"a fish, a barrel, and a smoking gun"
for 14 December 2000. Updated every WEEKDAY.

Hit & Run 12.14.00


With any Presidential transition comes the inevitable guessing game of Who Will Serve? Or rather, who will stop serving. Presidential pardon time is the season to visit those rogues' galleries that liven up the corridors of power. Eight years ago George Bush, Sr. issued a Get Out of Jail Free card to Reagan Defense Secretary Cap Weinberger, who had been indicted for the Bush-tainting Iran/Contra scandal just days before Bush's defeat on Election Day 1992. In 2000, the short list touts financier Michael Milken and Whitewater victims Susan McDougal and Webb Hubbell, along with the usual "political prisoners" like (yawn) Leonard Peltier and Mumia Abu-Jamal. (We prefer to let Rage Against the Machine and Beastie Boys fans do the talking for those two.) In the spirit of the season, we've got our own slate of recommendations for Executive pardons. Topping the list is Bill Clinton himself, a man certain to be peppered with subpoenas the second he steps outside of the Rose Garden. And why not let the doors swing wide for such ne'er-do-wells as Suge Knight, Pete Rose, those guys who threw pies at Willie Brown, Rammstein, Tiger Ali Singh, Henry Rollins for "Johnny Mnemonic," anyone who threw anything at John Rocker, surviving members of Milli Vanilli, anyone who tells a Viagra joke (if they promise never to do it again), and Presidential interviewer Leo DiCaprio from that pending lawsuit accusing him of ordering his "posse" to beat up the guy who played Mickey in Porky's and Porky's II so that Leo could woo Mickey's girlfriend, Showgirls star Elizabeth Berkley. We could use a little clemency for our own lapses with those too tempting handicapped parking spots outside the Wienerschnitzel. And hasn't Elizabeth Berkley paid her debt for Showgirls? Finally, as a sneak attack on the now-hapless Dubya, how about pardoning all those Texas death row inmates with complimentary DC bus tickets and White House tour passes for January 21, 2001? We're torn on Bob Downey, Jr.; is he really better off on the outside?

Why does the President have power to pardon but apparently no power to condemn? Certainly the number Americans deserving of mercy is but a thimbleful compared to the vast, roaring ocean of our countrymen who deserve to be jailed and punished with summary swiftness. We believe the nation would be well-served by mandatory sentencing for Jonathan Turley, rough justice for Jeb Bush, hard time for whoever does Tom DeLay's makeup. The only problem with unlimited Executive Condemnation powers is devising punishments grisly enough to fit the respective crimes. We'd like to begin the national healing period by urging our next President to appoint a permanent Punishment Czar, somebody with the Dantean imagination you'd need to figure out, for example, how much punishment Tom Clancy should get, and whether his sentence should be stiffer than that handed out to the average soldier sniffer or cop wannabe. Why should Roman Polanski be barred from our shores when Jerry Bruckheimer remains as free as OJ? Can't we at least suspend Bill O'Reilly's driver's license? Let's get the ball rolling right now. The staff of Suck will voluntarily serve President-elect Bush as a sort of permanent Star Chamber. Our justice will be sure and unwavering, steadied by our faith that in the end we too will be among the damned.

It's immediately clear that the selection of new Federal Czars need not stop after we've covered the twin scourges of drugs and information technology. Look in your hearts, America; hasn't Jim Lehrer earned himself a permanent seat as the nation's television czar?

And here's something a newly-named top cop of the small screen could look into right away. During the recently ended Sunshine State mud wrassle, one rumor that Democratic party operatives tried and failed to spread among the press corps was an alleged romance between presidential brother Governor Jeb Bush and Katherine Harris, the head of the Florida state department whose grooming habits stirred such troglodytic and ungallant talk from left-leaning wags around the nation. Although this particular apple didn't pass even the relatively relaxed smell test of the 2000-era news media — Politics of Personal Destruction, we hardly knew ye! — a sketch on last week's Saturday Night Live featured a parody soap opera in which Harris was getting busy with not one but two Bush brothers. Do the Democrats leak to Saturday Night Live? Wouldn't you if you were the Democrats? Our call to NBC was returned with pleasing speed by a spokesman for SNL, who assured us "If a rumor was floating around in the ether like that, there's no reason we wouldn't have heard it." But the rumor wasn't floating in the ether — it was passed out to news types who sat on it. Would one of the writers be able to tell us anything? "The writers don't do interviews," came the chilly reply. The spokesman left us with an assurance that Saturday Night Live (like the Republicans and the Democrats, come to think of it) "tries to stay bi-partisan."

For some months now, Suck has looked on with quiet pride at HPS Online, the web's "Ultimate Resource" for cloacal hygiene. What really held our attention was not the possibility of having our colons rejuvenated, nor the prospect that urine therapy may be within the reach of medical science, but the Suck caricatures that HPS (an acronym we are frankly unable to dope out) appropriated for its banner ad. A brief and accurate description of the site from Suck's pal Humberto Moreira:

It's a curious little company. They offer a generous "Limited Time Offer. FREE. Colon self-diagnostic test." and are very clear about what they are referring to: "Your morning BM ( bowel movement, shit, crap, evacuations, elimination's, pooh, poop)," but some of their claims, such as "you simply won't find a more hands-on, effective, total approach to vibrant health & rejuvenation anywhere, at any price," skirt some issues, the obvious one being why hands-on is good here, but more importantly the issue of exactly how hands-on it must be if you can't find anything that's even more so. At least they get specific in a few of their exaggerations ("25 years ahead of its time"), but then they go and ask visitors to "dive deeper into colon cleansing." By the way, if you do visit the page, stay clear of the photo samples page. A javascript warning pops up saying you might be offended, but both the "OK" and "Cancel" buttons take you to the pictures. And finally, according to testimonials, people who go through the cleansing lose their cravings for sugar, fat, and red meat, all of which I hope the Sucksters enjoy regularly.

We do indeed. Thus we were more than disappointed when we revisited the site the other day and found the cartoons by Terry Colon (whose name, we're wildly guessing, the HPSters found during a web search on the word "colon") had vanished from the site, only to be replaced by a collection of still photos (also stolen, no doubt) of the Survivor cast members. Fortunately, the original site remains cached for your enjoyment by the good folks of Google.

We have spared no effort in probing the rear of this breaking story. Sadly, our emails to the company have gone unanswered. A midnight call to the Kathmandu, Nepal phone number of Joshua Cravitt — the Whois-listed administrator of the site — ended in a dead connection. But we haven't given up the search. HPS-Online, we're here for you, ready to do our bit for the public's evacuatory health. Meanwhile, let there be no doubt that the Sucksters have assholes so clean you could eat out of them.

courtesy of the Sucksters