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U.S. election notebook

Continued from Page 4

"It's disturbing that the presidential candidates are both members of [Skull and Bones] because it seems that they're prioritizing the interests of a secret society above the interests of the rest of us," she told the wire service.
On the road
Locked in a close election race, U.S. President George W. Bush has stumped relentlessly to keep his job, spending three-quarters of the last 12 weeks on the campaign trail.

Number-crunching reporters at Agence France-Presse have noticed that Mr. Bush, who typically took a month-long vacation at his ranch during the summers of his early presidency, has become a constant traveller, often returning home only to sleep.

Reporters at AFP say that, in the past 82 days, Mr. Bush has spent only four days in the White House, 12 at his ranch in Crawford, Texas, and three at his parents' home in Kennebunkport, Maine.

The President makes full use of his mobility by regularly sleeping at the White House, flying to battleground states for a day studded with multiple appearances and then returning to Washington for the next night sleep.
Politics makes for strange bedfellows
Since sex sells everything else, a racy get-out-the-vote campaign is hoping that the same urges will convince young Americans to go to the polls on Nov. 2.

The premise is simple: "This Nov. 2, I pledge ... To vote. To have sex. To experience ... a Votergasm."

The idea is to sign up thousands of people willing to have sex with a young voter on election night -- after they've marked their ballots, of course. The most dedicated of these people are also being asked to withhold their sexual favours from those who shun their patriotic duty, until the next election.

The on-line campaign, launched around Labour Day, says that it wants to find 100,000 pledges and that it is well on the way.

The interested, curious and otherwise prurient can find out more by going to (Fair warning: the site may be blocked by some employers.)

Speaking of those who disapprove, the campaign has raised the eyebrows of Rush Limbaugh. In an episode aired late last month, the influential right-wing broadcaster accused the group of "selling sex for votes" and urged his listeners to flood the site and shut it down.
Court sinks lawsuit by marine mammals
A recent court decision means that the Bush-Cheney campaign can devote its legal team to potential fallout from the presidential election, without having to worry about a lawsuit from the world's marine mammals.

A Court of Appeals in San Francisco ruled Oct. 20 that these animals had not been granted the right to sue over alleged damaged cause by naval sonar equipment, the Associated Press reported.

The now-floundering suit was brought by Lanny Sinkin, a marine mammal activist and the self-appointed lawyer of "The Cetacean Community" of whales, porpoises and dolphins.

"If Congress and the President intended to take the extraordinary step of authorizing animals as well as people and legal entities to sue they could and should have said so plainly," Judge William A. Fletcher wrote in an 18-page opinion for the panel.

The decision upheld a lower court ruling.
Justice may be blind, but it must be clothed
Wal-Mart has decided that a doctored photo combining images of U.S. Supreme Court Justices with the bodies of nudists is too much for its in-store customers.

A popular new satire from Jon Stewart, called America (The Book), was riding high on bestseller lists but some of its content raised eyebrows at Wal-Mart.

The retail colossus reportedly cancelled its order after deciding that the photos failed their criteria on potentially offensive material.

Although Wal-Mart spokeswoman Karen Burk told USA Today Oct. 19 that "a majority" of the chain's customers be uncomfortable with the images in the Stewart book, it will continue to be sold on at because "[that's] a different audience."

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