The Rip Post                                Riposte Archive


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THIS: Supreme Court nominee Samuel A. Alito declares that he “will keep an open mind” if (when) he is confirmed.

THAT: Wow! Imagine that---a Supreme Court Justice with an open mind! Will wonders never cease?

THE OTHER: Alito’s 1985 job application to Atty. Gen. Ed Meese: "I am and always have been a conservative."

THIS: My neighbors did not receive mail for three days in a row over the holiday season. When they phoned the post office, they were told, “your carrier was on vacation, and we couldn’t find anybody to take his place.”

THAT: Neither snow nor sleet nor hail. . .

THE OTHER: The Post Office is the first thing to go.

THIS: Department of Vaterland---er, Homeland---Security opened letter from eighty-one-year-old retired University of Kansas professor to a friend in the Phillipines.

THAT: They have been corresponding for 50 years, but this did not lull the Department of Homeland Security into a false sense of security! The letter arrived resealed with the Homeland Security swastika---er, seal.

THE OTHER: Neither snow nor sleet nor hail. . .

THIS: Item---Martha “Mrs. Sam” Alito breaks into tears as Repugnican Sen. Lindsey Graham apologizes to Judge Sam for “unfair insinuations” about his membership in a conservative Princeton alumni group.

THAT: Darn those mean ol’ Democratic Senators! Darn those unfair men! Imagine them daring to suggest that Alito is a conservative! Darn them for suggesting he was a member of a group that opposed admission of minority and women students!

THE OTHER: Er, um. . .even though he was.

THIS: Riposte was posting some Christmas cards outside the federal building in Westwood, Ca., when a small SUV pulled up in the opposing lane, and stopped. The driver gave your redoubtable, benign scrivener a careful once-over. I mean an actual double-take.

THAT: The SUV door was marked “FEDERAL POLICE---Dept. of Homeland Security.”

THE OTHER: Good that they are keeping an eye on people mailing Christmas cards. Of course, I have long hair and was wearing sunglasses and baseball cap, so I fit the profile of a terrorist---at least to a government more afraid of its own people than Al-Qaeda.

THIS: Once upon a time, Riposte submitted his self-published novel to a very prominent fiction agent, and she responded that---to her amazement---she had read the entire book, enjoyed it, loved the characters, etc. That she has never never done that before with a cold submission.. That she rarely reads past the first few dozen pages of any prospective novel.

THAT: Gee, you’d think that should have told her something, wouldn’t you?

THE OTHER: “If you cut it by bout a third and repurpose it as a murder mystery, I’ll represent it. Everything is niche marketing.”

THIS: News item: Tax refunds sought by hundreds of thousands of poor Americans have been frozen and their returns labeled fraudulent. The suspected returns were flagged by. . .computer.

THAT: You know, if the government is going to suspect you of something, at least it ought to have the decency to allow a human to do the suspecting.

THIS: The alleged tax dodgers' average income was $13,000. Most of them were seeking the earned income tax credit, a benefit for the working poor. Without the credit, many coming off welfare and going to work receive less money because of taxes taken out of paychecks and the loss of health benefits. The average refund sought was $3,500. The vast majority of those suspected of fraud were single parents or married couples with children. The maximum benefit for singles is less than $400.

THAT: News item: Three weeks after failing to pass a massive tax cut for the wealthy, U.S. House Republican leaders muscled enough support for the $56 billion tax cut bill to pass it by 234-197. This latest congressional give-away to the rich, which cuts taxes on capital gains and estates, follows a $50 billion package of spending cuts in working family programs Republicans squeaked through by two votes on Nov. 18.

THE OTHER: Are there no prisons? And the workhouses? Are they still in operation?

THIS: Excerpt from recent Dan Neil auto column in the L.A. Times: “The (Honda) Si is an endless source of infantile thrills, a high-fructose sports compact with all the yank and snatch of a tuned autocross racer. Think psychotic hamster. . .The sport-tuned suspension is leathery and the ‘tuned’ intake system, routed through the fender nance, performs exploratory surgery until it finds your last nerve, then gets on it.”

THAT: Neil won a Pulitzer for writing in this fashion about cars. A Pulitzer!

THE OTHER: Think psychotic hamster.

THIS: Top three hardcover non-fiction books on the New York Times list: “Natural Cures They’ Don’t Want You To Know About,” by Kevin Trudeau, “Your Best Life Now,” by Joel Osteen, “Love Smart,” by Dr. Phil.

THAT: Mega-millionaire slimeball Trudeau, of course, has a history of credit card fraud. Osteen is a filthy rich Texas Jesus prettyboy “televangelist.” Dr. Phil is a weird bald guy who tells crying women, “you’ve got to STAR in your life!” Also worth countless millions.

THE OTHER: Think psychotic hamster.

THIS: Jack Abramoff, the one-time Beverly Hills High punk who stole millions from Native Americans and helped corrupt most of the Repugnicans in Congress (not hard to do, admittedly), will plea-bargain his way to greater fame and fortune. He's already made the cover of Time.

THAT: Abramoff shows up at his various prosecutions in a black hat and black trenchcoat.

THE OTHER: Guess he’s starring in his own life.

THIS: House Democrap minority leader Nancy Pelosi knew of the National Security Agency spying on U.S. citizens without a warrant years ago.

THAT: Maybe she should take a fashion tip from Abramoff.

THIS: Democrap National Committee Chair Howard Dean to Wolf Blitzer: "We need a president who will work constructively and cooperatively with our allies around the world so that we really can move capitalism and democracy further into the world and not turn off people."


THIS: More Dean to Blitzer: “There is a plan put together by Lawrence Cord and a fellow by the name of Bruce Cotulis, who -- Lawrence Cord was in the Reagan administration. It's a plan that I think makes a great deal of sense. It's a moderate plan, calls for strategic redeployment of our troops. While we're removing them from Iraq, we're keeping some in the region to fight the terrorism that the president's invasion of Iraq has spawned in Iraq. That’s a sensible plan for defending America.”

THAT: Wow. Gradually pull the troops out, but keep them in the Middle East? Howard might be the greatest con of all. As in Neocon.

THE OTHER: I see a black hat and trenchcoat in Dean’s future, too.

THIS: Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (my fingers still have trouble typing this) who has no motorcycle license, runs his Harley (with sidecar containing son) into a car backing out of a blind driveway, and splits his lip open.

THAT: Think psychotic hamster.

THIS: Schwarzenegger just proposed a budget that will cut the hell out of welfare programs (including the welfare-to-work program)---about $250 million worth---to help fund schools.

THAT: Funny, I didn’t read anything about cutting tax breaks for the rich in order to fund schools.

THE OTHER: Of course, that could mean curtailing certain luxuries, such as Harleys with sidecars.

THIS: “President” George W. Bush calls dissent over his Iraq policies---which the majority of the American public opposes---“irresponsible debate.”

THAT: Think about that a moment, folks. The President of the United States is calling public debate about government policy “irresponsible.”

THE OTHER: Next thing you know, he’ll be using the National Security Administration to spy on private citizens.

THIS: The guy who shot Pope John Paul II and murdered a prominent Turkish journalist has been released from jail. The NSA has spied on millions of U.S. citizens, reports whistleblower. Pregnant fashion models are paid up to $40,000 per day. New Orleans residents wiped out by Katrina have four months to show support for rebuilding their neighborhoods, or their homes will be sold to the federal government.

THAT:  Taiwan creates green flourescent pig.

THE OTHER: Soon it will fly.

THIS: Michael Eisner, the man who destroyed all of Disney’s subtlety and delicacy and replaced it with the mercenary crassness, will soon have his own talk show on CNBC.

THAT: We have a bit of advice for Mr. Eisner in his new venture which you may find by clicking here.

THIS: Somehow, former Dodger great Manny Mota is returning for his 27th year as a batting and outfield coach with the remains of the Dodger organization. Manny, who was still a sensational pinch-hitter into his 40’s, is 67.

THAT: For Manny to have survived all the various corrupt regimes since the O’Malleys, he must have made a deal with the devil---that is, Murdoch---that is, McCourt. Ah, what’s the difference?

THE OTHER: They might need him to pinch-hit this year.

THIS: Item---Elizabeth Vargas and Little Bobby Woodruff replace Peter Jennings as hosts of ABC's "World News Tonight."

THAT: Have you noticed how absolutely pubescent most of the young male anchors seem? They all look like little kids fresh off the schoolground, who somehow happen to shave, wear suits, and read from a teleprompter.

THE OTHER: Cronkite retired way too early.

THIS: Howard Stern, who is definitely starring in his own life, was interviewed on “Nightline” recently, in which he said essentially that he is a guy who likes to watch freak shows, and parlayed this into a career. He is being paid $500 million to do this on Sirius satellite radio.

THAT: ABC bleeped the word, “penis,” during the interview.

THE OTHER: Soon it will fly.

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