Friday, October 3, 2008

Four lefties and a neocon walk into a room...

Woody said he played the Canadian Leaders' Debate drinking game last night. When Gilles Duceppe or Stephane Dion mispronounced words, he had to drink. When Elizabeth May used the word "stupid", he had to drink. When Jack Layton said things like "dinner table", or "backyard", he had to drink. And when Stephen Harper talked about the economy, he had to take a drink. Which, apparently, got him loaded by 9:15. Which was about the time that this debate got really tiresome. Frankly, thank God Elizabeth May was allowed to participate. Her use of the word "stupid" was a propos every time, and she was a nice, impassioned, and articulate antithesis to Stephen Harper and Stephane Dion. Now, I like Gilles Duceppe, and I think he's a pretty darn smart guy with some pretty darn good ideas, but he is totally irrelevant in a leaders' debate, what with campaigning only in Quebec. And I came away from this debate liking Jack Layton a little more than I did before, if only because he too has good ideas and he has a very confident demeanor when dissecting Harper or Dion's policies.

But Elizabeth May was the best reason to watch. She had something intelligent and articulate to say on every issue, from gang violence and gun control to the economy and health care and funding for the arts. And of course, she was going to own Harper (and everyone else) on environmental issues. But what amazed me most was her performance on the economy. The connection she made between new, clean, green technology and the economic benefits of investing in that technology was incredibly convincing. I think everyone watching the debate already knew that Harper's economic policy was mutually exclusive from his environmental policy, if he even has one of those. And May was very convincing in showing the folly of that approach.

I like the format of these debates, too. Not like the American ones, where everyone is standing at a podium and making speech after speech. (Which allows the likes of Sarah Palin to appear literate.) The round-table theme is terrific. There is a great amount of cross-talk, there are immediate responses to attacks and questions, and the discussion remains stuck on the subject at hand. It's less formal, but shows the character of the leaders much more. I do have a bit of a problem with the hokey nature of getting "regular Canadians" to ask "regular Canadian" questions as a jumping off point. I think we Canadians can trust the moderator to come up with those same questions himself, and we don't need something so gimmicky. But I would certainly like to see the ratings on the Canadian debate vs. the American one in Canada. At the end of the debate Steve Paikin said he figured this debate was likely far more entertaining than Biden and Palin. (Woody thought he said something else, but I PVR'd it. And I double checked to day. Woody, he said Biden and Palin. Then again, he was playing the drinking game. Boy, I wish I had thought of that.)

But the one thing I took from this debate was this: We have too many lefty parties in Canada. There's the debate, going strong, and although there is a little dissention between Layton and Dion, or Duceppe and Dion, or May and Layton, their basic principles and basic plans are fairly similar. Then there is Stephen Harper. The lone neo-con righty, sitting there fighting everyone. Because of course he is the leader of the one party with nothing in common with the rest of them. And therein is the problem in Canada. Where the States is basically a centre-right country, with more right wing values than left, we are the opposite. We are, moreso, a centre-left country. We like the left wing values more. Universal health care, gay rights, and so forth. But here's the thing. If only 35 percent of our country leans right, the Conservatives will still be elected with a minority. Because the other 65 percent of our votes will be split between the other four parties. Not that I'm advocating a two-party system...I'm merely suggesting that the NDP all of a sudden should make a 180 degree turn and go suddenly, totally, aggressively right wing. Not so we have more options, but rather to save us from ourselves. Come on Layton, do it for the good of the country!

Funny stuff. At least I was wrong.

I was looking forward to a complete destruction of Sarah Palin by Joe Biden last night. And it did not take place. This was not the Giants upsetting the Patriots in the Super Bowl. Because she didn't win the debate. It was not something that stunned the world, it was merely a surprise. Like, we would have been surprised had the Giants kept that Super Bowl final score within three touchdowns. Palin had six talking points prepared for her before the debate, and she stuck to those regardless of the questions that were asked. One on Iraq, one on Afghanistan, one on the economy, one on meeting foreign leaders without preconditions, and two on energy policy. Because that is about all she knows. So regardless of the question, she would answer with one of those six talking points. So, while she clearly lost the debate, in that she didn't really know what she was talking about while Biden clearly did, it has been deemed a mild victory by the Republicans because she didn't dissolve into tears, set the stage on fire, or acciedentally quote the policies of Pol Pot, or forget the name of the current vice president. Score one for the Alaska governor!

I watched the debate on MSNBC, and when it was over the pundits came out, and that's always the funniest part of the event. Some on one side, some on the other. No one said she won, only that she was competent at best. Then, for a laugh, I flipped it over to FOX News. They had that hilarious studio audience button thing, where they turn it to the right if they're happy with what's being said, and to the left if they're sad. Or angry. Or if their fingers are itchy. And they showed a moment in the debate where the dials were all over to the right, and Palin was talking. And then they said she won. Because they are hilarious. This might have been the dumbest thing I have ever seen. Next to the Body Language segment. Or the Hot For Words segment. Or the comparison Bill O'Reilly made yesterday between Nancy Pelosi and Hitler. OK, FOX News is always funny.

I must say, though, I am very much disappointed that this wasn't a bloodbath, because Joe Biden went too easy on Palin. I guess he was told just to make his points and get out of the way, so he didn't look like a big mean bully. He was clear, he was concise, he painted a very accurate picture of America under Obama vs. America under McCain. But he talked far more about McCain vs. Obama than he did about Palin vs. Biden. Which is fine. In fact, it's what he should be doing. But call her out on something. Call her out on the Bridge To Nowhere. Call her out on the fact that she wants women who are victims of rape or incest to be denied the right to an abortion. There were openings for all kinds of justified jabs at the governor herself. She tried to go after Biden about comments he made in the primaries against Obama, why didn't he return the favour?

Well, it's because that isn't what Biden and this debate were really about. This was about Obama and McCain, and that's it. So he took the high road, spoke clearly and answered questions directly, and clearly outperformed his competition. But no major gaffes on her part that could make me laugh or entertain me. Which was upsetting. Until the very end. About a month and a half ago, Palin was wondering what, exactly, it is that the vice-president actually does. As Bill Maher said, it's quite simple. He starts wars, subverts the constitution, and shoots people in the face. Palin, in fact, has said that the only thing she thinks Dick Cheney did wrong know...shooting that guy in the face. But Dick Cheney subverted the United States constitution to create an amount of power for his position that was both unconstitutional and very, very scary. And Palin, in this debate, said she would try to make sure, were McCain elected, that the power of the vice-president was increased. Again. Even more. Which is totally insane. Biden made the point that Dick Cheney is one of the most dangerous individuals in America. Which is true. But perhaps he now has competition.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

This is hilarious.

Triumph the Insult Comic Dog does his best bit since the Star Wars lineup.

I would like to see a nice, orderly bloodbath, please.

I discovered something about myself yesterday. I was watching Season Two of Meerkat Manor (out this coming Tuesday - check out Cynical Cinema on Tuesday for the review). It's a nature documentary filmed like a reality TV series about a family of meerkats in the Kalahari desert. It's really soap-opera-ish, which is kind of neat. Meerkats get banished from the clan and die, or sometimes return. They have illicit affiars. The whole thing is run like a cult by the leader, a meerkat named Flower, and her partner Zaphod. You see, they are the only meerkats in the group that are allowed to have sex. Anyone else caught having sex gets banishment! But they don't show the meerkats actually having this illicit sexual intercourse. I think they want to keep this show as family-rated as possible. And then it occured to me that a lot of these meerkats die. They die in gang wars with rival clans and they die from predators. And I want to see that! I want to see things eat other things. THAT makes for cool nature shows. And that's just the truth, I imagine, about life in the desert. Things do eat other things.

But this was a new feeling for me. Or, at least, one I hadn't acknowledged that I possess. I have always hated watching Ultimate Fighting. Not because of the violence per se - I mean, I love football, and I watch boxing, and I enjoy those things. But the barbaric nature of Ultimate Fighting is what turns me off. Punching is fine. Kicking is fine. Wrestling holds and judo moves can be neat. But when a guy is knocked down and basically out, and the other guy jumps on him and wails on his unconscious face, I can't stand it. Beating a guy when he's on the ground really bothers me.

Which brings me to the next big bloodbath that I am terribly anxious to see. Tonight's vice-presidential debate. Scheduled decidedly incoveniently at the same time as the Canadian English-language leaders' debate. I'll have to PVR that one. I am loving the right wingers complaining about Katie Couric's "gotcha" journalism, where she asked Sarah Palin some blatantly unfair questions about, you know, John McCain's voting record. And what newspapers she reads. And what Supreme Court decisions she agrees with. And so forth. And she has come off looking like a total moron. As I heard a even a right-wing guy say on O'Reilly's show last night - she makes Dan Quayle look like Socrates. And I don't think Joe Biden is into the Barack Obama nice-guy-at-all-costs thing when it comes to this debate. I think this will be a beatdown on the level of the Cowboys-Bills Super Bowl. Or the Niners-Broncos Super Bowl. Sometimes, I really do enjoy watching someone get beaten up. And I can't wait.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

OK. More football.

Here's how I see it this week.

1. Dallas over Cincinnatti: OK. this is a no-brainer. Isn't it? But shouldn't Dallas have run it up on the Redskins? And shouldn't Cleveland have rolled over the Bengals easily? Neither of those things happened...but come on. This is the gimme game of the week. The Cowboys had a blip last week, the Bengals' entire season (especially without their only great player, Carson Palmer) will be a blip. Cowboys huge over the Bengals.

Dallas, 31-22. Well, Carson Palmer made it back into the game. And, for a second, the Bengals actually made this game very interesting. If they had converted that two-point conversion to make it 24-24, who knows how this game would have ended? But...they didn't, they lost, they're still the Bengals. Cowboys win, Cowboys cover.

2. Carolina over Kansas City: The Chiefs are still terrible. Yes, they stunned the Broncos (and me) last week. But that was simply a resurgent Larry Johnson and a competent rest of the offense exposing a truly terrible defense. Carolina does not have a terrible defense. And they are at home. And they are good on offense too. They have perhaps the best receiver tandem in the NFL, and they will hammer the Chiefs, who will get very little momentum out of their inter-divisional stunner.

Carolina, 34-0. Yep. The Chiefs win over Denver was a blip. And they are right back at it, being the Chiefs, one of the worst teams in football. And although this game wasn't much of a test, Carolina is serving notice that they are really quite good. Panthers win, Panthers cover, Chiefs suck.

3. New York Giants over Seattle: The Giants are still undefeated this year. They are showing that they are still the team to beat in the NFC. And they have had a bye week to rest up for the Seahawks. The Seahawks are a very disappointing team who will not make the playoffs this year, and who will not win this game on Sunday. Giants in a walk.

Giants, 44-6. Yep. A walk. The Seahawks are more and more disappointing week after week. They were supposed to win their division. I picked them to win their division. But they are 1-3 and trailing the Cardinals and the Niners, neither of whom is that good. They got absolutely hammered by the Giants here. Giants win, Giants cover, I'm totally right.

4. New England over San Francisco: The Patriots have to make a statement here that they are not done without Tom Brady. And the bare bones of this team are good enough to hammer the Niners. Does anyone think that with two weeks to prepare for San Fran, that Bill Belicheck won't come up with an unbeatable game plan? I think not. Patriots big, don't let that (truly amazing) Miami game throw you off. However, if the Patriots struggle in winning this game, it might be time to wonder about the rest of their season.

New England, 30-21. Well, the Patriots did win. And they did cover. So I was right about that. But they didn't look as good as I imagined they would. And they didn't seem as prepared as I figured they would be. That direct snap that beat them in Miami? Yeah...San Fran beat them with that again...I think it's time to worry in New England.

5. Indianapolis over Houston: I don't like to put too much emphasis on teams coming off the bye week, because I don't think it's often that big a deal. Unless that team is the Giants. Or New England. Or in this case Indianapolis. The Colts must make a statement in this game, and Houston is a team that has not done well against the Colts in the last few years. Then again, no other team has fared particularly well against them either. But this is a big game for Indy and Peyton Manning, and they will show it in a big way against the Texans.

Indianapolis, 31-27. Well, the Colts DID make a statement, but they waited until the game was almost out of reach to do so. And had Houston told their quarterback to slide at the end of all plays, the Colts would be 1-3, and so would the Texans. Although that comeback was certainly remarkable, and Indy is impressive simply by virtue of the fact they can take advantage of turnovers like they did here, it was Houston that lost this game more than it was Indy that won it. It may be time to panic in Indianapolis as well.

6. Jacksonville over Pittsburgh: Not in a blowout, of course, but the Jaguars seem to be gelling somewhat - their two losses have come against Buffalot and Tennessee, which looked bad to start the season but doesn't look so awful now. Pittsburgh is hurting, and had some trouble putting away a team they should have beaten on Monday night. The Jaguars are coming off two emotional late-game wins, and they are at home. Jaguars win in an upset, and cover the spread of 4 points to Pittsburgh.

Steelers, 26-21. Nope. The Steelers won, and they covered that 4-point spread. Just barely. Although, frankly, Pittsburgh looked much better in this game than the score indicates. After thowing a pick for a TD on the very first series of the game, Ben Roethlisberger settled down and looked very solid. David Garrard, on the other hand, looked somewhat erratic and while the Jaguars defense continued to hit hard and make big plays, they still couldn't seem to stop the Pittsburgh offense three plays in a row. Jacksonville is still a very, very good team. But so are the Steelers.

7. San Diego over Miami: The Dolphins pulled off one of the major upsets I've ever seen over the Pats two weeks ago. The win wasn't such a big upset in itself, but the fact that it was an utter domination was incredible. I am going out on a limb here, but I don't think Miami is that good, and I think they ran through their best plays two weeks ago. San Diego will certainly be ready for that direct snap thing! Chargers are coming together. And they will win, covering the spread, which sits at 7 points.

Miami, 17-10. OK...what? What is going on here? What's the matter with the NFL? The Dolphins have now, in back-to-back games, beaten the two AFC Championship Game teams from last year. You know, last year, when the Fish were 1-15? And almost winless all season? Remember when I said San Diego would be ready for that direct snap thing? It's right there in the paragraph above this one. Yeah...that was not the can you not prepare for that? But then, a gimmicky offense can get you...seventen points. What happened to that Chargers offense? Is the Miami defense actually...good? Either the Chargers are not the team we all thought they would be, or the Dolphins are a team to be reckoned with. I'm not prepared to deal with either possibility. And I'm totally confused.

8. New Orleans over Minnesota: The Saints are really looking good of late, and Minnesota has begun to come apart. Unless Adrian Peterson has a monster game, the Saints will roll and cover the spread and move to 3-2 while the Vikings remain stuck with but one win.

Minnesota 30-27. OK. Apparently I can't even predict the outcome of games in the fourth quarter of those games, let alone before they begin. when Reggie Bush ran that second punt back for a TD, and almost broke a third, and the Saints were able to move the ball in the third quarter even though they were losing, I thought this game was over. New Orleans had taken the lead, and once they had it they weren't giving it up. Well, no. Wrong again. The Saints let the Vikings back in it, now they are last in their division. A position the Vikings would hold in theirs, were it not for those lousy Lions.

9. Tampa Bay over Denver: I think the Broncos have really been exposed, in last week's debacle against the Chiefs. The Broncos have no defense. At all. And Tampa Bay is 3-0 since Brian Griese took over as the starter. He looks good, their defense looks pretty good, and Tampa Bay will continue to expose Denver as a pretender.

Denver, 16-13. I don't know how much more wrong I could have been. The Denver defense actually showed up, holding the Bucs to 13 points! A defensive battle! Again, I don't know what's going on here any more, and I feel lost. Denver may well be for real. But again, I'm not prepared to deal with that.

10. Philadelphia over Washington: The Eagles have to be reeling a little after their tough-fought loss to the Cowboys and their shocking (for me, anyway) loss to the Bears last week. And Washington is riding high after they knocked off Dallas last week. But you can never tell with a divisional game like this, especially when these could be two of the top four teams in football. I'll take the Eagles, simply because they are home, this game is a more important game for them so they can stay in the divisional race, and I truly think that overall they are a better team.

Washington, 23-17. The Redskins must be considered to be a Super Bowl contender. Notwithstanding that egg they laid in the opening week against the Giants, Washington actually looks good. More than that, they look amazing. And the Eagles seem incapable of winning the close ones in their own division. Three teams from this division will make the playoffs, and it's starting to look like the Eagles will be the team that gets left out.

11. Chicago over Detroit: I am still not a big believer in the Bears at all, but I am certainly a Lions detractor. They are absolutely terrible, and firing people and changing personnel won't help them at all. I think with Devin Hester in their lineup, the Bears have a chance to beat absolutely any team in the league. I think with Barry Sanders and Herman Moore and Joe Montana in their lineup, the Lions would still be lousy. They will lose, and the Bears will win. By default.

Chicago, 34-7. Yep, the Lions are dreadful. Even with Devin Hester held in check on kick returns, he managed to get free as a receiver and score. Detroit is one of the worst teams in football now, and Chicago is not all that good. But the Bears are certainly better than the Lions.

12. Packers over Atlanta: The Falcons look to be losing any early-season momentum they may have had. And if Aaron Rodgers goes against the Falcons, the Pack will win easily. However, if he can't go, this game could be ugly. Atlanta covers the spread if Rodgers is out, Packers cover if he's in.

Atlanta, 27-24. Well, the Falcons may have regained their momentum. And even with Aaron Rodgers playing, the Packers just couldn't get it done. I still think the Pack will win their division, but that's only because they play with the Bears and Lions and Vikings. And Atlanta might have a real shot at their division, all of a sudden.

13. Baltimore over Tennessee: I am almost completely sold on the Titans. I really am. I think they are a very, very good team. But I also think they haven't faced a defense like Baltimore's, which certainly impressed me in their game against the Steelers. The Baltimore rookie QB was fairly impressive, too, considering how he was thrown to the wolves so quickly. I think the Titans are due for a small letdown, and it will come in Baltimore.

Tennessee, 13-10. Close. Really close. If the Ravens defense could have held for 60 minutes, and hadn't given up that 80-yard drive at the end of the game, they would have won this thing. What was more impressive, however, was the Titans defense, which really made Baltimore's QB look like a rookie. With that defense, the Titans are actually the team to beat in the AFC!

14. Buffalo over Arizona: The Cardinals showed promise early this season. And then they started to show that they really, really know how to lose. They looked great in the third quarter against the Jets. Too bad they were already down by 34 points when it started. This team let Brett Favre throw SIX TD passes in their last game. The Bills don't have Favre, but they have enough skill to beat Arizona right now. And then they will have an amazing 5-0 record. Amazing.

Arizona, 41-17. Well, the Bills' bubble had to burst at some point. But who would have thought it would happen in such a big way, against Arizona? The Cardinals are actually leading their division now! And they will likely win it this year! The Cardinals! Not that they are a great team, but their division sucks. And while the Bills are still leading in their division, it looks as though they will have a pretty tough time holding on to it from now until the end of the season.

This week: 6-7. Overall: 42-30.

Absolutely hilarious. Wish I'd thought of it myself.

Things that are bothering me today other than that rash.

1. Bill O'Reilly. His body-language segment is the dumbest thing on TV. Dumber even than Paris Hilton's new show. But funny, at least. Today, he analyzed Bill Clinton's body language as he attempted to craft a response to a ludicrous question asked of him on FOX News in an interview with Greta Van Sustren. Then he made fun of him for having trouble answering the question. I'd sure like to see what the body language segment would say about Sarah Palin's Katie Couric interview. But I sure don't expect to see that. The best thing about the body language segment is that O'Reilly always asks the airheaded blonde girl who does it about himself. "What do I project in my interview with John Kerry?" The obvious answer is, of course jackass, but she always says stuff like "I loved the way you folded your hands together at the end. It's a real position of strength, and makes you look godlike." I quote directly. I'm watching it right now.

2. Paris Hilton's new show. And Paris Hilton in general. I thought pop culture had reached it's nadir with the advent of The Tyra Banks Show. But I was wrong. I thought A Shot At Love With Tila Tequila was the low point of human existence. But I was wrong. When there was a spin-off show from Tila Tequila, I had stopped questioning how low the world could go, or how MTV could actually become MORE dumbed-down. I gave up predicting the apocalypse. But now...Paris Hilton has another TV show. An even dumber one. You see, a bunch of chicks will compete to be Paris Hilton's BFF! (Which, Woody Of The Web tells me, means "Best Friend Forever".) On a reality show. Which if you're now Paris Hilton's best friend? You can audition people to be your friends now? More than anything though, it's the word "forever" that makes me worried about this. Even with The Bachelor and all that reality-show painful garbage, they end with an engagement. Nothing is promised beyond the last moment that the show was filmed. But with this - you're getting promised FOREVER. Does that mean that if, six weeks after the show ends, you read a book and start to get smarter and realize that Paris Hilton is a shallow douchebag, that you are still contractually obligated to be her best friend for the rest of your life? I see this show ending in murder.

3. Hallowe'en. It's almost a month away, and already I'm inundated with Hallowe'en-type stuff. I just reviewed two Hallowe'en specials that came out on DVD yesterday. Casper The Friendly Ghost and Fat Albert both have Hallowe'en specials that hit DVD yesterday. Both are obnoxious. Also, every horror movie ever made gets some kind of re-issue near Hallowe'en, one that has some new unnecessary special feature to make it essential for some collector somewhere. I am currently reviewing the 3-disc Collector's Edition of Rob Zombie's 2007 re-make of Hallowe'en. Three discs. One is the same as the original release. Another features casting sessions, trailers and bloopers. And the third is a four-and-a-half hour documentary done by Rob Zombie about the making of the movie. I have to review this by Tuesday, and I'm looking with dread upon the DVD right now. Scary stuff.

4. Scary stuff. Since Hallowe'en is approaching, I am starting to get those emails sent to me, that have scarecrows that look like they're mooning you because they have pumpkins for asses. That's an email I can stand never to see again. I am also seeing more and more events and sales being advertised as "spook-tacular". That really annoys me. The only reason "spook-tacular" doesn't irritate me as much as say "here we grow again!" is that it is seasonal. And in six weeks I will see it no more until next year. But "here we grow again" will be around forever. And I know that in the next couple of weeks I will start hearing awful, awful Hallowe'en-y music. Like the Monster Mash. And Warren Zevon's Werewolves of London, which I actually like, but it is not a Hallowe'en tune. Just because it involves the word "werewolf" does not make it scary or creepy or weird. How about Boris The Spider? Does that count?

5. The fact that I watch all these political analysis shows - CTV Newsnet, Rachel Maddow, O'Reilly, Olberman, Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, Rick Mercer - and they're always talking about the "female vote", and how Palin might affect that. Or the "black vote", and Obama. Or the "hispanic vote", and ex-Hillary Clinton supporters. Or even the "jewish vote", which doesn't appear to really matter a lot except that all two million of them across America want you to be in support of Israel and not Palestine? In Canada, it's a bit different. We don't break it down ethnically so much. Because, frankly, it's pretty insulting to those groups to suggest that they vote as a block and that women will go Republican because they have a woman or that black people will go Democrat because of Obama. In Canada, I see people talking about the "fermer vote", or the "university-educated vote". Like those are blocks who get together and decide who to vote for, en masse. But in all this, all this pigeonholing of voting blocks, no one ever discusses "the gay vote". Isn't that a big enough community to be pigeonholed as well? Can't the media make patronizng blanket statements about this group also? Or is "gay" too scary a subject?

6. Dr. Phil. When my girlfriend gets home from work, she puts on Dr. Phil. And I sit with her to see how her day was and so forth, because it's the only time we have to spend together. And Dr. Phil, aside from being a giant douche, now has a new theme song for his show, which really sucks. And actually makes the show worse. It has, like, these lyrics and everything...and it's just painful. It really reinforces the point that Dr. Phil is not to be watched by anyone with even a modicum of testosterone.

7. Free hats in beer cases. I bought a case of Bud on the weekend because it came with a free NFL hat, and I have misplaced my old Packers ball cap. But you can't tell what hat you're getting before you open the case. I guess the idea is that you are supposed to continue buying Budweiser until you find your team. But I got a Patriots hat. I hate the Patriots. So I don't want this. But I won't buy any more of these beer cases, because I don't want a bunch of other crappy hats. I just want a Packers one. This could work with other stuff - those mini helmets, or pendants or something. Because as a football fan, I would collect those. But I'm not collecting a pile of hats, because I'm only going to wear the Packers one. Or the Eagles, maybe.

8. Long, self-indulgent blog posts. Seriously, who do people think they are?

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

And another reason...

Isn't this more entertaining? Tina Fey continues her spot-on impression of Alaskan governor Sarah Palin on Saturday Night Live. How spot-on? Well, this mock interview with Amy Poehler standing in for Katie Couric is almost word-for-word the interview Palin actually gave to the actual Katie Couric. The SNL skit:

The real Couric interview:

I siad this morning that I actually laughed harder watching the real interview than I did watching the SNL parody. Well, it turns out they are in many ways one and the same. Canada just doesn't have anyone this entertaining! Thank God.

Why do Canadians pay attention to American politics? Here's a clue...

Stephen Harper is running for Prime Minister of Canada based partly on a pledge to end charisma as we know it. Watch this video as he speaks on National TV in one of those staged photo ops that features a bunch of Young Conservatives standing behind him as a backdrop. Then watch carefully as he actually bores one of his own supporters into a coma.

Then watch it again, as the rest of the Young Conservatives...don't help him up. He's passed out! He's almost bored to death! HELP HIM! Hmm...maybe helping a comrade is too...socialist?