Grrr! ... Vote or Die!

This column is writing itself.

I really don't know how this happens. I think my new editor Jen must have typed in the wrong CGI script or something.

No, that's not it either.

Actually, it's because I'm suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome and am acting on doctor's orders not to type for myself, so this column is auto-generated by design.

Yeah, that's the ticket.

"It's sort of an open secret that columnists use software that not only types for them, but also generates a point of view for the writer," said James Jonah Jameson, executive editor of "The Daily Bugle," which syndicates The Grrr! Column (search) weekly.

"A lot of the newer columnists do this," he said. "Now where's Parker? Parker!"

Now that we know Ashlee Simpson (search) doesn't lip synch all the time, only when she's suffering from acid reflux disease (sure), we can all stop Grrring poor, poor little sis and concentrate on the election.

But before we do that, just one more thing.

Last week I wrote that I doubted if "Saturday Night Live" (search) would do a sketch based on Ashlee's performance — or lack thereof — and boy, was I wrong. The show opened with a "translated" Usama bin Laden videotape in which the madman "Grrrs" on Ashlee's lip-synch, and then host Kate Winslet did a live song and dance to prove she was really performing, and the most hilarious bit came in Tina Fey's and Amy Poehler's "Weekend Update," when comic Horatio Sanz played Elton John, singing a song that spoofed all of Ashlee's woes.

It was hilarious. Now where was I?

Oh Yeah, the Election. Can I Get an Ashton?

I don't know about anybody else, but after watching Ashton Kutcher's rousing speech about "basic human desires" last week while he was stumping for Kerry, I ran out and cast my vote for the Democratic ticket.

See The Grrr! Block above in the video section!

I really wasn't sure that the neophyte Kabbalah recruit knew what was right for me, and I was right on the fence, but then I watched "Access Hollywood" and discovered that Leonardo DiCaprio (search) made a speech for Kerry "that he wrote himself" — according to Nancy O'Dell — and I thought, gee, if Leo is writing his very own speech, well, that changes everything.

And he probably doesn't even use the kind of software that I use. But only sometimes. Let me be clear, I only use it on doctor's orders. Where was I?

Vote or Die! ... Grrr!

If you believe the slogan, Paris Hilton has only a few hours left before meeting her Maker.

The California polls will close soon, so hopefully the notorious multi-tasker who proudly wears her "Vote or Die!" T-shirt won't get lost or become otherwise engaged on the way to the voting booth.

Her driver should try to avoid Rodeo Drive or anywhere there's a mini-digital video camera, if for nothing more than the sake of his future employment.

While I applaud Sean P. Diddy Combs' drive to get the youth vote out, the "Vote or Die!" slogan has got to be one of the dumbest things I've ever seen or heard.

It amazes me that a lot of money is all you need for access and credibility in this country. What Grrrs me is when it's OK for celebrities to buy in for themselves, but when a candidate does it, all of a sudden the dusty "Fortunate Son" records come out.

The Office of the President

No matter what my politics are, you'll never hear or read anything said or written by me that would disrespect, personally, the president of the United States — no matter who comes out victorious today.

We are a nation at war, and our president needs our support. Indeed, our armed forces need our support. There's been a lot of talk about Vietnam over the last few months, and there is talk that Iraq could become another Vietnam.

However, let's not make the same mistake of turning our backs on the brave men and women who have given their lives over to the service of our great nation. I know these are just words here, but don't forget that the freedom we so often take for granted has been secured year after year, generation after generation, by those young men and women stationed around the world.

This has been a bitter campaign season. I'm glad it's almost over.

Now for Your Grrrs

But before we do that, one quick note: A lot of you who have been e-mailing me ask why I don't use your full names. I used to, until I received an e-mail from a man whose e-mail I had posted, Grrring over the fact that somebody looked him up and called him at home at 3 a.m. with a not-so-nice message, because he disagreed with the man's e-mail, which I had posted. Fair enough?

Rod in Virginia: I think you missed the point when you called Chris an idiot (last column). He didn't say that he didn't care about terrorism, stem cells, taxes or the Supreme Court. He said he didn't want to choose between spineless diplomacy and reckless jingoism, or tax money for snake oil and Ludditism, or tax-and-spend and borrow-and-spend, or even between a Nanny-State Court and a Nunnery-State Court.

Ray W. in Omaha, Neb.: Ashlee Simpson should be commended for having the courage to even think that she could pull off a live TV performance. When the camera’s on you, you are raw and the camera doesn’t lie. I saw part of her performance on the Radio Awards show Monday night and I could not believe that people are actually promoting this girl. I felt embarrassed for her because she couldn’t hit a note to save her life. If that is what music has come to, I’m throwing the kids' CDs away and buying only the classics. Now, if "Saturday Night Live" has the fortitude to pan one of their guests, this would make for a great two-minute skit. Jessica, save your sister from more humiliation and give her a desk job, away from the stage … please!

Christine from Cudahy, Wis.: Funny, funny, funny, man. Do you realize that my heart stopped with your little "Hey, I Can Quit My Job" blurb? Oh, wait ... now I get it. But it's still not funny!!! Stop it! We need a voice of reason with a sarcastic sense of humor about the facts to get us with these tough times. Keep going please, Mike. You keep me going.

Brad V. in Overland Park, Kan.: Grrr! to "SNL" for jumping in to save Ashlee Simpson. They shrug it off by saying that others do it, too. So cheating the consumer is permissible as long as everyone in the biz is in on it?

G. Link in Cyberspace: Mailing out some mail today, I realized why I do so much bill-paying online — to avoid the Oblivions! I was in my vehicle, behind several other vehicles, with vehicles behind me, waiting to put my letters in the drive-by slot. The Oblivion in front of me stops at the box, puts his vehicle in park and proceeds to put his stamps and address labels on his stack of mail. At this point I cannot move, being boxed in, so I patiently wait ... and wait ... and wait. I timed it, at 3 minutes I tapped my horn, and the member of the Oblivion race in front of me had the temerity to give me a rather rude hand signal. Grrr!

William J. on the Second Floor: Kudos to Damon C. re: office nail clipping (last column). However, for fellow big city dwellers, it still amazes me when I am on public transportation — be it the subway or a bus — and out come the nailclippers! The noise is annoying enough, but need I even mention trying to avoid the airborne clippings! Grrr! Maybe I'm the exception, but I was taught from a very young age that this was a personal hygiene thing. In our home you took care of this in the bathroom where you could properly dispose of the detritus and not offend others in the house with the noise. Oh well, I guess I'm just old-fashioned, but boy, that one struck a chord!

Jim H. in Cyberspace: I thought you would get a kick out of this story. Last weekend, my wife and I were entering the local "warehouse type" store, you know, the largest chain in the U.S.  Anyway, the woman in front of us stopped right in the middle of the entrance, blocking us and the 20 people behind us from entering. My wife looked at me with that Grrr! look that every woman can get. I looked at her and said loud enough so the offender could hear, "Look honey, an Oblivion!" The response I got back didn't come from my wife, but the couple behind us who corrected me with, "No, that would be an Obliviot!" Double Grrr! to the Obliviot who was in front of us, she still didn't get it. I had to ask her to move out of the way so the rest of us could get in!

Mike L. in Cyberspace: As a retired Army officer still very active in matters of national defense, my response to Chris from Conn. is that life is full of choices —  some of them hard. Realizing I may get hammered from PETA supporters everywhere, and qualifying my statement with the fact that I really do love animals, Chris' "dilemma" is a no-brainer — child or 10 helpless animals — take the animals every time. We aren't talking about "Sophie's Choice" here. Keep up the good work. You make me laugh, which wouldn't be a bad epitaph when it's time for me to go.

— Mike ... I agree. See "The Grrr! Block" video for my take.

M. Tarzon in Cyberspace: Thank you, Mike, for your response to "Chris in Conn." Not only did your response spell out how important this election is, but you did not push either side of any issue. You put the big important issues out there for him to see the two sides and for him to choose. You showed him how important it is for him to make a choice and not just sit there and whine about the way things are going without doing anything about it. Thank you for doing what you can to show him (and all others with the same thought process) the light!

Jerry S. Birmingham, Ala.: To Scott M. regarding John Kerry in "Rolling Stone": You are aware that there is an election going on, right? So if someone forgets what album a track came off of, cut them a little slack.

Richard Stephens in Cyberspace: How dare you criticize someone for the choice! That is what America is supposed to be about! If people don’t want to vote, so be it! It is a right, not an obligation! Come on now, you’re supposed to be an educated, intelligent individual, yet the best you can do is call someone an “idiot” who disagrees with you? Pompous egomaniac. Look at the last election. Look at the Electoral College. Or how about the fact that 58,000 ballots were lost in Florida! 58,000! Lost! Seriously, what does the individual vote mean anymore? The illusion of democracy. That’s what we live under. I’m sure this reply won’t make it on your site, its not tilted and involves free speech. In any case, I feel better now.

— Richard ... I've said it before and I'll say it again: This is FOX News. Of course it makes it on our site — that's what the "You Decide" in our motto stands for. Believe me, if I couldn't take the criticism, I'd have no business writing a column like this.

Grrr! to the pretenders who can dish it out but can never take it!

The Grrr! Block

Don't forget to watch "Election Day Polignorants" above in the video section, and tune in to FOX Magazine this Sunday at 11 p.m. EST for my piece on "The Producers" and Tony nominee Hunter Foster (search).

Stupid Lit'l Dreamers

This week's SLD mention goes out to President George W. Bush and Senator John F. Kerry, for putting yourselves out there and believing that you can make our lives better.

We Grrr! you, but we love you too. God Bless America.

Until Next Week ... Grrr!

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Mike Straka is Director of Operations and Special Projects and a columnist for and contributes as a features reporter and producer on "FOX Magazine." He was also in the movie "Analyze This," and has appeared in various commercials, theater and TV roles.

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