President and Treasury Secretary Downplay Mid-East Strife, Hail Invention

By John Semmens: Semi-News — A Satirical Look at Recent News  

President Barack Obama and US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner sought to downplay fears that unrest in the Middle East would negatively impact the US economy by hailing a Virginia man’s invention of a rainbow-making machine as a harbinger of a brighter future for America.

The device is the brainchild of Michael Jones McKean, an assistant professor at Virginia Commonwealth University. It uses a large scale sprinkler system and the light of the sun to create rainbows averaging about 1,000 feet in length. Each device can produce a rainbow of 15 minute duration twice a day. A prototype is currently being installed on top of a building in Omaha, Nebraska.

“This is a very encouraging development for this country,” said an upbeat President Obama. “A rainbow is a sign that the storm is over, that a brighter day lies ahead. If we have the means to create a rainbow wherever and whenever we want we won’t have to wait for their random occurrence after rain storms. We can boost the people’s morale on an ‘as needed’ basis anytime we want.”

Since the device is powered by rainwater and biodiesel fuel, the President also cited the project as “an example of the ‘green’ economy my Administration is trying to build. There are 30,000 towns and cities in this country. Each one of these will need at least one of these machines. Constructing them will employ millions, not to mention the investment and jobs necessary to grow, transport, and refine the corn needed for the biofuel.”

Treasury Secretary Geithner highlighted what he called the “self-financing characteristics of an investment in these devices. Up to now, our ability to capitalize by recovering the pots of gold at the ends of rainbows has been hampered by the lack of foreknowledge on when and where a rainbow would appear. This combined with their short life span has frustrated our ability to take full advantage of the opportunity. With these machines, though, we’ll know exactly where and when these rainbows will appear. This should maximize our chances for an optimal rate of return.”

While admitting that he was “unsure of just how much gold is in any given pot,” Geithner said, “at the price gold is going for these days, I’m confident it will be a quite a lot—maybe enough to pay down some of the federal debt after the cost of construction and operation of the machines is covered.”

Bar Association Executive Council Opposes State Bans on Sharia Law

Legislation aimed at barring Islamic sharia law from being used to decide cases in state courts has been introduced in 14 states, thus far this year. The American Bar Association’s Executive Council has created a “task force” to oppose this legislation by producing “talking points that can be used to dissuade legislators from taking such action.”

“There are two key issues here,” said Council spokesman Arthur Swindel. “First, there is the cultural prerogative of persons to choose which laws they wish to be subject to. Islam has a long and storied history and a legal structure that has been in place for centuries—pre-dating, I’d like to point out, the constitutions and laws of every state now in existence. Therefore, whether a state’s laws or sharia laws should take precedence is, we believe, a matter for adjudication.”

“Second, it is the primary responsibility of the Bar Association to protect the interests of its members,” Swindel continued. “The more competing legal standards in play, the more ambiguity there is in what the law is, the more opportunities there will be for the employment of our members. Fees will be earned on both sides of every case. Even attorneys who oppose using sharia law will benefit from the necessity to contest its application in any given case. So, from an economic standpoint this means a bigger pie for every member of our profession.”

This venture into preemptive lobbying against legislative action supplements the profession’s more traditional approach of suing to overturn already enacted laws. Last November, an Oklahoma court struck down a ban on sharia law being used in its state courts that was put into place by voters.

President Defends Stimulus Cost

After the Congressional Budget Office issued estimates that the jobs “created” or “saved” by the federal stimulus program cost between $200,000 and $500,000 apiece, President Obama stoutly defended it.

“Those figures are just averages,” Obama argued. “The implication that every job was this costly is an unfair inference. Many of the jobs created were in the low income range, but the average was ballooned upward by the necessity to save expensive jobs on Wall Street and in corporate management. Over all, we provided opportunities across a wide spectrum of social classes, not just for the ‘six-figure’ guys.”

“And let’s not forget that not all of the money went to wages and salary,” Obama added. “Parceling out large sums of money isn’t easy. There’s overhead, handling, and vigorish that have to be paid, as well.”

The President rejected contentions that the program served as a “regressive redistribution of income” because the median income for Americans is only $50,000 per year. “The idea that we could’ve achieved a more equitable result if we’d simply granted everyone a tax cut or sent everyone a check is selfish and short-sighted,” Obama insisted. “We would’ve lost control over how the money was spent. That would’ve merely reinforced individual greed. Fighting against such greed is one of the keys to the transformation I intend for America.”

White House Unable to Deal with Libya Due to “Scheduling Difficulties”

President Obama has been unable to take effective measures to deal with the crisis in Libya because of “scheduling problems” according to new Press Secretary Jay Carney.

“Massacres of civilians, disruption of oil deliveries, and the rescue of Americans from danger aren’t the only things on the President’s plate,” Carney huffed. “Unions are being assaulted in Wisconsin. That’s a lot closer to home than some ruckus in Asia. The President’s focus on domestic tranquility is, I think, appropriate.”

As for the time the President spent coaching his daughter’s basketball team, Carney pointed out that “the regular coach couldn’t make the game. The President stepped into the breach and saved the day. Providing vital leadership for these young girls at a critical time for them is more than any previous President has done in similar circumstances. Critics need to keep that in perspective before they carp about how he spends his time.”

Congressman Calls for Blood in Union Dispute

Citing the “assault on unions” being carried out in Wisconsin by that state’s Governor Scott Walker (R), Representative Michael Capuano (D-Mass) urged union partisans to take to the streets and not be afraid to “get a little bloody” in their battle for better wages and benefits.

The “battle” in Wisconsin stems from Governor Walker’s proposal to narrow the state’s budget deficit by having public employees pay 5.8% of the cost of their pension benefit (the national average) and 12.6% of the cost of their health insurance (about half the national average). In addition, the proposal would bar state employee unions from bargaining for wage increases exceeding the rate of inflation.

“You know, Thomas Jefferson said that the ‘tree of liberty’ must be watered periodically with the blood of tyrants,” Capuano recalled. “Right now may be one of those times. We cannot let the right-wing oppressors make slaves of the working class by trying to take back hard-won gains. We’ve got to take the bastards down and smash them to the ground.”

Capuano rebuffed accusations that his call for blood might contradict the President’s request for a more civil political discourse. “You only have to be civil with those who are civil,” he declared. “Reaching into somebody’s pocket to take money they already have isn’t civil. The thief shouldn’t be surprised if his hand gets broken. Besides, in case you haven’t heard, the President and I are on the same side on this issue. I don’t think he considers himself uncivil in this class struggle.”

Of course, it’s possible that Capuano may have been inspired by the Service Employees International Union’s new fight song: “Take the Bastards Down.” http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/dropkickmurphys/takeemdown.html

Wisconsin Democrats Face Hardships as Refugees

The 14 Democratic senators who fled Wisconsin rather than vote on Republican Governor Scott Walker’s budget measure are suffering unforeseen hardship while hiding out in the People’s Republic of Illinois.

“We thought we’d be feted here, what with Rahm Emanuel being the new mayor of Chicago,” said Senator Jon Erpenbach (D-Middleton). “I mean aren’t we the vanguard of the struggle against fascism? Hasn’t the President praised our strategy? Yet, we find ourselves lonely and ignored.”

One of the chief gripes is “we have to pay for everything—food, shelter, entertainment, you name it—out of our own pockets,” Erpenbach complained. “And our paychecks have been stopped. The Governor says if we want to get paid we’ll have to come back to work. What is he, some sort of dictator?”

Senator Fred Risser (D-Madison) said he may be “forced to move to a lower class hotel like Holiday Inn if this goes on much longer. What the Governor has made us go through is criminal. Walker ought to be ashamed.”

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Wisconsin Democrats Go into Hiding

By John Semmens: Semi-News — A Satirical Look at Recent News  

The entire contingent of Democrats in the Wisconsin State Senate has fled the state and gone into hiding somewhere within the People’s Republic of Illinois. The inspiration for the exodus of Democrats was the looming passage of legislation aimed at trimming the State’s fiscal deficit.

Senator Jon Erpenbach (D-Middleton) vowed that he and his colleagues are prepared to stay away as long as it takes to defeat the “enemies of social justice. Just because they have the votes doesn’t mean they have the right to govern any way they want. The Governor and his GOP henchmen are trying to undo policies that have prevailed in the State of Wisconsin for more than 50 years.”

The fact that Wisconsin voters gave Republicans a majority in both houses as well as the governorship was dismissed as irrelevant by Erpenbach. “You know, German voters elected Hitler,” Erpenbach said. “So, we can’t just use election results as a guide to what is right.” Many of those demonstrating in the streets of the State Capital and carrying placards depicting Governor Scott Walker (R) as Hitler would appear to agree with Erpenbach’s assessment.

Democrats consider Republican efforts to block public employee wage increases that exceed the rate of inflation, require state employees to pay half the cost of their own pensions and nearly 13% of the cost of their own health care insurance in order to try to reduce a $3.6 billion budget deficit to be “unfair.” “Even if this is what voters want, it isn’t what we want,” said Mary Bell, president of the teachers’ union. “Forcing us to take less than we want is oppression of the worst sort.”

Teachers who have illegally called-in sick in order to join the street protests constitute a substantial share of the mob demonstrating against the proposed policy changes. This has forced a widespread cancellation of classes throughout the public school system.

President Barack Obama has weighed-in on the side of the protesting state employees. “We can’t really blame them for resorting to illegal tactics to combat this unprecedented attack on their rights,” he said. The President’s Organizing for America is aiding the protest by providing phone banks to recruit demonstrators and buses to haul them to the rallies.

US House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif) professed herself “inspired by the brave Democrats in Wisconsin” and hoped that “I’d have the courage to lead a similar rebellion against an out of control GOP at the national level. But we couldn’t just go to another state like they did. We’d have to go to Cuba or Venezuela—somewhere where progressive values are appreciated.”

Obama Administration Won’t Cooperate with Congressional Inquiries

A request by Representative Darrell Issa (R-Calif), Chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, for testimony on the President’s “stimulus package” was rejected by the White House. At issue was the so-called Romer-Bernstein report (authored by Jared Bernstein, Vice President Joe Biden’s top economic adviser, and Christina Romer, the former head of the White House Council of Economic Advisors). The report portrays the stimulus package as a great success. The White House has cleared Romer and Bernstein to appear on television to discuss it.

“If they can go on TV why can’t they testify in Congress?” asked Issa spokesman Kurt Bardella. “With unemployment at 9%, home foreclosures at distressingly high levels, and government budgets at all levels bleeding red ink we’d like to hear more about the reasoning behind the idea that the package was a success.”

Obama spokesman Reid Cherlin explained that “it is the GOP’s persistently hostile attitude toward the President’s agenda that is blocking the requested testimony. Why should Romer or Bernstein be thrown into the ‘lion’s den’ at a Republican hearing when we can still get our message out through a more friendly medium?”

The Administration’s refusal to allow the testimony is part of a “conscious policy of non-cooperation” said Cherlin. “The President was elected with his own mandate from the voters. He doesn’t have to answer to these guys. If they don’t like it they can try impeachment, but given that they couldn’t get that done against a perjuring fornicator, I think we can be confident of how that will end up against our first Black President.”

President Threatens Cuts in Social Security

If Republicans in Congress insist on passing a finance bill that contains too many cuts to “vital programs” the President says he will veto it and make cuts in Social Security payments instead. The targeting of Social Security is, according to President Obama, “intended to get people’s attention.”

“Look, if I cut back on things like high-speed rail subsidies, corporate bailouts, or bureaucratic headcounts I’d be playing right into my opponents’ hands,” Obama explained. “The average American isn’t going to be motivated to oppose Republican plans to cut spending if this is what we were to cut. But tens of millions depend on Social Security checks. In turn they have tens of millions of children and grandchildren who won’t like to see their parents or grandparents suffer when the checks stop coming.”

The President characterized his willingness to “play chicken” with the GOP by “placing a key demographic at risk,” “courageous.” “I could do the popular thing and go along with cuts to programs that few care about,” the President said. “But sometimes a leader has to employ a strategy of selective duress in order to ensure that the people get what they should have rather than letting them settle for only what they want.”

Abortion Needed to Spare People from Lives of Bad Cuisine

Finally, an irrefutable argument for federal funding of abortion has been articulated. For those unpersuaded that killing unborn humans is sometimes necessary to protect the mental health of the would-be mother comes a new idea for their consideration from Representative Gwen Moore (D-Wisc). As Ms Moore sees it, a timely abortion saves many from lives that are sustained by bad cuisine.

“If all your parents can afford to feed you is Ramen noodles and mayonnaise sandwiches you’re better off dead,” contended the plump congresswoman. “I mean, if I couldn’t get my regular dose of pizzas, cheese burgers, and ice cream I’d kill myself. By getting an abortion a woman saves her child from having to face a harrowing choice between a grim life of bad-tasting food and blowing one’s head off.”

Federal funding for abortion is, thus, essential because “the type of mother who would be faced with this choice most likely can’t afford to pay for an abortion on her own,” Moore observed. “Without federal funding only those who could easily afford good food for their children would be able to get abortions. That would restrict the right to abortion to those who, in my opinion, don’t really need it.”

We Shouldn’t Fear Muslim Brotherhood, Carter Says

Former US President Jimmy Carter sought to reassure everyone that “the Muslim Brotherhood is not a group we should be afraid of. From my dealings with some of their representatives I can assure you that they are pious and devout people who only want to promulgate their faith as instructed by their holy book—the Quran.”

That the Quran commands Muslims to offer nonbelievers the options of conversion, second-class citizenship, or death didn’t faze the ex-president. “Each faith has its own path,” Carter instructed. “The Muslim obligation to make war for Islam and the Christian belief in ‘turning the other cheek’ are not inevitably in conflict. I think the world could quite easily accommodate both. After all, what is our paying the jizya compared to the suffering of Jesus on the cross? If it is the price of peace I say we can afford to pay it.”

In related news, Hamas, the Palestinian terror organization, maintains that Islam is more democratic than the West. “In the West democracy is impeded by minority rights,” said Hamas spokesman Mahmoud Zahar. “The majority is forced to abide the sacrilegious speech and immoral behavior of the minority. The majority is blocked from purifying the community by suppressing this sinful activity. Such barriers to complete democracy do not exist in an Islamic state.”

Burglars’ Rights Defended in UK

The ability of burglars to ply their trade in the United Kingdom was given a boost in two recent incidents.

In one, police ordered residents in Surrey and Kent to remove wire mesh from windows because it “could injure burglars.” “Wire mesh is an unexpected and abnormal structure for a home window,” police spokesman Reginald Addleman pointed out. “Persons breaking into buildings could be seriously injured. Treating such avoidable injuries would stress the already tight budgets of the National Health Service. Property owners have no right to impose these costs onto the rest of the nation.”

In another, police chastised homeowner Gary Holmes for shooting a burglar with an air rifle. The chastisement was issued upon a complaint by the burglar. “The burglar was armed with only a crowbar,” Addleman explained. “Using a firearm against him was disproportionate. Even though it was an air rifle, there was no way the burglar could’ve known this. Frightening another person this way and during a mere dispute over the possession of material goods is against our laws.”

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Dems Oppose Blocking Federal Funding of Abortion

By John Semmens: Semi-News — A Satirical Look at Recent News  

Key Democrats came out against legislation (H.R. 3 and H.R. 358) sponsored by Representatives Chris Smith (R-N.J.) and Joe Pitts (R-Pa.) that would block the use of federal money to pay for abortions and would protect health care providers who are morally opposed to abortion from being forced to provide it.  

Speaking at a press conference to announce opposition to the legislation, Representative Diana DeGette (D-Colo.) vowed her “implacable resistance to any attempt to place limits on abortion. Women must not be denied this fundamental right because of their inability to pay for it out of their own pocket.”

DeGette rejected the suggestion that pro-choice proponents establish a fund to cover the costs of those unable to pay, stating that “it is unfair to compel a portion of the population to bear the whole burden of our collective responsibility to assist the less fortunate. A person should not have to rely on charity to secure her rights.”

Representative Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) also attacked the bills. “We are a pro-choice country,” he declared. “Women have a Constitutional right to abortion. Impeding this right in any way is a virtual a declaration of war against women. In this war I stand with women and against those who would subjugate them.”

Weiner adamantly assailed “the idea that health care providers should be permitted to insert their own moral values into the equation. If the law declares that medical practitioners must provide pregnancy termination services as a condition of licensing then no nonconforming scruples can be allowed to interfere.”

In related news, Weiner rejected the suggestion that due to a shortage of a drug used in executions the condemned be dispatched by having a scissors jammed into the back of their necks as “cruel and unusual” and, therefore, “unconstitutional.” While few would dispute that such a procedure is cruel, it is not that unusual. Thousands of unborn humans have been terminated by such means without the due process of a prior finding of guilt by a judge or jury.

University Study Finds Conservatives More Outrageous than Liberals

A study of political “vitriol” conducted by Tufts University Assistant Professor of Sociology Sarah Sobieraj and Professor of Political Science Jeffrey Berry found that political talk has become nastier over the years on both ends of the political spectrum. However, in the judgment of the researchers, those on the right have gone further over the line of civil discourse than those on the left.

“Using mainstream thinking as our baseline, it is clear that conservative commentators go beyond the accepted norms both more frequently and to a greater distance than liberal commentators,” Sobieraj said. “Take, for example, the assertion by many conservative commentators that President Obama is a socialist. None of the mainstream media have described him in such a way. Further, the president himself has denied he is a socialist.”

“In contrast, former President Bush never directly contradicted accusations that he is a Nazi,” Sobieraj observed. “And, truth be told, many of us in academia find this very telling. When you add in his approval of water board torture, the charge has an element of truth that must be seen as an offset to the inflammatory tone of the charge.”

Coming at the issue from a slightly different angle, Professor Berry emphasized the perspective of the victim of the nasty talk. “More flat out ‘outrage’ has been expressed by the targets of right wing hate talk,” Berry contended. “If we count the number of times people say they are outraged by a comment, the overwhelming majority of the time it will be a comment from the right side of the spectrum. So, if conservatives are outraging more people more often then it stands to reason their commentary is more outrageous.”

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Abuses Justified

Inconsistent handling of FOIA requests to Obama Administration agencies was robustly defended by Attorney General Eric Holder last week. It seems that requests from parties deemed friendly to the Administration are expedited while requests from parties deemed hostile are delayed.

Holder explained that “when it is apparent that a request may be made with the intent to embarrass the Administration we meet it with ‘all deliberate speed.’ We see no need to rush in order to supply ammunition to those who will use it to assail the President or his mission. They’ll get the information they are legally entitled to, but in a timeframe that will attenuate its use against us. On the other hand, requests from those who we know are trying to help promote the President’s cause will be met as quickly as possible so as not to dilute the favorable impact of these parties’ efforts.”

Those who think that all requests ought to be treated equally under the law are “naïve” according to Holder. “Control of the government is a political asset that should not be thrown away through misplaced notions of impartiality,” Holder argued. “Why should we give our opponents a fair shake if we don’t have to? A ‘level playing field’ is a myth and chivalry toward one’s enemies is for fools.”

Holder challenged those unhappy with his handling of this issue to “win the next election—if they can.”

Obama Administration Rebuffs Opposition by Court and Congress

The Obama Administration is standing its ground in enforcing what it terms “the people’s mandate” despite opposition from two other branches of government.

Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius brushed aside Federal Judge Roger Vinson’s decision that the President’s health care law is unconstitutional. “The nation’s health is too important an objective to be turned aside by the opinion of a single judge,” Sebelius asserted. “Voters elected the President who proposed this law and the Congress that enacted it. This mandate takes precedence over the views of the unelected branch of our government. So, until we hear otherwise from the voters we will continue with the steps needed to implement this law.”

Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson similarly rebuffed a Congressional challenge to her agency’s rulemaking authority. “EPA regulations are saving millions of lives every year,” Jackson boasted. “Against this record of achievement we have an argument on behalf of a quaintly formal notion that making laws should be congress’ prerogative. Given the flagrantly immoral and corrupt behavior of so many in that body would it really be in the public interest to entrust it with safeguarding the environment? The President and I think not. Until we are persuaded differently, we’ll continue to do what we think is best.”

In related news, the Federal Communications Commission announced that the “Presidential Alert System” will be in place by early 2012. Under this system the President will be able to take control over every television set in America so that messages of national urgency may be transmitted. Any resemblance to the similar use of TVs depicted in George Orwell’s distopian novel 1984 were pooh-poohed by Press Secretary Robert Gibbs as “anachronistic—in case you didn’t know 2012 is way past 1984.”

Rumpelstiltskin Covenant Inadvertently Disclosed

Vice-President Joe Biden’s recent exclamation that “the Chinese will own our children if we don’t build high-speed rail” was considered by many to be just another example of his patented incoherent babbling. However, belated scrutiny of the terms and conditions attached to the Chinese Government’s purchase of US Treasury debt has shed a new light on his remarks.

An unadvertised rider to the debt purchased by China requires the US Government to purchase hundreds of billions of dollars in high-speed rail equipment and supplies from China over the next ten years. Failure to do so would activate the so-called “Rumpelstiltskin Covenant.” This convent requires the US to supply “in-kind” labor services of equivalent value. That is, Americans would have to work off the debt at Chinese wage rates. While to say that China will own our children is imprecise, that country’s claim on our children’s labor may essentially amount to the same thing.

Fed Not Worried about Inflation

Fears that the Federal Reserve Bank’s massive monetization of US government debt will lead to runaway inflation were dismissed by Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke.

“Inflation is characterized by rising prices,” Bernanke said. “If such a situation were to arise the Fed has the authority to create whatever amount of money it takes to pay these higher prices. People need not worry that their government will run out of money. I know I’m not worrying.”

Obama Explains His Tax Promise

Despite having urged and signed legislation that has resulted in higher tobacco taxes for those earning under $250,000 per year (the median income for smokers id $36,000/year), President Obama insisted he has kept his pledge. “I said no one earning less than $250,000 would see a tax increase,” Obama clarified. “The tobacco levy is imbedded in the price of the product. There is no overt tax increase for anyone to see unless he reads the fine print. Besides, smoking is unhealthy. If the added tax inspires quitting, the money saved by those who do quit may outweigh the higher taxes paid by those who don’t. Collectively, the nation will be better off.”

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Senator Urges President to Ignore Court Ruling

By John Semmens: Semi-News — A Satirical Look at Recent News  

Federal Judge Roger Vinson’s ruling that President Obama’s health care law is unconstitutional need not be obeyed says Senator Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-Ill).

“The Courts aren’t the only ones authorized to decide the Constitutionality of the laws,” Durbin insisted. “We all—Congress and President, alike—take an oath to uphold the Constitution. Just because the Court has a different opinion doesn’t mean the President must accept it.”

“This wouldn’t be the first time a President ignored a Court decision,” Durbin observed. “Back in the 1830s, President Jackson chose to ignore a Supreme Court decision—telling then Chief Justice John Marshall to enforce his own decision. So, President Obama ignoring a lower court decision is small potatoes in comparison. In the final analysis, the President is the Commander-in-Chief. The Army and all federal law enforcement personnel answer to him. If he doesn’t want to abide by a court decision who’s going to make him?”

The Court decision President Andrew Jackson chose to ignore was one asserting that Indians had sovereign rights that the US and state governments had to respect. Subsequently, the Cherokee Tribe was forcibly evicted from its land by the US Army so it could be seized by the State of Georgia.

In related news, Obama Administration spokeswoman Tracy Schmaler said that Vinson’s ruling will have “no effect on our implementation of the health care reform law,” calling it “a rogue decision by a judge who is out of step with modern judicial thinking. It is one thing for courts to make laws that help people. It is another thing entirely when a judge tries to overturn the efforts of Congress and the President to help people. Quite simply, Judge Vinson is guilty of the wrong kind of judicial activism.”

Would Egyptian Democracy Be Such a Great Thing?

A recent poll of public opinion indicates that replacing the current dictatorship in Egypt with a democratically selected government may not be as rosy as many expect. On the surface, a government chosen by the people would appear to be superior to one imposed on them against their will. But would it in all cases?

Nearly 60% of Egyptian adults say they want an Islamic regime. Fewer than 30% favor an open society that respects individuals’ rights to non-Islamic lifestyles including freedom of speech and freedom of religion. 

So, what kinds of policies would a democratically chosen Egyptian government implement? Well 84% of poll respondents favor executing any Muslim who tries to leave the religion. As one poll respondent put it “Islam is God’s law. Only someone under the influence of Satan would reject it. We have a right to protect ourselves from the Satanists in our midst.”

The Obama Administration’s response to the Egyptian crisis has been to order the country’s ruler, Hosni Mubarak, to “step down now” rejecting Mubarak’s request to stay until the end of his current term which ends later this year. “Mubarak’s notion that he can adhere to normal election procedure is untenable,” Obama said. “When people take to the streets to demand your ouster you’ve lost your mandate and must step aside.”

Obama defended his prerogative to order Mubarak out of office citing “the $60 billion in foreign aid the United States has paid him over the last 30 years. He’s made a good living off our dime. If we say it’s time to pack it in he’s got to pack it in.”

The Muslim Brotherhood, a radical Islamist faction that stands to garner a majority position in a democratically selected government, has called for closing the Suez Canal and declaring war on Israel. “Mubarak has made our country a puppet of the Jews for too long,” Muslim Brotherhood leader Muhammad Ghannem charged. “We must cut the strings and slay the Jews as the Quran commands us to do.”

Internet “Kill Switch” Legislation Introduced Again

One of the ways in which the Mubarak regime tried to quell opposition was to shut down the Internet in Egypt. The idea was to block anti-government forces from communicating with one another. While this action has been widely viewed as an illegitimate attempt to interfere with freedom of speech, legislation conveying a similar authority to the President of the United States has been reintroduced by Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine).

The bill—“The Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset Act of 2010” (S.3480)—was originally introduced last year by Senator Joe Lieberman (D-Conn). It would give the President the power to declare an emergency and take control over the Internet in the US in order to block all unauthorized use.

Senator Collins asserted that “granting the President this power is necessary if we are to keep up with rivals like China where the government has the authority to strictly control Internet access. Right now, there is no way for the government to prevent our enemies from using the Internet to spread lies and misinformation aimed at undermining us.” Collins professed herself to be unconcerned about potential abuse of such a power in the United States because “unlike China or Egypt, we live in a democracy with a democratically elected President.”

Connecticut Birth Certificate Bill Assailed

A bill introduced by Connecticut State Senator Michael McLachlan (R-Danbury) to require candidates for public office to provide genuine birth certificates before their names can be placed on the ballot was assailed by leading Democrats as “unwarranted” and “an insult to the President of the Untied States.”

“The argument that this is just an extension of existing laws that require a person to show a birth certificate to obtain a driver’s license or attend a public school is bogus,” said Danbury Democratic Town Committee chairman Lynn Taborsak. “Making laws to determine the eligibility of ordinary people to do things like drive a car or go to school in this state is a legitimate state responsibility. Determining whether a person is eligible to be President is not.”

Democratic State Committee Chairwoman Nancy DiNardo agreed that “the President can’t be expected to jump through the same hoops we set up for everyone else. He’s the leader of the national government and that comes with special perks and privileges.”

Taborsak said Democrats “might be amenable to a compromise that ‘grandfathers-in’ existing officeholders. Asking private citizens for proof of eligibility is a reasonable safeguard. Asking those already in office is an insult to them and the voters who put them there. I mean, what if it turned out that some incumbents don’t meet the requirements? It would be a huge embarrassment. That’s something we definitely don’t need right now.”

Over 700 Exemptions from New Health Care Law Issued So Far

The contention that President Obama’s health care law would provide a comprehensive solution to the nation’s health care needs is being contradicted on pretty much a daily basis by his Department of Health and Human Services where Secretary Kathleen Sebelius has already issued 733 exemptions.

“We have the authority to waive compliance in cases where we deem it best,” Sebelius explained. “Parties that can make a proper case will get a fair hearing.” Thus far, “exemptees” include the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), the states of Massachusetts, New Jersey, Ohio and Tennessee, major corporations McDonald’s and Jack in the Box and the United Federation of Teachers.

Notably unable to make a “proper case” as yet are members of the “small business” community. “We can’t accept insufficiently documented pleas for special treatment,” Sebelius contended. “Those who believe they are entitled to an exemption should hire appropriate legal counsel—someone familiar with federal law and regulations. Trying to plead your own case is a recipe for failure.”

In related news, corporate giant GE was granted an exemption from EPA greenhouse gas rules. “GE CEO Jeff Immelt has been a great friend of the Administration,” said Press Secretary Robert Gibbs. “Jeff can be counted on to do the right thing without having his arm twisted by regulators.”

Obama Aide Defends Treating General as Waiter

What observers took to be a gaffe was vigorously defended by Obama adviser Valerie Jarret. At a dinner hosted by the Alfalfa Club, Jarret asked a passing uniformed general to “bring me another glass of wine.”

“They’re called ‘service men’ for Pete’s sake,” Jarret argued. “I’m a high-ranking advisor to their Commander-in-Chief. If I ask for something I should be served. It’s not like I’m asking them to take a bullet for me, although I believe it would be their duty to honor such a request.”

CPUSA Calls State-of the-Union Speech “Best Ever”

The US Communist Party website called President Barack Obama’s recent “State-of-the-Union” speech “the best ever by a US President. President Obama’s grasp of economics was remarkably free of the usual capitalist nonsense that typically spews forth at such occasions. His call for government direction of investments in green technology evidenced an insight not seen since Stalin’s last five-year plan. Comrades, the day that true social justice comes to America cannot be far away.”

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