"Democracy is a device that ensures we shall be governed no better than we deserve." —George Bernard Shaw

Assuming as I do that most Stranger readers reside under either a rock or a wet cardboard box, the fact that this past Tuesday was Election Day probably comes as a bit of a surprise to them. If only that same surprise had affected this paper's "Election Control Board," that gaggle of dubiously qualified souls who routinely foul the political airs with their half-baked (and, if the drug tests they display on their office walls are to be believed, fully baked) opinions on everything from worthy candidates to necessary propositions. But while The Stranger has long provided endorsements, it's become clear to me recently that the staff's true interest in local politics revolves around one thing: election-night parties. Hence this week's news section, which finds the paper's squad of mouth-breathers making the rounds of election-night drink fests, purportedly to capture the "scene" and "analyze" the results, but really to do little more than embarrass both themselves and their professions whilst bathing in free booze. Democracy in action indeed.

Elsewhere in this issue, we find none other than DAN SAVAGE pontificating—which for him is a form of breathing—about the latest GOP official to be caught en fag-rante. That Mr. Savage has some 5,000 words to spill about both homosexuality and hypocrisy should shock no one (after all, both are quite familiar to him); that he was actually moved enough by this latest scandal to gallop his high horse all the way to the wilds of Spokane, Washington, however, leaves me floored. Savage amongst the rubes (as he routinely calls them)? How is it that simply entering a city where the citizens don't necessarily tote the liberal line, where deviant sex is not only not celebrated but often discouraged—how is it that this didn't send Savage reeling and whinnying, if not bursting into outright flames? I am mystified, and, I must admit, rather disappointed that the latter didn't occur.

Rounding out this week's journalistic atrocities, we find CHARLES MUDEDE soiling the books section with an essay about Proust. Leaving aside the strong possibility that he, like so many faux-intellectual hacks before him, has not even made it through one of Proust's tomes, just who in their right mind thought that Mudede, of all pencils on staff, would be the right man to tackle such an author? "Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom," Proust once wrote. "Pregnant women are disgusting," Mudede once opined. I rest my case. recommended