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  THE WEEKLY RUNDOWN FOR MAY 16.  
   
   
   
 

 

You know, we're not kidding about this: We really are still "officially" at war. United States administrators in Iraq say they're going to "aggressively" go after anyone who served under the Saddam Hussein administration and is still in office. Hey, guys … GOOD IDEA. This is like Joe Torre calling the bullpen three hours after the game ended. In other "war" news, U.S. troops are gathering up 300 violent criminals released by Saddam Hussein in the last days of his regime and tossing them back into jail. Over a 48-hour span, our boys in the Gulf arrested about a third of the fugitives. Here's a guess as to where the other two-thirds might be hiding: With Saddam Hussein. (Note about that link: It's from The New York Times, so, you know, it could be totally full of shit. Keep that in mind.)

 

 
   
 

 

Don't mess with Oklahoma. For those of you who think politics just isn't fun anymore, we refer you to Texas, where the House Democrats are hiding out in an Oklahoma hotel to stop some Republican quorum, or something or other. While the Democrats have been hiding, the Republicans have been tossing paper airplanes around the House floor and zinging rubber bands at each other. (That's not a joke. They really have been doing that.) We'd make a joke about your tax dollars in action, but, really, what's the point?

Hey, more about The New York Times. Now, we love the Times, which is run by smart, handsome, charming people who should spend more time giving jobs to malnourished online journalists. But man, this has been a pretty lousy fortnight for the old gray lady. (We're not talking about Harvey Fierstein.) Disgraced 27-year-old journalist Jayson Blair, who apparently made up, like, all of his stories, has left a ripple of resentment in his wake. ("Ripple of resentment." We like that. Let's try some more. "Dirge of disgust." "Morass of muck." "Puddle of putrid, pusillanimous pollywaggle." Wee! This is fun!). Wednesday, Executive Editor Howell Raines called an all-staff meeting yesterday, where various staffers lined up to ream him for his ignorance of Blair's malfeasance and his hard-charging style. He said he would not resign and vowed to "win back your trust." Now, we realize that the rest of the planet doesn't give a dog's bone about the inner workings of shluppy, underpaid media schmucks, but let me tell you: This is a really huge thing in our little world. I mean, The New York Times running a ton of fabricated stories? That's like learning John Wayne liked Polynesian boys, or that Kurt Cobain used Aqua Net, or that President Clinton was actually a virgin.

 

 
   
 

 

China? No! You must be joking! You can always count on China for some good old executin'! In response to reports of some pricks intentionally spreading SARS, the Chinese government has threatened to execute anyone spreading SARS on purpose. Many say it's unlikely they would actually go through with it, but, you know, it is China. See, Mr. President? China isn't all that different from Texas after all! Other countries are good! Really!

 

 
   
 

 

No, no, trust us, you should totally buy stock in Salon. Really. Last month, New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer released the results of his year-long investigation into the Wall Street research scandal. Included in the pages and pages of documents were report cards for disgraced (and now-banned) analyst Jack Grubman, also known as "The Reason Your Little Sister Can't Go to College Anymore." The report card comments, filled out by stockbrokers helpless to stop their clients' portfolios from evaporating because of Grubman's ridiculous recommendations, range from "Grubman is a prostitute" to "Grubman is a horse's ass." Check out an assortment of highlights here. Careful … that last story was written by a moron.

 

 
   
 

 

We'll always know him as the anal probing guy in the Beavis and Butthead movie. "Unsolved Mysteries" host Robert Stack -- if you're old enough to remember him as Eliot Ness in TV's "The Untouchables," congratulations! We're very proud of your grandchildren for teaching you how to use the Internet -- died Wednesday at the age of 84. Stack also gained fame for starring in Airplane!. His last project was providing voiceover for the Canadian kid's cartoon "Butt-Ugly Martians," a fitting testament to this versatile actor's wide range of skills.

 

*BT*

Will Leitch is filling in for Aileen Gallagher, who is in Ireland, being Irish, doing Irish things. She will return next week, don't you worry.