Monday, January 02, 2006

2005: It Was a Very Weird Year

It was a hell of a year for blogging (though not so good if you lived in Iraq, New Orleans, or one of the Red States). Here are some of the high- and low lights. Happy New Year!

January 20: The Reverend James C. Dobson reveals that children's television star, Sponge Bob Squarepants, is gay. The beloved cartoon character denies all allegations of sexual conduct, but admits that he finds himself strangely attracted to David Hasselhoff.

Bush approval rating: 49% (lowest of any president entering his second term).
SpongeBob TV ratings: 2.4 million viewers (#1 regularly scheduled cable program).

January 26: A former male escort turned conservative reporter is discovered lurking in the White House press gaggle. Later news stories reveal that Jeff Gannon (aka James Guckert, aka "Bulldog") visited the White House more than 200 times over a two-year period, including a handful of overnight stays. White House spokesmodel Scott McClelland says it's perfectly normal for gay male hookers using fake names to gain access to the White House by pretending to be reporters. He also admits to being hot for Hasselhoff.

March 21: After a dramatic late-night flight from Texas to Washington, President Bush signs a bill authorizing the federal courts to intervene in the case of coma victim Terri Schiavo. Dr. Bill Frist becomes the first medical professional to offer a video diagnosis from the Senate floor, saying Schiavo appeared to respond to stimuli (despite being both blind and brain dead). The attempt at resurrection ultimately fails when a federal judge allows Schiavo's feeding tube to be removed. A secret GOP memo later reveals the entire Schiavo charade was concocted to boost support among its conservative base, more than two-thirds of whom are also brain dead.

Percentage of Americans who say the President and Congress should stay the Hell out of private medical decisions: 82

Percentage of Americans who believe Schiavo charade was all about politics: 74
(CBS Poll - March 23)

April 1: The top two CIA officers during the runup to the Iraq war deny any knowledge that the primary source for intelligence on Iraq's biological weapons program just made all that shit up. Despite repeated warnings from German and US intelligence officials that "Curveball" was a pathological liar, "evidence" he coughed up found its way into major US speeches leading up to the war. The CIA quietly orders an immediate review of intelligence gathered from sources named Goofball, Screwball, and Hairball.

May 31: VP Dick Cheney declares that the "insurgency is in its last throes". Disappointed insurgents pack up their bombs and go home.

Average number of insurgent attacks per day:

May 2003: 10
June 2004: 52
May 2005: 70

August 6: Cindy Sheehan and several hundred of her closest friends begin camping out near El Rancho Bush in Crawford, Texas, to protest the Iraq war. On several occasions the presidential motorcade speeds by and lobs empty bottles of Mr. Pibb out the windows. The protestors consider roasting President Bush in effigy but decide to roast weenies instead, since they're virtually the same thing.

August 28: Hurricane Katrina nearly wipes a great city off the map. President Bush cuts his 35-day vacation short to attend fundraisers and photo ops while Americans die on TV. After arriving in NOLA he praises FEMA chief Mike "Heckova Job" Brown and sheds a tear for the loss of Sen Trent Lott's Mississippi home. Millions of Americans -- and the media -- finally begin begin to appreciate what a Bozo this man really is. Meanwhile, First Mother Barbara Bush discovers she enjoys chillin' wid da homies in their new crib, the Astrodome.

September 28: During the space of 10 days, Tom DeLay is indicted for conspiracy and money laundering in Texas, Sen. Bill Frist comes under investigation for insider trading, and White House aide David Safavian is arrested in connection with the Jack Abramoff scandal. Republicans suddenly rediscover the concept of "innocent until proven guilty," which they had apparently mislaid on September 12, 2001.

October 28: Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald indicts vice presidential hatchetman Lewis "Scooter" Libby on five counts of perjury and obstructing justice in the Valerie Plame scandal. He hints at more indictments to come. Karl Rove goes on a crash diet, determined to be tanned, rested, and ready for his upcoming court appearances.

November 30: In a major address, President Bush details his plan for victory in Iraq, which appears to consist largely of being photographed in front of signs with the word "victory" on them. At the same time the White House releases a document titled "National Strategy for Victory in Iraq." Bloggers soon reveal the document was originally titled "How to weasel out of Iraq with our last remaining shred of dignity," but the title was later edited for "clarity."

December 16: The NY Times reveals that President Bush ordered the NSA to spy on Americans without a warrant, in direct violation of federal law. Bush first denies the report, then defends it. His supporters argue that the divine right of presidents allows him to suspend the Constitution when he feels like it. The "I" word is finally muttered by Democrats on Capitol Hill. Meanwhile, the Department of Justice opens an investigation into the leak, which may prove to be the only investigation the Bush White House willingly cooperates with.


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