NEWSFLASH: Michael Steele half-right

Michael Steele has had a rough year as chairman of the Republican National Committee, a job that is normally faceless in the media … unless your party is intentionally touting you in the public eye to look “totally not racist.” (Seriously, try to name his predecessor without resorting to Google or Wikipedia.)

As a direct result of this situation, he’s been a punching bag for mostly his own party, making him effectively the Donovan McNabb of Republican politics. Every other week, he’s been almost fired or admonished like he left a wax build-up on Judge Smail’s golf shoes.

So, when a viewer of ABC’s Good Morning America asked the $50 million question, Steele responded that, yes, he does have “a smaller margin for error because he is African American.”

Unfortunately, he didn’t finish that thought to make it completely correct: wouldn’t it be nice if all politicians were held to the standard that the black ones are? That every spending incongruity over $2000 were investigated with as much zeal? That every ill-planned trip to Hawaii be reconsidered? That any time a politician steps in it, their future in politics is questioned?

Threat Level: Nonexistant

Hey Germany, isn’t it the other way around? First you say that a real event never happened. Now you’re convinced that a hoax actually happened? Just how do we apply the “Fool me once” formula to your country?

Act 1: The German media is informed by an alleged reporter of a local American TV station based in the city of Bluewater, California, about a suicide bombing in a local restaurant. The media, trying to verify the story, checked the city’s official website and the TV station’s website to find numbers of the local police and fire department, which promptly confirmed that two explosions had occurred in a restaurant. So German media proceeded to report a suicide bombing in the USA.

Act 2: The story was partly revoked. Now it was three German rappers, named the “Berlin Boys”, who had staged a fake suicide bombing with fake bomb props in an attempt to seek publicity. The TV station’s website featured a news report about the arrest of the Germans.

Act 3: Eventually it was revealed that the “Berlin Boys” don’t exist. Neither was anyone arrested. Nor did the TV station exist. And neither does a Californian city named “Bluewater” exists. Still, police officials in San Bernardino received a lot of phone calls from German media seeking to verify the story.

The Troofiness: It was all one giant publicity stunt by the director of an upcoming German movie named Short Cut to Hollywood, which is about three German rappers who stage a fake bombing in the USA to get publicity. The director reportedly wanted to find out if something like that could actually happen in real life. To do so, he set up fake websites for the (fake) city of Bluewater and the fake TV station, with fake phone numbers on the sites that would redirect callers to the Skype accounts of participants in the stunt. Even fake Wikipedia entries were set up that would verify the existence of the city and the TV station, with links to the “official” websites.

Germany has officially been served. Or punked. You know, whichever silly descriptor that the kids are using these days.

How To: Mourn a celebrity

Jesus, the Internet’s like a bad zombie movie these days. Just a couple of weeks ago, you were lucky if you caught “It’s Bad for Ya” on HBO, which was played as filler between John Adams marathons and Recount. But now that George Carlin’s dead, you can’t escape the c**ksucker.

(And the week before, it was Tim Russert. You know, the guy from the political news that wasn’t Chris Matthews.)

The Guys are running around the Internet, trying to find quality news for you readers, and there’s George, walking around in another eulogy. No matter how fast we run, he’s still there, right behind us.

But he doesn’t moan for “braaaaaaaains” or even “pussyyyyyyyy farrrrrrrts.” No, he sounds like Jerry Seinfeld, Stephen Colbert or some blogger. There’s George, but that isn’t George anymore.

So how do dead celebrities get around so much? Because everyone’s gotta take their turn to mourn and do it right, or their fans will jump out of the woodworks to call you “insensitive.” It’s this rabid attention to post-mortem detail that prompted us to write how to mourn a celebrity. Continue reading How To: Mourn a celebrity

Take it from Snee: Cleaning out the language gutters

Every few years, I find that it’s time to clean out the old lexicon. Everyday language is a constantly evolving collection of trendy phrases from movies, literature, music and–as The Guys would like to think–blogs.

But as time marches on, those phrases cease to remain useful. Sometimes they’re no longer relevant, other times they’ve been brow-beaten so low that they no longer hold any real meaning. It’s time to flush these five clichés so we can make room for newer, more interesting terms.

Continue reading Take it from Snee: Cleaning out the language gutters