre-conclave party.
"I don't think Amsterdam will ever see so much red" offered a spokesperson.
Derby Considers Child Jockeys From Qatar
Bush Admn Offers No Child Left Behind Funding, Immigration Waiver
The horse racing industry was rocked yesterday when officials at Churchill Downs hinted that they may experiment with this years' Kentucky Derby by using child jockeys.
This comes on the heels of Qatar and the United Arab Emirates moving to robots to replace the child jockeys of their popular camel racing industry.
The Bush Administration is reportedly backing the venture. Desperate for some good news for it's No Child Left Behind program, they may offer some funding for the project, as well as easing immigration rules that would allow Churchill Downs to bring in the child jockeys in time for the Kentucky Derby.
A spokesperson for the Association of Racing Commissioners International indicated the board would have a 'wait-and-see' position. Officials at Aqueduct, Pimlico, Hollywood Park were all cautious in their statements, voicing similar attitudes.
Jockey clubs denounced the move.
Lafitt Pincay, recently retired due to injury, and the world's winningest jockey said he was disgusted.
"First lampposts, and booze decanters … Now this - children …"
The rather sudden availability of veteran child jockeys comes as Qatar and the United Arab Emirates move to robots, chiefly over concern and international criticism that they were exploiting and abusing children. A Swiss company has developed and successfully tested the camel-riding robots.
Churchill Downs officials dismissed concerns, indicating the child jockeys would be well-cared for and treated as regular jockeys and employees of the track.
With the funding from No Child Left Behind, special tutors will be brought in so that, between races and workouts, the children can receive a normal education.
White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan indicated the President was thrilled with "some positive news regarding No Child Left Behind".
Reportedly, talks are underway between Churchill Downs and Armstrong Williams, for Williams to conduct PR work for the derby and the child jockey program.
Friday, April 15, 2005
Jackson Trial Nixes Tradition
9. Instead of lifetime appointments, now rounds of 10-Minute Justice - just like the dating thing
8. Do like baseball - Use Christian colleges as a farm-team system to develop rightwing, conservative judges
7. All cases with life-or-death, or faith-based elements go to the floor to vote on verdict and let Congress decide case
6. Will make activist judges pay - with checks to Tom DeLay's Fact Finding Fund
5. Judges must now have skills to smote guilty defendants
4. Instead of chain-gangs, now Bible-Reading-gangs
3. Bring back stoning
2. Throw out Bill of Rights; Base justice system on 'A Purpose Driven Life'
1. Disband the entire system and give it all to Judge Judy
Thursday, April 14, 2005
Minutemen Heading To Wisconsin Cat Hunt
'Can't Shoot Illegal Aliens', Says Leader
On Monday, soon after outdoorsman in Wisconsin approved a proposal to legalize the killing of feral, or free-roaming cats, Jim Gilchrest, leader of the controversial Minutemen Project, issued the order for his members to start packing for the cheese state.
"They're going to need some help up there", stated Gilchrest
The Minutemen, largely recruited from the Internet, have been voluntarily patrolling the U.S. border in Arizona to protect against the wave of undocumented workers, in an effort to augment the undermanned federal agencies. While critics have labeled the Minutemen as vigilantes, Gilchrist argues that it is within their constitutional rights to assemble and that the group is peaceful.
The Minuteman patrol the border in shifts and radio the Border Patrol with coordinates if and when they discover any attempted border crossings.
The Wisconsin proposal would allow licensed hunters to kill free-roaming cats, including any domestic cat that isn't under the owner's direct control or any cat without a collar.
Governor James Doyle denounced the plan on Wednesday and doubts that plan will be enacted. Numerous groups, including the Humane Society and the Madison Audubon Society have said the plan is cruel and inhuman.
Experts estimate that over two million feral cats roam Wisconsin, and the state says that studies show that the cats kill 47 million to 139 million songbirds a year. The Wisconsin Conservation Congress, a public advisory group, that would classify wild, free-roaming cats as an unprotected species that kills song birds and other wildlife.
Governor Doyle also stated that the Arizona Minutemen would not be welcomed in Wisconsin.
Gilchrist cited the vote by the outdoorsman - 6,830 to 5,201 in favor of hunting the cats - as his mandate and indicated that he has been contacted by parties encouraging the Minuteman to come to Wisconsin.
"My guys are getting itchy", stated Gilchrist. "I mean, after all, we can't shoot the illegals".
Hooters Applauds FDA Breast Implant Vote
Opens Doors For More Woman To Become 'Hooter Girls'
Hooter's of America, the casual beach-themed restaurant chain, hailed yesterday's F.D.A. vote to make silicone breast implants available to woman again, after a 13-year ban. A company spokesperson stated that this 'opens the door for more woman to become Hooter Girls'.
The F.D.A's 7-to-2 vote approved an application by the Mentor Corporation, a day after a similar application by Inamed Corporation was rejected in a 5-to-4 vote. Panel members were satisfied with the long-term safety of Mentor's devices.
The voting came after three-days of hearings, of often impassioned testimony, both for and against, allowing silicone breast implants on the market. Dozens of woman gave graphic testimony on the illness and disfiguration their implants caused, while others testified to their safety and boost in self-esteem.
Nearly all studies have found no link between silicone implants and serious disease.
Hooter's, with over 375 restaurants in 46 states, as well as Argentina, Aruba, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Chile, England, Guatemala, Mexico, Singapore, Switzerland, Taiwan, Taipei and Venezuela, has long been criticized for their exploitation of woman.
Waitresses and hostesses, Hooter Girls, as they are known, are required to wear uniforms of orange shorts and a white tank top, short-sleeve or long-sleeve T-shirt, with pantyhose and bras being required.
Hooter's defends it's policy, stating on their website;
Claims that Hooters exploits attractive women are as ridiculous as saying the NFL exploits men who are big and fast. Hooters Girls have the same right to use their natural female sex appeal to earn a living as do super models Cindy Crawford and Naomi Campbell. To Hooters, the women's rights movement is important because it guarantees women have the right to choose their own careers, be it a Supreme Court Justice or Hooters Girl.
The spokesperson pointed out that woman hold upper management position with Hooters and highlighted Kat Cole, Vice President of Training and Development. Cole started her career at Hooters as a Hooters Girl.
Hooters plans to bring attention the silicone breast implant vote with their upcoming 2005 Hooters International Swimsuit Pageant in June, in Miami, Florida. Boasting the Hooter's pageant is the world's richest, offering over $150,000 in cash and prizes, plans are being made to offer a new, Silicone Breast Implant category.
The pageant is open to only Hooter Girls and talks are underway to have members of the F.D.A. serve as judges for the new Implant category
9. Donald Trumps' apprentices
8. Research for job - The thousand of iTunes you download
7. Now with FDA approval, silicone breast implants
6. At least six of the members of the new Iraqi Parliament as dependents
5. Heart medication needed after Red Sox won World Series
4. All the extra food bought in attempt to be cast on 'Fat Actress'
3. Gambling losses on Poker.Com - special tip from Bill Bennett
2. Black turtleneck, ski mask and mileage you use for the Special Renditions
1. Religion - The 800 copies of 'A Purpose Driven Life' that you annoyed your friends and co-workers with
Wednesday, April 13, 2005
Sesame Street Goes Dark Over Dispute
Cookie Monster, Count Balks At Planned Healthy Foods Slant
Sesame Street, for the time being, is being brought to you by the letter "S" - for Strike.
After the Sesame Workshop Company, producers of Sesame Street, announced last month a new 'Healthy Habits for Life' initiative, one of it's stars, Cookie Monster, has refused to go on air. He was soon joined by Count Van Count, leaving producers the only option of shutting down taping of the popular children's program.
'Healthy Habits for Life' launched on April 4th, to coincide with Sesame Street’s 36th season. The initiative included a series of public service messages featuring Sesame Street characters and members of Congress, including Senators Hillary Clinton (D-NY), Christopher Dodd (D-CT), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) and others.
The PSA's were sent to television outlets across the country as the new season was to spotlight health issues with children, such as obesity, as well as the importance of physical fitness, healthy nutrition and personal hygiene.
According to his agent, Cookie Monster was not to be included in the 'Healthy Habits' segment.
"He's spent decades building up a character … He's type-cast … This would be a disaster for the Cook. It would cost him millions in endorsements".
Last minute talks, that had producers offering to substitute vegan or sugar-free cookies was declined by Cookie Monster.
Producers planned to work the 'Healthy Habits around Cookie Monster's shooting schedule, when another crises arose.
Count Van Count announced that, after undergoing treatment for depression, it was discovered he suffered from Repressed Memory Syndrome and wanted a new contract that would allow him to drink blood on the program. The Count soon joined Cookie Monster on the sidelines and producers halted taping.
A spokesperson for Sesame Street Workshop said that talks are on-going, progress is being made and they hope to have a resolution soon so taping can resume. It was also stated that the 'Healthy Habits for Life' PSA's will continue to run, as scheduled.
Rumsfeld Stumps In Iraq For Statehood
Warns Corruption, Civil Strife Could Derail Efforts
After announcing on Monday, plans to make Iraq the 51st state, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld made an unannounced visit to Iraqi, to confer with leaders and warn the corruption and civil turbulence could delay the efforts of statehood.
The Garlic, in an exclusive, reported on Tuesday the Bush Administrations plans to have Iraq become a U.S. state (Bush Moves On Making Iraq 51st State)
The surprise visit, not announced due to security precautions, had Rumsfeld meeting with newly elected Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari and Jalal Talabani, the Kurdish militia leader. Rumsfeld stressed to the Iraqi leaders that they must press forward and complete the formation of their government, which included drafting a constitution. The delays in doing so, Rumsfeld warned, drain support in the U.S. Congress to act on President Bush's proclamation for Iraqi statehood.
In the meeting, the Associated Press reported that Rumsfeld was peppered with questions as to how many congressman and senators Iraq would be allotted, when can they start receiving funds, and can they take special research trips like Congressman Tom DeLay takes.
A significant amount of time was spent discussing Federal holidays. The Iraqi's inquired if they are bound to observe the Martin Luther King Day, July 4th and Veteran's Day. Rumsfeld indicate they are bound, but also, as a state, they can establish an unlimited number of state holidays.
Following the meeting, Rumsfeld acknowledged that there are "challenges" but that "more and more Iraqi's are picking up on the cause of the new government" and are ready to "embrace statehood".
In a related story, President Bush, speaking yesterday to soldiers at Fort Hood, noted that trained Iraqi soldiers now outnumber U.S. forces in Iraqi.
Additionally, and to help the Iraqi leaders sell statehood, and get dipped in American culture, the President boasted that the toppling of the Sadam statue and freeing Iraqi two-years ago was just like Bobby Thompson's homerun in the 1951 playoff game for the New York Giants.
9. President can nose around and see if there's anything for sale around Crawford, Texas
8. Start a rumor: Tell the settlers to move before John Bolton takes his post at the United Nations, or they're on their own
7. Will have a word with Wolfowitz at the World Bank about getting some low-interest loans for the settlers
6. Hey, U.S. controls Iraq .. Should be able to carve out some prime real estate for the settlers
5. Will see if Donald Trump can put together a team of Apprentices to work on the problem
4. In case of Civil War, America won't send solders, but only the actors from the reenactments to assist - they have all the gear
3. Tell the settlers it's for a special edition of Extreme Makeover
2. Offer the settlers free iPods for moving
1. Start a rumor: That if found innocent, Michael Jackson plans on moving into the area
Tuesday, April 12, 2005
Bush Moves On Making Iraq 51st State
DC Ignored; Puerto Rico Bumped Back To 52nd 'Unofficial' State
President Bush, and the White House, dropped a bombshell yesterday, when it was intimated that the Bush Administration is preparing legislation to make Iraq the 51st state of the USA.
Faced with mounting criticism, from Congress, the general public and internationally, and with funding battles looming, inside sources say that a troika of Vice President Dick Cheney, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Chief of Staff Andrew Card have been building a coalition of Senators and Congressman to endorse a proclamation by the President to make Iraq the 51st state.
Bypassing a special Enabling Act, which hasn’t been ruled out by Cheney, Congress, with the coalition behind it, could pass a bill recognizing Iraq as a state.
It was reported that establishing Iraq as a territory of the United States was briefly discussed, however, that avenue presented limited options as to funneling more funds for the seeds of democracy. It was argued that the current U.S. occupation of Iraq essentially amounted to Iraq being a territory.
As a state, Iraq would be eligible for a wide variety of funding, from numerous government agencies, including the lucrative Federal Transportation Department budget. Card pointed out the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and its' capital, the City of Boston, for the billions they received, with almost unchecked usage, for it's plagued 'Big Dig' project.
The key delay in making this move has been the laborious, dragged out Iraqi January voting and vote counting, as well as the subsequent in-fighting in choosing a cabinet for the newly elected Iraqi parliament. Additionally, Cheney and Card have reportedly quarreled over whether Iraq would be a 'state' or a 'commonwealth'.
Reaction to the reports stunned House and Senate Democrats, including eight-term District of Columbia Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton. The District of Columbia has been fighting for statehood since 1970.
Holmes was particularly outraged at the reported off-the-cuff dismissal by Cheney, who, at a breakfast meeting, allegedly stated; "What's their gripe? We're giving them back baseball this year .. What more do they want?"
Cheney was referring to the new Washington Nationals, Major League Baseball's return to the Capital for the first time since 1970, when the former Washington Senators closed down and the team moved to Texas to become the Texas Rangers - a team once owned by President Bush.
"If the Vice-President thinks baseball is the answer for statehood, then let's ship the team to Wyoming and we'll have DC take their place as a state".
The criticism was swift from the U.S. Territory of Puerto Rico, who has been impatiently waiting for statehood recognition from the U.S. since 1898, when the U.S. took control of the island from Spain, following the Spanish-American War.
Sila M. Calderon, the first women governor of Puerto Rico, elected in November 2000, indicated this sets back Puerto Rico efforts to become a state and fuels the opposition, the segment of Puerto Ricans who favor becoming an independent nation.
"What are they all loco up there? Puerto Rico is a very vibrant Commonwealth, that costs the United States over $10-billion-a-year to maintain as a territory. Give us the full statehood and let our economy grow, just like they did with Hawaii and Alaska … And who flies off to Alaska for a weekend, anyway?"
Numerous U.S. Presidents have primed Puerto Rico's hopes for statehood, going back to the Eisenhower administration, less for Puerto Rico's benefit and more as a launching base for the long-sought war with Cuba.
In Iraqi, newly-elected Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari offered his support for Iraqi statehood, but indicated it would be a hard sell with the new, fractious government.
Both Cheney and Rice have reportedly been pushing hard for the President to release his proclamation. By rushing Iraqi to statehood, the administration could immediately augment U.S. Forces with additional support, coming chiefly from the National Guard.
Gone would be the lazy weekend retreats, or summer vacations as, with Iraqi being a state would allow the Pentagon to reassign and relocate whole divisions of the National Guard to Iraqi as their reporting base.
World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz, former Bush Administration Deputy Defense Secretary, endorsed the Iraqi statehood program, indicating it as a perfect opportunity to expand the building of U.S. bases in the Middle East - without opposition - and position the United States to next invade Iran. Wolfowitz reportedly pledged back-channel funding for the project.
With a significant mountain of details, programs and policies to be developed, the official language of Iraqi will remain Arabic, however a substantial push will be made, starting at grade-school levels for English to be the second language.
As to the new state's economy, Chief of Staff Card is said to be leveraging his New England connections and has a commitment from Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation, owners of the Foxwood Resorts Casino in Connecticut, to build a gambling resort in Baghdad. Card is also soliciting other major companies to either relocate to the new state of Iraq, or to establish branch offices.
To date, it is reported that only Halliburton has signed a lease on office space in Iraq.
Many inside Washington wondered where White House Senior Adviser Karl Rove was with the Iraqi statehood push, or more to-the-point, why he wasn't out at the front of it.
White House spokesman, Scott McClennan immediately put to rest any scent of a rivalry or discord between Rove and the troika, indicating;
"…We only use Karl to rig elections".
9. Should tear it down; Build new Jets Stadium there, as opposed to Westside
8. Thinks U.N. General Assembly might be a good enough team to challenge for the World Cup next year
7. Already has Security Resolutions written to target Senator Joe Biden as a terrorist threat and seize his assets
6. Feels U.N. Security Force weak; Couldn't break up a sorority house pillow fight
5. Confident, if they bought into Colin Powell's lies, he'll do just fine
4. Will keep criticizing U.N. until Annan cuts him in on Oil-For-Food profits
3. Plans first day on job to go over to North Korean Ambassador and kick his ass
2. Biggest challenge is get music played in headsets instead of boring translations
1. Only part of the job he will like is gets to park anywhere in New York City
Monday, April 11, 2005
OJ To Outsource Hunt For Killers
Better Productivity, Cost Efficiency Cited
O.J. Simpson announced that he is outsourcing the work for the hunting of his ex-wife's killer.
In June, 1994, Nicole Simpson was found brutally murdered, along with her friend, Ron Goldman in Brentwood, Calf. Simpson was later charged with the murders and, in a media-driven frenzy, tried and found innocent, in what was deemed the 'trial of the century'. Subsequently, Simpson was convicted and found guilty in a civil trial for the murders
Simpson vowed that he would hunt down the killer or killers and clear his name.
Over the last 10+-years, Simpson has doggedly and tirelessly, searched for the killers, primarily on golf courses and in the state of Florida. Relentlessly, he has left no stone unturned and has yet to come up with any suspects or substantial leads.
In a statement, Simpson felt that now was a good time to take advantage of the growing market of outsourcing. Recently, The Gartner Group speculated that the outsourcing market will grow another 8-10% in 2005 and reaching over $134 billion in generated revenue.
Former Clinton Secretary of Labor Robert Reich hailed Simpson's choice for the outsourcing of the hunt for the killers, saying he was 'pleased to see O.J. joining the global economy'.
Simpson made the announcement to outsource the hunt for the killers following his attendance at the funeral of his lawyer, Johnnie Corcoran last week. Prior to his death, Corcoran reportedly endorsed Simpson's plan to outsource, saying, 'if you can't run the course, you must outsource'.
In a separate matter, the Menendez brothers (Lyle and Erik) have filed a suit against Simpson. The Menendez brothers were convicted of killing their parents and was secondary high-profile, media-driven case running concurrent to the O.J. Simpson trial.
In the suit, the Menendez brothers claim the Simpson stole the idea for the slow, freeway, Ford Bronco chase that preceded his arrest. The Menendez brothers indicated that this was their idea, but that they 'forget to ask Dad' for the keys to the car.
PB&J Sandwiches Temporarily Banned
Smucker Gets Injunction While Appealing Loss
Tens-of-thousands of schools, daycare centers, amusement parks, even private citizens, were issued court orders to stop serving peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.
This follows the emergency appeal filed by J.M. Smucker Co. after last weeks' rejection by the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Smucker had sought a patent for their peanut butter and jelly pockets called Uncrustables.
Smucker's Uncrustables are, essentially, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, with the crusts cut off and sealed with crimping method that Smucker's claims is unique. Smucker's purchased the crimping patent in 1995, from two North Dakota bakers.
Patent examiners and the Court of Appeals were unconvinced this was a unique process, indicating the similarity to pie crusts. Smucker was initially rejected for the crimping patent by the Board of Trademark Appeals and Interferences.
The patent office receives nearly a half-million patent applications each year and it is about 2½ years for a patent to be processed. Roughly 65 percent of all patents submitted are approved.
A Smucker's spokesperson indicated that the company "understood" that thousands of children will be deprived of one of their favorite foods but that the company "had to take a stand again activist judges and boards" and to protect the substantial investment Smucker has made in creating its' peanut butter and jelly sandwich.
"They'll have to switch over to Fluffanutters, I guess", the spokesperson added.
Smucker holds no claims for peanut butter and marshmallow sandwiches.
9. I'll have to fight them to keep the giant check … I love the looks on the faces at the bank when I walk to cash it
8. Let's see … I'll just keep winning the Masters, if only, to piss off all these crackers
7. I should just tell DiMarco to give it up - It ain't gonna happen today
6. Think I'll screw with the PGA … Tell them I'm going to start my own golf association
5. I hope CBS likes the script I sent them - CSI Tiger Woods
4. Wonder if the Pope ever got to try out that tip I gave him with his 7-Iron ...
3. Think I'll wait until the 16th hole to make some really unbelievable shot that will be all over television tonight
2. I need a blue jacket … I wonder if they'll let me switch it
1. Hope Nicklaus has a Living Will. I want him around when I break his record