New Henhouse for the Fox
So, it looks like former house speaker Gordon Fox is headed for federal prison (aka, “a Bud-I vacation spot”) for a few years. He got caught being a Vo Dilun General Assembly politician (i.e., pocketing over $50,000 in bribes and looting his own campaign fund for over $100,000). Accepting the judgement against him, Gordo said, “I contributed to the cynicism of government. I never wanted to do that.” No, he just wanted to live the traditional life of a Vo Dilun speaker of the house — one who is above the law and lives in comfort as the leader of the pack. If you look back at speakers of the house since at least the early 1960s, you will see that this theme keeps repeating itself. Not all of these people were arrested or found guilty of crimes, but they all seemed to get involved in behaviors that would lead one to believe they assumed they were above the law.
Meanwhile on the radio, the man who is independent of everything but self-righteousness and hypocrisy was running a campaign to get people to send letters to the judge to urge her to give Fox more time than the plea agreement called for. P&J have a vague suspicion that trying to influence a judge may be illegal and this certainly looks like trying to influence a judge but, hey, we’re not lawyers.
Anyway, just another sordid chapter in the history of politics in the Biggest Little.
Welcome to the Funhouse …
While we are on the subject of prisons, perhaps the baddest man Phillipe and Jorge have ever met was a former gangster from Baltimore with a head about the size of a concrete block, who did considerable time inside at the government’s pleasure due to such heavy-duty activities as armed robbery and major drug dealing. He has since reversed course and become a very enlightening Muslim imam. (As our muse Oscar Wilde once said, “Every saint has a past, every sinner has a future.”)
Our rather intimidating friend spent time at Terre Haute Federal Penitentiary in Indiana, the wonderful place where scum-of-the-earth Boston Marathon terrorist bomber, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, awaits his death sentence appeals on the aptly named death row. The former inmate and current imam described Terre Haute as “gladiator school,” which, coming from a man who probably could have whupped Spartacus’ ass twice over, was impressive in a wet-your-pants frightening kinda way, and doesn’t leave much to the imagination as to everyday life there.
So we hope Dzhokhar has a great deal of fun in Terre Haute with his new buddies, and P&J suggest that if the government wants to save an absurd amount of money and time continuing to get Tsarnaev’s death sentence enforced, they simply let young Dzhokhar mingle with the gentlemen in general population, which would eliminate the problem for good. Justice is swift, and that move would be a booster rocket for Tsarnaev’s finding it, and his 72 virgins, quite rapidly.
Sadness at Casa Diablo when the death of Vincent Musetto was announced. Yeah, we know you don’t know who he is, but…
Musetto wrote perhaps the most iconic front-page headline in mainstream media history while an editor of the New York Post in 1983, one that other editors have tried in vain to outdo. It involved an extremely gruesome article about a man who got into a fight with the owner of a Queens, NYC titty bar he was drinking in. The owner then shot him, took a couple of his strippers hostage, raped one of them and forced the other to cut off the victim’s head. Despite the appalling story, Musetto blared this across the front page of the Post:
“Headless Body in Topless Bar.”
While this remains the Holy Grail of headers, Musetto personally favored another of his front pagers: “Granny Executed in Her Pink Pajamas.” P&J also give high points to another Post headline, not Musetto’s, about a gangster who had been shot to death in the garden area of a Little Italy restaurant: “Mobster Blown Away Al Fresco.”
And back to our current days, with a killer sports headline two weeks ago from the Portland, Ore, East Oregonian about Oakland A’s pitcher Paul Venditte, who pitched with both his left and right hands (obviously not simultaneously) in a game against our occasionally beloved Boston Red Sox.
“Amphibious Pitcher Makes Debut” read the bold-point type, with the editor, no doubt equipped with a PVD-level education, confusing “amphibious” with “ambidextrous.” As many wags have cracked, “Was he facing Aquaman at the plate?”
But the best line comes from our friend The Doctor’s 9-year-old son, who responded to the news by saying, “He should have been pitching for the Atlantis Braves.” Kids say the darndest things, eh?
Signs of the Apocalypse
For all you collectors of the truly weird and intriguing out there, we recommend two items to hold onto for future enjoyment and possible financial gain.
The first would be a Wheaties box with Caitlyn, nee Bruce, Jenner’s picture on it after he won the gold medal in the Olympic decathlon. Propping it on your mantelpiece next to a framed cover of Vanity Fair with Caitlyn’s photo gracing it wearing only lingerie and a come hither (at your peril) look on her face is a surefire bet to impress your friends and frighten your enemies.
The second objet de Bizzaro World will be a Lincoln Chafee for President campaign pin. What got into our pal Linc’s mind to decide he would best be able to govern the greatest power on earth is beyond P&J’s ken, but hardly out of line with his past behavior. Many of the things he has done in the past are overlooked for the balls it took for him to pull them off (e.g., dumping the GOP, voting for Bush 41 over 43, voting against the Iraq invasion and resulting obscene and tragic lost war – Hi, Hillary!). But while Phillipe and Jorge are not political consultants nor soi disant “experts” that the TV chattering class love, we do know enough to advise Linc that the preferred top media story coming out of the announcement of his candidacy is more than likely not having America adopt the metric system.
If nothing else, Chafee, along with Bernie Sanders and the always in the background Elizabeth Warren, should keep the Democratic primary race interesting, especially with the tremendous potential for Hill or Bill to “blow up good” in the many stultifying coming months.
PVD is Gentleman’s Quarterly’s “Coolest City…You’ve Never Been To”? Well let P&J return the favor by saying GQ is the coolest magazine no one reads.
And if you are following the U.S. Women’s soccer team at the World Cup now taking place in Canada, look out for #17, Tobin Heath, whose parents live in Jamestown along with her Uncle Steve, a good friend to P&J. (It is required by Biggest Little journalistic statutes to mention any relationship anyone on the national stage has to Vo Dilun and its residents.) Tobin appeared as a sub in the team’s first game against Australia, played very well, and is considered the most skillful player on the squad. But what would you expect?
As usual, a number of prominent and admirable people passed away recently. Former State Senator John McBurney. Jr. of Pawtucket passed away at 90. He was a Second World War hero (decorated by both our government and the government of France) and greatly loved for helping so many people over his decades in politics.
Sir Christopher Lee, the elegant horror film star, also passed away at age 93. Jorge screened a number of his movies made for Britain’s Hammer Films as well as The Wicker Man at his Comediac show back in the 1980s. And Ornette Coleman, the composer and alto saxophonist, a rebel and an original, also passed away at 85. All were unique and special. Rest in peace.