Truth may be the first casualty of war, but just because it’s dead doesn’t mean you have to drag it down the street with its guts trailing behind it as double-jawed hyenas gnaw on the gristle.

Can’t you just put a bullet through its quaint head and give it a decent burial? “Here Lies Truth. We Never Knew Him.”

Evidently not. Check out the much-anticipated report from the Bush camp on Iraq’s evil, vile weapons. Wait a minute, you can’t. The official report is as missing as the missiles, and Leeza Rice says, “Don’t hold your breath. Sure, we said we’d give you guys the skinny, but we control the horizontal and the vertical. This is a stickup. Give us your money instead.”

The war used to “honestly” cost $21 billion. Now it may cost $121 billion. No apologies necessary on that one, kids. We understand Bush’s problem with math.

But the part about only needing 50,000 troops when in reality you’re going to need 150,000, that’s going to piss a lot of people off, Rummy.

Most fresh meat joined the National Guard for one weekend a month, two weeks a year, and a college education. There was nothing in the brochure about rocket-propelled grenades to the face, or a lifetime of bad karma from joining an occupying army of one in a defenseless country filled with oil.

There is much clanging of chains and moaning in the karma chamber tonight, folks. Ten thousand dead Iraqis have some uppance coming. Whether it be leukemia for every D.U.-exposed grunt, or enough land-mined limbs to fill the Euphrates, someone must pay. The souls are angry. I can hear them.

But not as angry as I wish California would be when the closing credits roll on total recall and we realize we are in a Leni Riefenstahl film.

A stolen election, two invaded sovereign nations, the return of War All the Time – now against an entire religion – the attempted hostile takeover of our governor’s office, the rape of civil liberties in the name of protection of the Paterland, e-patches for every Muslim; Sieg Heil! Sieg Heil!

“What the Christ!” yells Califia. “You did what? To who? For how long? Oh, you are so smoked!”

Camejo called it during the recall debate, and it was like a cosmic ray through a sludge pond. The fifth largest economy in the world must tell Bush where to stick his plans for world dumbination.

The sun does not shine in this place. Dante saved it for the sowers of discord, the counterfeiters, the bearers of false witnesses and most of all, those treacherous to kin, country and master.

I will vote for Camejo this week, not because I think he’s got a milkshake’s chance in Dante’s hell of winning, but because he was the only one who got the point: We have been distracted by this recall while Bush pee-peed and poo-pooed on California’s rug.

Just ask yourself who did more damage to California in the last couple years: Enron or the Arabs?

Pack your bags, bozos. The sleeping giant of the West stirs. She’s pro-medical marijuana and she too agrees, “Let’s roll.” Califia will skewer you fuckers. And she will be right.

David Downs is a Santa Barbara reporter, national freelance journalist and short story author. He lives in Santa Barbara.