By John Semmens: Semi-News — A Satirical Look at Recent News
Architect of the so-called compromise health care bill, Senator Max Baucus (D-Mont) defended a controversial provision in the legislation that would send those who refuse to pay for mandated insurance to prison.
“Look, our goal is 100% compliance,” Baucus explained. “’Carrots’ aren’t enough to motivate those ideologically resistant to this goal. So, we’ve got to have the option of using the ‘stick.’”
The Senator rejected the idea that those who don’t want to buy insurance are “innocent.” “Collectively, society has determined that everyone needs to be insured,” Baucus argued. “We cannot allow individuals to selfishly opt out. Such open rebellion against the government would undermine its authority to promote the general welfare.”
Neither would Baucus accept that some might have religious reasons for wanting to opt out. “Requiring someone to buy insurance doesn’t force them to receive services,” he pointed out. “If they have religious reasons for not using the services they won’t have to unless the President declares an emergency and orders mass inoculations or other treatments.”
Baucus said he didn’t expect refusal to pay to be widespread. “The prospect of having to bunk with the lowlifes occupying our jails should minimize disobedience,” he asserted.
Under Baucus’ bill, the minimum payment for insurance is set at $1900. Those who neglect to comply may be sentenced to fines up to $25,000 and/or prison terms of up to one year.
In related news, Jonathan Blum, acting director at the federal government’s Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services issued a “gag order” barring “any and all health-related businesses or associations from commenting on the Senator’s bill.” “This is a critical junction in the debate,” Blum said. “Voters don’t need to be confused by those contradicting the President, especially firms whose expertise in the field could lend credibility to his critics. It’s time for all good corporate ‘citizens’ to pull together behind him and get the job done.”
Questions Arise over Terrorist Access to Credit
It turns out that Najibullah Zazi, the person arrested in connection in with a suspected New York City subway bomb plot, was able to obtain over $50,000 in loans from the Bank of America, Chase, Capital One, Discover and Citibank despite having no assets to pledge nor a steady work history.
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner acknowledged that “some banks may have been a little lax in vetting borrowers, but let me remind you, we’re in a recession and it is the Administration’s policy to encourage banks to push the money the government lent them out the door as fast as possible.”
Geithner called critics “hasty and judgmental.” “Withholding credit from Mr. Zazi would’ve constituted illegal ‘ethnic profiling’ of the worst sort,” Geithner contended. “Besides, it’s a knee-jerk reaction to assume that even if Mr. Zazi had succeeded in blowing up the New York subway it would’ve been all bad. Having to rebuild would’ve created thousands of jobs. And that’s exactly what we need to get the economy moving again.”
Green Car Gets Government Subsidy
Fisker Automotive will receive a $529 million subsidy from the US government to build hybrid cars for the US market. This follows a previous subsidy award of $465 million to Tesla Motors to build electric cars. Both awards were made on the recommendation of international climate genius, former vice-president Al Gore.
The models may seem a bit pricey for the average motorist with the Fisker vehicle going for an estimated $89,000 each and the Tesla for $109,000.
Gore touted the subsidy as a “first step toward a completely green automotive future. While these vehicles may look expensive, they are really a moderately priced contribution to saving the planet. Those who insist on owning their own transportation should be willing to pay this price. Those unable or unwilling to pay the price for their own vehicle should contribute by using public transit. No one has the right to pollute the planet just for the sake of their own freedom to drive wherever they want at a price they can afford.”
The former vice-president suggested that “buyer reluctance might be overcome by targeted efforts like the recent ‘cash for clunkers’ program or by federal regulations forcing all manufacturers to match the performance standards of these ‘green cars’ and the phasing out noncompliant models.”
In related news, in his speech to the “We Media Conference” Gore declared that “American democracy is in grave danger from unconstrained criticism of the government by ‘right-wing fanatics.’ They are abusing the very Internet I invented with their screeds against the President and his efforts to engineer an orderly transition to a new society of communal caring.”
UN Flu Warning
Health ministers around the globe were sent a warning that “unless we receive £900 million by next Friday millions will die.” The message from a group calling itself the WHO, was composed of letters cut out of a newspaper (likely the New York Times, experts say), and specified that the money “must be in small, unmarked, non-consecutively numbered bills.”
The message directed the ministers to await further instructions regarding the “drop location” and warned that “any attempt to contact the police will have dire consequences.”
The surprisingly sparse media coverage of the incident was explained by former US UN Ambassador John Bolton’s observation that “this is pretty normal for the UN. Hysteria, threats and extortion are not abnormal procedures when this gang has its eye on someone else’s money.”
President Urges Governor to Drop Reelection Bid
President Barack Obama has requested that Governor David Paterson (D-NY) discontinue his bid to be reelected. The President’s request comes amidst polls showing that Paterson is likely to fare poorly.
“In these troubled times extraordinary leadership is required at all levels of government,” Obama declared. “From what has transpired since his elevation to the governorship, it seems clear that Paterson lacks the vision needed to provide that leadership. It would be best for all concerned if he were to step aside.”
The President expressed his hope that Paterson would “leave gracefully and voluntarily,” but said he wouldn’t hesitate to take sterner measures if necessary in order “to resolve the succession issue.” “If need be, I will appoint the next governor if that is what it takes ensure appropriate leadership for the state,” he promised.
Insiders say that Representative Gregory W. Meeks (D-NY) may be the “appropriate leader” in Obama’s eyes.
Presidential Advisor Recommends US Attack on Israel
Zbigniew Brzezinski, foreign policy adviser to former President Jimmy Carter and current President Barack Obama, is urging a radical change in US Mid-East policy.
“Our long term alliance with Israel has brought us nothing but headaches,” Brzezinski opined. “Jews have been a sore spot in the region since the days of the Roman Empire. Eliminating their presence there would solve a lot of problems.”
Brzezinski conceded that his proposed change would not be easy, but suggested that a possible Israeli air strike against Iran’s nuclear capabilities might offer an opening. “Say we have US forces shoot down the aircraft involved in Israel’s planned operation,” he conjectured. “We’d be coming to the aid of a Muslim victim of Jewish aggression. The payoff in our relations with most of the nations of the world could be huge.”
Not to be totally heartless, Brzezinski added that “the tiny minority of the world’s Jews currently living in Israel could be easily accommodated in the United States. A not to be overlooked byproduct, of course, would be a significant increase in Democratic voters in the states that receive the Jewish refugees. It’d be a ‘twofer’—there’d be both less conflict in the Middle East and a stronger constituency for social legislation here at home.”
ACORN Files Lawsuit
Stung by the prospect of withdrawal of federal aid following the airing of video evidence of its corruption, the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) has filed a suit against filmmakers James O’Keefe and Hannah Giles.
ACORN attorney Jack Cozener argued that “real damage has been done here. The ACORN organization is losing millions in government money. Justice requires compensation for this wrong.”
Cozener said he will be demanding that “100% of the profits that O’Keefe and Giles reap from this effort—from the films, any books or other media—be turned over to my clients. After all, it is ACORN’s staff members that provide the stars for their video. O’Keefe and Giles couldn’t have done it with them.”
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