Dec. 26, 2008

HOLLYWOOD–God bless America, and how’s everybody?

• President Bush issued 19 pardons Tuesday, forgiving drug dealers and embezzlers and counterfeiters and people who lied to the Department of Housing. That wasn’t the worst of it. He also gave them a $700 billion bailout.

• Vladimir Putin’s shirtless photo defeated Barack Obama’s shirtless photo in an online poll Monday. The Russian won by two to one. We should have known the country was leaning this way when the government took over the banks and nobody said anything.

• The Dallas Cowboys had a postgame show with Roger Staubach after the last game in Texas Stadium. Half the crowd had already walked out in disgust after the Cowboys lost the game. It’s the last time Roger Staubach will ever try to follow prop comedy.

• Sarah Palin told Human Events magazine on Monday that her biggest regret as a candidate was not giving enough interviews. Every time she did an interview, Saturday Night Live got two weeks of material out of it. At the rate Sarah Palin is going she could replace Wall Street regulation as America’s funniest running joke.

• Oprah Winfrey booked the Royal Suite at the Four Seasons in Washington for the Inaugural weekend at a cost of $15,000 per night. She won’t like it. The hotel is so exclusive that television stars have to use separate drinking fountains.

• New York Congressman Gary Ackerman accused Caroline Kennedy’s promoters Sunday of shielding her like she’s Sarah Palin. It’s unfair. One’s from a dysfunctional family whose kids are all out of control while the other one’s the governor of Alaska.

• Washington D.C. big band leader Bob Hardwick was chosen Monday to perform at his sixth presidential Inaugural Gala at the Renaissance Hotel. He left a successful career in banking to be a bandleader. Sooner or later they all have to face the music.

• The Auto Club said Tuesday that gas prices reached their lowest point in five years. In addition to crashing the housing and stock markets and letting Louisiana drown, President Bush has now crippled the economies of Oklahoma and Texas. If Jefferson Davis had done this much damage to the Union the South would’ve won the war.

• Reverend Pat Robertson blasted the Bush administration in a CNN interview this week. He’s wasting his time with the 700 Club. Any guy who thinks that hurricanes are caused by Gay Day at Disney World should have his own show on the Weather Channel.

• Condi Rice urged all nations Tuesday to battle Somali pirates operating off the coast of Africa. The pirates take what they want by force and demand ransoms, then they use the cash for parties in Mogadishu with cocaine and beer and chicks. Somalia has only two postage stamps, one shows young Elvis and the other shows young President Bush.

• Bernie Madoff remained under house arrest after he admitted to swindling $50 billion. It’s not the end of the world. He could get his time in prison reduced for his work as a history teacher, lecturing other prisoners on how the pyramids were built.

• Joe Biden began touting the new administration stimulus package Monday. He was asked by the president-elect to be his personal emissary to the middle class. It has long been a tradition that the vice president represent the president at funerals.

• Barack Obama took his family to Hawaii for the Christmas holiday. The president-elect’s chief of staff decided to spend his Christmas vacation in Africa. That birth certificate has to be somewhere.

Argus Hamilton is the host comedian at The Comedy Store in Hollywood. He can be reached for speaking engagements by e-mail at argus@argushamilton.com.