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SEMI-NEWS: A Satire of Recent News

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SEMI-NEWS/SEMI-SATIRE: June 20, 2021 Edition

Fauci Denies "Deliberately" Suppressing Lab Leak Theory

Dr. Anthony Fauci denied that he deliberately suppressed the idea that the coronavirus could have leaked from the Wuhan lab that was experimenting on ways to enhance a bat virus to make it a more deadly pathogen that could be used to infect humans. "I would say my actions were more intuitively driven than consciously deliberate," he contended. "If the Wuhan lab leak was revealed as the source of the pandemic I felt it would do irreparable harm to the scientific community. So, I came out strongly in favor of the natural mutation theory."

Fauci went on to point out that "the vast majority of the suppressing was done by Twitter, Facebook, and others. It was there that rogue algorithms identified the lab leak theory as false and removed posts that purported to present evidence and arguments in support of this theory. I had no control over these entities. I was just an innocent bystander."

"Personally, I was thinking the lab leak idea could be true, but I dared not say so for fear that I would be labeled a spreader of disinformation and fired from my job," the Doctor said. "That would have left the nation without my essential guidance. There would have been no authoritative voice supporting continued lockdowns, social distancing, and mask wearing. People would have been left to make up their own minds and chaos would have been the result."

"Now it doesn't matter that the evidence that a lab leak was responsible is piling up because we have vaccines," Fauci explained. "Whether the virus evolved naturally or was given a boost by Chinese scientists, everyone still needs to get vaccinated. It is encouraging to see that all those in government and the media are in agreement on this. On the one hand, many 'carrots'--lottery tickets, cash payments, marijuana, liquor, etc.--are being offered to induce hesitaters to get the jab. On the other hand, various 'sticks'--loss of employment, loss of access to public venues, and loss of liberty—are also working toward universal compliance. So, regardless of the zigs and zags in policy over the past year, we have achieved a remarkable advance in unity and obedience in this country. I take pride in my role in making this happen."

In related news, Mariana Mazzucato, a professor at University College London, hailed the pandemic lockdowns as "a model for what we should do to combat global climate change. We've seen the sacrifices ordinary people willingly made to fight the COVID menace to their health. If we can frame the climate issue as one that directly threatens their health they'll be begging for more lockdowns. The resulting decline in consumption, production, travel and other nonessential human activities will move us away from senseless luxury and back toward the subsistence mode of living that prevailed before capitalism transformed the world."

Supreme Court Dismisses Challenge to Obamacare

A suit brought by 18 states challenging the constitutionality of Obamacare was dismissed in the US Supreme Court by a vote of 7-2. The decision was written by Justice Stephen Breyer who decreed that "these states lack standing to challenge this law." Justices John Roberts, Brett Kavanaugh, Amy Coney Barrett, Elena Kagan, Sonia Sotomayor, and Clarence Thomas concurred. Justices Samuel Alito and Paul Gorsuch dissented.

The states had argued that since the tax penalty for not purchasing Obamacare was repealed during the Trump Administration the basis for the prior Supreme Court decision upholding the law was eliminated. Breyer rejected this argument, saying that "the reasoning behind the earlier decision was fallacious. There was no need to rely on the government's power to tax as a justification. The government's mission to promote the general welfare is sufficient to support any action it takes to support this mission. If Congress decides that everyone must buy health insurance because it is in the general welfare to do so no one has standing to challenge this except a higher authority. In this case, that higher authority is the President of the United States."

Breyer pointed out that "in juxtaposition to the plea of 18 states we have an explicit request from President Biden to keep Obamacare in place. Eighteen states aren't even a majority of the states. In contrast, the President speaks for the entire nation. A minority of states does not represent the will of the people. The wishes of the duly elected president does. Since Obamacare was enacted to promote the general welfare it is in compliance with the preamble of the Constitution. The fact that Obamacare proved more expensive than anticipated is irrelevant. Almost every government program is more expensive than anticipated. If expense was deemed to be sufficient evidence of harm to the general welfare few programs would survive scrutiny."

Justice Alito called the "lack of standing" argument "deeply flawed. Millions of Americans were damaged by this law. The fact that not every state chose to object to the damages inflicted on residents of their state doesn't invalidate the standing of the 18 states that did. By not hearing this case we have given government carte blanche to inflict whatever harmful program it desires and barred its victims from any legal recourse against it."

Biden Stumped by Criticism

As details of his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva have been disclosed, President Biden professed himself "stumped by some of the criticism I've received for what I and Joe Scarborough agree was the most successful summit meeting in world history."

The most serious criticism of Biden's actions at the summit was tied to the list of 16 crucial targets for cyber attacks that he handed to Putin. Rebecca Heinrichs, a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute, asked "since when is it a good idea to give an adversary a list of vital targets? From one perspective, it is letting him know your prime vulnerabilities. From another, it implies that unlisted items may be freely attacked without consequence."

Biden rebuffed this criticism by pointing out that "I'm bringing a more open and transparent style than we saw when Trump was president. With him, everything was about negotiating the best deal for America. In my view, that selfish approach is not likely to win us friends. By being more open and direct I convey a message of trust that I hope will be reciprocated. Now Putin knows if any of the 16 targets is attacked by hackers I will be very disappointed in him."

Press Secretary Jen Psaki defended the President's stance, saying that "by giving President Putin a clear picture of where he can and can't launch cyber attacks it is hoped that any such attacks that are made will be diverted to the nonessential sectors of American life. As we saw during the pandemic many small businesses and their employees could be sacrificed by lockdowns because large essential businesses were declared essential and allowed to thrive and grow. So, by making it clear to Putin that he would have a free hand if he targets the same sectors that were targeted during the pandemic we are playing the same winning hand we did during COVID."

In related news, Psaki made an effort to calm concerns that the President was nodding yes to a question to say he trusted Putin. "Actually, the President thought he was nodding yes to the offer of pudding," she explained. "At that moment there was a lot of noise at the conference—both on the floor and in his ear bud—and he is especially fond of pudding. The rude media person who shouted the Putin question is the one who should be ashamed."

New National Security Strategy

Another Biden move that is likely to reassure Putin is a shift in national security policy to focus on domestic terrorists rather than foreign threats. Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas explained that "while foreign actors can bomb facilities and kill Americans they can never overthrow the government. The same can't be said for those who follow Trump. They were successful in seizing control of the federal government in 2016 and ruled for four years. After Trump was defeated in the 2020 voting a hard-core cadre of Trumpists tried to overturn the election by occupying Congress on January 6th. They were narrowly thwarted by the heroic action of the Capitol Police's timely shooting of their leader—Ashley Babbitt—before she could seize power."

Mayorkas dismissed the fact that the January 6th insurrectionists were unarmed as "diversionary propaganda. They were armed with an idea that is more seductive for disaffected Americans—Trump and his make America great agenda—than any weapons jihadi terrorists possess. Thousands of ordinary Americans can be mustered at the drop of a hat to rally for a return of Trump to the White House. Millions will donate money to this cause. Tens of millions will vote for it. There is no question that these people are the greater danger to the Biden Administration and the transformation he is trying to impose on this country."

"We are calling on all right-thinking people to help us in this effort," Mayorkas added. "Our enemies are insidious. On the outside they may seem to be quiet neighbors, long-time friends, or even family members. But on the inside they are enemies of everything that's decent. The FBI is already monitoring the communications of everyone—over the phone, through the Internet, and conversations in public places like restaurants, sporting events, and churches. Unfortunately, FBI agents can't be everywhere. We need the public's help. So, if any of you out there see or hear something—a hat, a tee-shirt, an American flag, a disrespectful joke, or an opinion that expresses disloyal words or implies disloyal thoughts—contact the FBI and we'll take it from there. The fate of our democracy depends on it."

In related late-breaking news, by a vote of 168 to 55, U.S. Catholic Bishops decided to instruct priests to withhold communion from politicians who support abortion. This prompted President Biden to order Mayokas to add the Catholic Church to his list of domestic terrorists. "Holding the prospect of eternal damnation over the heads of the courageous men and women who want to protect the right of every woman to terminate the life of an unwanted baby is a terroristic threat," Biden declared. "We need to bring the full force of the government down on these meddlesome purveyors of disunity." House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif) praised "the President's swift action in this matter. As a Catholic, I too am terrified by the bishops' attempt to undermine my support for a woman's access to the sacred rite of abortion."

Wuhan Lab Should Get Nobel Prize

Zhao Lijian, a spokesman for China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, dismissed contentions that the Wuhan Lab was the source of the coronavirus pandemic as "a minor issue. Accidents happen. The more important point that is being overlooked is that this lab was successful in its efforts to modify a bat virus into one that could infect and kill humans. The creation of a bioweapon potent enough to accidentally kill millions is a formidable accomplishment. Clearly, a more focused and intentional deployment of such a weapon gives China the upper hand in its struggle against capitalist imperialism."

"A scientific breakthrough of this magnitude merits a Nobel Prize," Zhao asserted. "The use of a virus to eliminate enemy populations while leaving the physical infrastructure of buildings and roads intact is a significant advancement in how warfare can be conducted. It will require far less expenditure to annihilate an enemy than the grossly more expensive kinetic warfare that the imperialist nations rely on. In a properly designed attack, a few infiltrators carrying the virus inside their bodies can start a pandemic that kills or incapacitates tens of millions of our enemies in a span of just a few months."

"Now that the world has gotten a small taste of what we can do the foundation for a lasting peace has been laid," Zhao predicted. "Acceptance of China's leadership and cooperation with our global transformation of society is the path to an enduring contentment for all of humanity. The plague of selfish individualism will be replaced by the total unity of universal collectivism."

Zhao's boasting confirmed Chinese defector former vice minister of State Security Dong Jingwei's testimony to the DIA earlier this year that "the coronavirus was developed as a bioweapon at the Wuhan Lab. It was not intended for immediate use, but an accidental exposure at the lab infected several scientists who unknowingly took the infection home with them leading to a widespread outbreak in Wuhan province. At that point a decision was made to further spread the virus by allowing infected persons to travel by air to various parts of the world as a kind of field test of the weapon's effectiveness."

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