The Weekly World News has been one of the most famous and extravagant sources of urban mythology for years. Whereas respectable papers like the New York Times deal with a world that seems increasingly insane by presenting themselves as dignified bulwarks of reason, the WWW doesn't even make the effort. It seems to have been founded with the idea of not only hurling itself into the madness of modern life, but encouraging it. Where would our pop culture be today without the mythic adventures of Batboy or the continuing travels of Elvis? The Weekly World News's headlines have a jagged beauty to them; the vigor with which they insist that they print "nothing but the truth" makes the innate dadaism of their stories that much richer. In some psychological sense, the stories about Bat Boy and P'lod could be true. Certainly, they seem to say something real about the darker, more fragmented corners of the American psyche.
Which brings us to the following headline, which has to be one of the Weekly World News's true moments of genius, and one of the best pieces of satire of the GWB years. Except, of course, that it's true:
CARAVAN, Calif. — A gypsy curse has transformed conservative Supreme Court justices into liberals, leaving GOP leaders howling like werewolves.
This assumes, of course, that such behavior is unusual for said leaders. And that they're not actually werewolves. Based on the behavior of the party for the last thirty years, I consider the jury to be out on the latter question.
"This is obviously a huge blow to the party, not to mention the United States of America," said North Carolina Republican Senator Kurt Krewcut, 56. "Those lifetime liberal justices could hand down decisions that'll have us living in the land of the 'freak' and the home of the 'bong.'"
The curse came about after the Supreme Court ruled against a band of gypsies. The Romanian expatriates were suing the city of Caravan, Calif., for discrimination and harassment.
"I could see several of those justices looking down their noses at us in court," said Syeira Purrum, 82. "After the verdict, I stood up and said, 'Many of you have no hearts. Well tomorrow they will bleed.' "
Purrum was taken into custody by police who mistook her comments as a death threat. Her words took on a different meaning, however, when staunch conservative justices awoke the next morning as "bleeding heart" liberals.
I can hardly wait for the rulings.
Following a brief panic and prayer sessions, Republicans have been seeking to win favor with the gypsies, making frequent visits to camps across the country and handing out 'We are the Gypsy's Own Party' buttons.
Quick to adapt, GOP strategists are looking beyond this crisis to seek out other groups associated with magic and spells, such as witches and wizards.
"Just think of it," said Krewcut. "Spells that turn African- Americans into whites, make gays become straight and transform liberal slime into hardworking, God-fearing Republicans.
Harry Potter may have a nice, comfy job waiting for him when he graduates from Hogwart's. Although really, it seems more like a job for Draco Malfoy.
"We'd make a deal with the Devil himself if that hadn't worked out so badly for us with Dick Nixon."
Of course we all knew about this — it was well documented by Hunter S. Thompson and others. But it's nice that they're finally coming clean about it. Or does that just mean that they're feeling especially brazen?