Forget that the Bush Administration led us into an unnecessary war using false intelligence--America's children saw Janet Jackson's nipple! Like the Eveready bunny, the furor over the Super Bowl "Nipplegate" has refused to subside this week, and grows increasingly idiotic by the second. After the heart-throbby Justin Timberlake ripped the coverlet off of Janet's bustier at the climax of their half-time performance, Ms. Jackson's nipple made a special surprise appearance. The fallout was deafening and immediate; the NFL loudly blamed CBS. CBS loudly blamed MTV. MTV loudly blamed Janet and Justin. And... Justin loudly blamed the bustier. "I am sorry that anyone was offended by the wardrobe malfunction," JT quipped. Janet offered a mea culpa as well, saying it was the duo's idea and that "MTV was completely unaware." Well, according to America's moral guardians, apologies can't wash away the sin of a toddler who's been scarred by the sight of Janet's nipple. "I am outraged by what I saw," squealed Michael Powell, chairman of the FCC. "My family gathered around for a celebration. Instead that celebration was tainted by a classless, crass, and deplorable stunt." And naturally, what would a ridiculously insignificant incident be without a hillbilly Christian filing a class-action suit? Terri Carlin of Tennessee plans on taking Jackson, Timberlake, MTV, CBS, Viacom, and anyone who looks like them to court "on behalf of all Americans [who] suffered outrage, anger, embarrassment, and serious injury" after being exposed to the NIPPLE. Hmmm... "serious injury?" Maybe she has a point. Who's going to pay for our TiVo's whiplash?


Though we've promised to stop making fun of Martha Stewart's personal tragedies--how can we when it's so funny? It looks like the "Queen of the Stepford Wives" will have a lot of explaining to do after the government's star witness presented damning testimony today in the Martha Stewart/Imclone inside trading case. Douglas Faneuil, a former brokerage assistant for Merrill Lynch, said his boss, Peter Bacanovic, ordered him to alert Stewart that the owner of Imclone was dumping his shares. According to Faneuil, Bacanovic's exact words were, "Oh my God, get Martha on the phone." (The court assumes that Bacanovic was not having a pinafore emergency.) Bacanovic then allegedly left a message for Stewart, telling Faneuil to inform Stewart of the Imclone sell-off when she called back. When Faneuil asked if passing on this tip would be appropriate, he testified that Bacanovic replied, "Of course. That's the whole point." After the government finishes presenting its case, Bacanovic is expected to discount the story and claim that his intention was to pass on a tip on how to remove French Bordeaux from a Gambectola table linen. He's then expected to begin sweating profusely after being caught in such an obvious lie.


Today the Massachusetts high court declared that gays are entitled to nothing less than marriage, and that Vermont-style civil unions are so five minutes ago. State legislators had asked the court for an advisory opinion on whether civil unions for gays would be allowed under a recent ruling. However, the legislators got more than they bargained for when the court returned its opinion; Gays are allowed the same rights as straights--especially in marriage. "The history of our nation has demonstrated that separate is seldom, if ever, equal," wrote four justices. "For no rational reason the marriage laws of the commonwealth discriminate against a defined class." Naturally, this decision sent state Republicans into a fuming outrage, and even captured the attention of the White House. Presidential spokesman Scott McClellan pooh-poohed the ruling, saying, "Activist judges continue to seek to redefine marriage [After Bush defined it? The NERVE!--Ann] by court order without regard for the will of the people." McClellan paused before continuing, "And by 'people' I mean non-gay people. Gay people aren't people. At least not my kind of 'people.'"


Like rats deserting a sinking ship, another major player turned his back on the Bush administration today. In a speech at Georgetown University, CIA director George Tenet claimed his organization never told President Bush that Saddam Hussein posed an imminent threat--a defense Bush used to cram the war down the throats of Congress. While Tenet believed that Hussein had a stockpile of chemical weapons, he now admits that some of the CIA's information has turned out to be both right and wrong. "[The analysts] never said there was an imminent threat," Tenet said. "Rather, they painted an objective assessment for our policy-makers of a brutal dictator...that might constantly surprise us and threaten our interests." In response, White House aides pointed out that Bush never called the threat "imminent"--but that's probably because he has no idea what the word "imminent" means. Nevertheless, President Bush is expected to speak out against Tenet's betrayal, and blame the invasion of Iraq on the NFL, who will blame CBS, who will blame MTV, who will blame Justin Timberlake, who will level the blame at the real reason we're at war--Janet Jackson's nipple.


John Kerry has picked up a few new endorsements this week including the support of former rival Dick Gephardt. Howard Dean, meanwhile, lost the endorsement of the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees. In yet another boost in his meteoric rise, Kerry picked up the endorsement of Gaia, goddess of all living things. In a blow to his struggling campaign, Dean lost the support of Father Christmas, who had been an early campaigner for the candidate. Kerry aids expect to announce the endorsement of God sometime after the Wisconsin primary. God had been firmly behind Dean, but is said to be having "serious doubts about Dean's electability." God delivered the news of his imminent retreat to the former front-runner at a meeting in Burlington, VT. Of course Dean is not the first person to be abandoned by God, but it's got to hurt for it to happen in such a public arena.


Terrorism experts are expressing concern that Janet Jackson's booby trap might inspire a spate of dirty bombing. Terrorists have the will and some of the expertise to make a chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear weapon, and are "doing everything they can" to acquire the materials, said the U.S. State Department's top anti-terror official. This intelligence, combined with the recent rise in interest in Janet-like nipple shields (up from 10 to 25% in some markets), has led some experts to theorize that terrorists may be considering using the two in tandem. Cofer Black, U.S. ambassador at large for anti-terrorism, said he and other U.S. officials are "killing ourselves" to make sure terrorists don't succeed. In this effort they are personally conducting full body cavity searches of every girl with a nipple shield and a no gag reflex in Asia.


Paris Hilton has sued a Panama-based internet company for $30 million, claiming it illegally distributed a tape of her having sex with an ex-boyfriend--you might have heard of it. Specifically, Paris is suing the company for violation of privacy, illegal business practices, and infliction of emotional distress. According to the lawsuit, "Hilton intended the videotape only for personal use and never intended or consented that it be shown to anyone else or distributed to the public." Hilton is also suing the people of New Jersey, for violation of privacy and infliction of emotional distress. According to the lawsuit, "She intended the island of Manhattan to be for personal use and never intended or consented that it be shown to anyone else or made available to the public." Emotional damages are said to be steep. As we all know, that bridge and tunnel crowd can be really, really upsetting.