State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki lamented the perception that President Obama's foreign policy has been plagued by incoherence and inconsistency, saying that "President Obama doesn't give himself enough credit for what he's done around the world."
"Lesser minds are having difficulty comprehending the sophisticated nuances of the President's world view," Psaki contended. "They see the resurgence of al-Qaeda as evidence of failure in the war on terror. What they fail to understand is that if the United States is not perceived as threatening, that it is no longer their enemy, they will have no reason to attack us. And unlike during the Bush Administration, there have been no terrorist attacks on America since President Obama introduced his 'smile turneth away wrath' approach."
Some members of the media found Psaki's perspective "laughable," however, former Vermont Governor Howard Dean came to her defense. "There is no question that there are vast differences between the mental capabilities of different people," Dean said. "President Obama is at the pinnacle of the human pyramid. It stands to reason that persons further down would have a hard time trying to figure out his thinking."
As an example of President Obama's superhuman mental accomplishments Dean cited "the transformation he has wrought in Libya. For 40 years Gaddafi ruled that land with an iron fist, but with the skilled intervention carried out under President Obama's orders a democratic and peaceful regime has supplanted his tyranny."
According to Dean, the fact that few would be inclined to agree with his assessment "only bolsters the case for President Obama's genius. Historically, geniuses have always stood out from the pack. Many have been pilloried and persecuted as President Obama is being pilloried and persecuted for his vision of a better world."
In related news, Secretary of State John Kerry labeled Edward Snowden a coward for refusing to return to the United States where he faces the threat of prosecution for divulging that the US Government spies on its own citizens. "I think that a person who has objections to what his Government is doing has an obligation to air these grievances face-to-face like I did as a young naval officer in order to expose the war atrocities being committed by US troops in Vietnam," Kerry said. The Secretary's comparison may be inapt, though. While Kerry may have committed crimes, the Government never sought to try him—a circumstance that Kerry attributed to "both Nixon's cowardice and the irrefutable truth of what I had to say."
Pelosi Explains Why VA Secret Waiting List Isn't an Obama Scandal
First of all, the contention that the Veterans Administration used secret waiting lists to conceal lengthy delays in treatments is disproved by the fact that everyone knows about them," House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif) argued. "To say it's a secret when there are hundreds of stories in newspapers, magazines, TV and radio is just more of the same old Republican dirty tricks."
"Then to say that somehow President Obama is at fault is simply unfair," Pelosi continued. "As anyone who has seen his recent press conference knows he only found out about it from media reports just like the rest of us did. Just because he is the President doesn't mean everything that goes on in his Administration is his fault. The Government is a vast enterprise that is far too big for any one person to manage."
Confronted with the fact that Senator Obama criticized the VA when George Bush was president, Pelosi insisted that "awareness of the mistakes of others is different. The objective in 2008 was to convince voters to make a change. That goal was accomplished and reconfirmed in 2012, which, I think, shows that President Obama was able to focus on and achieve the more important task."
"Now that President Obama has courageously and graciously accepted Shinseki's resignation I am hopeful that we can put this ugly episode behind us," Pelosi added. "Once again the President has been failed by a subordinate's ineptitude. That he still continues to persevere for a country that may be unworthy of his greatness shows a strength of character beyond what anyone else in similar circumstances could have shown."
In related news, VA officials testifying before Congress were accused of "stonewalling" by Representative Tim Huelskamp (R-Kan). Thomas Lynch, Assistant Deputy Undersecretary for Health and Clinical Operations, claimed that "disclosing Government secrets to a rogue Congress would be both insubordinate and possibly treasonous. The ulterior motive of those prying into VA affairs is to undermine our nation's Commander-in-Chief. I cannot allow myself to become a party to this kind of disloyal and insurrectionist activity."
Clinton Calls Benghazi Probe "Unpatriotic"
In what appears to have the character of a preemptive strike in furtherance of her anticipated 2016 presidential campaign, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton blasted GOP efforts to open a Congressional investigation of 2012's massacre of four Americans in Benghazi as "unpatriotic."
"For the sake of argument, let's say that maybe some mistakes were made," Clinton said. "Wouldn't a public airing of these mistakes reflect poorly on the US Government? And wouldn't making the Government look bad give aid and comfort to this country's enemies? Isn't this defined as treason in the US Constitution?"
"When you consider that I already conducted an investigation of this tragic event, the egregious redundancy of the GOP effort should be clear," Clinton asserted. "My investigation showed that nothing we could say or do at this point would make any difference to the Americans who died on that day in Benghazi. I conveyed these findings in testimony to Congress last year. I answered their questions. For the Republicans to say that there are still unanswered questions merely because they refuse to accept the answers I gave is deceitful."
Senator Refuses to Debate Opponent
Senator Thad Cochran (R-Miss) continues to decline invitations to debate his Republican primary opponent Chris McDaniel on the grounds that "this is a race for the United States Senate, not a debating society."
"The voters of Mississippi have had 40 years to get to know my views," Cochran pointed out. "I don't see how a few hours of debate at this late date could provide a significant augmentation of what I've said and done in my service to the citizens of this fine state over this lengthy period."
"By appearing on the same platform with my less-experienced challenger I would be elevating his stature—making him seem a viable alternative," the Senator observed. "Why should I do that? LBJ didn't debate Goldwater in the 1964 election and he went on to crush him winning more than 60% of the vote. I'm the sitting senator. McDaniel is the naif crying for attention. I think this contrast alone is enough to give voters a clear idea of who they should want as their senator."
Obama Economy Continues to Under-Perform Expectations
For the 21st consecutive quarter the US economy has failed to live up to the Obama Administration's promised improvement. The revised GDP for the January-March period of 2014 showed a 1% decline. The vaunted recovery from the "Great Recession" remains elusive.
Jason Furman, Chairman of the President's Council of Economic Advisers, attributed the decline in GDP to "bad weather," which he blamed on "GOP resistance to the President's efforts to curb global climate change."
"In one sense, bad weather can just be bad luck," Furman suggested. "The Soviet economy was hammered year-after-year by an incredible streak of bad weather from the 1920s through the 1980s. If a country like the old USSR with a totally unified consensus on economic policy could suffer such misfortune, there ought to be more sympathy for President Obama's frustration with an uncooperative Congress."
"The real issue here is persistent GOP obstruction of the President's agenda," Furman maintained. "With each passing day the GOP's behavior is forcing him toward taking unilateral action to bypass their blockade. While those wed to strict adherence to Constitutionally delegated powers will complain, I, for one, will welcome this bold adventure into a new form of governance for this country."
Senator Pushes "Hate Speech" Surveillance Law
Senator Edward Markey (D-Mass) is pushing legislation (S-2219) that would empower the federal government to monitor all media to ferret out "hate speech."
"There is a large reservoir of bigotry in our population," Markey said. "If we are to stamp it out we need to know who is spreading these vile thoughts. While we can't listen in on everybody at this point we can access all communications passing over the Internet and airwaves."
The Senator denied his Bill is an invasion of privacy. "The Internet and the airwaves are in the public domain," Markey asserted. "In effect, this means that the Government owns these mediums and has both the right and the obligation to ensure that no hateful expressions are permitted on them. A necessary step to ensuring this is to find out who is abusing our communications systems for the purpose of fomenting hatred."
Currently, Markey has no co-sponsors for his legislation—a phenomenon he attributes to the "climate of fear that has been successfully nurtured by the purveyors of hate. If these people can intimidate members of Congress to spurn this vital legislation it should be obvious that it is needed more than ever."
Michelle Obama Vows Veto of Changes to School Lunch Menus
First Lady Michelle Obama says she will "veto" any effort by Republicans in Congress to grant local school districts discretion to deviate from her prescribed "healthy fare" food choices. "Obesity is a serious health threat and I have worked too long and hard to allow the gains I have achieved to be undermined by people suffering from nutritional ignorance," she declared.
School districts have sought freedom to diverge from the First Lady's program because many of their students refuse to eat what is served. Nonetheless, Michelle sees no reason to yield or compromise. "Even if it is true that some of their students won't eat what's good for them, I can't permit the substitution of unhealthy alternatives," she insisted. "If this means that some students go without lunch, well, is that really so bad? Kids today are way too fat. Missing one meal a day would probably benefit most of them."
Meanwhile, the lunches served to Michelle's daughters at the posh Sidwell Friends School deviate considerably from what she has decreed must be mandatory for public schools catering to the broader population.