By John Semmens: Semi-News — A Satirical Look at Recent News
President Obama pushed his Midwest “self pity” tour into new ground this past week with his claim that he has it harder than President Lincoln did.
“Everyone thinks that Lincoln had it tough,” Obama said. “But let’s not forget that his opposition was confined to one region of the country. Secessionists only controlled 11 states in the South. Today, I’m beset from all sides. Tea Party extremists operate in every state and control the government in a majority of them. We live in perilous times. The fate of the nation is at stake.”
The president said he is “waiting for those who want to destroy America to make their fatal ‘Fort Sumter mistake’—the one where they fire the ‘first shot’ that will enable me to rally loyal Americans to fight this threat to our way of life. Maybe it’ll be a state seceding from Obamacare. Maybe it’ll be the nomination of a person who accuses an official of the Government of treason. Whatever and whenever it is, I will not hesitate to use my authority to put down our nation’s enemies.”
Several Civil War historians characterized President Obama’s remarks as “laughable,” “ludicrous,” and “dangerous,” but did so anonymously for “fear on ending up on the President’s list of reputed enemies.” “Remember, Lincoln had a lot of his critics arrested,” one professor observed. “It looks like Obama is setting himself up to do the same.”
In related news, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney chastised Republican presidential candidate Texas Governor Rick Perry for implying that Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s promise to print as much money as we have to between now and 2013 might be treasonous. “I would remind Governor Perry that the FBI reports to the president, not to him,” Carney pointed out. “It is the president who decides who will or won’t be arrested for treason.”
City Shuts Down Ill Woman’s Yard Sale
A Salem, Oregon woman’s desperate efforts to raise funds to treat her bone cancer were stifled by City officials. Jan Cline had been holding weekly yard sales trading her possessions for the cash she needs to pay medical bills. City rules limit the number of yard sales per address to three per year.
Harden Callas, spokesman for the City’s Community Development Department urged people “to not lose sight of the bigger picture here. We know a lot of people are going to feel sympathetic toward Ms. Cline. But we can’t let her or anyone else put their own personal needs ahead of the community’s needs.”
“It’s a residential neighborhood,” Callas went on. “Allowing three yard sales a year is more than a generous concession to individual rights, if you ask me. It’s unfortunate that she sick, but if we bend the rules for her others will want exceptions too.”
Callas suggested that Cline “go on Medicaid. That way, she can keep all her stuff and let the government pay her medical bills.”
Poll Shows New Yorkers Disappointed in Obama
A poll of New York voters conducted by Siena College found that only 36% approve of President Obama’s job performance. This is a decline from last May’s 53% approval rating.
A comment from a Manhattan poll respondent cited the president’s “lack of focus.” “He keeps talking about creating jobs,” the respondent complained. “We don’t want wage slavery. We need to get paid. That’s why we elected him. What I want to know is where are our checks?”
Despite their disappointment with the President, New York voters still prefer him to any possible Republican contender. The poll shows that even former New York Mayor Rudi Giuliani loses to Obama by a 50-44 margin.
LA Mayor Calls for Repeal of Prop 13
Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa called for the state legislature to repeal California’s Proposition 13. Prop 13, the People’s Initiative to Limit Property Taxation, was enacted by voters in 1978. It restricts property taxes to 1% of full cash value and limits increases to 2% a year.
“It’s time for progressive to start thinking and acting big,” Villaraigosa said. “The government needs money. People who can afford to own property have more money than they need. We shouldn’t let a vote taken over 30 years ago stop us from extracting some of this excess wealth from property owners.”
Villaraigosa contrasted his “forward looking” approach to that of the “reactionary ideologues in the Tea Party,” and demanded that Democrats in Sacramento “act before it is too late.” “After the 2012 election the enemies of progressive policies may have the upper hand,” Villaraigosa warned. “If Republicans win, as seems likely, the assets and incomes of taxpayers may be out of our reach for a generation. We must make an effort to grab them now while we still have the chance.”
Food Stamp Record Hailed as Triumph
While most economists would see the record number of Americans currently receiving food stamps as a bad sign, the Obama Administration’s Secretary of Agriculture, Tom Vilsack, is touting it as a triumph for the president’s policies.
“The idea that people depending on the government to get fed is a bad thing reflects archaic thinking,” Vilsack maintained. “Our analysis shows that for every dollar we pay out in food stamp benefits, an additional $1.84 in economic activity is generated. From this it should be clear that the problem isn’t that too many are on food stamps. The problem is that there are too few. If we had 300 million recipients instead of only 45 million the economy would be in a lot better shape.”
Vilsack says that the “success” of the food stamp program argues for extending the concept to include “clothing stamps.” “Food is only one leg of the tradition ‘three-legged stool’ of life,” Vilsack said.
“People also need clothing and shelter, too. People shouldn’t be forced to wear worn out, obsolete, or out-dated clothing just because they can’t afford to buy new clothes. If the government were to give everyone ‘clothing stamps’ they’d be able to help stimulate this sector of the economy as well.”
Credit for “Texas Miracle” Disputed
One of the factors boosting Texas Governor Rick Perry’s presidential bid is the relative economic success of his home state. Statistics indicate that the Texas economy is generating a disproportionate share of the net new jobs created. Perry has argued that his policies deserve some of the credit.
Democratic National Committee Chairwoman, Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla), challenged Perry’s claim and argues that President Obama deserves the lion’s share of the credit.
“Look, Texas is an oil producing state,” Wasserman Schultz pointed out. “When oil prices are high more profits are going to accrue to oil producers. More profits mean expansion and more employment. Well, oil prices didn’t get high by accident. President Obama has done more to accomplish that than Perry ever could have done.”
“It was President Obama who placed a moratorium on off-shore drilling,” Wasserman Schultz said. “It is President Obama who is slowing on-shore drilling. It is President Obama who is impeding the construction of new refineries. All of these actions reduce access to supplies that could’ve competed with supplies from Texas. So, if the people of Texas want to thank someone for their improved economy it should be President Obama.”
Wasserman Schultz’s take was echoed by leftist economist Paul Krugman who also added Texas’ “lax regulatory climate” as another factor. “It’s the old ‘fallacy of composition’ argument we are seeing here,” Krugman asserted. “Texas was able to benefit from other states’ comparatively stricter regulatory climate. Businesses could escape to Texas’ laxer environment, boosting that state’s economic growth. A more uniform regulatory regime, which the President is striving to implement, would prevent individual states from exploiting the kind of comparative advantage Texas has enjoyed in the regulatory sphere.”
Obama Weighing Pardon for Illegals
Frustrated with Congress’ inability or unwillingness to act on immigration reform, President Obama is said to be weighing granting all persons in the country illegally a blanket pardon.
Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) praised the idea. “The Constitution gives the president the power to pardon anyone he wants,” Durbin contended. “He doesn’t need to get Congress’ permission before he acts to grant amnesty to those illegally in the country.”
Representative Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill) concurred with Durbin’s interpretation, calling it “a victory not just for immigrants, but for the American people as a whole. Making these immigrants legal residents will help boost the vote totals for the Democratic Party and offset the advantage gained by the president’s enemies in the Tea Party from the economic misfortunes that have burdened the Democratic Party’s election prospects.”
A Satirical Look at Recent News