Pussy Galore

A British Airwaysflight to the U.S. is cancelled at the last minute on Jan. 2 amid fears that a female Al Qaedaoperative is sneaking aboard with a bomb in her woo-woo. "Smuggling a bomb onto a plane by this method is one of our worst nightmares," a senior Scotland Yardsource tells the Glasgow-based Daily Record. "If you do not have specific information about the suspect, it would be impossible to carry out an intimate body search of every female passenger." Impossible in England, perhaps, but probably not here in John Ashcroft's America. If the Newport Coast womanwe sat behind on a recent flight out of John Wayne was miffed over being pulled out of line to remove her shoes, just imagine her reaction to being ordered to lie on her back and spread 'em! This ovarian egg timer does feel duty-bound to admit our skepticism over this Limey reportage, however. Among the grounded banger breaths the Record cites is a family from Middlesex; an American passenger with the last name Holeman; and the "defence analyst" they rely on—we swear we're not making this up—is one Paul Beaver. Guess Harry Vaginawas busy. Do the Brits celebrate April Fool's Day the day after New Year's?

SHIT PEOPLE SEND US Manteca resident Richard Curranis so gung ho over the capture of Saddam Husseinand "lead poisonings" of Hussein's sons Udayand Qusaythat he's created a $2003 bill with Dubya's face on it. As you can see it's quite elaborate and looks and feels like bona fide legal tender, which is good because it's going to take a whole lotta $2003 bills to pay for the fucking mess Bush got us in. NOT GETTING WHAT WE'RE NOT PAYING FOR The national magazine Education Weekreports on Jan. 7 that Californiaspends less money per student than 90 percent of the other states in the nation, while our student scores in math and reading rank lower than the national average. Throw that back into the face of the next conservative assholewho bitches about too much of the state budget being devoted to public education and how more money won't solve what ails our schools. By the way, while Governor Ahnuld's budget axe spares K–12 education, he's proposing no new spending to improve our piss-poor ranking. THE BEST VOTE MONEY CAN BUY The man most responsible for Schwarzenegger being where he is today, recall benefactor Congressman Darrell Issa(R-Oceanside), spends Jan. 7 at the Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa in Phoenix getting his palms greased by western coal, power and mining officials. A four-day conference begins with a $1,500-per-person round of golf and private dinner dubbed "Mulligans and Margaritas," and for an extra $2,500, Issa or one of the other dozen or so Republican congressmen in attendance join the contributor's foursome. "It is a festival of access-buying," complains Frank O'Donnellof the environmental group Clean Air Trust. No wonder he's pissed: the "official business" portion of the junket includes a presentation by Bush administrationofficials on how they'll rewrite the landmark Clean Air Act. "You see, we take this thick, black Sharpie . . ." ALL POLITICS IS WEIRD Another law the Bushies are rewriting, the portion of immigration law dealing with guest workers, necessitates California driver's licensesfor undocumented immigrants. That's not just the reaction on Jan. 7 from the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, but GOP political consultants. So in sweet, sweet political irony, Schwarzenegger will get cover from the same issue that may have cost Gray Davishis job. For those keeping score at home: Ahnuld just handed in a budget that experts agree is identical to Davis', energy officials are still having their way with our politicians, and, yes Virginia, illegals will get their licenses. Why'd we go through that recall shit again? NOT-SO-SWEET, SWEET POLITICAL IRONY Alvaro Tejeda was a chef at a San Jose-area El Torito restaurant until he lost his job after heeding the call of Nativo Lopezand others to stay home on Dec. 12 to protest the repeal of driver's licenses for the undocumented, the Associated Press reports on Jan. 9. Boycott advocates across the state say they've heard from dozens of workers like Tejeda who were canned for missing work the day of the boycott that was supposed to bring this state to its knees—which if it had knees would be around San Jose, come to think of it. Lopez's reaction—to people like Tejeda getting fired, not San Jose's knees: "With every social movement, there's always a byproduct of direct action." Maybe Tejeda can feed his family that byproduct tonight. CONCERTGOERS OF THE WORLD UNITE! Anaheim mayor Curt Pringle, the Republican who rose to be speaker of the state Assembly briefly, is now a leading advocate for socialism. That's what we're left to assume after receiving a Jan. 7 statement in which he crows that the Grove of Anaheimhas experienced its first profit ever—in 2003, the same year the city took over ownership of the formerly private concert venue. A WISEMAN SAYS . . . The 5th District Court of Appealsin Fresno rules on Jan. 8 that it is legal for Disneyland to charge Southern California residents less than tourists to enter the park. In her opinion, Justice Rebecca Wisemanseizes the opportunity to unleash her inner Mouseketeer: "As we celebrate Mickey Mouse's 75th birthday, we are called upon to address the legal status of Disneyland in the context of its Resident Salute program, a marketing concept that offers nearby residents a discount as an incentive to visit during the slow season. Essentially, during certain times of the year, if Mickey lives in Los Angeles, he pays $8 to $10 less than his girlfriend Minnie, assuming she lives in some far-off land such as Oz or Fresno." Wiseman goes on to characterize as just plain goofy the plaintiff's contention that Disneyland can't offer the price break because it's a "common carrier" like a ballpark or movie theater. SEND IN THE CLONES Yes, it's early, but we're submitting this as our story of the year, courtesy of NPR's Jan. 11 Wait Wait Don't Tell Mebroadcast: to make The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King's climactic battle the mother of all cinematic battles, director Peter Jacksonwanted his 200,000 digitized soldiers to be indistinguishable from real actors. So his computer animators wrote a code to make the virtual fighters think for themselves on the battlefield. But for the first two years, the plan backfired; the soldiers kept fleeing the combat zone. Explains special-effects designer Richard Taylor, "We could not make their computers stupid enough to not run away." INSTANT REACTION TO THAT LAST ITEM FROM A CONSERVATIVE NEWS FORUM "Jackson's mistake? The modeling software was 'Made in France.'" Prodigal Son, on FreeRepublic.com.
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