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New rules

With a tip of the hat to HBO’s Bill Maher, from whom I stole the idea …

New rule: Next time when you’re the Spanish government and hundreds of your citizens are killed in a terrorist attack, wait until the investigation is concluded before you blame it on the Basques. How do you say "Richard Jewell" in Spanish?

New rule: All the media members and politicians who criticized Mayor John Street for opting to participate in the DROP program will be forced to give up any legal tax break they’ve ever editorialized or voted against.

New rule: Note to Barry Bonds: If your head is as big as the Hindenburg and you hit 73 home runs, that’s enough cause to be drug tested.

New rule: If you own a Hummer or any SUV, you can’t gripe about high gas prices, you can’t gripe about the war in Iraq that’s bankrupting us, and you can’t complain when Dick Cheney sells out your interests to Halliburton. This goes double if you park in front of my house.

New rule: If you’re Donald Rumsfeld, you don’t keep a piece of an airplane that crashed into the World Trade Center in your back pocket as a souvenir while FBI agents are threatened with firing for the same thing. Yeah, I know you claim that you only use it to remind folks about the horror of 9-11, but we’ve got museums for that. You and Bush don’t own 9-11, you just think you do. What you own is the Iraq war.

New rule: If you’re John Kerry and you’ve been in the Senate for 18 years or so, you should have learned the difference by now between being "thoughtful" and being "indecisive." Thoughtful is when you were smart enough to marry Teresa Heinz. Indecisive is when you voted to give the President the power to wage war in Iraq and then decided to vote against funding it.

New rule: Bush’s dental records do not show that he served in Alabama while in the National Guard; only that he needed his teeth fixed. If you’re a guardsman currently serving in Iraq, why not write the President and ask him if you can take a year off to work in your daddy’s business?

New rule for critics of Martha Stewart: Being a successful woman with an attitude does not give the law the right to persecute her for what is essentially a blemish on the hindquarters of corporate crime. Everyone rejoicing over the fate of Martha Stewart should repeat after me: She may be a witch, but I’m an envious witch.

New rule: When you recruit athletes to play football for your school, make sure the girls you offer up for sex are willing participants. There are plenty of college girls who would fight for the chance to cohabit with an athlete — for instance, the entire cast of Girls Gone Wild. There is no need for rape. Remember, when athletes rape, pillaging is not far behind. Incidentally, for a definition of rape, please don’t ask Kobe Bryant.

New rule: For Allen Iverson, when you’re the problem, you’re not "The Answer." Get a cap that fits you, go to practice on time, stay home at night with your wife , and you might have something left of your career. Otherwise, how would you like to be "The Answer" for the LA Clippers?

New rule: For the Eagles organization, life does not end at 30, even for a football player. It’s nice that your team is young and under contract, but it would be nicer if you would win sometime when you get to the NFC Championship game. This is not American Teen Idol, it’s the NFL.

New rule: The next time George W. Bush stares into the soul of Vladimir Putin of Russia, it would be nice if he cleaned his glasses. That was the KGB he belonged to, George, not the Young Republicans Club. And now that he’s pretty much become a dictator, you can stop using the words "Russia" and "democracy" in the same sentence.

New rule for seniors like me: We can’t ride SEPTA for free while the system is awash in red ink and they need to take away healthcare benefits from its employees. We have no God-given right to ride for nothing and then complain when they start pulling buses off the street. I know we worked hard all of our lives, but that doesn’t get us a gold star; it’s what we’re supposed to do. What it gets us is the right to collect a pension and sit on our duff, but it shouldn’t give us the right to get discounts and freebies from the government unless we’re poor, and most of us aren’t.

Meanwhile, our kids are struggling to meet their bills. You and I can pay half the fare without getting angry.

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