Of course, I love the Super Fans. Too bad SNL doesn't run in the summer. Political season's the only time I really watch it now. I still laugh when I think of the Al Gore veepstakes parody four years ago, riffing off "The Bachelor" (brand-new then), with Al and Joe Lieberman clinking champagne flutes in a hot tub. Can you buy those sketches somewhere?
Super Fans back Coach: He'll win with 118% of vote
July 14, 2004
BY LUCIO GUERRERO Staff Reporter
Bob Swerski has some advice for Barack Obama -- drop out of the race, you've got no chance against Da Coach.
"I have a prediction for the race -- Ditka: 118.4 percent of the vote, Obama: -4," Swerski told the Sun-Times Tuesday. "Not only do I think Obama should drop out, I think Mr. Bush should drop out, too."
Of course, Swerski's views may be a bit jaded. After all, he is a Super Fan.
As a regular fixture on Saturday Night Live, Swerski and his fellow Super Fans would get together at Ditka's to talk about their beloved Bears -- aka Da Bears -- and its larger-than-life coach, Mike Ditka. So of course, when word reached the Super Fans that Ditka could be on his way to the Senate, they wanted to be heard.
"My only concern is that the Senate would restrict him to one vote," said Swerski, who's a close friend of actor George Wendt and was with him on Tuesday when the Sun-Times called. "He is such a massive man that he would probably need a two-thirds majority on his own."
Swerski said he didn't care that Ditka didn't have any political experience -- he does have a Super Bowl ring.
"His judgment is impeccable," said Swerski. "He ran the Fridge for a touchdown in the Super Bowl -- that's judgment, that's vision."
And why stop at the U.S. Senate, Swerski said.
"It's going to be a DITKtatorship," he said. "He will be the omnipotent ruler of the world."
Now that Ditka is back, will the Super Fans return to SNL?
Wendt said he called Rob Smigel, creator of the Super Fans. "He's dusting off the briefcase with our mustaches and Bears jerseys."
Because of the whole Jack Ryan mess, the Illinois GOP has spent the better part of the last month trying to find someone - anyone - to fill their senate slot. In the last week, however, party mo has started to shift and follow the grassroots momentum to Mike Ditka. Seriously. (And I'm not saying this with condescension.) He's interested, family's willing, state and national parties are up for it. Now, can you just picture it: DITKA FOR SENATE? The possibilities boggle the mind. I'll say just two words: Reagan Democrats. One more word: Labor.
Anyhoo, word on the street (or on the 'net, anyway) among political junkies is that RNC/GOP biggies are heading to Chicago and there could be an announcement today. Though the two items could be unrelated.
In a two-and-a-half hour gala that raised $7.5 million, a record for a single event, Chevy Chase poked fun at the president's pronunciation of "nuclear" and "terrorist" and said Mr. Bush had invaded Iraq "just so he could be called a wartime president." Paul Newman decried "tax cuts for wealthy thugs like me" as "borderline criminal."
I'm glad Chevy Chase, that great foreign policy analyst, has made it clear we're not actually in a war or anything. Now we know where John Kerry stands. Good job.
The comedian John Leguizamo, who is half Puerto Rican, said the notion of Hispanics supporting Republicans was "like roaches for Raid." And Whoopi Goldberg, after joking about refusing to submit her material to campaign censors, made an extended sexual pun on the president's surname.
Hey, John Leguizamo, I'm 100% Puerto Rican, si lugar di nacimiento means anything. (I suppose it doesn't - or are Charlize Theron or Teresa Heinz Kerry "African", or what? Class, please discuss.) And I don't find that funny. But maybe you should ask Columba or George P. about it.
Then the Academy-Award-winning actress Meryl Streep asked which candidates Jesus might support.
"I wondered to myself during 'Shock and Awe,' I wondered which of the megaton bombs Jesus, our president's personal savior, would have personally dropped on the sleeping families of Baghdad?" Ms. Streep said.
Steve Schmidt, a Bush campaign spokesman, denounced the event as "a Hollywood fund-raiser filled with enough hate and vitriol to make Michael Moore blush."
After the concert, Mr. Kerry's press secretary, David Wade, said, "Obviously John Kerry and John Edwards do not agree with everything that was said tonight," adding: "Performers have a right to speak their minds even when we don't agree with everything they say. That's the freedom John Kerry put his life on the line to defend."
Hey, did you know - John Kerry was in Vietnam! Yes! Really!
Most telling point:
Campaign aides said the performers would not allow broadcast journalists to record the concert.
The performers wouldn't allow it? Or - maybe the campaign didn't want it recorded? But that would be a little Moore-ish of me to so speculate, wouldn't it? I'm sure the performers, people like Dave Matthews, were just afraid of bootlegs.
But unlike one of Mr. Kerry's vanquished primary rivals, Howard Dean, who denounced racial humor and profanity at one of his own fundraisers in New York, Mr. Edwards and Mr. Kerry hardly veered from their script when they mounted the stage at the end of the extravaganza, looking more subdued than they had all week.
So Howard Dean had better manners and more presence of mind than John Kerry?
WASHINGTON — In a secret operation, the United States last month removed from Iraq nearly two tons of uranium and hundreds of highly radioactive items that could have been used in a so-called dirty bomb, the Energy Department disclosed Tuesday.
The nuclear material was secured from Iraq's former nuclear research facility and airlifted out of the country to an undisclosed Energy Department laboratory for further analysis, the department said in a statement.
Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham described the previously undisclosed operation, which was concluded June 23, as "a major achievement" in an attempt to "keep potentially dangerous nuclear material out of the hands of terrorists."
The haul included a "huge range" of radioactive items used for medical and industrial purposes, said Bryan Wilkes, a spokesman for the Energy Department's National Nuclear Security Administration.
Much of the material "was in powdered form, which is easily dispersed," said Wilkes.
The statement provided only scant details about the material taken from Iraq, but said it included "roughly 1,000 highly radioactive sources" that "could potentially be used in a radiological dispersal device," or dirty bomb.
Also ferried out of Iraq was 1.95 tons of low-enriched uranium, the department said.
Wilkes said "a huge range of different isotopes" were secured in the joint Energy Department and Defense Department operation. They had been used in Iraq for a range of medical and industrial purposes, such as testing oil wells and pipelines.
Uranium is not suitable for making a dirty bomb. But some of the other radioactive material — including cesium-137, colbalt-60 and strontium — could have been valuable to a terrorist seeking to fashion a terror weapon.
Such a device would not trigger a nuclear explosion, but would use conventional explosives to spread radioactive debris. While few people would probably be killed or seriously affected by the radiation, such an explosion could cause panic, make a section of a city uninhabitable for some time and require cumbersome and expensive cleanup.
Nuclear nonproliferation advocates said securing radioactive material is important all over the world.
A recent study by researchers at the Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Monterey Institute of International Studies concluded it is "all but certain" that some kind of dirty bomb will be set off by a terrorist group in the years ahead. There are just too many radioactive sources available across the globe, the report said.
"This is something we should be doing not just in Iraq," Ivan Oelrich, a physicist at the Federation of American Scientists, said when asked to comment on the Energy Department announcement.
Oelrich hesitated to characterize the threat posed by the uranium and other radioactive material secured in the secret U.S. operation because few details were provided about the material. The Energy Department refused to say where the material was shipped.
But Oelrich said it is widely believed that medical and industrial isotopes can be used in a dirty bomb.
The low-enriched uranium taken from Iraq, if it is of the 3 percent to 5 percent level of enrichment common in fuel for commercial power reactors, could have been of value to a country developing enrichment technology.
"It speeds up the process," Oelrich said, adding that 1.95 tons of low-enriched uranium could be used to produce enough highly enriched uranium to make a single nuclear bomb.
Well, there was something in the news that intrigued me, only for its utter ordinariness. Another day, another Arab tyrant handed over to civilian authorities to answer for his crimes.
You know, it happens so often we’re just blasé about nowadays, eh? I mean, tell me something new.
I saw some clips of the arraignment on CNN this morning; they had some Brit human-rights attorney worrying on about the fact that Saddam did not have legal representation, however the Iraqis had set up the court at this point, and yet was made to sign a statement saying he understood the charges being made. The CNN broadcasters were very grave. I felt a tear welling up for the Butcher of Baghdad. Obviously the poor fellow is going to be railroaded by our puppet proxies.
The best bit is at the end (though you really should read all of it):
Take your choice. Wallow, if you will, in this day of shame. Saddam is going to stand trial – and Bush isn’t. Truly a world turned upside down.
Oh, the sweet irony: These Paul Martin Kool-Aid drinkers aren't even at a Tim Horton's, they're at an imperialist-hegemonist McDonald's! Hel-lo-oooo! Via Kathy Shaidle. I won't even try to excerpt it, because I'd end up reprinting the whole thing. Oh, what the hay, I'll give you a taste. But you've got to go read the whole thing. Now, not all Canadians think like this. But a whole lot of them, especially in the cities, really actually do . . .
"Exactly," said Heather. "The scariest part for me about him is that [Harper] wanted to cosy up to the Americans. Can you believe it? The bloody Americans. I hate the Americans."
What do you hate about them?
"They're warmongers," said Don. "They're out to take over the world. They remind me of the Germans in World War II."
"They're not our best friends, they're our worst enemies," said Heather. "You can't trust them. I wish we had some other country as our neighbour, not those bullies. They're ignorant. They don't know anything about any other country. They'd just love to take us over if they could."
"I don't think they're all bad, I've got American friends," said St. Clair, "but Harper would've had us kissing their ass instead of telling them to screw off like Martin will do."
I suppose Mr. St. Clair missed Mr. Martin's much-heralded (on both sides of the border) rear-smooching of GWB back in March . . .