Slice of White Bread Chosen to Fill Open Supreme Court Seat

by Mark Saporta, Political Hellscape Correspondent

In yet another in a series of political stunners, Donald Trump has chosen to fill the open seat on the Supreme Court with a literal piece of white bread.

The seat, vacated nearly a year ago by the death of Justice Antonin “Far-Right Nutjob Before It Was Cool” Scalia, was intended to be filled by the eminently qualified Obama nominee Merrick Garland, but a combination of Republican intransigence and NO WAIT THAT WAS THE ONLY REASON caused his confirmation hearing to be delayed to the point of mootness.

Naturally, Trump’s nomination of an inanimate slice of uncooked toast has made waves among politicians and ordinary citizens alike, or at least among those who consider Alex Jones’ InfoWars rants to be anything less than God’s honest truth. The nomination was duly criticized by Senate Democrats and-

*deep sigh*

Okay, look.

Do you have any idea how hard it is to be a political satirist these days? And don’t give me any of that “are you kidding? there’s more to satirize than ever!” crap. Coming up with stories more insane than what’s actually going on right now is a legitimate challenge. The best I can do is resort to the shallow jab that Neil Gorsuch is boring. Hell, Gorsuch doesn’t even seem like that terrible of a choice, but what else am I going to write about? Sean Spicer? Steve Bannon? Trump complaining on Twitter about the travel ban ruling? They’re pretty much all already parodies of themselves.

Man, I remember the good old days, back when the Republican primary race was completely up in the air. We still had hope then. God, the most pressing issue we were facing was that Congress was incompetent, as though that was something that hasn’t been continuously true since 1774. Remember how I wrote that article about celebrating Government Shutdown Day? Heh, that was a pretty good one.

That must’ve been back in Fall 2015. I was so young then. We all were.

Anyway, Neil Gorsuch is boring, he’s pretty conservative, at least Trump didn’t nominate [insert reality TV star here] for the bench, etc., etc.. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m gonna pour myself a drink, make myself a sandwich, lean back in my standard-issue CMU desk chair, and dull my political sorrows, if only briefly, with anime and My Brother, My Brother and Me.

At press time…man, whatever.

Trump Signs Executive Order Editing Statue of Liberty Plaque to “LOL NOPE”

by Mark Saporta, Political Hellscape Correspondent

The world was rocked this week when, in one of his first moves as President, Donald “Already At Mid-Second-Term Levels of Disapproval” Trump signed an executive order shutting down America’s refugee program and closing its borders to people from several Muslim-majority countries. Despite throngs of people across the political spectrum coming out in opposition to this piece of counterproductive political showmanship, readme can now confirm that Trump is doubling down by formally changing the plaque on the Statue of Liberty from Emma Lazarus’ sonnet The New Colossus to, simply, LOL NOPE.

“Reliable” sources within the Trump Administration have also indicated that the new text will not only be in 400-point font but will also be in bolded Impact, so as to “make certain the message gets across that, yeah, we super all the way don’t want you here.” According to Trump’s nascent Office of Management and Budget, the project is expected to cost $2 million, which when converted to Not Crazy Person Money translates to a cool $15 mil, minimum.

Naturally, politicians of all stripes and people across the nation have been incensed by Trump’s brazen willingness to essentially deface a national landmark with particularly unclassy xenophobia. Well, politicians of some stripes and roughly half of people across the nation, at least. The rest are A-OK with it. Why wouldn’t they be? After all, Breitbart just put out an article alleging that the immortal words “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to break free” are fake news produced by the liberal media to defame our glorious leader. Obviously.

Among the people across this nation who actually are incensed, though, a heroic few are getting off their asses and doing something about it, for instance by writing invective thinly disguised as satire. Truly, these brave men and women are doing yeomen’s work out there in the political wilderness, taming the beasts of tyranny with elegant strokes of their blades. Well, pens. Keyboards, if we’re really being honest.

(This is me I’m talking about here, by the way. Can you tell? Anyway, yeah, it’s me. Mark Saporta. The writer of this article. I’m basically the best. You’re welcome.)

At press time, Trump had quietly issued four more far-reaching executive orders while the media desperately attempted to process the previous four. Welcome, my friends, to the Darkest Timeline.

 

Kanye West Makes History as First Professional Rapper President

by Mark Saporta, Political Correspondent Emeritus

WASHINGTON D.C, JANUARY 20, 2021—Three months after his landslide victory over Republican incumbent Mike Pence, Kanye West was inaugurated today as the 47th President of the United States. Beyoncé Knowles-Carter was also inaugurated as the 49th and first female Vice President of the United States, succeeding incumbent VP Martin Shkreli.

The inauguration, a raucous affair featuring musical performances not only by many of the President’s former colleagues but also by the President himself, was described by attendee Nicholas Rauen as “the official return of the dankest timeline.” In a notable departure from tradition, West put a beat behind his inauguration speech; the speech will reportedly be one of the tracks on West’s upcoming concept album Commander-in-Chief.

When asked for comment immediately following the event, President West reportedly said that he was “…just so appreciative of [his] beautiful wife Kim Kardashian and [their] daughter North for standing by me during this difficult campaign.” First Lady Kardashian was unavailable for comment, as she was busy liveblogging the event on several social media sites.

Now that he is officially in office, President West plans to appoint Malcolm J. “Mac Miller” McCormick as Chief of Staff, Shawn “Jay Z” Carter as Secretary of State, Marshall “Eminem” Mathers as Secretary of Defense, and Tauheed “2 Chainz” Epps as Treasury Secretary. The newly Democrat-controlled Senate is expected to confirm all of President West’s nominees in short order, and, in an ironic twist, former Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s 2017 deployment of the “nuclear option” means that the Republicans will be unable to filibuster any of West’s appointments. However, the seemingly nepotistic appointment of the Vice President’s husband as Secretary of State has even some Democratic commentators worried.

President West’s policy positions are still unclear, but he is likely to follow up on his signature campaign promise to decrease the influence of the executive branch in response to the abuse-of-power scandals of the Trump administration. The coalition that propelled him to office will expect him to act in accordance with his campaign slogan: “No one man should have all this power.”

Other potential policy priorities are the creation of a strategic bass reserve, a broad-based crackdown on gold diggers, the adoption of a new redistributive economic program through which the wealthy will flick stacks of high-denomination bills at the poor, and immigration reform.

At press time, Insane Clown Posse frontmen Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope were reportedly considering a joint Presidential run in 2024.

Leaked Memo Suggests Everything Since 2011 According to Kerry’s Master Plan

by Mark Saporta, Only Senior Political Correspondent

In yet another shock twist in American politics, a recent Wikileaks trawl has unearthed a devious plot to take the Presidency, supposedly written by then-Massachusetts Senator and current Secretary of State John Kerry in early 2011.

The plan hinges on the order of presidential succession. As is widely known, if the President is impeached, resigns, or dies, the Vice President is sworn in as soon as possible. Less well-known is that the next in succession are the Speaker of the House, the President Pro Tempore of the Senate, and, crucially, the Secretary of State.

What follows is an unaltered transcription of Kerry’s five-year plot to become the President by whatever means necessary:

 

TOP SECRET

FEBRUARY 17, 2011

FROM THE OFFICE OF SENATE FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE CHAIR JOHN KERRY

TAKING THE PRESIDENCY: PLAN #1A

First, I must lay some groundwork over the next three years. Successfully executing the following will make what comes next far more doable:

 

  • The Republicans nominate someone uninspiring to run against Pres. Obama in 2012. My “good friend” and Massachusetts “colleague” Mitt Romney should do nicely for this purpose.
  • Obama wins re-election handily.
  • Hillary Clinton resigns as Secretary of State with plans to run in 2016. As chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, I am the obvious replacement.
  • Partisan gridlock continues to choke Washington, stoked by efforts to defund the government in 2013 and a strong Republican victory in 2014 that wins them the Senate and an unassailable House majority.
  • Speaker John Boehner is thrown out by conservative diehards, who also prevent his natural successor Kevin McCarthy from taking the office. He is replaced by Paul Ryan, essentially the only person in the House that can unite both the establishment and Tea Party. Dissatisfaction with Congress and the government in general continues to increase, especially among Republicans.

 

Next, I will exploit every channel I can to make sure that somebody with a criminal history is elected President in 2016. I have settled on Donald Trump as a particularly loathsome candidate. This will require some good fortune, but if my groundwork pays off the Republicans will hate their party so much that they will be willing to elect a lunatic over one of their own:

 

  • At least ten candidates from all corners of the Republican party enter the 2016 primary, ensuring there is little concerted resistance to the next stage of the plan.
  • Hillary Clinton faces at least one unexpected challenger, perhaps someone from the far left who can energize the youth by promising free college and legal weed. I leak the existence of her private emails to some Republican congressman (t.b.d.) who is going after her for some real or imagined crime.
  • Donald Trump enters the Republican primary. Unless it seems like Trump will win through sheer chutzpah, I will anonymously manipulate Speaker Ryan and the head of the RNC into making a secret deal that gives Trump the primary. Either way, I will make sure there is a paper trail, real or fabricated, linking Ryan to Trump’s victory.
  • Clinton wins the primary, but the challenge from the left and the emails take a toll on her favorables. Moreover, I exercise my pull with the Russians to get them to interfere in Trump’s favor. To everyone’s surprise, Clinton manages to lose to Trump (ideally winning the popular vote but losing the Electoral College for maximum public outcry), who has been managed by my top political agent Kellyanne Conway the entire time.

 

Now here comes the fun part:

 

  • Shortly into his presidency, Trump is convicted of one of his myriad actual crimes and is forced to resign. Some well-placed bribes should ensure nothing goes awry.
  • Trump’s running mate is a wild card, but my inside men on the Secret Service should be able to get the job done no matter who it is.
  • I expose Paul Ryan’s “manufacturing” of the 2016 primary results through one of many potential back channels. He too is eventually forced to resign after a few short scandal-ridden months.
  • The President Pro Tem will now be the last man standing in my way. As his office is defined by his age, though, his death from “natural causes” shortly after his inauguration should come as no surprise.
  • As the next in succession, I, John Kerry, will become the 49th President of the United States.

 

The release of this memo will surely shake up Americans’ confidence in their political institutions for years, if not decades, to come. If it is truly legitimate, though, your political correspondent must express some degree of respect for John Kerry, perhaps the greatest political mastermind of the modern world.

New Alternate History Novel Debuts In Which Donald Trump Wins 2016 Election

by Mark Saporta, Counterfactual Correspondent

2016-11-11-1

To widespread popular acclaim, beloved alternate history author I. T. T. Line released his third and most detailed work to date earlier this week. Titled Make America Great Again, the novel delves into a thorough examination of an alternate 2016 election in which businessman Donald J. Trump defeats Hillary Clinton and becomes the 45th President of the United States.

The real 2016 election was, of course, a subdued affair. After attaining a massive early financial lead, Jeb Bush steamrolled his primary opponents and was a lock for the Republican nomination by February. For her part, Hillary Clinton ran nearly unopposed for the Democratic nomination, easily winning every state. The general election was then relatively genteel and policy-focused, in contrast to the vicious elections of the last twenty years, and Clinton/Booker defeated Bush/Walker by a comfortable margin of four points.

In Make America Great Again, Line asks readers to consider a completely different and in some ways diametrically opposed reality. In his book, the Republican primary is thrown into chaos as Trump bombastically joins the fray in the summer of 2015. Starting from his announcement speech, he publicly shows no regard for consistent and feasible policy positions, the well-being of anyone who isn’t a white male, or even basic human decency itself. Nonetheless, he rises and rises in the polls, running roughshod over a slate of candidates from across the Republican spectrum and a party apparatus that can’t seem to muster a defense. In the meantime, Clinton finds herself in an unexpectedly difficult race against an unexpected opponent: 73-year-old democratic socialist Bernie Sanders.

The action only continues once both Clinton and Trump are officially nominated, with the former facing down a persistent scandal concerning proper handling of classified material and the latter lurching from massive gaffe to massive gaffe (without spoiling too much, it is worth mentioning that the words “grab them by the pussy” feature near the end of the book). Despite three clear debate victories, a far superior campaign, and the wholehearted support of the increasingly popular sitting president, Clinton’s early lead tightens to three points by November.

Finally, in the climax of the novel, Trump defies the expectations of pollsters, politicians, and the media alike by pulling off a small but solid Electoral College lead and nearly tying the popular vote. The book ends with his victory speech early on November 9th, deliberately leaving the reader uncertain about what’s next for this alternate America.

Naturally, this timeline is incredibly implausible; Line admits as much in the preface. Nevertheless, Make America Great Again is an excellent read for anyone looking for in-depth alternate history, a view into the dark depths of the American psyche, or even just a good political thriller.

Mark’s Review: 4.5/5 Highly Recommended

Report: aaaaaaaaaaa

by Daaaaaaaaaaaniel Bork

According to a late-breaking series of reports following the results of Tuesday’s presidential election, aaaaaaaaaaa. Commenting on the unexpectedly large electoral college margin of victory for the Republican candidate despite receiving fewer popular votes, Democratic campaign chair John Podesta observed “aaaaaaaaaaa.” As the election’s result became clear early Wednesday morning, the Democratic candidate was too consumed by aaaaaaaaaaa to concede the race. Instead, Podesta addressed her supporters, delivering a sober assessment of the candidate’s precarious path to victory by confirming that, indeed, aaaaaaaaaaa. Shortly afterwards, the states of Aaaaaaaaaaa and Pennsylvania were called for the Republican, sending him to the White House and Democratic voters into paroxysms of aaaaaaaaaaa.

On the economic outlook following the election, Paul Krugman of the New York Times reported that the odds of a global aaaaaaaaaaa have spiked in the last 24 hours. On the question of whether the odds of aaaaaaaaaaa were likely to increase or decrease should campaign finance chair and ‘Suicide Squad’ executive producer Steven Mnuchin be appointed Treasury Secretary, Krugman equivocated. “Aaaaaaaaaaa. However, aaaaaaaaaaa,” assessed Krugman, clearly weighing the inexperience of Mnuchin against the possibility of a yet less qualified appointee. “*incoherent sobbing*” added Krugman, upon realizing that the likely front-runner for EPA administrator, Myron Ebell, was an aaaaaaaaaaa denialist who, if appointed, would likely roll back decades of aaaaaaaaaaa regulations.

The victory of the Republican came as a surprise to polling aggregators, many of whom confidently predicted a Democratic win and were stunned Wednesday morning when, instead, aaaaaaaaaaa. One exception to this was the FiveThirtyEight model, which had controversially diverged from the conventional wisdom by predicting a considerable chance of aaaaaaaaaaa throughout the cycle. “Aaaaaaaaaaa aaaaaaaaaaa aaaaaaaaaaa,” remarked its vindicated founder Nate Silver on his site’s return to pre-eminence. At press time, sources reported that aaaaaaaaaaa had again retweeted Silver’s predicted men-only electoral map, along with the caption, “#Aaaaaaaaaaa.”

This Article is About Making Sandwiches, Not the 2016 Presidential Election

by Mark Saporta, Meatbread Enthusiast

2016-11-04-2

Your political correspondent has decided that we as a nation have heard more than enough about the forthcoming presidential election, and has therefore opted to write an article about something else.

Instead of adding to the crush of stories, thinkpieces, and polling analyses, some of them written by him, about this horrendous failure of democracy, he is writing about a subject of personal interest: how to make a good sandwich.

The first thing to consider when making a sandwich is the bread. Many people content themselves with bagged, pre-sliced white bread, never knowing the true joy that comes from bread that doesn’t suck. If you can, go to a bakery, or at least the bakery counter at your local supermarket, and get a loaf of something that appeals to you.

You may have noticed that the last two sentences were mostly about making sandwiches, and not very much about the 2016 presidential election between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. This will continue to be the case for the remainder of the article.

Once you’ve chosen your bread (your correspondent recommends sourdough), the next step is to figure out what meat to put on it. Obviously, this owes a lot to personal discretion, but the current FiveThirtyEight Sandwich Forecast shows that there is over an 80% chance that using roast beef is a good idea and only about a 20% chance that ham would work better. It should be noted, however, that the trend line in most national polls has been slightly favorable towards ham since the third debate, and the fact that roast beef is reportedly once more under investigation by the FBI probably won’t help its poll numbers.

Of course, there are also vegetarian options if you’re opposed to eating meat, but all of them are currently languishing at five percent or less in the polls. Interestingly, there is a non-negligible chance that portobello mushrooms win the state of Utah, which would be the first time a vegetarian option has won a state since George Wallace in 1968.

Now that you’ve chosen your bread and meat, there are two further things to consider: toppings and spread. Toppings run statewide every six years; here in Pennsylvania, provolone cheese is running a couple points ahead of the Republican incumbent, Swiss. In contrast, spread runs district-wide every two years. In Pennsylvania’s 14th Congressional District, which contains Pittsburgh, pesto is once again running unopposed.

And there you have it: bread, meat, toppings, and spread. The makings of a great nation. Erm, sandwich.

Your political correspondent hopes you enjoyed this break from the unending torrent of presidential election commentary. Even as an avid watcher of politics, he understands that most people find it depressing, even nauseating, especially when it’s the only thing anyone is talking about. If you do feel that way, here is his advice: the next time you get sick of hearing about this election, just go to the polls and make yourself a nice sandwich instead.

Election Night Drinking Game

by Mark Saporta, Politicoholic

Eds. note: readme is not responsible for any illness or injury that may result from actually doing this. Play drinking games published in satirical newspapers at your own risk.

1. For each state Trump wins, take shots equal to that state’s electoral college votes, divided by 10, times the most recent decimal probability that Clinton wins that state on FiveThirtyEight. (ex: Ohio has 18 electoral votes, and Clinton has roughly a 50% chance of winning it, so if Trump wins Ohio, take (18/10) * 0.5 = .9 shots)

1a. Disregard any states which by this calculation would merit less than a quarter of a shot under a Trump victory.

2. Any time Clinton wins any of the following traditionally red states: Alaska, Arizona, Georgia, Missouri, South Carolina, Texas, or Utah, there is a 5-minute moratorium on drinking

3. If Evan McMullin wins Utah, no further drinking is allowed for the rest of the night.

3a. If Evan McMullin wins the Presidency, no further drinking is allowed ever.

4. If Trump passes 270 electoral votes, take a shot if you’re registered as an independent, two shots if you’re a Democrat, and three shots if you’re a Republican.

4a. Anybody who voted for John Kasich in the primary is exempt from this condition.

5. If Clinton passes 270 electoral votes, immediately drink at least a pint of water and have something to eat.

6. If the election goes to the House, drink as much alcohol as you can as quickly as you can. You’ll need it. We all will.

Trump Allegedly Hiding Schröedinger’s Cat in Tax Returns

by Kwanpo Cheng, Theoretical Reporter

2016-09-28-1

As the media continues to unearth scandal after scandal surrounding the presidential nominees, the scientific world was wracked with a shocking revelation last Wednesday. Republican candidate Donald Trump has allegedly released his tax returns to the public, stating even though the forms are released, the numbers cannot be examined as they contain details about a Schröedinger’s Cat.

“I’m telling you, I have a tremendous science experiment going on,” Trump said at the press conference. “This Scrodangler [sic] cat is both alive and dead. I cannot look at my tax returns because then I’ll ruin the experiment. You cannot look at the returns. No one can look at the tax returns. In fact, I can’t even tell you about it. This is real science, end of story.”

This reveal has sparked numerous debates in the scientific community. Physicists are evenly split on agreeing whether this was a valid experiment or not. Others argue more heavily about whether Trump has actually released his tax returns, a new phenomenon called Schröedinger’s Taxes in which the returns are both released and unreleased. This discovery may be grounds for a Nobel Peace Prize.

When asked about the possibility of receiving the Nobel Prize, Trump responded, “People are going to tell you I am incompetent or I am crazy. But really I am crazy – about science. Let me tell you, I love science. I have always loved it as a kid. That’s because I am smart. I’ve got people writing my paper for me. It’s going to be great. I’m going to charge people to read it. That’s going to create jobs and bring them back to America.”

“We believe Mr. Trump is ready to lead the country,” said Marcia McNutt, the president of the National Academy of Sciences. “We had initially thought Trump to be unintelligent, biased, and unscientific, but he has proved himself by standing strong.” The Academy is expected to hand several large projects to Mr. Trump including global warming and solar energy.

The IRS is struggling in the aftermath to obtain Trump’s tax returns as opposition from the scientific community increases. Other political leaders are supporting Trump’s decision to withhold his returns while simultaneously releasing similar statements about other Schröedinger’s Tax Animals, such as Dogs, Hamsters, Goldfishes, and Parakeets. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie was especially proud of his Schröedinger’s Potato.

Celebrity scientist Neil DeGrasse Tyson tweeted, “If Trump’s theory of observation applies to taxes, then it applies to my Internet cat. We cannot learn the name of my cat until I find out it is ,” before running out of characters.

Hillary Clinton to Take Four Week Vacation

by Mark Saporta, Only Senior Political Correspondent

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In an unprecedented show of confidence, Democratic nominee and President-elect-elect Hillary Clinton’s campaign has announced that the candidate will spend the rest of the race on vacation with her family in Martha’s Vineyard, MA.

Seeing virtually no upside to Clinton holding more campaign events, fundraising further or being in the public eye whatsoever, the campaign plans to give her a nice breather while she wins the Presidency more or less by default.

The full press release out of Clinton’s Brooklyn campaign HQ has been transcribed below:

“After a series of devastating gaffes by Donald Trump, culminating in the release of a video in which he claims he can grab women ‘by the pussy’ thanks to his celebrity, the Cantaloupe Colossus has effectively scuppered any chance he ever had of becoming the 45th President.

If the deal hadn’t been sealed when congressional Republicans began deserting Trump in droves, it certainly was following a barely-adequate debate performance in which he ‘apologized’ for about five seconds and then tried to change the subject as quickly as possible.

And that’s not just talk. Recent polls, both national and in the eight to ten states that we actually give a shit about, have shown momentum in our favor from the moment Trump first uttered the name ‘Alicia Machado.’ We were just one or two points up before the first debate; now, we’re up six and rising. It would take an unprecedented turnaround for us to lose now, and, as you know, the 2016 campaign up until now has been about as conventional as it gets.

Now, we at Clinton HQ aren’t stupid. We know our candidate is among the least popular people ever to run for President. It’s become readily apparent to us over the last 18 months that the less people are paying attention to her, the better we do. So, we are not going to waste this beautiful moment of self-immolation by trotting her out fifty more times to say a few platitudes and talk about policies that, let’s be honest, nobody is paying attention to anyway.

But enough about that. It’s time for Hillary, and indeed all of us, to kick back, relax, and watch as we make history in the most depressing way possible. See you on the 8th!”

At press time, Hillary Clinton had secured a private server for storing her vacation photos.