Well, congrats to everyone at Halitosis Hall, for making Vo Dilun look like the moron capital of the universe once again.
Phillipe and Jorge are referring, of course, to how Governor Don "The Don" Carcieri may be taking the House of Representatives’ vote on the state budget to the Supreme Court because the 49-22 tally did not reflect the two-thirds majority required by law. (And why the four missing reps were not on hand to vote is something for them to explain, and their constituents to sort out at the ballot box in November.) Nice one, Don, since you couldn’t override a budget veto with a bullwhip and a handgun.
Ah, the joys of the Ocean State — as we drown in our incompetence
TOP GENII OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT
One thing we love about our Vo Dilun politicians is how their loose and foolish pronouncements know no party lines. This past week, we got a beauty from House Majority Leader Gordon Fox (a man P&J always accepted as a straight-shooter and good guy, but whose percentage on the shooting range has dipped precipitously since he joined the top of the House leadership team).
Upon discovering that 11 House Democrats were voting against the House’s version of the budget, Gordo (according to the BeloJo) fumed, "What is going on in this State House is despicable." Word was the Don had been doing a bit of horse-trading with the dissident Dems in question, and had perhaps agreed to not so aggressively seek Republican opponents for them in the coming election. If so, that is a bit over the top, but we’ll know soon enough if there’s anything to it, since the filing deadline is next week.
But the lobbying of Democratic legislators by Republican governors is nothing new, and it’s hardly in the realm of "despicable." It’s called "politics," Gordo. Get used to it.
Meanwhile, the always over-the-top mayor of Cranston, Steve "Laugh at Me" Laffey, in response to a union-organized campaign encouraging Cranston Democrat voters to disaffiliate, to vote against Laffey in an assumed primary (there is no declared opponent as of this writing), was not pleased. "They know that the only way to do it [beat Laffey] is to rig an election," he told the Other Paper. "That’s why they are trying to rig, manipulate and corrupt the election . . . Tell them in case they’ve forgotten, we actually live in America."
Yes, Laugh at Me, we do live in America, where the rules say people can switch from party to party and then disaffiliate any time they choose. There is nothing "rigged" or "corrupt" about the process, and if it’s politics to you, get used to it. A few presidential primaries ago, a number of your superior correspondents’ friends were encouraging folks, who would be otherwise known as liberal Democrats, to disaffiliate and vote in the Republican primary for Pat Buchanan, so that the weakest candidate would prevail. Many did and nobody raised a stink about it. It’s called "strategic voting" and we believe that lots of people do it on a regular basis. It’s democratic, legal, and if you don’t like it, tough shit.
FLYING HIGH AGAIN
Flight helmets off to Channel 10 JARhead Brian "Rocketman" Crandall for trumping every reality show on TV with his live-in-action trip with the Thunderbirds before the recent Quonset Point air show.
Rocketman evidently drew the short straw among his colleagues and had to go up into the wild blue yonder with one of the Thunderbirds’ pilots. The camera was on him, in the rear cockpit of one of the jets, while it did its sound barrier-breaking stunts, including a turn that produced an effect of nine Gs. As the pull fully exerted, Crandall’s eyes rolled back and he then pitched forward, unconscious after blacking out. When the pilot congratulated him, evidently unaware that Rocketman had hit the wall, the intrepid fellow admitted he missed quite a bit of the excitement while in the ether himself. He did, however, recover in time for a live shot on the extended five o’clock news, so mission accomplished, as our President Prancer, the poseur in a Top Gun flight suit, might say.
This brings to mind the legendary story of Jack Cavanagh, another JARhead from ages ago, who went up with the Blue Angels in the same scenario. After returning to earth and exiting the jet, Jack proceeded to park the tiger on the tarmac and staggered over to lie in the weeds for a longish spell, before being escorted back to the studio by his cameraman, quite worse the wear for earning his wings.
Roger Wilco from P&J, Rocketman!
READING THE BEADS
Your superior correspondents always figured we were the cattiest queens around until we saw the New York Post’s "Page Six" item on Justin Timberlake, material witness to the "wardrobe malfunction" ("If that is indeed your name, Lieutenant Batguano"). Here’s the dish on Justin from the June 18 column, and it sounds like just what happens when P&J forget to deliver the Framboise-laced cosmopolitans to our girlfriends Rosemary Pork-Tenderloin and Victoria Falls in proper time.
"Fading pop star footnote Justin Timberlake should consider hiring professional bodyguards for a change. One of the gargantuan goons he can’t live without threatened to kill a photographer in Sydney, Australia, the other day. The girlish Timberlake was all scowls as he ignored fans while strolling through the city with alleged girlfriend Cameron Diaz, flanked by their two blubbery bodyguards, reports the Daily Telegraph. When they arrived at Harbour Bridge, one of the hysterical sides of beef shrieked at a shutterbug, ‘I’m not from this country. I will kill you if you get in my way!’ "
Book 'em, Bob-OPhillipe and Jorge’s favorite ex-cop author, Bob Leuci, the role model for the famed Prince of the City book and movie, who just happens to be a Saunderstown resident, has a new non-fiction tome coming out, All the Centurions. The book evidently explains all the hideous/lovely/bizarre circumstances behind the crafting of the man who exposed corruption in the New York City Police Department and has since gone on to fame as a writer of detective novels that not only have no peer, but which mention Little Rhody institutions like the Twin Willows. P&J advise immediate purchase, sight unseen, except for how the truth may hurt. Still, we would rather have no one tell the tale than Mr. Leuci.
Now that President Dubya Boy George — gutless defender of justice, unless it requires showing up for National Guard duty — has had not just more criminals killed by the state while a governor than anyone else, but also a record three (and counting) decapitations on his watch, should he be known as "Behead of State"?
MOORE IS MORE
Terrific performance on NBC’s Today show when Michael Moore engaged in a June 21 battle of wits with unarmed Baba Wawa wannabe Katie Couric, over Moore’s new movie, Fahrenheit 9/11. Couric’s "tan" resembles a disastrous QT experiment gone wrong, and when forced to deal with someone with an IQ over the median Today quotient of Matt Lauer’s 25, sounds like Maureen Dowd after a pre-frontal lobotomy. No surprise, then, that she got chewed up and spit out after lamely trying to defend how NBC, like all the networks, has donated multiple fellatios to the Bushies’ White House. Yeah, Moore can be a pedantic a-hole at times, but faced with a woman who is so starved and desperate for approval that she let her own fundament become the subject of a news report, he shoved her lame excuses and questions up the self-same spot. Good on ya, Mikey.
By the way, Fahrenheit 9/11 comes to town tomorrow (that’s Friday, June 25, for those who scoop up their Phoenix as soon as they hit the streets), and the folks from http://www.moveon.org are pushing for packed houses at the first slew of screenings. The local one will be at Providence Place Mall. Sounds like a good idea to us.
MARVIN, THE TAIL-WAGGIN' MASTER
Word comes to your superior correspondents that Marvin, a four-year-old black Labrador, who is the proud mascot of the Rhode Island SPCA and paints with his tail (not unlike P&J), recently sold one of his paintings for $2500. This is believed to be a world record for doggy artists. All the proceeds from Marvin’s paintings go to www.marvinfund.org, a charitable organization that helps the elderly, disabled, and low-income families with their pets’ medical needs. Marvin has had some tough times. He was relinquished to a shelter not once, but twice in his life, and has a permanent disability. We understand that he has also written an inspirational biography, presumably with his tail.
WAKING UP TO REALITY
We hope everyone got a chance to read (and ponder) the front-page story in the Urinal of Monday, June 21 by scribe Jennifer Jordan, about the study results from the Poverty Institute, the highly respected policy and advocacy group at Rhode Island College. The findings show that 47 percent of all Vo Dilun families bring in less than $50,000 a year, which is barely adequate to feed, clothe, and house a family of four.
Of course, we folks living in the real world have known this for quite some time. Rent, mortgage figures, and other cost-of-living data tell the story. It’s clear to anyone with half a brain that the "minimum wage" is so minimum that hundreds of families with two working parents remain unable to afford housing.
For years, P&J have been railing about the continually expanding gap between rich and poor, not just in our own backyard, but throughout the country. We’d like to hear this all-important issue discussed by our elected government officials and the candidates for office, but all we get is a deafening silence, or (from the Republicans, anyway) the genius solution of handing out more tax cuts to the rich. Wake up and smell the discarded coffee grounds being scrounged by people without enough to eat.
Send Carlos Beltran and Pulitzer-grade tips to p&j@ phx.com.
The Phillipe & Jorge archives.
Issue Date: June 25 - July 1, 2004
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