This year in the interest of getting it done and making it fun, we're declaring Jihad on holiday shopping. We're exchanging the "must-haves" for the "must-gives"-gifts that people don't want, but we're dying to buy them. With the glut of political gag items available online this year-coupled with the fact that a presidential election looms-we feel it's an ideal time to provoke our loved ones at the expense of America's political icons without ever having to interface with a store clerk.
Mass-produced candy may be like poison to your buddy the exercise freak, but a talking Ann Coulter doll under the tree is worth five rancid milk-chocolate Santas in the gut. These highly collectible dolls come pre-programmed to show off Coulter's poise with statements like, "Even Islamic terrorists don't hate America like Liberals do. They don't have the energy. If they had that much energy, they'd have indoor plumbing by now." Ms.Coulter, in all her miniature splendor, can be bought for only $29.99 at www.conservativebookservice.com.
For the Republican who has everything, the 2004 Desk Calendar of Presidential (Mis) Speak featuring 365 "oratorical manglings" from George W. Bush, provides daily entertainment at Clinton-era prices. The calendar that was banned by Yahoo features such amusing Dubya malapropisms as "Border relations between Canada and Mexico have never been better." Only $11.99 at www.bushcalendar.com.
There's no better way to show your support for the troops and antagonize your jingoistic colleagues than with the controversial Peace Symbol Flag. The 3-foot-by-5-foot flag can be flown outdoors but is best suited for indoor window display. Get one now for $30 at www.politcalgifts.com.
Looking for something bipartisan? Everyone can relate to the cast-iron Uncle Sam Penny Bank available at www.slick.com. This thoughtful memento provides a regular reminder of the futility of our retirement plans. Slick also carries a unique assortment of handy items like the "Arnold" Driver License, the Clinton 3-Dollar Bill and the United Nations Axis of Weasels deck of playing cards featuring Michael Moore and Barbara Streisand.
It seems everyone's jumped on the playing card bandwagon this year. "Republican Chickenhawk Cards" available at www.chickenhawkcards.com for $14.95, feature photos of prominent Republicans along with their "chickenhawk" titles. There's Karl Rove "The Puppeteer"; Katherine Harris "Election Fixer"; and none other than George W. Bush "The Fool."
As appealing as the "Chickenhawk" cards are, political mockery has reached its zenith with Psychedelic Republican Trading Cards. As with other decks, each card features a photo of a favorite conservative. But, instead of crisp headshots, their images have been stretched like silly putty into groovy rainbow daydreams. This is not "what your brain looks like on acid." This is, "what John Ashcroft looks like on acid" and it's very good. Get these at www.psychedelic republicans.com and remember: It's far better to give than receive.