Senator John McCain (R-Ariz) assailed fellow Senators Rand Paul (R-Ken) and Ted Cruz (R-Tex) as “wacko birds” for participating in a 13-hour long filibuster against the confirmation of CIA Director nominee John Brennan. The filibusterers vowed to continue until the Obama Administration answered a question they had about possible drone strikes on American citizens on American soil.
McCain maintained that “the question is an impertinent violation of the separation of powers. The decision to use deadly force against this country's enemies is the sole prerogative of the Commander-in-Chief. Senator Paul has no business meddling.”
The Arizona Senator argued that his stance was confirmed by the fact that it was he and eleven other “important Senators who were invited to dine with President Obama while Paul and his accomplice were blathering in the Senate. I think we have to question the sanity of someone who would prefer to rant in the Senate chamber over an evening of fine dining with the President.”
Senator Lindsey Graham echoed McCain's sentiments insisting that “the crucial interactions of our government are settled quietly among men of stature. It should be readily apparent that our 'sit-down' with the President carried more weight for the fate of the nation than a couple of neophyte senators droning on in an empty room.”
Senator Paul lamented “the troubling implications of colleagues who prefer schmoozing with the President to taking a stand against undermining citizens' Constitutional rights to due process. The parallel with how Roman senators acquiesced in the demise of their republic is disturbing.”
Whether the filibuster was effective or not remains to be seen. Senator Paul did achieve his immediate aim of getting the Administration on record as eschewing any authority to use drones to execute Americans on American soil. The value of this statement, however, is undetermined. Obama has a well-documented history of incongruity between his words and deeds.
In related news, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif) said “the President should stop wasting his time trying to be nice to the Republicans. He doesn't need them. He's the Commander-in-Chief. That's all the authority he really needs to rule this country. He needs to use it more forcefully.”
Administration's Sequester Antics Strain Credibility
In an effort to try to make the sequestration as painful as possible, The Administration announced that the White House would be closed to tourists for the duration. White House Visitors Office Director, Ellie Schafer explains that “in this time of fiscal crisis everyone must do his or her fair share of sacrifice.”
The estimated annual savings to be attained by canceling visitors' access to tours of the White House is a little over $900,000. This is less than the million dollars the Administration spent on a single Presidential golf outing with Tiger Woods in February.
Schafer contended that the comparison is “unfair. The cancellation of one Presidential recreational outing would place the sacrifice all on one person. Closing down the tours spreads the pain over tens of thousands of people each of whom suffers a small amount. We think it's more equitable for a lot of people to give up a little than for one person to give up a lot, especially when the President has already sacrificed so much for the country.”
The sequester belt-tightening has skipped over Ms. Schafer who received a 25% salary increase this past year. The three White House calligraphers who collectively take home nearly $300,000 a year have also been spared because “hand-crafted invitations are essential to upholding the majesty of the office.”
NYC Mayor Insists Documented Incompetence of Citizens Validates His Actions
The case for Mayor Michael Bloomberg's “nanny-state” style of governance received a boost from a just-released study revealing that 80% of New York City's public school graduates can't read.
“I think this pretty much vindicates what I've been trying to do,” said a euphoric Bloomberg. “The demonstrated incompetence of those who graduate helps illustrate the magnitude of the problem when you realize that the majority of those who start high school in this city drop out before finishing.”
“Let's face it, the average New Yorker is a moron,” Bloomberg elaborated. “These people are obviously unqualified to decide what to eat and drink, how much sleep or exercise they need, what to listen to or watch on TV. They need my help. Unlike my pusillanimous peers, I'm not afraid to take the reins and govern for benefit of those who can't run their own lives.”
Bloomberg said he is working on a program to use the City's extensive surveillance system to spot those up and about past a healthy bedtime hour and guide police to interdict offenders. “It's not as airtight as a nightly 'bed-check,' but it's the best we can do with current resources,” Bloomberg acknowledged. “We're also looking at ways to use this system to organize some supervised callisthenics for those out on the streets during daylight hours. If Muslims can be called to prayer for a few minutes at intervals during the day surely we can call on people to do a few jumping-jacks and squat-thrusts for their health and fitness on a similar schedule.”
Democrats Argue for Fairer Allocation of Nation's Collective Wealth
Both President Obama and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif) labeled GOP demands that the federal deficit be reduced by focusing on cuts in government spending “narrow minded.”
“By insisting on looking only at federal spending they're ignoring 75% of the economy,” the President complained. “America produces $15 trillion of output per year. The federal government only spends $3.5 trillion of that. What we're saying is that the fairest way to cut the deficit is to take a slice out of the bigger piece of the pie that currently is allocated to the private sector.”
“Every dollar we let the private sector take out of the nation's GDP is a dollar that could be used to reduce the federal deficit,” Obama explained. “By siding with those who are already hogging the bigger share of the collective wealth of America, the GOP is siding with selfishness over community.”
“The Republicans' argument that the private sector is earning its wealth overlooks the fact that the government is letting them do this,” Pelosi maintained. “The amount of the nation's wealth that is allowed to flow to the private sector is a discretionary decision. The GOP's attempt to assert that a person who produces it has some sort of claim on the output elevates greed over need as a matter of policy.”
Obama and Pelosi expressed optimism that “once the American people realize that the entire wealth of the nation can be redistributed by government action they will either press the Republicans to cooperate in the process or sweep them aside into the dustbin of history.”
The idea that government can make better use of the nation's resources is cast into doubt by a recent Inspector General's report showing that most of the $63 billion in taxpayer money spent to reconstruct Iraq has been wasted. Part of the money went to overpay for supplies like the $900 paid for a switch that retails for $7 and the $80 paid for pipe that retails for less than $2. Other funds went for construction projects never completed that now lie in ruins. Nearly a third of the $63 billion seems to have simply disappeared without a trace.
Actress to Run for Senate
Hollywood cutie Ashley Judd is preparing to run for the Kentucky senate seat currently held by Mitch McConnell (R). The 44 year-old actress has no prior political experience, but exudes confidence she'll win.
“I'm pretty sure I'll have the edge in the swimsuit and evening gown portions of the competition,” Judd bragged. “Talent-wise, I'm prepping by taking singing lessons from my Mom. The one iffy part I'm facing is the 'poise question.' There are so many worthy causes I'd like to promote during my reign that it”ll be hard to pick one.”
Judd speculated that “McConnell's ugliness is a definite plus for me. He's old and kind of lumpy with no sex appeal. While I may be a bit past my prime for Hollywood at 44, McConnell's way past his 'sell by' date.”
Whether Judd's glamor and sex-appeal will be able to overcome the ill-will sparked her previous campaign to replace coal-fired power-generation with the free distribution of government-subsidized D-cell batteries remains to be seen. Coal mining is a major industry in Kentucky.
Dem Says Better Informed Criminals Is Best Defense against Rape
Seeking to counter a potentially powerful argument against gun-control, Democratic Strategist Zerlina Maxwell contends that women arming themselves to fend off potential rapists isn't necessary.
“Urging women to take up arms is the wrong approach,” Maxwell said. “The primary responsibility lies with the men who commit rape. What we need to do is tell men not to rape women. We need to clearly communicate the message that rape is an inappropriate way to interact with women. Putting society's energy into disseminating this message would be our best investment toward solving this problem.” Maxwell cited the low educational achievement of most rapists as proof of “the great potential of an information-based approach.”