Class Is Out For The Summer...But Political Brains Still Overheating
By: Rachel Marsden
There's something about the intense summer heat that seems to go straight to
politicians' brains -- and the phenomenon isn't geographically limited.
New York City: Democratic N.Y.C. councilwoman Darlene Mealy wants to ban the words "bitch" and "ho" from everyday use. This new ban comes on the heels of an earlier symbolic ban of the n-word. Because, yeah, that worked.
Of course, the ban would only be symbolic, since presumably, in a city where people don't think twice about jaywalking in front of the police, having them chasing people down for language violations would be unlikely. Although it would certainly make my late night subway rides much quieter by leaving some of my fellow travellers with an allowable vocabulary of about five words.
City councilors need to focus on the issues within their jurisdiction--like getting dog excrement off the sidewalks. If they want to amend free speech or deal with the Iraq war, then they're in the wrong political office.
Washington, D.C.: It's obvious that class is out for the summer, because at least one congressional member seems to be focused on his beach bod. The Hill newspaper reports that Democratic congressman Neil Abercrombie--fittingly of Hawaii, and the chairman of the House of Representatives "gym committee'-- is looking for $8 million to renovate the House gym.
According to LegiStorm, Abercrombie makes $165,200 annually, which is enough to buy a gym membership at an upscale club in D.C., a hot trainer, and a few protein shakes at the juice bar. The Hill also reports that Abercrombie sets an annual goal of benching his age plus 200 lbs--which is still much lighter than the bill he'd be foisting on taxpayers. If you're that eager to exert yourself at work, Neil, how about just benching Ted Kennedy?
France: The World Cup Rugby tournament is coming to France next month, and the French government's ministry of foreign affairs has been busy prepping a "French Survival Kit" for non-francophone attendees. It features various useful French translations of phrases like, "My luggage hasn't arrived"; "Can you tell me where to get off?"; "What can you do at night?"; "This isn't cooked enough" and "I have a hangover".
Cute, but as someone who grew up around rugby, I'd like to know where in this manual I can find translations for the most common rugby phrases, such as, "Hey ref! Are you f-----g blind?!" and, "He's offside, you bloody idiot!"
I'm sure rugby fans around the world have run off copies from the government's "France Diplomatie" website and are power-quizzing each other over pints of Guinness right now. French taxpayer money well spent, no doubt.
U.S. presidential race: Or as I like to call it, the Marathon of Political Idiocy.
Former GOP Senator Fred Thompson has changed campaign managers for the third time before even joining the race. It's a bit like firing your personal trainer before setting foot in the gym.
Democrat Barack Obama, the "anti-war" candidate, said he'd order military strikes on Waziristan to take out the Taliban members to whom Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf has given refuge. Actually, the only thing idiotic about this is that it's coming from Obama--meaning it's probably just the result of seeing too many summer action movies.
Iraq: The Iraqi government has decided they deserve a month-long summer vacation because, you know, nothing's really going on in the summer anyway. Just ask the U.S. troops over there dodging bombs.
PUBLISHED: TORONTO SUN (August 12/07)
COPYRIGHT 2007 RACHEL MARSDEN