Satire From ‘The Onion”

U.S. Flag Recalled After Causing 143 Million Deaths

April 13, 2010 | ISSUE 46•15
* via @TheOnion – U.S. Flag Recalled After Causing 143 Million Deaths

WASHINGTON—Citing a series of fatal malfunctions dating back to 1777, flag manufacturer Annin & Company announced Monday that it would be recalling all makes and models of its popular American flag from both foreign and domestic markets.

Representatives from the nation’s leading flag producer claimed that as many as 143 million deaths in the past two centuries can be attributed directly to the faulty U.S. models, which have been utilized extensively since the 18th century in sectors as diverse as government, the military, and public education.

“It has come to our attention that, due to the inherent risks and hazards it poses, the American flag is simply unfit for general use,” said Annin & Company president Ronald Burman, who confirmed that the number of flag-related deaths had noticeably spiked since 2003. “I would like to strongly urge all U.S. citizens: If you have an American flag hanging in your home or place of business, please discontinue using it immediately.”

Added Burman, “The last thing we would want is for more innocent men and women around the world to die because of our product.”

Millions of U.S. flag–related injuries and fatalities have been reported over a 230-year period in locations as far flung as Europe, Cuba, Korea, Gettysburg, PA, the Philippines, and Iraq. In addition, the company found that U.S. flag exports to Vietnam during the late 1960s and early 1970s resulted in hundreds of thousands of deaths, a clear sign that there was something seriously wrong with its product.

Despite fears about the flag’s safety—especially when improperly used or manipulated in ways not originally intended—sales continued unabated over the years, potentially putting billions of unsuspecting people in danger.

“At first, we wanted one of our flags in every home in America,” Burman said. “Unfortunately, the practical applications of this product are far outnumbered by the risks it presents. Millions have died needlessly, and when you ask people why, they point to the flag.”

Unfortunate casualties of Old Glory’s near-continuous 230-year use.

Added Burman, “Frankly, we should have pulled it off the market decades ago.”

Studies conducted by the Annin & Company research and development department revealed that faulty U.S. flags have caused more than just injuries and deaths. During the mid-1950s, the flags were found to have the bizarre side effect of causing fear, paranoia, and hysterical behavior among millions of Americans. This was dismissed as an isolated event until September 2001, when similar symptoms reemerged on a massive scale.

As hazardous as the flags may be on their own, Annin & Company officials claimed the products become even more dangerous when used in conjunction with other common household items.

“When combined with alcohol, excessive patriotism, grief, or well-intentioned but ultimately misguided ideals, U.S. flags transform into ticking time bombs, just waiting to go off,” Burman said.

Manufacturers are addressing the flag’s unsafe and potentially lethal alignment of stars and stripes by designing a revised model that they hope will cut down on deaths in the United States and overseas, where experts say the flag is nearly 1,000 times as deadly.

In the meantime, Annin & Company is advising all Americans to either ship their flags back to the manufacturer or, if no time permits, dispose of them in an efficient manner.

“I understand that people might be reluctant to stop using a product they have found to be reliable over the years,” Burman told reporters. “But I can’t in good conscience allow them to use something I know to be dangerous. We’ll try to make adjustments soon and come up with something that benefits everybody rather than hurting them.”

Added Burman, “In the interim, I would recommend that all Americans switch to the Canadian flag, which seems to be working just fine.”

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Army To Court Martial “Birther”

Army to court martial ‘birther’ officer
Tuesday, April 13, 2010 4:10 PM by Mark Murray

From NBC’s Jim Miklaszewski and Mark Murray
U.S. military officials tell NBC News that the U.S. Army will court martial a lieutenant colonel who refuses to deploy to Afghanistan because he considers orders from President Obama to be “illegal.”

Army doctor Lt. Col. Terry Lakin believes Obama does not meet the constitutional requirements to be president and commander-in-chief, because he believes (incorrectly) that Obama wasn’t born in the United States.

Lakin refused this week to report to Fort Campbell, KY for deployment to Afghanistan, but instead showed up at the Pentagon, where he was confronted by his brigade Commander Col. Gordon Roberts, a Vietnam Medal of Honor recipient.

Lakin was informed by Roberts that he would face court martial, and his Pentagon building pass and government laptop computer were seized.

Is The Geico Gecko A Tea Party Crasher?

by Matt Kibbe

Why would the voice of Geico Insurance (“Save $50 dollars or more…”) attack the staff and followers of FreedomWorks as “mentally retarded?” Does he really think that the good men and women who make up the tea party movement – mothers and daughters, grandparents and grandchildren – are all potential murderers that will inevitably “actually kill someone?”

geico

Better yet, how many of these “mentally retarded” killers opted to save $50 dollars or more on their car insurance.

Last week, the FreedomWorks press department received a voicemail from a man identifying himself as Lance Baxter. This is what Lance has to say:

Click to Listen: Lance Baxter’s Voicemail: MSG02713.WAV

We called back to verify Lance’s identity. He said he was busy, but thanked us for the call and said he’d call back. When he didn’t, we followed up to make sure his question had been answered:

Click to Listen: Adam Brandon confirms the caller: MSG02754.WAV

Lance Baxter (AKA D.C. Douglas) is a noted voiceover actor. When he is not making creepy harassing calls to groups like FreedomWorks, he is the voice at the end of the Geico commercials.

Feel free to contact Lance. He was so kind to provide his number in the voicemail. Call his employer too. The customer service line for Geico is 800.871.3000.

Let them know that you, in fact, are not a mentally retarded killer, but that you are now in the market for car insurance.

Empathy And The Supreme Court

by Jonah Goldberg

If you don’t mind, I’m going to skip the preliminary bouts over which party is more hypocritical for switching its views on Supreme Court nominees. Democrats now insist that decency and precedent require Republicans to green-light anyone President Obama nominates to replace John Paul Stevens, and Republicans insist that there’s nothing wrong with them adopting the tactics and standards advocated by Democrats — including then-Sen. Obama — when George W. Bush was in office.

Instead, I’d like to get to the heart of the matter. Obama and the vast majority of Senate Democrats believe that Lady Justice should peek from under the blindfold every now and then.

Obama opposed both of President Bush’s Supreme Court appointees, John Roberts and Samuel Alito, presumably because they lacked what he called the “quality of empathy, of understanding and identifying with people’s hopes and struggles.” And in his run for the presidency, Obama said in 2007, “We need somebody who’s got the heart — the empathy — to recognize what it’s like to be a young teenage mom. The empathy to understand what it’s like to be poor or African American or gay or disabled or old — and that’s the criteria by which I’ll be selecting my judges.”

According to Obama — a former law instructor — in 95 percent of the cases, precedent and the law are clear enough for judges to go with the rules, but in the last 5 percent, judges have got to have a heart that bleeds for certain kinds of people.

Sean Hannity FREE

Last week, the president offered a more populist spin, saying he wants a nominee who “knows that in a democracy, powerful interests must not be allowed to drown out the voices of ordinary citizens.” The Associated Press calls this a “fight-for-the-little-guy sensibility.”

According to Obama and countless other liberals, this sort of compassion in the law is “pragmatic” because it pays heed to the real world and real people as opposed to legalistic abstractions such as impartial justice. As former Boston Globe columnist Ellen Goodman put it last year: “I’ve never been sure why Lady Justice wore a blindfold as part of her permanent wardrobe. Yes, it’s supposed to be a symbol of impartiality. But it does limit her vision a bit.” For Goodman, the best judges reject the “myth” of impartiality.

Of course impartial justice is an abstraction, but it isn’t so much a myth as an ideal. Since we are all designed from the crooked timber of humanity, we can only approximate perfect justice.

What I don’t understand is why we should abandon an ideal simply because it is unattainable. If I can’t be a perfect husband, should I get a divorce? If an umpire can’t call each game flawlessly, should he stop trying? Maybe for 95 percent of pitches the ump should call ’em straight, but for the other 5 percent he should give the black or gay batters the benefit of the doubt?

In a country this vast, diverse and dynamic, any judicial conception of the little guy is bound to confuse more than it clarifies.

For instance, liberals who like Stevens’ rulings insist he understands the plight of the downtrodden, despite the fact that the nearly 90-year-old justice was born rich and has served on the court for almost 35 years, becoming more liberal as he has become more distant from life as lived by the little guys.

Meanwhile, Clarence Thomas was born dirt poor and black in rural Georgia and spends his vacations exploring America in an RV. But those same liberals insist he doesn’t understand poverty and race the way Stevens does. How do they know? Because they don’t like his rulings.

In other words, the empathy-for-the-little-guy standard is simply a Trojan horse for an approach just as abstract as any endorsed by the right. In fact, I would say it’s more abstract because at least there’s a text conservatives invoke — the Constitution — rather than the indefinable feeling of “empathy.”

Unless the plight of every gay, black, poor, old or disabled American is the same, then coming into court favoring a specific category of human being is nothing more than state-sanctioned prejudice.

The benefit of the ideal of impartial justice is that it provides a standard by which judges aren’t asked to rule by prejudice. We’ll never fully get there, but I don’t think we should stop trying.

Published at Town Hall

Are We A Two Class Society?

by Phyllis Schlafly

Income tax day, April 15, 2010, now divides Americans into two almost equal classes: those who pay for the services provided by government and the freeloaders. The percentage of Americans who will pay no federal income taxes at all for 2009 has risen to 47 percent.

That isn’t the worst of it. The bottom 40 percent not only pay no income tax, but the government sends them cash or benefits financed by the taxes dutifully paid by those who do pay income tax.

The outright cash handouts include the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), which can amount to as much as $5,657 a year to low-income families. Other financial benefits can include child tax credits, welfare, food stamps, WIC (Women, Infants, Children), housing subsidies, unemployment benefits, Medicaid, S-CHIP and other programs.

Sean Hannity FREE

This is both a massive transfer of wealth and a soak-the-rich racket. The top 10 percent pay 73 percent of the income taxes collected by the federal government.

Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., has become the congressional leader in explaining details of the recently passed Health Control Law. He says that, based on Congressional Budget Office figures, taxes to pay for Obamacare will have to skyrocket to an 88 percent income tax rate within 30 years.

Although all wage-earners help fund their own Social Security and Medicare benefits, only federal income taxpayers pay the costs of running the federal government, and are responsible for paying off our $12.8 trillion national debt and for bailing out Social Security, Medicare, and Fannie and Freddie when they collapse.

Even the recently passed Health Control Law contains financial subsidies to unmarried couples that are denied to married couples. This rewards the unmarried women who were the second largest demographic constituency that voted for Barack Obama for president in 2008.

When Obama told Joe the Plumber he wanted to “spread the wealth around,” Obama wasn’t kidding. That’s exactly what he is now doing: taking money from taxpayers and spreading it around to non-taxpayers.

Nor was Obama kidding when, on the eve of his election, he threatened, “We are going to fundamentally transform the United States of America.” Converting the earnings of American workers into handouts for those who voted for Obama in 2008 is certainly a fundamental transformation.

Obama’s promise not to raise taxes on middle-Americans is already down the drain. Obama brought former Federal Reserve Board Chairman Paul Volcker out of obscurity to serve as chairman of an Economic Recovery Advisory Board and announce that we need to raise taxes.

Volcker was blunt in predicting that the new tax increase will be a Value-Added Tax (VAT). That’s the tax European socialists love because its rates can be hidden and frequently raised, while producing rivers of revenue for the bureaucrats.

Volcker claimed that a VAT is “not a toxic idea.” It really is — Charles Krauthammer called it “the ultimate cash cow” because it transfers so much money from individuals to the government.

Having already co-opted the executive and legislative branches of government for his fundamental transformation, Obama now wants to use the judiciary, too. The retirement of Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens gives him this opportunity.

On Jan. 18, 2001m on Public Radio WBEZ-FM, Chicago, Obama complained that the Earl Warren Court “wasn’t that radical” because “it didn’t break free from the essential constraints placed by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution. … The Supreme Court never ventured into the issues of redistribution of wealth and serve more basic issues of political and economic justice in this society.”

Calling for the Supreme Court to participate in the “redistribution of wealth” is shockingly revolutionary. Any judicial nominee who agrees with Obama’s theory should be rejected.

Obama’s game plan to “fundamentally transform” America is based on both Saul Alinsky’s modus operandi for community organizing and on the Cloward-Piven spending strategy. Saul Alinsky was a famous Chicago radical, and Richard Cloward and Frances Fox Piven were less-well-known Columbia University sociologists.

The goal of all three of these agitators was the overthrow of the private enterprise system. The Alinsky strategy is to use community organizing and mass demonstrations by those he labeled the “Have Nots,” and the Cloward-Piven strategy is to overload the bureaucracy with enormous demands for entitlements, thereby causing a financial crisis.

Obama used Alinsky methods by taxpayer financing of ACORN and subprime mortgages. Obama used Cloward-Piven methods by massive deficit spending for entitlements for more and more millions of people.

Fortunately, hardworking, taxpaying Americans are beginning to understand how they are being ripped off and rushed into bankruptcy. The one way to save ourselves and our country is to elect a Congress in November pledged to stop the spending.

Published at townhall.com

Are We Going To Go The Way Of The Moocher?

A MOOCHER
By
Neal Boortz
@ April 14, 2010 8:23 AM

Barack Obama and the Democrats are so eager to make America more like Europe. With our current spending levels and our soon-to-be taxation techniques – the value-added tax – they are well on their way to solidifying a full-fledged moocher society. Which leads me to this …. coming soon to the United States:

The Davey family’s £815-a-week state handouts pay for a four-bedroom home, top-of-the-range mod cons and two vehicles including a Mercedes people carrier.

Father-of-seven Peter gave up work because he could make more living on benefits.

Yet he and his wife Claire are still not happy with their lot.

With an eighth child on the way, they are demanding a bigger house, courtesy of the taxpayer.

Mrs Davey has never had a full-time job while her 35-year-old husband gave up his post in administration nine years ago after realising they would be better off living off the state.

At their semi on the Isle of Anglesey, the family have a 42in flatscreen television in the living room with Sky TV at £50 a month, a Wii games console, three Nintendo DS machines and a computer – not to mention four mobile phones.

With their income of more than £42,000 a year, they run an 11-seater minibus and the seven-seat automatic Mercedes.

But according to the Daveys they have nothing to be thankful for.

‘It doesn’t bother me that taxpayers are paying for me to have a large family,’ added Mrs Davey.

‘We couldn’t afford to care for our children without benefits, but as long as they have everything they need, I don’t think I’m selfish.

‘Most of the parents at our kids’ school are on benefits.’

She added: ‘I don’t feel bad about being subsidised by people who are working. I’m just working with the system that’s there.

‘If the government wants to give me money, I’m happy to take it. We get what we’re entitled to. I don’t put in anything because I don’t pay taxes, but if I could work I would.’

If these moochers lived in America they would be voting Democrat. Perhaps Pelosi will send her fancy taxpayer-funded airplane to pick the whole lot of them up and move them over here.

Story is from the Daily Mail in the UK.