Two heads for the price of one

Double trouble: It’s been the elephant in the living room of the ongoing presidential primaries, a pronounced malignancy on the American body politic, a tumor threatening the Constitution and all the values we hold dear. Barack Obama’s former smoking habit? Hillary Clinton’s questionable fund-raising activities? No! Bites refers of course to the large misshapen lump jutting out of the left side of Sen. John McCain’s face like a second head.

According to Bites’ unofficial Republican medical consultant, the fibrous malignancy set to burst Athena-like from McCain’s jaw is the result of his third bout with melanoma, the most deadly form of skin cancer, in 2001.

Perhaps. But Bites wonders: Could not the lump in fact be a second head, and could not that second head now be running McCain’s campaign?

That certainly appeared to be the case last week when the candidate appeared on Larry King Live. McCain, who has come under withering scrutiny from his own party’s right wing, basically denounced his entire political career. Courageously voting against Bush’s war time tax cuts? A mistake, he now says. Granting amnesty to illegal immigrants? Dumb idea. Legalize abortion in the case of rape or incest? He was just kidding!

But all that was nothing compared to what is undoubtedly the most nauseating political flip-flop of all time. McCain, the Vietnam War hero who was tortured for years in the infamous Hanoi Hilton, is now down with waterboarding and whatever other illegal methods the Bush regime deems appropriate to fight the War on Terror. Bites has said it before and will say it again: Osama bin Laden didn’t beat us. Idiots like this did.

Hollywood hand-job: The antidote to these idiots, if the latest issue of Esquire and The Sacramento Bee’s own Daniel Weintraub are to be believed, is none other than California’s own Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. Republicans and Democrats both have something to learn from the Austrian Oak, the cover of the lamest men’s magazine in the world promises. It then leaves out the most important lesson Schwarzenegger has offered thus far: Take credit for anything good that happens on your watch, whether or not you had anything to do with it, and deny anything bad.

Bites has often pondered why Weintraub has treated Schwarzenegger for the most part with kid gloves since Gray Davis was defeated in the 2003 recall election, and now we know: Danny’s been writing a book—with the governor’s blessing! Titled Party of One: Arnold Schwarzenegger and the Rise of Independent Voters, it promises to be a hagiography of unrivaled pretension, if the first chapter leaked out in Weintraub’s column is any indication.

According to Weintraub, the man who just sliced 10 percent off the MediCal and state education budgets is just like you and Bites! Well, except for the part where he parlayed illegal steroid use into a multimillion-dollar acting career. Uh, and the dozen or so women he allegedly groped on rowdy Hollywood movie sets. Oh, and that secret meeting he had with late Enron CEO Ken Lay in the months leading up to the recall. But beside those things—and thousands of others that can’t be listed here due to space constraints—he’s just like the rest of us.

Note to Weintraub: Next time, just put your lips together and blow.

Mo Bites: It would be remiss for Bites not to inform readers that dramatic change is afoot here at SN&R. Instead of plowing money into California real estate á la McClatchy Co., your favorite alternative weekly has invested in itself. Without giving too much away, understand that next week’s paper will have a decidedly different look on the inside, and that new look includes Bites. Need more of a hint? OK, let’s put it this way: No longer will Bites toil in anonymity. And for now, that’s all Bites has to say about it.