Assholes of the Week

*Senator Larry Craig, not only for the opening statement at his press conference–“Thank you all very much for coming out today”–but also for his silly rationalization that when he tap-danced on the shoe of an undercover cop in the adjoining stall, it was only because of his own “wide stance,” thereby breaking Rose Mary Woods’ excuse record. She testified that, while transcribing Richard Nixon’s tape, she answered a phone call, but when reaching for the stop button on the recorder, she mistakenly hit the record button next to it, [unnecessarily] keeping her foot on the pedal, resulting in the infamous 18-1/2-minute gap. When asked to replicate that position, her extremly awkward posture caused political pundits to question the validity of her explanation.

*Senator John Kerry, for not ridiculing George Bush’s 180-degree turnaround concerning the comparison between the Vietnam and Iraq wars by labeling the president a flip-flopper.

*General Wesley Clark, for waiting until recently to reveal to Amy Goodman on “Democracy Now” the following: “About ten days after 9/11, I went through the Pentagon and I saw Secretary Rumsfeld and Deputy Secretary Wolfowitz. I went downstairs just to say hello to some of the people on the Joint Staff who used to work for me, and one of the generals called me in. He said, ‘Sir, you’ve got to come in and talk to me a second.’ I said, ‘Well, you’re too busy.’ He said, ‘No, no.’ He says, ‘We’ve made the decision we’re going to war with Iraq.’ This was on or about the 20th of September. I said, ‘We’re going to war with Iraq? Why?’ He said, ‘I don’t know.’ He said, ‘I guess they don’t know what else to do.’ So I said, ‘Well, did they find some information connecting Saddam to al Qaeda?’ He said, ‘No, no.’ He says, ‘There’s nothing new that way. They just made the decision to go to war with Iraq.’ He said, ‘I guess it’s like we don’t know what to do about terrorists, but we’ve got a good military and we can take down governments.’ And he said, ‘I guess if the only tool you have is a hammer, every problem has to look like a nail.’ So I came back to see him a few weeks later, and by that time we were bombing in Afghanistan. I said, ‘Are we still going to war with Iraq?’ And he said, ‘Oh, it’s worse than that.’ He reached over on his desk. He picked up a piece of paper. And he said, ‘I just got this from upstairs’–meaning the Secretary of Defense’s office–“today.” And he said, ‘This is a memo that describes how we’re going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran.’ I said, ‘Is it classified?’ He said, ‘Yes, sir.’ I said, ‘Well, don’t show it to me.’ And I saw him a year or so ago, and I said, ‘You remember that?’ He said, ‘Sir, I didn’t show you that memo! I didn’t show it to you!'”

*Presidential candidate Mitt Romney, for championship pandering. Although he now wants to overturn Roe vs. Wade, when he was running for the Senate in 1994, he came out in favor of choice for women. He admitted to Mormon feminist Judith Dushku that “the Brethren” in Salt Lake City told him that he could take that position, and that in fact he probably had to, in order to win in a liberal state like Massachusetts.

*Great Assholes of the Past: The Sunday School teacher who advised one of his students to write on his penis, “What would Jesus do?” Presumably, “Jerk off” was not considered to be the correct answer.

PAUL KRASSNER is the editor of The Realist. His books include: Pot Stories for the Soul, One Hand Jerking and Murder at the Conspiracy Convention. He can be reached through his website:


Paul Krassner is the editor of The Realist