HOLLYWOOD ? God bless America, and how's everybody?

"War of the Worlds" starring Tom Cruise and directed by Steven Spielberg will be screened for critics in New York tonight. The 100-year-old story has been completely updated. In fact, the alternative title of the movie was Mars Has Oil.

Billy Graham addressed reporters Tuesday about his revival in New York City. He said he's invited his friend Bill Clinton to stand onstage with him. After years of describing sin in the abstract, Billy Graham has become a prop comic.

Yellowstone National Park suffered a lightning strike at Old Faithful geyser on Tuesday, injuring 11. It's a tragic travel agent mix-up. People who go on vacation to cheat on their spouses are supposed to go to Las Vegas, not Old Faithful.

Palm Springs broke out in brushfires Wednesday, prompting Southern California firefighters to go on high alert. Everyone here is on pins and needles. Disaster was averted last night when an earthquake ruptured three hydrants and saved Bel-Air.

The King Tut exhibit continued Tuesday to draw big crowds to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. The African monarch is encrusted in jewels and gold and covered with inscriptions. He looks like an NBA player at a post-game press conference.

"Bewitched" opens tonight starring Nicole Kidman in Elizabeth Montgomery's old role. Witches must be Republicans now. Whenever the president needs a boost, some bride in Georgia vanishes into thin air and everyone forgets about Iraq for a month.

Iraqi prime minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari refused to shake hands with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in Brussels Wednesday evening. He smiled at her and stood with his hands firmly by his side. It is a cheesy way to get a goodnight kiss.

"The Truth about Hillary" by Ed Klein made the best-seller list this week. It calls her a cheater and a liar and a backstabber and a late sleeper who barely bathed during law school at Yale. It's the first book to make the case that she married up.

President Bush toured a nuclear power plant in Maryland Wednesday, where he made a speech calling on Congress to pass his energy bill. He walked around the power plant wearing a hard hat. Republicans exchange them at Christmas as gag gifts.

President Bush met Vietnam's prime minister on Tuesday and announced he will visit Vietnam in the fall. It brings back bad memories. The U.S. spent 13 agonizing years in Vietnam before we accepted the fact that cars won't run on rice.

President Bush vowed Monday to push for Social Security reform until his last day in office. He's utterly obsessed with private accounts. To put the spice back in her marriage Laura Bush came to bed last night dressed up as a variable annuity.

Argus Hamilton is the host comedian at The Comedy Store in Hollywood. He can be reached for speaking engagements by e-mail at argus@argushamilton.com.

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