Backstreet Boy Kevin Richardson testified before Congress yesterday on the issue of mountaintop mining. Apparently, Richardson's extensive experience rolling around in mountains of money has made him uniquely qualified to lecture Congress on this subject. Or, Joe Lieberman is grandstanding and trying to focus media attention on himself by inviting Richardson to testify. You decide.
"Mr. Richardson is here as more than a well-known celebrity," Lieberman said. "He is knowledgeable on this issue and has in fact worked to protect the environment in his home state. I believe his voice will add to our understanding of the issue."
Since "knowing something about something" appears to be the new standard for allowing people to testify in front of Congress, I hereby announce my intention to address a joint session of Congress on how to avoid 'bitter beer face'. Also, I'm pretty sure Ted Kennedy would like to know my special formula for the Ultimate Margarita.
At first, I wasn't sure what to think about Richardon's testimony. I was too busy dry heaving. But after that, it occured to me that there is an upside here - this may, in fact, be the nation's healthy response to the dangerously high levels of suckage in today's music industry. After all, if Richardson is busy testifying in front of Congress, he's too busy to write more songs that have the word 'girl' in them 27 times. Our government seems fully engaged in solving the bad music problem - Congress has Richardson tied up, while NASA plans to launch N'Sync's Lance Bass into space. Someone call the State Department - I smell a diplomatic position in Rwanda for Celine Dion.
Anyway, given the importance of Richardsn's testimony, I thought a transcript of it would be helpful. Let's listen in, shall we?
Richardson: Hey, politician dudes! You've gotta stop people from mining on mountains. It's not cool.
Senator Kennedy: Is it true that you guys have hundreds of groupies back stage after every concert? And they go home afterwards and don't even try to sue you or anything?
Richardson: Yes, but I want to talk about mountaintop mining. I don't like it. It looks ugly when you fly over top of a mountain at 35,000 feet in your Learjet, and it's all, like, chewed up and stuff.
Senator Clinton: Is it true that Lance Bass is single again? I think he's dreamy.
Richardson: I don't know. He's in N'Sync. I'm in The Backstreet Boys. You can tell the groups apart by... Okay, maybe he is in the Backstreet Boys. Or am I in N'Sync? Wait. He's 'the smart one', and I'm also 'the smart one'. So we are in different bands. Gotta be. The formula doesn't allow for duplicates. Anyway, about this mountaintop mining stuff...
Senator Byrd: Just tell us how much money you want, and how much of it can be spent in my state, okay?
Richardson: Well, I'm not exactly looking for money, I want you to stop...
Senator Lieberman: Could you move a bit to left, kid? You're blocking the press's view of my new suit.
Richardson: Uh, sure, but...
Senator Thurmond: Can I get a wax pressing of your music for my Victrola?
Richardson:What's a Vic..
Senator Hutchison: Too bad about Dee Dee Ramone, huh? "Rock N' Roll High School" is my favorite movie. The Ramones kicked serious ass, didn't they? But just like Johnny Rotten said, it's better to burn out than fade away, am I right?
Richardson: That's something I'm not qualified to speak on. I have no talent or understanding of music. About mountaintop...
Senator Lieberman: Okay, the press is gone. Thanks kid. You were a big help.
Richardson: But I didn't get to say anything about....
Senator Clinton: Could I get you to autograph my copy of the Federal Register? I'd just die if I let Kevin Richardson get within 20 feet of me and leave without an autograph!
Richardson: Piss off.
All in all, another historic session in Congress. What with the war on terror, the threat of nuclear war in India and Pakistan, a stock market falling faster than Bill Clinton's reputation, and the biggest re-structuring of the government since WWII, it's nice to see that Congress knows where its priorities lie.