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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016


Bowl Games

The next time Vlad "I'm Bad" Putinochet wants to crack down on his media critics with some goon-squad action, he might take a tip from Rosemarie Parsons on how to deal with those pesky pantywaists who boo-hoo-hoo about a little rough-house.

Tell 'em it was all in fun - and hey, the victims enjoyed the treatment!

Parsons, a loving mother from Outagamie County, Wisconson, has employed that unique line of defense in her trial on felony child abuse charges, the Post-Crescent reports this week. She said her kids liked having their heads stuck into a flushing toilet - an after-dinner diversion known affectionately as a "swirly."

"He was laughing," Parsons said of one incident, when she and her boyfriend, Jeff "Jocularity" Seguin, and one of Jeff's buddies forced her 16-year-old son's head into the gurgling bowl. "He thought it was hilarious. He was laughing so hard he had tears running down his cheeks. He said, 'Mom, I can't stop laughing.'"

In fact, it was so funny they decided to stick Parsons' 6-year-old's head in the toilet as well. But then her 11-year-old daughter spoiled the family fun: When they tried to give her a swirly treat, the ungrateful little brat put up a fuss, so Parsons and her beau slammed her to the floor, put her in a headlock and tied her feet with a belt. Really, what else could they do? Unfortunately, Little Miss Can't-Be-Dunked-in-the-Toilet ran away and told school authorities.

She also described other domestic delights at Chez Parsons-Seguin. The three children were forced to sleep in the tiny living room, where Mama and Step-Thing also spent the shank of their evenings drinking beer, watching Jerry Springer on the tube, and demonstrating the reproductive process, no doubt for the educational benefit of the children. (Mama did, however, warn the kids that she would "beat the hell out of them" if they disclosed this bit of their home schooling.)

Faced with these charges, Parsons' response was very much in the Bad Vlad mold: She had been provoked, she said. Her daughter, it seems, had actually been the one who encouraged the adults to dunk the boys. "I told her, maybe it's time for your turn," Parsons testified. "You always start stuff and you never finish it."

And isn't that just what Putin said to Maskhadov?

Insider Trading

And now, a brief news quiz: Which presidential candidate's father has been paid millions of dollars by a virulently anti-Christian bizarro cult leader and convicted criminal who believes he is the Son of God and calls the United States "Satan's Harvest"?

Why, that would be the father of the deeply Christian, highly patriotic, compassionate conservative George W. Bush, of course. In fact, the elder Bush has been engaged in a veritable orgy of cult-coddling and influence-peddling since being booted out of office eight years ago, the Los Angeles Times reported last week. And GOP insiders are beginning to worry what effect Daddy's grubbing for foreign lucre will have should young Georgie make it to the White House.

George the Elder, universally portrayed in the mainstream press as a quaint and kindly old man - jumping out of airplanes, puttering around the house with Barb, offering the lofty, disinterested wisdom of an elder statesman - has in fact spent most of his Clinton-enforced retirement whizzing around the globe collecting extremely massive moolah for boilerplate speeches, photo-op ribbon cuttings - and hard-nosed lobbying for selected corporate clients, including oil companies, gambling interests and the Bush family's close personal friend: cult guru, arms merchant, tax evader and GOP financial spigot, The Reverend (sic) Sun Myung Moon.

Old George's hijinks in foreign parts have sparked controversy and parliamentary investigations in such countries as Indonesia and Argentina, where lawmakers suspected undue interference in domestic affairs by the illustrious lobbyist, who is not afraid to throw his ex-presidential weight around to get his corporate masters a good deal. Now some on young Georgie's staff are fretting that Papa's lust for foreign gold will lead to all manner of conflict-of-interest problems and diplomatic flaps. Little George has already declared that Daddy will be one of his major advisers if he becomes president; Bush handlers are shuddering at the kind of high-priced hay the avaricious old man will make of this connection.

Is America about to exchange the Dukes of Hazzard for the Borgias?

Final Curtain

From the "Just When You Think It Can't Get Any Worse" Department:

Plans are set to bring the life story of Minnesota meat-puppet Jesse "The Body" Ventura to Broadway, reports the New York Daily News. Producer Pierre Cossette says he will premiere the governor's inspiring saga of broads, booze and body oils on the Great White Way early next year.

And just when you think it can't get any worse, Cossette says the show, titled (what else?) - "The Body Ventura" - will be "like 'Rocky,' only with music and dance."

And just when you think it can't possibly get any worse, Cossette tells us that he's offered the lead to David Hasselhoff.

Have we reached the bottom of the barrel yet? This is it, right? Can we go home now?