By John Semmens: Semi-News — A Satirical Look at Recent News
U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu vigorously assailed what he labeled “the GOP’s simplistic approach to energy policy. They are fixated on the notion that increased supplies are the answer. They would have the American people believe that increased supplies will improve availability of gasoline. Well, I’ve got news for them. Americans aren’t as stupid as they think.”
Chu mocked Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich’s promise to roll back gasoline prices to $2.50 per gallon, calling it “an attempt to turn back to the failed policies of the past. The crux of this Administration’s efforts on the energy front have been aimed at dampening demand for fossil fuels. If we can get the price of a gallon of gas up to the $7 or $8 level that has been attained in Europe I’m confident that demand will fall to more manageable levels in this country.”
Fuel price trends seem to indicate that the Obama Administration’s efforts to boost the cost of burning fossil fuels has been at least partially successful. The price of a gallon of gasoline averaged $1.80 when Obama took office in January of 2009. Recently, the price per gallon has reached nearly double that amount. Administration experts say that a price of $5 per gallon by Labor Day is achievable if present policies can be maintained.
“It’s not as if we haven’t been trying to provide options,” Chu added. “For the near term, we’re subsidizing the Volt so people can drive responsibly. And for the long term, we’re investing in high-speed rail and public transit. Ultimately, the need to own and operate one’s own vehicle will become a thing of the past.”
The Secretary expressed confidence that “voters would appreciate the President’s vision of a future where unnecessary travel is brought to a minimum and the vast majority of Americans will rely on safe and environmentally friendly public carriers for the trips they absolutely have to make.”
Chu’s confidence was echoed by Democratic National Committee Chairwoman, Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz (Fla). “All the Republicans have to offer is more drilling,” she pointed out. “The abundance of supplies and low prices that they preach are out-of-step with our long-term goal of weaning this nation off of fossil fuels and the unnecessary travel they enable.”
Over a Million US Families Living on Less than $2 a Day
A US Census Bureau study indicated that an estimated 1.46 million families in the United States are now living on less than $2 per day. This is more than twice as many as the estimated 636,000 families that were living at a like standard in 1996.
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius hailed the report as “a tribute to the affirmative steps taken by this Administration to lower the cost of living. Critics have been quick to harp on the negatives of high unemployment, declining wages, and falling home values as if that were the total picture. We’re hoping that this study opens peoples’ eyes to the other side of the equation.”
“Also, let’s not discount the environmental benefits of living on less,” Sebelius urged. “The more people we can get to live like this the less our economy will have to produce. That means fewer smoke-belching factories and less road traffic. A lower need for materials means we can stop raping nature and return more land to a wilderness status. And let’s not forget the gains in leisure time attained by every person that no longer has to work to produce the excessive amount of unnecessary stuff that a so-called affluent society demands.”
That minorities make up a disproportionately large fraction of those living so parsimoniously was held to be encouraging by the Secretary. “These are the fastest growing segments of the population,” she pointed out. “The trend foretells of a future where the majority will live as frugally as only a minority does now.”
PA Judge Rules Muslims Have Right to Assault those Who Offend Islam
A Pennsylvania man walking in a parade dressed as a zombie Muhammad next to a man dressed as a zombie Pope was physically assaulted by a recent Muslim immigrant for insulting Islam. Instead of facing jail time or being assessed for damages, the attacker was absolved by Judge Mark Martin.
Martin, himself a Muslim, brushed aside the victim’s First Amendment rights asserting that “freedom of speech does not entitle anyone to commit blasphemy against another’s religious beliefs. I am quite familiar with the Koran. Nowhere does it state that Muhammad arose and walked among the dead. For him to be portrayed that way, especially in jest, is a grave insult to members of the Islamic faith.”
The victim was informed that “he got off easy. According to sharia law the assailant was within his rights to kill the blasphemer. Consequently, his claim to recompense to cover his medical bills is unwarranted.”
Presidential Apology Fails
President Obama’s apology for the burning of Korans by US troops stationed in Afghanistan failed to stem riots that have already claimed numerous lives, including two US soldiers.
“The burning was inadvertent,” Obama insisted. “Troops ignorant of the document’s demands that Muslims have a religious obligation to kill Jews, apostates, and unbelievers thought they were burning terrorist propaganda. We have been trying to reeducate our servicemen, but it is difficult to break through to people raised to believe that ‘turning the other cheek’ represents a religious ideal. They cannot conceive that a holy book might command the faithful to slay those who offend their beliefs.”
A spokesman for the Taliban called the apology “totally inadequate. The Koran is the word of God. No one may desecrate it. The act of these unbelievers is punishable by death. We call upon all Muslims everywhere to attack, kill, or capture any American who is within their grasp in retaliation for this outrage.”
“Taxes Are what You Pay for the Privilege of Being an American” Says Geithner
US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner advised taxpayers to “quit complaining, taxes are what you pay for the privilege of being an American.”
“You know, there are places in the world where the government can take everything you have,” Geithner observed. “The fact that you get to keep anything here ought to inspire a greater appreciation for your own government’s forbearance.”
The Secretary warned those he called the “one-percenters,” that “government is the only thing preventing the other 99% from murdering you and looting your property. The protection we offer ought to be worth whatever it costs. Quibbling over the price of this protection may be an unwise course.”
DC Resident Fined for Not Recycling Newspapers
D.C. resident Patricia White has received fines, totaling $2000 for not recycling old newspapers. The Department of Public Works levied the fines after rooting through her trash and finding old newspapers in it.
White tried explaining that she didn’t recycle the papers because she had used them in her cat’s litter box. “It’s not that I don’t support the idea of recycling,” White said. “I recycle plenty of other stuff. But I thought who wants to sort through cat sh*t. For health reasons alone I figured it would be better to just trash the newspapers I used in the litter box.”
Judge Audrey Jenkins denied White’s appeal of the fines. “Ms. White’s notions as to what might be healthy have no bearing,” Jenkins insisted. “The law says newspapers go in the recycle bin. It is her duty to get them there. Her selfish desire to save money by creating her own kitty litter is denying legitimate businesses the right to sell her commercially appropriate kitty litter. And the fines help fund the city’s trash inspection system.”
Lest Ms. White opt to start dumping her cat’s litter box full of shredded newspapers into the recycle bin in an effort to comply, the Judge cautioned her that “it is Ms. White’s obligation to separate out any non-recyclable components. She must not allow any cat feces to make it into the recycle bin. Inspectors will be watching.”
White House Refuses to Comply with Another Subpoena
Citing what it called a key precedent recently established by a Georgia case, the Obama Administration declined to submit documents subpoenaed by the House Energy and Commerce Committee investigating the loss of over $500 million of taxpayers’ money on the Administration’s Solyndra loan guarantee.
“If you will recall,” Press Secretary Jay Carney told Committee Chairman Representative Fred Upton (R-Mich), “the Administration’s refusal to provide documents or even to appear in answer to a subpoena was upheld by Judge Milihi’s decision in the President’s favor.”
“It’s a separation of powers issue,” Carney explained. “The president was independently elected by the American people. He is answerable only to the American people. No judge, no congressman, no one, has the standing to challenge anything he does unless he deigns to acquiesce in the inquiry. If Mr. Upton isn’t satisfied he can try to convince his peers to use the only Constitutional option available to Congress and impeach the President. Then the President might respond.”
A Satirical Look at Recent News