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Nyuk, Nyuk, Nyuk

Three Stooges invade Capitol, armed with bimbos, incompetence and junk science

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This sultry blond Babe sidles up to the Speaker, and says in a whisper so steamy it could melt the Gold off of the Dome, "Hey, big boy, the fellas around here call me Gas Line Mata Hari. They say you might wanna help me lay some pipe, if you get my drift?"

The Speaker tosses down the rest of his martini, arches his eyebrows as he takes in the sweet scenery in front of him. "Yeah, message heard loud and clear," he says with a pat to her bottom acreage. "Let me check what time the Christian Coalition prayer meeting ends, and then maybe we can find a quiet committee room where you can tell me about your pipe and I can show you mine."

Blondie steps closer and aims a pair of 38s at the Speaker. I'm not talking about pistols. Her tongue slithers across her fire-red lips. She moans, "Ohhhhhhhh, baby, you know I love long ..."

The Speaker: "Real long."

The Babe: "... hard ..."

The Speaker: "Solid iron and steel."

The Babe: "... pipes ..."

The Speaker: "It's more than a pipe, honey. It's a pipeline."

* * *

Sigh. If only what went on under the Gold Dome read like a Mike Hammer novel. Unfortunately, the script more resembles a "Three Stooges" skit. And, in these opening days of the 2007 legislative session, Moe, Curly and Larry are ably played by House Speaker Glenn Richardson, Gov. Sonny Perdue and Rep. Bobby Franklin. The schemer, the dope and the loon.

I know many will think that Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle should get the gig as Larry, but heck, the lite guv has been acting normal. Pimping for developers, of course, but that's normal in the peach pit known as the Capitol.

"Moe" Richardson has been the subject of a gazillion blog postings about what an ethics complaint calls an "inappropriate personal" relationship with a comely blond lobbyist for AGL Resources, aka Atlanta Gas Light. Tales of La Femme's liaison with the very married speaker have been oozing down the Capitol steps for weeks, but the Christian soldiers of God's Own Party have been curiously silent.

Richardson was co-sponsor of a bill last year that would have picked the pockets of Georgians to the tune of $300 million to pay for an AGL pipeline -- for which the speaker's putative paramour was shilling.

If a "family values" Georgia Republican being hypocritical sounds familiar, see: Mike Bowers (sodomy is good for him, bad for gays), Newt Gingrich (two extramarital affairs; blowjobs are bad for Bill Clinton, good for Newt) and Linda Schrenko (screw and steal).

The speaker is pshawing the idea that he was a big booster of AGL's attempted theft-by-pipeline (he was), or that his, um, relationship with a lobbyist might have influenced him. He has been trotting out his wife of 17 years, and threatening those who push the lobbyist inquiry. "I'm looking for the folks that manufactured that poison," Richardson vows. Or, as Moe would say, "I'll murderize you."

On to "Curly" Perdue, who in his inaugural address cracked a line for which the original Three Stooges would have paid handsomely. The gubna, who should have been poking Moe's eyes and hammering Larry's nose at the time, declared: "I remain committed to securing Georgia's status as the single best-managed state."

Slap your knees, hoo-hah 'til you cry. Best managed? Georgia?

What a hoot. Kids in state care are dying, as are mental-home patients. Our poorest and weakest citizens are denied adequate health care, while predatory developers prepare to carve up what's left of what makes Georgia good. Our schools work hard to be dead-last in the nation in test scores. We're running out of water. We have the most dysfunctional, congested, balkanized metropolitan area in the nation, and Perdue's "leadership" has done nothing but make matters infinitely worse. What Perdue has managed well is handing out hundreds of millions of dollars in corporate welfare to a corrupt Korean carmaker, and engineering tax laws and land deals to enrich himself.

"Soitenly," Curly says.

Finally, Rep. Bobby "Larry" Franklin, R-Lunar Orbit, kicked off the legislative session with a rally of religious psychotics at the Capitol to scream "hallelujah!" at House Bill 1. The legislation -- with the Christian Taliban pointing the gun of election support at the senators' and representatives' hollow heads -- could well pass, although with the most crazed parts watered down. The bill would outlaw all abortions, in all cases, for all women, even if their lives are endangered by the pregnancy or if they were victims of rape or incest. Ah, such compassion!

As Franklin entered an auditorium in the legislative office building, a plump, red-dressed woman stood up, waved her hands evangelical-style, and swooned, "Holy, holy, holy." Franklin smiled. He went on to tell the flock that the Legislature's authority comes from God, not from the people or the governed as ol' Tom Jefferson believed. Religious freedom for these folks means the right to choose between ultra-right Baptist dogma or ultra-right Calvinist dogma -- and damn little else. The legislators' job is to do the Lord's will (as interpreted by His self-appointed prophets such as Franklin).

Heck, you'd think with all the extramarital screwing going on among Georgia politicians, they'd be thankful that abortions are now safe and legal.

The knucklehead logic of Franklin's bill is a hash of junk-science mumbo jumbo -- including (and I'm not making this up) that abortions lead to cigarette smoking. The gentleman also claims Supreme Court decisions are "merely opinions. They're not laws, and as legislators, we can do what we want."

Wisdom is rare at the Gold Dome. But not slapstick and pratfalls, led by our Stooges.

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