- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 3, 2000

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Registered Republicans outnumber registered Democrats logged onto the Internet 37 percent to 28 percent respectively.

The remaining 35 percent of Web users are affiliated with other political parties or are not registered, says Media Metrix, a Nasdaq company and Internet pioneer in media measurements.

Why is this important?

"With the elections just over a month away, political marketers should monitor the relative popularity of Web destinations among registered voters in order to communicate effectively with specific target audiences," says Media Metrix president Dough McFarland.

Witch hunt

There are an estimated 600,000 witches in the United States, of which 86 percent are registered to vote. Seriously.

"Witches count! So be counted, and let the world know that we exist," encourages the latest Covenant of the Goddess poll, which has canvassed 31,241 witches over the last nine months.

"We encourage you to continue to spread the word to other witches," says poll wizard Kathryn Fuller, the covenant's national first officer emerita.

California has the highest number of witches (12 percent), followed by Texas (8 percent), which could spell good news for George W. Bush.

The economy, stupid

No wonder the economy is so strong. Upwards of $2 billion will change hands electing our new president this election year.

Which helps explain why a majority of Americans believe elections are "for sale."

The $2 billion price tag is contained in "Money & Politics: Who Owns Democracy?" a new National Issues Forum guide produced by the nonpartisan Public Agenda and Kettering Foundation.

Boys night out

Nationally known AIDS activist Michael Petrelis couldn't believe his eyes when the calendar of events for the University of California at San Francisco's AIDS Health Project (AHP) listed an "HIV bowling night" and series workshop on "flirting."

"Start by learning the basics of flirting and how to have fun while sending the right message to the right guy … regardless of HIV status," the calendar notes.

Mr. Petrelis immediately fired off a letter to Dr. Joseph F. O'Neill, associate administrator of the HIV/AIDS Bureau of the Department of Health & Human Services in Washington, demanding to know how much of the $977,701 in Ryan White Comprehensive AIDS Resources Emergency (CARE) Act funds allocated to AHP were "spent for bowling and flirting."

Dr. O'Neill took the question seriously, and is now relieved to report that "CARE Act funding is granted … to provide psychiatric care and treatment services to persons living with HIV. No CARE Act funds are being spent for bowling and/or flirting."

As for nonfederal AHP funds, Dr. O'Neill states: "The HIV/AIDS Bureau does not monitor how funds from non-CARE Act grants are expended."

Who reads what

This just in from the Internet. Surely they jest:

"The Wall Street Journal is read by the people who run the country.

"The New York Times is read by people who think they run the country.

"The Washington Post is read by people who think they ought to run the country.

"The Washington Times is read by people who don't think anybody should run the country.

"USA Today is read by people who think they ought to run the country if they could only understand The Washington Post.

"The Los Angeles Times is read by people who wouldn't mind running the country, if they could spare the time.

"The Boston Globe is read by people whose parents used to run the country.

"The New York Daily News is read by people who aren't too sure who's running the country.

"The New York Post is read by people who don't care who's running the country as long as they do something scandalous.

"The San Francisco Chronicle is read by people who aren't sure there is a country.

"The Miami Herald is read by people who are running another country."

Vinni for president

Finally, an excuse to order martinis.

TenPenh, a new restaurant on Pennsylvania Avenue near the White House honored by Gourmet magazine this month as No. 1 in Washington, is conducting a unique presidential poll.

On the martini menu are a Tennessee Tumbler and a Texas Twister, each with elephant and donkey stirrers. After each martini is downed, the stirrers are collected and carefully placed in a ballot box.

Awaiting Saturday, Nov. 4, when Vinni Nair, director of bar operations, will tally the stirrers to reveal three days before Election Day who is on his way to the White House.

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