The Beast 50 Most Loathsome People in America, 2004 50. Ann Coulter Crimes: Coulter plummets down the list as she slips into irrelevance. As her columns degenerate further into absurd, incoherent attacks against her own personal paranoid fantasy of fanged, drooling, Saddam-loving liberals who hate America and childish France-bashing, we find our outrage slowly giving way to a baffled “I can’t believe I used to go out with you” feeling. Her arguments are ridiculous, her vitriol forced, her hatchet face even harder to look at. Still, she insulted a one-armed war veteran, called reports of the hundreds of tons of missing munitions in Iraq false, claimed Wesley Clark was pro-infanticide, and blamed Abu Ghraib on the presence of women in the armed forces—they’re not all like you, Ann—and on and on. It’s just not worth debunking someone who has no credibility in the first place. Smoking Gun: Has credibility in the minds of more people than we can stomach acknowledging. Punishment: Skull crushed with rock. 49. Clay Aiken Crimes: Rode to stardom on a racist backlash after his failure to win “American Idol.” Brings false hope to pre-teens that they will meet a nice clean boy who won’t take advantage of them. Befouls airwaves with his vile dreck, which makes us long for the days of Sean Cassidy. Smoking Gun: Was one of two people on this list to do a duet with the rolling corpse of Bing Crosby for a Christmas special. Put himself in the role of David Bowie. Punishment: Hydrochloric acid martini. 48. Scott McClellan Crimes: Completely hollow. Able to regurgitate any message programmed into him without regard to its validity or internal logic. A human void, capable of sapping the virtue away from the most idealistic reporter within three jokey, familiar, stonewalling press conferences. Smoking Gun: Hasn’t killed himself. Punishment: Locked in a room for eternity with a camera that sprays spitting cobra venom in his eyes every time he speaks. 47. 50 Cent Crimes: Sole credential for being a rapper, aside from his affiliation with Dr. Dre, is having been shot several times. Spent his first record company advance on crack to sell. Can barely talk, let alone rap. Represents the worst aspect of urban culture, its tendency to collapse in on itself in an orgy of mobsterism and self-destructive spending. Obnoxious tendency to pull out large wads of cash and wave them around in people’s faces (not a figure of speech). Smoking Gun: Ugliest rapper to make it since Biggie. Punishment: Getting his ass kicked by Will Smith. 46. Colin Quinn Crimes: Least funny SNL alum since Joe Piscopo (at least Tim Meadows can speak English). Blamed cancellation of his awful show on reverse racism, ignoring his pathetic ratings, stumbling speech and the fact that his entire C-list entourage couldn’t beat Pamela Anderson at Trivial Pursuit. Smoking Gun: Pontificated at length on the nature of comedy in Seinfeld’s yawn-fest Comedian. Punishment: Stash of white supremacist literature and nun-porn discovered in high profile cocaine bust. 45. John McCain: Crimes: Survived years of torture in Vietnam only to become a bend over buddy for a sheltered rich dunce. McCain could have bolstered his largely unearned air of credibility this year had he stood against Bush, but instead chose to show us all that that no principle is too fundamental to humanity to be overlooked in the name of party loyalty. We can only hope that they’ve got something on him, something big. Smoking Gun: Returned to criticizing Bush as soon as it didn’t matter anymore. Punishment: Vice President under Rumsfeld. 44. Ellen Degeneres Crimes: Turns out to be the most boring comedian, gay or straight, since…ever. Her Seinfeld on Quaaludes routine isn’t just tedious; it’s harrowing—watching her belabor a gag that wasn’t funny in the first place about opening a jar of pickles for minutes is enough to make anybody groan. Her cookie cutter talk show succeeds for the simple reason that, beyond the gay thing, viewers know that Ellen will always be nice and won’t let any negative information invade their fragile minds. If Degeneres were a straight man, she’d be getting booed off the stage at a tiny club in Scranton right about now. Smoking Gun: Tolerated Anne Heche. Punishment: Ten years as writer for “Mad TV." 43. Tony Blankley Crimes: Editorial page editor for the Washington Times, the Reverend Sun Myung Moon’s religiofascist newsletter and the Bush Administration’s favorite morning read. Thinks the UN Oil for Food scandal warrants more attention than a White House full of war criminals. Had the gall to attack George Soros because “[h]e said that he has no moral responsibility for the consequences of his financial actions,” when that is clearly a moral loophole embraced by all free market zealots such as Blankley, and went on to attack him for being “a self-admitted atheist” and “a Jew who figured out a way to survive the Holocaust.” Refers to Donald Rumsfeld as “brilliant.” His paper has lost a billion dollars and sells one paper for every seven Washington Posts, but is in no jeopardy because of lavish funding as the psy-ops arm of Moon’s Unification Church. Smoking Gun: Ended his final column of the year like this: “Americans are standing upright, their strong arms uplifted against the barbarians.” A shameless, taint-licking propagandist. Punishment: Very slowly lowered into meat grinder. 42. Jenna Jameson Crimes: The first best-selling author who could be sodomized with a well-thrown baseball since Truman Capote. Her newfound mainstream legitimacy as an icon of America’s freakish love for porn is directly related to her former incarnation as the best blowjob of the ‘90s. Smoking Gun: Now only does scenes with boring phony-lesbos…and her husband. Real hot. Punishment: The inevitable attention-vacuum which will envelop her the second any part of her body begins to sag perceptibly. 41. Everyone who got together to watch the final episode of “Friends” Crimes: Allowing a trivial sitcom about living in New York, made for people who’ve never been anywhere near New York, to become a focal point in their shallow, meaningless lives. Watching TV together is not a bonding experience; it is a distancing experience, a way in which people can cohabit a room without actually having to engage each other or connect personally. Whoever’s ultimately responsible for the “watch ‘Friends’ or the terrorists win” meme should have a special room reserved for him in the bad section of hell. Smoking Gun: You probably liked the whole Niles and Daphne thing on “Frazier,” too. Punishment: A full year of plodding BBC Documentaries. 40. Laura Bush Crimes: Oh the first lady, what an inspiration she must be to android researchers everywhere. Smile, nod, smile, (look interested) nod, put on $50,000 dress, suck off the president and there you have a typical day for the first lady. Corporate yes-wives like her will hasten the coming of mandated burkas for American women. Actually looks related to George, which might explain their mongoloid children. Smoking Gun: She married George Bush. Punishment: Chugging a gallon of stem cells on Fear Factor. 39. Tom Cruise Crimes: Inexplicable stardom. In a just world, Brendan Fraser would get an Oscar before this carbon copy of every other rich asshole cokehead with a fast car. Consistently influential in casting women in his movie for the sole purpose of nailing them. Extremely convincing when he plays an ambitious, superficial prick. Smoking Gun: Always plays an ambitious, superficial prick. Punishment: Caught in the act with Vin Diesel. 38. Toby Keith Crimes: The worst kind of proud-to-be-brainwashed dolt, one who feels he should express himself. The fact that this ambulatory hamburger’s opinions were ever given public forum is an indictment of our entire civilization and all human history leading up to this point. Smoking Gun: Plays country music. Punishment: Impaled on improperly installed American flag attached to tractor-trailer, dragged for 12 hours, eaten by wolves. 37. Halle Berry Crimes: Chooses projects on the basis of how opportunistic they are in exploiting her body. Followed her sweaty fuckfest in Tomorrow Never Dies with the worthless atrocity Catwoman. Her tearful 2002 Oscar acceptance speech for Monster’s Ball (which also included a fevered humping scene) put her in competition with Barbara Streisand for the title of most self-important woman in Hollywood. Smoking Gun: Every role she takes will be hailed as another milestone in civil rights history by virtue of her barely discernible smattering of African DNA, when in reality her success only underscores our nation’s incapacity to accept a truly black actress. Punishment: Reduced to skin care infomercial endorsement. 36. Stephen Moore Crimes: President of voodoo economics PAC the Club for Growth and frequent Republican whipping boy on HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher,” Moore actually snivels visibly. Follows every evil statement with a pussified “just kidding—sort of” laugh and shriveling “please don’t hurt me” body language. May be the least original thinker of all supply side policy drones. Smoking Gun: Missing out on the heart and soul of what’s fun about being Republican, freedom from self-consciousness and doubt. Punishment: Smacked to death by Richard Belzer. 35. Matt Sharp Crimes: Creator of VH1’s celebration of undeserved wealth and morbid excess, “The Fabulous Life,” the bastard ghetto child of “Lifestyles of the Rich And Famous,” complete with Robin Leach-impersonating voiceovers. His morally bankrupt show serves as a who’s-who of prime targets for public execution, entertaining bloated, brand-conscious meatbags with the details of how sinfully rich celebrities squander their undeserved fortunes. Sharp knows his audience; you can tell by the hilarious elementary mathematical breakdowns he offers his viewers at the end of the show when he reveals how much money his subject is actually worth (“Britney could buy 50,000 rare Gorilla-foot handbags and still have enough left over to occupy Syria!”). The celebratory, awed tone with which his show informs us that Lil’ Kim has crushed $100 bills put into her nail polish, or that you could feed your family for a year on what J-Lo spends to get her eyebrows done, makes us wish we could burn such criminals with our minds. Smoking Gun: Your girlfriend loves this show. Punishment: Pureed and made into face cream for Lindsay Lohan. 34. Clarence Thomas Crimes: On the wrong side of every Supreme Court decision since he got the job carrying Scalia’s golf clubs. Smoking Gun: Angry black man routine during Anita Hill hearings was the most forced overacting this side of Keanu Reeves’ tantrum in Johnny Mnemonic. Punishment: Led out of the Court in chains after inadvertently casting the deciding vote to reinstitute slavery.