Political Soup

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Frank HamannFrank Hamann is among a group of people who frequently send the Weekly letters to the editor that never appear in the paper. It's not that these letters are offensive or overly critical of our fine work (we love those). It's just that we receive so many letters and have such limited space in which to print them that we're forced to stick to the ones that pertain to specific stories that have appeared in these pages.

That's too bad because we're sure many readers would enjoy Orange resident Hamann's colorful political insights. If only there were more space . . .

We've found it! It's been right here under our runny noses all along: the Food page.

Curses! Our overlords require that food stories deal with local restaurants. Brothers and sisters, the Man is cramping our style with his establishment rules.

No sweat: we'll just manufacture some questions for lines in Hamann's latest letter to the editor, e-mail him a few food questions, and merge it all together into one delectable food-section interview. Abondanza!

OC Weekly: What is your favorite Orange County restaurant?Frank Hamann: Caspian Restaurant in Irvine. That's fascinating! So what do you think of the Bush administration's war on terrorism?

The war on terrorism, as it is presently being waged, will not result in victory no matter how long it lasts. How could it be otherwise when the Bush administration welcomes terrorist-supporting governments into the new anti-terror coalition?

Beats me. What do you like about Caspian?

Authentic Persian food, music and belly dancers!

Sounds great. Any thoughts about the president's speech to a joint session of Congress?

In his Sept. 20 speech, Bush described the terrorists thusly: "They are the heirs of all the murderous ideologies of the 20th century. . . . [T]hey follow in the path of fascism, Nazism and totalitarianism."

Speaking of totalitarianism, which dish is totally satisfying at Caspian?

Beef shish kebab with rice.

Whoa, now you've got my mouth watering. Say, did the president leave anything out of his speech?

Bush did not mention communism, the most murderous ideology of the 20th century. That's quite an omission, particularly considering that Russian communism spawned the international terrorist network. How can the terrorist network be eliminated when Russia's leader, Vladimir Putin, is made our ally in the fight against terrorism? Putin was once head of Russia's Federal Security Service, the renamed KGB. Does Bush honestly believe that this unrepentant veteran of the Soviet police-state apparatus can be trusted?

Hey, mister, I'll ask the questions around here. So do you recommend any other restaurants?

In-N-Out Burgers.

In-N-Out Burgers? Fabulous! Anything else tick you off about the president?

Bush has also invited Chinese President Jiang Zemin into the fight against terrorism. China is still openly a communist country, which helps explain why Bush does not utter the C-word when he condemns "the murderous ideologies of the 20th century."

C also stands for choices. Which menu choices do you take advantage of at In-N-Out?

Double-double and chocolate shake.

So I take it no Chinese food?

China has been a longtime supporter of the Taliban.

Caspian Restaurant, 14100 Culver Dr., Irvine, (949) 651-8454; In-N-Out Burgers, follow the long line of cars spilling into the streets throughout Orange County or call (800) 786-1000 for the nearest location.


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