Saddam shows up for trial: The ex-dictator blamed his courtroom absence on a defective clock and the dog that ate his homework. No trespassing: The U.S. House of Representatives passed the Border Protection, Antiterrorism and Illegal Immigration Control Act of 2005, which calls for erecting a 698-mile border fence at the Mexico-U.S. border. “It’s a win-win program for both Americans and immigrants,” said an anonymous congressman. “We ordered the fence from the American-owned Home Depot and we’ll be using some of the guys hanging out at the parking lot entrance to put the fence up.” God suspended: With a boisterous, “Let them learn creationism in the streets like I did when I was a kid,” a Pennsylvania judge has disallowed the teaching of “intelligent design” in public school biology class. The Discovery Institute, a strong supporter of intelligent design, signaled that it’s not ready to give up the fight. “We’ll be coming up with a new name to shove religion into the classroom,” said Hal Leer Thanthou. “Other than the need for a new letterhead, it’s far cheaper than actually coming up with new legal arguments. Right now, the new designation for God will be either ‘Healthy Lunches’ or ‘Bathrooms.’ Let’s see them keep either of them out of the schools!” War on Christmas on holiday break: Today marks the end of this year’s attack on everything that is holy, but commanders in the field have made it clear that the suspension of hostilities doesn’t mean the war is over. “We won’t rest until there’s a nativity scene in every department store and synagogue across this great country of ours,” said Gen. Bill O’Reilly. Orwellian or not? Lawyers for the estate of George Orwell have announced their intention to sue President George W. Bush for plagiarism. “We have long believed that this administration has stolen much of its policy from Mr. Orwell’s writings,” said attorney Will Bilyalotz. “In some cases, like the illegal surveillance of its own citizens, this administration has lifted the passages word for word from ‘1984.’ Just changing the year doesn’t protect the president from copyright laws.” While refusing to comment directly because of the “ongoing investigation,” White House spokesman Scott McClellan reminded reporters that “9-11 has made us look at plagiarism in a different way. The American people expect the president to do everything in his power under our laws and Constitution to protect them.” McClellan said that the Patriot Act has given the president the power to suspend copyright laws, “and, anyway, no one can own words or years.” One too many surprises: British Prime Minister Tony Blair and U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney made surprise visits to Iraq this week, but it seems that soldiers are getting upset with all the surprise visits. “It’s not that we don’t like them coming over so much,” said one National Guardsman. “It’s just the making believe we’re surprised that’s wearing us out.” Dodgers update: With the Dodgers on a new player-signing-a-day pace, the team has shown a willingness to bring home a winner. “We won’t stop until we’ve signed every player we didn’t have last year,” said new general manager Ned Colletti. “That way we’ll only have to play teams full of last year’s Dodgers, and how difficult will that be?” Governor takes back name: Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has formally asked Austrian officials to remove his name from a soccer stadium because of the uproar in that country over the governor’s refusal to block the execution of convicted murderer Stanley Tookie Williams. Austrians had gathered signatures for a petition calling for the 15,300-seat arena to be renamed ACLU Field. Austria Soccer League director Rowdy McHooligan denied the name change was meant as any sort of retribution. “Far from a political statement, this was just an easier spell.” Bus drivers needed: The Los Angeles Unified School District, which serves 2,100 bus routes, is looking to fill 100 driver openings. No experience required, but the ability to hit the accelerator before children get to their seats is a plus. More ironic than funny news: Referring to the National Security Agency’s controversial surveillance, Sen. Trent Lott, R-Miss., actually said, “I want my security first. I’ll deal with all the details after that.” A spokesman for Ben Franklin – he of “They that give up essential liberty for a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety” – said the late inventor, forefather and womanizer took time from turning over in his grave to let his fans know that, “Lott has every right to give up his rights … just not anyone else’s.” A holiday thanks: To all of you for allowing me to make fun of so much that wasn’t all that funny this year. I owe ya.— Steve Young is author of “Great Failures of the Extremely Successful.” AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORERose Parade grand marshal Rita Moreno talks New Year’s Day outfit and ‘West Side Story’ remake160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!