November 16th, 2003

fashionable

How to screw veterans and undermine the constitution at the same time!

From a recent Washington, DC press conference...
-------------------------
HELEN THOMAS: Scott, there are 17 former POWs from the first Gulf War who were tortured and filed suit against the regime of Saddam Hussein. And a judge has ordered that they are entitled to substantial financial damages. What is the administration's position on that? Is it the view of this White House that that money would be better spent rebuilding Iraq rather than going to these former POWs?

SCOTT McCLELLAN: I don't know that I view it in those terms, David. I think that the United States -- first of all, the United States condemns in the strongest terms the brutal torture to which these Americans were subjected. They bravely and heroically served our nation and made sacrifices during the Gulf War in 1991, and there is simply no amount of money that can truly compensate these brave men and women for the suffering that they went through at the hands of Saddam Hussein's brutal regime. That's what our view is.

MS. THOMAS: But, so -- but isn't it true that this White House -- that this White House is standing in the way of them getting those awards, those financial awards, because it views it that money better spent on rebuilding Iraq?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, there's simply no amount of money that can truly compensate these brave men and women for the suffering --

MS. THOMAS: Why won't you spell out what your position is?

MR. McCLELLAN: I'm coming to your question. Believe me, I am. Let me finish. Let me start over again, though. No amount of money can truly compensate these brave men and women for the suffering that they went through at the hands of a very brutal regime, at the hands of Saddam Hussein. It was determined earlier this year by Congress and the administration that those assets were no longer assets of Iraq, but they were resources required for the urgent national security needs of rebuilding Iraq. But again, there is simply no amount of compensation that could ever truly compensate these brave men and women.

MS. THOMAS: Just one more. Why would you stand in the way of at least letting them get some of that money?

MR. McCLELLAN: I disagree with the way you characterize it.

MS. THOMAS: But if the law that Congress passed entitles them to access frozen assets of the former regime, then why isn't that money, per a judge's order, available to these victims?

MR. McCLELLAN: That's why I pointed out that that was an issue that was addressed earlier this year. But make no mistake about it, we condemn in the strongest possible terms the torture that these brave individuals went through --

(In other words, "Congress? Judges? Bah. Screw seperation of powers - the prez says the money is ours!")

MS. THOMAS: - you don't think they should get money?

MR. McCLELLAN: -- at the hands of Saddam Hussein. There is simply no amount of money that can truly compensate those men and women who heroically served --

MS. THOMAS: That's not the issue --

MR. McCLELLAN: -- who heroically served our nation.

MS. THOMAS: Are you opposed to them getting some of the money?

MR. McCLELLAN: And, again, I just said that that had been addressed earlier this year.

MS. THOMAS: No, but it hasn't been addressed. They're entitled to the money under the law. The question is, is this administration blocking their effort to access some of that money, and why?

MR. McCLELLAN: I don't view it that way at all. I view it the way that I stated it, that this issue was --

MS. THOMAS: But you are opposed to them getting the money.

MR. McCLELLAN: This issue was addressed earlier this year, and we believe that there's simply no amount of money that could truly compensate these brave men and women for what they went through and for the suffering that they went through at the hands of Saddam Hussein --

MS. THOMAS: So no money.

MR. McCLELLAN: -- and that's my answer.
-------------------------


Excuse me... Is this the right room for an argument?!
fashionable

Christopher Lee cut out of final LOTR movie!

And he doesn't sound happy.

Rumors have been flying that Peter Jackson was forced to make the cuts by the movie studio, while his fans launched a petition to get him reinstated. Peter Jackson -- sensing a backlash of oliphant proportions -- sent an email to smooth ruffled feathers, explaining that Lee's scenes will be on the extended DVD version of the movie.

Still, given the iconic star power of Christopher Lee, and his rabid legion of fans, you still have to question the wisdom of not having at least some kind of short, powerful appearance at the beginning of the third movie. Think of it not as an "add-on", but as a chance for Lee to foreshadow the absolute overpowering doom and hopelessness that is Sauron... and if anyone could do a good job at foreshadowing doom, it would be Lee.

Would you really want to be the person who cut Lee out of the year's biggest movie? I don't care how old he is -- you just don't mess with Christopher Lee. He's a scary guy and could rend the flesh off of Peter Jackson's carcass in under 15 seconds... and he's got that stare, too. They say he's got strange, dark powers...
fashionable

Too much of a good thing.

Witness the horrors of the newest sexual dysfunction, Persistent Sexual Arousal Syndrome.

"It's just a horror," said Lila, a 71-year-old woman who has had the syndrome since brain and bladder surgery in 1999. She said she often has 200 small orgasms a day. "It bothers me more than the breast cancer," an advanced case that was diagnosed two years ago.

"This never stops, it never lets up," she said, and it ruins everything, including car travel, dinner parties and simply sitting on the couch. "It colors your whole life."

Poor woman. She must *really* hate speed bumps...