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The A-Hole List
and Things I Hate
Following is a list of people who I think are deserving of being remembered only so that we are sure they receive the disrespect, ridicule and perhaps even punishment that they deserve. I list them in no particular order.
- President George W. Bush — lots of commentary to come. To begin with, he stacked his administration with unqualified, toadying cronies to a frightening degree, screwed-up our economy and squandered the immense budget surplus, sent too few soldiers to fight the unjustified war in Iraq to allow them to actually succeed, and squandered something far more important than the surplus: the respect and goodwill our country had in the eyes of the world. This ethnocentric, self-interested, ignorant man has, wittingly or unwittingly, chipped-away at the substance of our great country, handing huge portions, along with his VP and others, to people and companies associated with ihs family and supporters.
- Ben Stein — former Nixon speechwriter, attorney, economist, actor and writer. Despite his memorable role in a favorite movie of mine, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, I cannot help but lose all respect for him with his film Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed, "a film which attempts to link evolution to Nazi Germany and the Holocaust and portrays advocates of intelligent design creationism as victims of discrimination by the scientific community, which has widely rejected intelligent design as pseudoscience" [per Wikipedia]. Said Stein in an interview: "When we just saw that man, I think it was Mr. Myers [i.e. biologist P.Z. Myers], talking about how great scientists were, I was thinking to myself the last time any of my relatives saw scientists telling them what to do they were telling them to go to the showers to get gassed ... that was horrifying beyond words, and that's where science - in my opinion, this is just an opinion - that's where science leads you." He's also a pro-lifer.
- Roy Pearson — former administrative law judge in the District of Columbia. This is the ass who sued his local drycleaner for $54 million because they misplaced his suit pants... and he did this as a sitting judge! Fortunately, he lost. Now he's suing to be reinstated after he lost his job. See CNN article.
- Richard Bruce "Dick" Cheney — Vice President, served in Congress from 1978 through 1989, and voted initially against honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with a national holiday (1979), against sanctions against South Africa to oppose apartheid (1986), and against a resolution calling for the release of Nelson Mandela (1986). He also formed alliances with mining and coal industries, and later became CEO of Halliburton Company in 1995. His continued ties to Halliburton while the company did big business (and overcharged the US military for food service) in the "liberation and rebuilding" of Iraq lead to charges of conflict of interest. Cheney is worth between $30 and $100 million, due almost entirely to his work with Halliburton. Halliburton was given a $7 billion contract for its projects in Iraq without having to go through the typical competitive-bidding process.
- Karl Rove — As deputy chief of staff in charge of policy, he's often seen spouting party-line administration bullshit. He is believed to be linked to the illegal exposure of Valerie Plame, the CIA agent outed by Robert Novak. In 1986, he falsely claimed that the Democrats had bugged his office, just to gain media attention. He was involved in a number of political/financial dealings with companies such as Enron, Intel, GE, Boeing and Pfizer, despite major conflicts of interest. On June 23, 2005, he said "Liberals saw the savagery of the 9/11 attacks and wanted to prepare indictments and offer therapy and understanding for our attackers. [Conservatives] saw the savagery of 9/11 and the attacks and prepared for war."
- Robert Novak — Is truly an asshole. In his newspaper column in 2003, he exposed Valerie Plame as a CIA operative in retaliation for her husband's justified criticism of the Bush administration. This act is so illegal, unethical, and just nasty. Jon Stewart of The Daily Show labeled Novak a "Douchebag of Liberty." Well done. His son, Alex Novak, is the Director of Marketing for the Swift Boat Veterans' publisher, Regnery Publishing.
- John Ashcroft — Our 79th Attorney General (through February 3, 2005), is closely tied to both the Republican party and the Christian right. Some of his pet projects include: Operation TIPS, the Terrorism Information and Prevention System, which asked citizens to report "suspicious activity" and was seen to be an invasion of privacy violating the First and Fourth Amendments; he strongly supports the War on Drugs, even with a focus on casual drug users, including the jailing in Federal Prison of Tommy Chong for his involvement in a pipe-manufacturing company started by his son (though Ashcroft's own nephews, when caught with over 50 marijuana plants, didn't serve any prison time); the USA PATRIOT Act (Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001), legislation opposed by seven states and at least 389 communities, plus the ACLU and The EFF for greatly expanding the government's ability to conduct surveillance on citizens through monitoring Internet use and e-mail, roving wire telephone wire taps, and the creation of a criminal DNA database, all with an over-broad focus and rather complex and poorly-phrased language, which undermine the Bill of Rights, most especially the Fourth Amendment.
- Donald Rumsfeld — Secretary of Defense.
- Tom Cruise — He just lost it while being interviewed by Matt Lauer, criticizing Brooke Shields for taking medications to combat post-partum depression and saying that there is no such thing as a chemical imbalance. Ignorant, pompous dumbass. Loved Risky Business, though.
- Ken Starr — I'm on the fence here. Starr sure seemed like a dick with the impeachment proceedings and the Monica Lewinsky investigation. He's since said things should have focused on Whitewater. He's also working pro bono to overturn a rather questionable death sentence. Maybe he shouldn't be on this list.
- Linda Tripp — She was such a horrible, self-interested, betraying troll.
- Fabian Basabe — Okay, now I know this guy is of no importance to anyone (except, of course, himself). Further, I admit that all I know of him is what's shown on that show, Filthy Rich Cattle Drive. Nevertheless, he seems to represent all that is pathetic, pompous, narcissistic, self-absorbed and generally detestable about some of the "idle rich." It almost makes me want to be poor, just watching him make an ass of himself. If this is just a TV persona, then he's an idiot for allowing himself to be portrayed as he is. He must have a tiny penis to act the way he does. His family must be so proud. I must admit he did step-up to collect stallion semen.
Here are some things I hate, or at least by which I'm extremely annoyed, again in no particular order.
- Co-opting Names and Phrases — Is it fair that Fox sued Al Franken when he used the phrase "Fair and Balanced" in the title of his book? Of course not, especially as he was engaged in political satire, which is protected. Good thing the suit was thrown out. I don't like how the anti-abortion folks claim the phrase "Pro-Life," as if the only alternative is pro-death, rather than pro-choice. Same, too, for such catch phrases as "family values" and so many others.
- Loud Commercials — Those that are so much louder than the program material. I also hate the ones that expect you to identify with someone who's a complete idiot. At least I have Ultimate TV (like TiVo), so I can often skip 'em.
- Bad Drivers — If you can't stay in your lane, don't drive. Oh, and why would you care if I want to pass you on the freeway? So let me get the ticket; no skin off your nose.
- Media Filler Hype — Do we really need a real-time telecast of the smoke plume from the Vatican during the conclave? Do we need constant "around-the-clock" coverage of the various kidnappings, bombings, trials and other goings-on when there is no new information? I see it as a sad sign that it's all ratings-driven.
- Reality TV — Now this is, for the most part, a bunch of crap. It is also far from reality, being partially scripted, carefully staged, and completely un-realistic. Sure, the first seasons of Survivor, The Apprentice and The Surreal Life were unique, though didn't MTV do a lot to pioneer this approach? All this other crap, though, is truly crap: Fear Factor (though they do make efforts to get attractive women in tight outfits), Being Bobby Brown, Big Brother, etc., etc. is all just a bunch of derivative drivel. Two shows, Scare Tactics and Punked!, are truly evil in my view, taking the approach that it's easier to ask for forgiveness (or to buy it), than to ask for permission when committing hideous wrongs against the victims of their shows.
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