The Spite Before Christmas

‘Tis the time around Christmas and all through the night,

I’m still struggling with the website.

But the season is lovely with its gifts and its luster,

Even better this year with no filibuster.

The members are nestled all snug in their districts,

On a very brief break from political cheap tricks.

They’ve just settled in, turned away from their labors;

No speeches, no meetings, not even fundraisers.

But on the TV, there arises a clatter

(I forgot I’ve left on the cable-news chatter).

There’s one of the shouters being nasty to someone,

So as fast as I can, I’ll turn off the volume.

Outside there is movement — oh goody, what fun!

Quick as a flash, I pull out my gun.

When what to my wondering eyes should appear,

But this guy in a red suit and sporting a beard.

It’s Santa, of course, with GPS and smartphone,

Bringing gifts on a sled, and not on a drone.

They all have been made by the worker elves that he’s

Left at the North Pole to rest up and shoot selfies.

And the reindeer are with him, numbering eight, I recall;

Among them are Rubio, Cruz, Ryan and Paul.

All in the group are being quite frisky,

Trailing the mean one, the one who’s named Christie.

It is quite the scene, it is heavy with drama,

As each tries to be the one trampling Obama.

He’s standing there mumbling while looking quite sheepish:

“If you like your health-care plan then you can keep it.”

But he has a dog with him, sniffing ‘round like a bloodhound,

For right-wingers to blame for the government shutdown.

So the Republican deer bolt, they head right for my chimney.

I grab for my gun, thinking “You gotta be kiddin’ me.”

Claus slides into my home — the invasion I’ve feared?

Nah, there is no real danger, the guy is just weird.

He is fat, he is jolly, says “Ho ho ho,” has a sack.

And tell Megyn Kelly that Santa is black!

He wastes no more time, starts leaving his swag,

For the tea-party types, it is coal in a bag.

He has quite a time doling out the remainder:

A tact course for Reid, suntan lotion for Boehner.

Till Hillary runs, she gets a huge speech fee,

While Biden must wait as the Democrats’ Plan B.

There’s something else snuck in the bag he’s unloadin’.

It’s from the NSA: poison for Ed Snowden.

Claus doesn’t take long, must fly quickly away.

The deer planned stops in New Hampshire and I-o-way.

So in just a flash he’s once again sailin’,

Shouting words that will hack off O’Reilly and Palin.

‘Cause there’s no one religion in the cry of his getaway,

Just a cheery, loud wish for a great HAPPY HOLIDAY!

He is being inclusive with a message for all,

And a promise to see us, come next year at the mall.

Bob Franken is a longtime broadcast journalist, including 20 years at CNN.


Sat, 01/21/2017 - 23:42

What others say: Obama took right tack on Cuba

There’s no solution to the half-century old Cuba problem that will satisfy everyone, but we strongly believe President Obama made the right decision to end the troubled “wet foot, dry foot” policy.

Read more

What others say: Obama’s legacy a mixed one

President Barack Obama leaves office Friday after eight years as the most consequential Democrat to occupy the White House since Lyndon Johnson. And unlike that Texan, whose presidency was born in tragedy and ended in failure, Obama will not have the ghost of the Vietnam War haunting his days and eating his conscience as LBJ did all the remaining days of his life.

Read more

Op-ed: Trump won the news conference

Donald Trump should do press conferences more often. Not for the country’s sake, certainly not for the media’s sake, but for his. He really shouldn’t have waited 167-plus days to hold one, because the man gives great sound bite. Although I’ve participated in probably thousands of these staged encounters as a reporter, they’re not my favorite way of getting news — you almost never get any. The guy at the podium controls the proceeding. He can get his message out with little challenge from the assembled journalists who are limited to a question and a follow-up, maybe. Politicians can bob and weave through that without any of us landing a blow. And that’s our job: to penetrate the canned responses to their version of the controversy du jour and get at whatever truth they are hiding. Besides, Trump — who uses contempt for the media as a weapon, his preferred way to discredit reporting that displeases him —has a wonderful forum to do that. At the very least he should hold these confrontations as a supplement to his Twitter tirades. And frequently. It’s his opportunity to hold the media hostage as they cover live his rain of abuse on them.

Read more

Good luck in Juneau

The 30th Alaska Legislature gavels in on Tuesday, and we’d like to take a moment to wish our Kenai Peninsula legislators good luck over the coming months in Juneau.

Read more