Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Gitmo Welfare Queens

Attorney General Holder says some Gitmo detainees may end up being released in the U.S.; Director of National Intelligence Blair adds that "we need some sort of assistance for them to start a new life."

Gitmo Welfare Queens
By Asher Embry

I’ve got a new neighbor who’s just moving in.
His life in our country’s about to begin.
He’s got an unusual work resume.
Last place of “employment” - Guantanamo Bay.

So, what should I make of this fellow next door.
Can I really believe he’s combative no more?
His terror war’s off ‘cause Obama decrees,
A “Contingency Operation Overseas?”

For DNI Blair, release isn’t enough.
Put detainees on welfare, and give them neat stuff.
And in-state tuition for college, I’ll bet.
No doubt there are Stimulus funds they can get.

Barack’s closing Gitmo; says “the World” did insist.
“Rehabbing” combatants; says they won’t reenlist.
But why only us does he chose to ignore,
By bringing these captured jihadi’s ashore?

This harebrained idea will cause voters to roar.
Most likely in two years and surely in four.

Copyright 2009

Our New GM Honchos

Have we got a deal for you!

Our New GM Honchos
By Asher Embry

GM has to hire a new CEO;
Obama showed Wagoner the door.
The industry’s crumbling, its prospects are low.
The government’ll fix it for sure!

Despite the March deadline, Billions flow without pause;
In Detroit, there’s great jubilation.
This next time, their plan’ll be ready because -
They’re on double secret probation.

It’s easy to find a new chief for GM,
Especially since AIG.
The perks include ridicule, scorn and mayhem.
And a government salary.

He’ll work for the best bosses on the Earth:
Half the cabinet, dozens of czars,
Congressional overseers – there’s never a dearth.
Not a one knows a thing about cars.

Yet, they’ve already laid out “details” of their plan.
It’s political, not financial.
No more down the road will GM “kick the can,”
Actual specifics are minimal.

The authorized tasks are all still at hand:
- Cutting deals with bondholders and banks.
- Don’t touch union legacies; that will not stand.
- Put more gas mileage in the tanks.

More challenges lurk around every bend.
As workers and dealerships grouse.
Most difficult hurdle of all in the end:
Sell the Volt for the cost of a house.

So maybe it’s tougher than we would’ve thought,
To sign a new boss after all.
Since we’re the new owners, think that we ought,
To hold public elections next Fall?

Still, the strangest thing that this Car Plan revealed,
Was the source of its central supports.
Apparently bailout decisions were sealed,
Based on ranks in Consumer Reports.

If buying a new car you’re still apprehensive,
Un-“covered” repairs will become too expensive.
Obama will honor your warranty;
Just go to your neighborhood DMV.

Copyright 2009

Friday, March 27, 2009

Tilting At Windmills

Recently, Senator Feinstein proposed restricting wind, solar, and other renewable energy facilities from significant parts of California, saying "it is critical that these projects are built on suitable lands."

Tilting At Windmills
(Fondly remembering Ogden Nash)
By Asher Embry

I think that I shall never pine
A single Cape Cod wind turbine.
Nor mirrored panels for the sun.
Which would across the deserts run.

Did “Greenies” cause us all this mess?
Self-righteousness, they must confess.
Insisting carbon we retard,
They’re hoist now on their own petard.

From each device comes tangled wire.
They know it’s for a purpose higher.
Still, it destroys their precious view.
So who will suffer? Me and you.

Where will they get “new” energy,
Without these structures they can see?
Ensuring it’s some other place,
To Senators they quickly race.

So, Feinstein says wind must be mined,
But “suitable lands” they must find.
Apparently quite far away,
From Mojave and Nantucket bay.

Remember what we could have had.
Now oil drilling doesn’t look so bad.
But they refuse to “pay the price,
Of damage to the seas and ice.”

So fossil fuels we now must shun.
Replace it all with wind and sun.
But where? I bet you could’ve guessed.
It turns out your backyard is best.

Copyright 2009

“Sheriff” Joe

Recently, at the Transportation Department, the President said of Joe Biden: “To you, he's Mr. Vice President, but around the White House, we call him the sheriff ...." Does that mean Biden deserves a version of the "Cowboy's Lament" (aka "The Streets of Laredo") written for him?

“Sheriff” Joe
By Asher Embry

As I walked out on the streets of Laredo.
I mean, in Wilmington, Delaware.
I spied our new VP, who goes by the credo:
Judge not what I say, judge the furl of my hair.

At the White House, the “Sheriff” is now what they call him.
‘Cause he’s czar, overseeing the Stimulus dough.
The chance he gets seriously taken is so slim,
That we’ll still address him as ole “Blooper Joe.”

Now some of Joe’s notions are just idiotic.
He once called Obama “articulate and … clean.”
Says raising our taxes would be “patriotic”.
Thinks: “We kicked Hezbollah out” from the Lebanon scene.

His blunders are legion, his tongue’s in fine fettle.
Yet he’s certain his IQ’s the tops in the room.
Says a “generated crisis” will test Barack’s mettle.
But oft times it’s Joe causing ‘Bama to fume.

What he says, even the Prez can’t remember “not surprisingly.”
We could always find out from a Neil Kinnock speech.
About Indians making “Slurpee’s” he speaks generalizingly.
To officials in wheelchairs: “Stand up” he’ll beseech.

Why keep him around? That Obama’s no dummy.
As the butt of these jokes, plainly Joe bears the cross.
Obama makes sure that Joe’s treatment is crummy,
So late-night comedians won’t make fun of Joe’s boss.

That’s why - of the taxpayers - this appointment’s contemptuous.
For the cool cat they voted, but got the buffoon.
To put that gaffe-meister in charge, oh God help us,
If he’s the new sheriff, we’re gone by high noon.

Copyright 2009

Not As I Do

The earmark lecture just before Obama signed the Omnibus in private was what finally pushed us over the edge:

Not As I Do
By Asher Embry

It’s in the Guiness record book - Barack’s hypocrisy.
There’s one rule for Obama; another for you and me.
Of his copious skills as orator, he couldn’t be much prouder,
But disregard his golden words; his actions speak much louder.
Does he think he slips it by us? Does he think we have no clue?
We’ve figured out his watchword: Do as I say, not as I do.

Predictably, reporters quote the things he’ll choose to say.
The fact he does the opposite rarely sees the light of day.
On spending bills a scalpel I’ll use, for cutting line by line.
Yet Omnibus’ stinky pork [literally], suited him just fine.
I’m ending evil earmarks, my campaign promise I fulfill.
But, of course, that starts tomorrow. Today I’ll sign the bill.

No matter what the work is, creating jobs is thrilling.
We must put people back to work, unless it’s oil drilling.
For 95% of you, lower taxes will be paid.
But don’t use electricity or you’re taxed by “cap and trade.”
I’m reaching out across the aisle, but turns out he did balk.
I’ll take ideas from anywhere, once more just idle talk.

Make sure your house is chilly in the winter in the snow.
But it’s so hot in his office, fragile orchids “he could grow.”
You’ve cut household expenses; spend just for basic needs.
But hosting White House parties, Wagyu beef his guests he feeds.
While the hardship in the country, pinching pennies does inspire.
The White House shindigs weekly with stars like Earth, Wind and Fire.

Organized. Experienced. Day One, the country I can run.
Don’t ask to speak to Geitner’s staff, he’s still the only one.
Unlike George Bush, he vowed he’d always plan before he acts.
On Gitmo, Yucca, stimulus - he’s leapt without the facts.
He pledged openness and candor but neither has been seen.
The principal transparency’s his teleprompter screen.

These are a few examples; more keep coming all the time.
But my fingers all are throbbing and I’m tiring of this rhyme.
Some may disregarded this thesis, but for sure one thing it proves:
Past Presidents said: “Read my lips;” for this one, read his moves.

Copyright 2009

Our New Line of Succession

Not a day goes by without our reading something about Obama's cherished teleprompter.

Our New Line of Succession
By Asher Embry

Al Haig will always be remembered,
For uttering the line:
“I am in control here…”
When Reagan wasn’t fine.

But given its importance,
To Obama’s Presidency;
They’ve changed the line of succession,
First time in history.

Instead of VP next in line,
With Speaker number three;
The Teleprompter’s now in charge
In an emergency.

Copyright 2009

The Wisest Pundit

It turns out the best television assessment of President Obama's character came in the primary season from an unusual political analyst:

The Wisest Pundit
(or, Rev. Wright Was Right)

By Asher Embry

On radio, on cable TV, the pundits we do hear.
Cacophonous analysis is ringing in my ear.
The Carville’s and the Matalin’s, they argue day and night.
But on the subject of Barack, the best, turns out, was Wright.

Some said Obama’d transform the world, with newness and with hope
With five words back in April, Jeremiah argued: “nope”.
He must have seen it coming when he heard Obama say:
Wright’s sermons never reached my ears, I wasn’t there that day.

First “public funding,” then one by one kept promises grew sparse.
Transparency, full truthfulness, then words we had to parse.
The lobbyists came and then tax cheats, “new” politics was done.
How’d: “We’re not blue states and red states,” so quick become: “I won”?

Pat Buchanan, he is charming, Jon Alter has his views.
But who needs pundits anyway with bias in the news.
Still, no one’s spoken ‘fore or since with words which rang so true,
As Jeremiah’s warning: “He does what politicians do.”

Copyright 2009

Picking Fights

Listening to the White House press briefings, and the other WH staff comments, you'd think the new axis of evil is Rick Santelli, Jim Cramer, and Rush Limbaugh.

Picking Fights
By Asher Embry

Just two months in, this White House staff we find in quite a snit.
They’ve started their attacking; an “enemies list”’s been writ,
They’re lashing out against the press in ways’d make Nixon blush.
First targets from Gibbs’ podium: Cramer, Santelli and Rush.

Who pulls the strings on these attacks, who authors these libretti?
Who runs Obama’s dirty tricks, his Ziegler and Segretti?
On daily conference calls they plot distractions with aplomb.
They’re baaack: Begala, Carville, Stephanopoulos, and Rahm.

Criticize at your peril since “O” has the thinnest skin.
So used to adulation, any less does cause chagrin.
If you ever raise real questions then you’re getting out of line.
Tell of any opposition and they’ll say you rant and whine.

There’s been no wealth destruction; we’ve enough still to retire.
If the public hates the mortgage plan don’t dare report their ire.
Don’t question central planning or if fiscal prudence’ll prevail.
And never, never ever, say a policy should “fail”.

With these attacks the Left and Robert Gibbs do get their kicks.
But ‘member when the candidate “ended” old-style politics.
Govern! Stop campaigning; off those tactics finish weaning.
They’re distracting, they’re dishonest, they’re disheartening, they’re demeaning.

No more snarky Plouffe op-eds; Rahm and Gibbs can end their sniping.
Get ’em back downplaying terror and financial crisis hyping.
Instead of spending all that time on Rick and Rush and Jim -
Stop Bin Laden, Putin, Chavez, Ahmedinejad and Kim!

Copyright 2009

The Field Trip

Surely there must be a better way for government decisions get made.

The Field Trip
By Asher Embry

Barack’s AutoTask Force is “saving” Chrysler, GM and Ford.
But despite the work they have to do, apparently they’re bored.
They took a Motown field trip and they drove a Chevy Volt.
Must be a better way to give the auto biz a jolt.
Did they need to fly 500 miles to see where cars are made?
The economy needs fixing; this isn’t second grade.

They think they’ve nailed the problem – soaring costs and plunging sales!
But Barack needs more historic change than such a fix entails.
While in Detroit on those labor costs, they really heard a whopper
About the South and the Japanese from the UAW’s topper.
Management, too, has shown it needs to learn a thing or two.
When it comes to what the public’ll buy, it’s clear they have no clue.

But who thinks government understands how the biz to fix?
Better that they just decide the bailout to deep-six.
A reminder of the wonders state-run industry begets:
A brochure for the stylish Soviet-made Zaporozhets.

So stop with all these grandiose plans to remake our industries.
Don’t look at this crisis as “an opportunity,” please.
The bailout funds were spent, but the public’s been deluded.
For 40 Billion dollars, let’s hope Undercoat’s included.

Copyright 2009

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Delegate, Blame, Confuse, and Distract

It became clear that we needed a "cerebral" analysis of the Obama political strategy after the events of the AIG/Leno week:

Delegate, Blame, Confuse, and Distract
By Asher Embry

We now know how you govern when you haven’t got a clue.
Obama’s shown us early on exactly what to do.
He came up with this strategy: he doesn’t hesitate,
To Blame, Distract, Confuse – but, first, and foremost: Delegate.

Delegate…
To Obey and Pelosi, who passed “Stimulus” with speed.
“O” signed it without bothering the particulars to read.
To Barney Frank, who rails at every firm but Fannie Mae
To Dodd (the son), whose story keeps evolving every day.
To Geithner, down at Treasury, who’s curled up on the floor;
(Barack says he’s “outstanding” as he’s showing Tim the door).
To Putin, in exchange for taking missiles from the Poles;
He holds our proxy now to meet our nuke-free Iran goals.
To boatloads full of White House czars, too many to describe;
If someone tries to blame Barack: they quickly circumscribe.

Blame…

Learn to use “inherited” as the start of every thought.
Remind them it takes time to fix a crisis eight years wrought.
Be sure to say “The Buck Stops Here” then point to someone else.
Sign - one final time - because “leftover business” still compels.
Keep in mind that certain things like “blame” are so subjective.
If those don’t work just hurl some anti-Cheney/Bush invective.

Confuse…
For everyone to think you’re on their side is quite a ruse.
Specious arguments are one way to deceptively confuse.
Liberally use straw men who can be easily knocked down.
With rhetorical sleights of hand you can really go to town.
Like saying that the budget’s “cap and trade” is not a tax;
No “enemy combatants”; no “war on terror” - so relax.

Distract…
Talk of bank greed, dog breeds, Limbaugh and your ancient Irish roots.
It’s easy to distract them when the press is in cahoots.
Field trip to Ben’s Chili Bowl or out Costa Mesa way.
Fill out NCAA brackets; and even go on Jay.
When desperate, with nothing else left in your bag of tricks.
Gaffe away: say you’re bowling “like the Special Olympics.”

Copyright 2009

If

Blagojevich. Too easy. And still, the Blago show doesn't end (P.S. I know, I know - properly pronounced, Illinois doesn't really rhyme with boys!):

If
(Apologies to Rudyard Kipling)
By Asher Embry

IF you comb your hair right down to your eyes,
And simultaneously fabricate lies.
If you quote Lord Tennyson verse by verse,
And you’re Pavarotti of the curse.
If your “shake down” style is crisp and frank,
And you treat Senate vacancies like a bank.
If you steal state money from sick girls and boys,
You, too, could be Governor of Illinois.

To buy space in this poem, just give me a ring;
But know “it’s a f---ing valuable thing.”

Copyright 2009

Ode to the Reithrodontomys raviventris

You knew someone just had to write a poem to Speaker Pelosi's beloved marsh mice and the wonderful Stimulus Bill legislative process.
Sadly, that someone is me.


Ode to the Reithrodontomys raviventris
(aka the San Francisco Salt Marsh Harvest Mouse)
By Asher Embry

We’re told among animals the lion is king,
A head and a tail ‘bove the rest.
We lovers of pets, each one has his own thing,
‘Bout a species he thinks is best.
But now a new crown has been set on some fur,
By the Senate and by the House.
The smartest, the swankest, the richest - for sure,
The (formerly) lowly Salt Marsh Harvest Mouse.

It’s just inches high and weighs just 15 grams,
Its coat it is brown and it’s dark.
Its belly’s pink cinnamon down to its gams,
But its “crowning” was far from a lark.
It lives, you see, in environs most cozy,
San Francisco, down by the bay.
The district hometown of Speaker Pelosi,
And with earmarks, she does get her way.

“The economy’s the worst we’ve seen,” Dem’crats say,
“Our circumstances are dire.”
“Spend, spend, stimulate, no time to delay,
Bet it all on the Keynes multiplier.”
Next bills: Banks and Housing, no details for now,
But surely the total’s “gigante.”
We can’t help but worry we’re headed somehow
For the con they call “Three-card Monte.”

But back to the marsh mouse, now rich and well known,
To what does it owe all this fuss.
Its $30M earmark got in on its own,
‘Cause there’s no pork in “Stimulus.”
There’s nothing for condoms to stop STD’s,
No “Big Brother” doctors’ reports.
No Mickey Mouse railroad, no insurance for bees,
No Nicorette, no tennis courts.

Never before has so much money been spent.
What’s in it they haven’t a clue.
But Washington really should know where it went.
Could’ve saved us a trillion or two.
Quickly vote they did; Pelosi’s jet was awaiting.
To vote and run, it just is rude.
So on our dime, marsh mice will keep mating,
But we’re the ones getting screwed!

Now maybe it’s worth $30 mil. for these mice.
Maybe some jobs they’ll create.
Remember though, ‘fore we start rolling the dice,
It’s our grandkids who’ll carry the weight.
With these mice, with this pork, of course we’d vote “no!”
We’d have stopped “Stimulus” from movin’.
And then even Collins and Specter and Snowe,
Would’ve voted as Scots do: “Not Proven.”

Copyright 2009

My New Mortgage

The musings of an average Joe who doesn't like what is happening to the house next door:

My New Mortgage
By Asher Embry

The web sites offered quite a deal:
“Low sub prime teaser rate!”
But five years on the risk was real,
Huge ARM rate jumps await.
Cautious, I bought a house much smaller,
With interest I could pay.
I pay my mortgage, every dollar.
It pains me every day.

My neighbor struck a diff’rent chord.
He recklessly did shop.
The biggest loan he could afford -
Figured values seldom drop.
Of course, a rate of 2%,
It only lasts so long.
And through the roof the rate it went.
He found he’d gambled wrong.

I also could’ve risked that route.
A chump, that is my fate.
‘Cause now Barack will bail him out,
His mortgage they’ll abate.
Help those in need, we ought to do,
But enabling’s what this is.
Now I’ve got mortgage number two,
Unfortunately, it’s his.

Copyright 2009

Hasty Does It

About whom does the AIG mess say the most?

Hasty Does It
By Asher Embry

At A.I.G., we see again that bailout funds were blown.
It seems no matter who’s involved it’s all of us who bleed.
But what’d we learn about Barack and skills he needs to hone?
And ‘bout the many lofty plans he’d pass at breakneck speed?

The country’s all enraged at every bonus being paid off.
Imprison “Bailout Queens,” they say. Confinement solitary.
Or better yet, restrict them to a cell with Bernie Madoff.
Grassley had the best idea; committing hari-kari.

But Dodd, turns out, to the Stimulus, a few choice words did add.
Surprised? Pelosi’s process was devised to be oblique.
To leave no time to read the bill ‘fore voting’s simply mad.
And now we’re told Tim Geithner could have stopped it all last week.

Is it starting to catch up with them, this government by haste?
You’d think they’d want to start afresh before they’re further mired.
Start governing the right way – organized and slower-paced.
By then, perhaps, some Undersecretaries will be hired.

And everyone is asking what Obama knew and when.
And asking if he’s doing too much and doing it too fast.
He’s overwhelmed. He’s giving lame excuses once again.
And what else will be lurking in these bills they’ve writ and passed?

This surely shakes our confidence that things are in control.
At the Pentagon and C.I.A., there’s no room to be lax.
This is the heart of governing; you simply can’t cajole.
We need to know for certain nothing’s slipping through the cracks.

“Presidents…have to deal with more than one thing at a time.”
But he should know: it’s quality - not quantity - that’s sublime.

Copyright 2009

Stopping My Car on a Snowy Evening

An elegiacal reaction to the Transportation Infrastructure Commission's recommendation that the U.S. shift to a mileage tax (with apologies to Robert Frost and his great American classic "Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening"):

Stopping My Car on a Snowy Evening
(with sincerest apologies to Robert Frost)

By Asher Embry

Whose woods these are I think I know.
I can’t afford to further go;
I sit here with my car in park.
My tax bill otherwise will grow.

Each mile we drive they plan to tax.
Sly, these megalomaniacs.
So here I stay and write with scorn,
These phrases of elegiacs.

Will their addiction never end?
Eternally, they’ll waste and spend?
Fight back, we must, or still I can’t
Afford to drive around the bend.

These snowy woods now seem so vile,
For I have tax returns to file,
Before I go another mile.
Before I go another mile.

Copyright 2009

“Summit Depths”

Look up oxymoron in the dictionary and there is a picture of Obama's Fiscal Responsibility Summit (with Larry Summers sweetly snoozing):

“Summit Depths”
By Asher Embry

Today at the White House we did see,
The Summit on Fiscal Responsibility.

After weeks of borrowing Trillions to spend,
And hinting of more to come. It
Takes chutzpah to heights even we can’t ascend,
This Obama White House summit.

This was a brazen, theatric creation,
The purpose of which was to fool the nation.
To show contrition for the Trillions or so,
These last two weeks they’ve committed to blow?

It’s oxymoronic, that’s plain to see.
Like “instant classic,” dad-gum it.
And also like “tragic comedy.”
Is “Obama’s Fiscal Responsibility Summit.”

A news flash comes at the day’s end,
(Good things this surely does not portend):
Once again, in reaction, the markets did plummet,
Incredulous as they are of this White House’s summit.

Copyright 2009

Our “Nation of Cowards”

An undeservingly refined reply to Attorney General Holder's "Nation of Cowards" speech:

Our “Nation of Cowards”
By Asher Embry

Were Goodman, Chaney and Schwerner cowards
When they died along that road?
Others paid dearly in deeds and in words,
When on freedom’s path they strode.

A “nation of cowards!” How dare he.
Why he’d say it, I can’t understand.
Anyone who thinks it, is scary.
But from the top lawyer in the land?

Were they cowards who landed at Omaha Beach,
And sacrificed in every war?
Or the brave First Responders risking body to reach,
All those trapped on each fiery floor.
Or the passengers aboard who each made the choice -
United 93 they down’d.
There are million of heroes, whose lives gave voice,
Who are buried in hallowed ground.

Each day sees hundreds of heroic acts across this splendid land.
Only a sneering elitist would give all those the back of his hand.

But no ordinary scoffer is this one.
He cowers; he quails; he did quake.
Tore Elian from bed at the end of a gun.
With pardons, did he justice forsake.
Is he not the coward, those things said and done?
Should he not apologies make?

Now, I’m not suggesting we’re perfect.
Far from it, there’s plenty to fix.
On race, in particular, there’re miles still to go.
What we don’t need is lectures from cynics.

Copyright 2009