Smug As a Bug in a Rug

God bless those wacky old libs on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals!There they were on Monday, getting all jiggy with Bush vs. Gore and doubtless peeing themselves with laughter while mimicking the Supreme Court's words back at 'em like your rotten little brother used to when he was trying to drive you especially nuts.1

Can't you just see Antonin Scalia's face, all frustrated and pissy even more than usual? Me, too!2

Now, assuming the Supreme Court isn't going to step in and bitch-slap the Ninth Circuit—and that is a stupid, stupid thing to assume because they're crotchety, that court!—we'll have six more months of recall.

Me, I've been bored with this whole recall thang—stupid MTV attention span!—ever since all the fringey folks started burrowing back into their mole-men holes. What had been Direct Democracy in Action! and A Historic Opportunity to Get on the Ballot Without Having to Be Vetted and Chosen by Establishment Vetters and Choosers! and That Backyard Sumo Wrestler Guy!became just another exercise in The Man gettin' us down about the same time we stopped hearing from Larry Flynt—a man who knows a little something about The Man, by the way, and a little something about getting down. And by then, of course, Democratic Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi had long since dropped out—one day after he got in, in fact—because all the Dems in charge had already decided for the rest of us that Cruz “Hmmm, What Rhymes With Cruz?” Bustamante was to nobly bear our standard. Simon and Ueberroth, too.

Hasta labye-bye.

Right. So. Before all that happened with the court and the election and stuff? Say, around about last weekend? The Republicans threw a party. Bummer about the timing, huh?

Now, I love a good party. I especially love a good Republican party because you never know when someone's going to order a $128 bottle of wine and then send it back, and that kind of chutzpah, frankly, is thrilling to see. (Well, we're doin' mighty fine, I do suppose/In our streak-of-lightnin' cars and fancy clothes/ But just so we're reminded of the ones who are held back/Up front there oughtta be a Man In Black.) Also, you could very well get an aged Angus steak dinner out of the whole thing. Mmmm, bribes!

This time, with all the hoopla, it wouldn't just be the same wild-eyed Eagle Forum nut ladies roaming the convention halls and breathlessly proselytizing at ya that he who has The Lord has life while he who has not the Lord has not life—and the nut ladies really are the reason, besides the steaks and the bribes, that I love the Republican conventions. (I wear the black for those who never read/Or listened to the words that Jesus said/About the road to happiness through love and charity/ Why, you'd think He's talking straight to you and me.)

No, this time, there'd be fancy people there, drinking drinks and gladhanding and bullying the California Republican Party minions who were trying to keep the press and their press passes parted. RepCon03 at the LAX Marriott was full of big fancy reporters, reporting! For you! And those minions didn't know who they were messing with! Especially when they messed with me! Sitting cozily in the lobby, interviewing folks such as Newport Assemblyman John Campbell, were such folks as OC Press Club jefe Jean Pasco, and interviewing Sherry Bebitch Jeffe was every other reporter in the whole damn world ever. LA Timescolumnista Pat Morrison wore a big pink hat and charmed people while hanging in a group that included the Times' Mark Z. Babar . . . Barabak . . . Mark Zee.

In the press lounge, a wondrous place of overstuffed couches and obscenely juicy pineapple, the Weekly Standard's Christopher Caldwell stood around awkwardly as NPR's Ina Jaffe coffee-klatsched with her cool, important, middle-aged-lady friends, including Sherry Jeffe. God, I wanted to be them bad!

Mostly, we drank, gladhanded and bullied. But it wasn't all fun and games! We also wandered lonely as a cloud and tried to avoid the hatchet glares of the Associated Press' cute-'n'-freckled Erica Werner, who thinks we are a chippie and who won't be coffee-klatsching with us any time soon. Eh, she's probably right.

But I'll tell you this: Erica Werner doesn't get to hang out and be friends with Alan Bock, who's, like, The Orange County Register's evil, pulsing, disembodied brain!

And I totally do!

Be sure to check out Bock's books on the Drug War and Ruby Ridge. (If you run into him, ask him; he often carries them with him!) Also, he's got one from the '60s on, like, Bob Dylan or some other dirty-hippy subject from back before he realized he was a libertarian. Were there others out there like him? Was he the only one who felt this way?It was the politics that dared not speak its name. . . .

We drank, we gladhanded, we listened to various Young Americans for Freedom recount to us all the ways they'd hilariously screwed with the minds of the party's moderates. “You talk freedom, baby,” said one, “you're talking Republican girls!”

Then we saw the District Attorminator (okay, that was stretching it) Tony Rackauckas, and we fled because he's scary even if he is pretty wee. (I wear it for the prisoner who has long paid for his crime/But is there 'cause he's a victim of the times.)

And then we saw Sheriff Mike Carona, over whom we didn't fawn overmuch because we didn't want to be like the statuesque redhead who was begging the sheriff's guy, John “Flash” Fleischman, for a private introduction, and it made her sound like a huge, huge whore. The sheriff is not running for attorney general, it seems, because it turns out you have to actually be an attorney. He is planning to run for lieutenant governor, though why he'd want such a useless position is beyond me. Glad to straighten that up for you.

We discovered that hefty Long Beach Water District dude (and friend of Snoop!) The Honorable Norm Ryanspeaks Mandarin from his days in the U.S. Army interrogatin' school, and when you're watching a big ol' white guy with a mini cheeseburger in one hand begin speaking fluent Mandarin, you might be forgiven for gawking.

Everyone seemed seriously underwhelmed by Arnold Schwarzenegger—who's also wee, except for his gigantic, oddly sized noggin. But they tried to put a pretty face on it nonetheless. I think he's crashing and burning.

And Tom McClintock is still The Devil. In fact, he's Seor The Devil. And I think he's going to win.

You heard that incredibly depressing prognostication here first.

Pithy Aphorism of the Week!

This week's pithy aphorism comes courtesy of Joel Vuolevi of Long Beach. “Democracy is like an auction. Every fourth year, someone lets you pee on your pants. It makes you feel warm for a little while, but the rest of the time, you are freezing even more.”

Thanks, Joel!

Interns' Corner!

Where we let the interns leave the office and teach them how to make it in the sweaty world of alternative journalism!

This week: Intern Heather Reger reports from South Coast Plaza!

Champagne glass in hand, Orange County designer Meghan Noland was easy to spot through the 99 [Make it “neun-und-neunzig” for the so-old-it's-new-againNina Hagen reference.—ed] hot-pink balloons floating by in Nordstrom at the fall preview fashion show. [Too many facts. Facts are dull.—ed] Best known for her lingerie-inspired clothing, Noland's fall line includes lots of bows and lace and very little actual material. A kelly-green camisole known as “The Runway Top” [moaned] out something reminiscent of [the sluts in] Top Gun: “Take me to bed or lose me forever!” Regardless, these hot, sexy little numbers are sure to be worn by celebs, rock stars and any [big sluts] who wants to ensure some action in the sack. Be forewarned: a sweater would definitely be needed if you plan to wear these little numbers in the fall [so your love-buttons won't put someone's eye out] [slut].

We would love to wear a rainbow every day.


1. Go read a newspaper, for Christ's sake!

2. No, seriously. Go read a newspaper

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