Federal Times Blogs

Daily Show: GSA’s lame trinkets ‘a disgrace to corruption’

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Last night, the Daily Show’s Jon Stewart weighed in on the General Services Administration’s conference spending scandal and zeroed in on what may be its most appalling angle: The sheer lameness of the crap GSA bought with $822,000 in taxpayer dollars. Said an outraged Stewart:

Canteens, clowns and bicycles? You’re in Vegas! Unless those canteens were filled with cocaine [...], you are a disgrace to corruption everywhere. I think I’m less upset about the waste of money than I am with the waste of opportunity.

[...] Yearbooks! They got yearbooks! The people in government known for efficiency and cost-cutting made sure they had physical evidence of the boondoggle they had in Vegas.

Stewart then shows a mock yearbook photo of former GSA Administrator Martha Johnson and dubbed her “Most likely to resign over an event that betrays an almost comical misunderstanding of the agency’s mission.”

The language, though bleeped, gets pretty salty at times, so be warned.

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Government Doesn’t Suck event piggybacks on Stewart-Colbert rally

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From GovLoop

Are you a fed tired of the knee-jerk government bashing that’s so in vogue these days? The social networking site GovLoop thinks its time for all of you to stand up and yell at the top of your lungs, “I don’t suck!”

Yes, GovLoop is holding a “Government Doesn’t Suck” rally tomorrow, alongside Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert’s Rally to Restore Sanity/March to Keep Fear Alive event. Go to the south end of the Air and Space Museum and look for the people with green shirts with “Chicks Dig Govies” sign.  (Apparently that’s an official GovLoop rally slogan. And I really, really hope they don’t start singing government-themed anthems inspired by Joan Osborne — the “What If Gov Was One Of Us?” sign fills me with dread.) GovLoop promises “some swag and solidarity” for feds and fed supporters who swing by to express “reasonable indignation.”

The official rally itself is shaping up to be a pretty good mixture of music and comedy. The Roots are the opening act, Sheryl Crow will play, and (best of all) soul legend Mavis Staples will perform with Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy. If you attend any of the events tomorrow, sound off about your experience below.

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Friday Fun part II: Keep fear alive!

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Late-night comedy hosts/faux newsmen Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert last evening unveiled their plans to hold a “Rally to Restore Sanity/March to Keep Fear Alive.”

The event, to be held Oct. 30 on the National Mall, is partly a parody of the “Restoring Honor” rally Glenn Beck held in August. But Stewart is only half-joking when he calls for a million-moderate march to find solutions to the problems our nation faces, without demonizing those who may disagree with us. Or in his words, “take it down a notch for America.”

As his announcement made clear, shrill hysteria has become a bipartisan attribute over the last few years. Just look at how many people descended on this FedLine post — making Obama = Hitler comparisons, yelling about the Patriot Act, and calling the Census an unconstitutional scheme that leads to concentration camp imprisonments — to see how far the crazy has gotten.

And speaking as someone who covers the business of government day in and day out, “Got competence?” doesn’t sound like a bad rallying cry.

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Rally to Restore Sanity
Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorTea Party

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
March to Keep Fear Alive
Colbert Report Full Episodes2010 ElectionFox News

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Orszag had Jon Stewart at ‘Good morning’

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In case you haven’t heard, White House budget director Peter Orszag’s home life just got a lot more complicated. For the appropriate — and always tasteful — analysis on Orszag’s “magnetic machismo,” we turn it over to Jon Stewart and his crack staff at the Daily Show.

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Peter Orszag Sex Scandal
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Political HumorHealth Care Crisis

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Postal Service: Whipping boy of the health care debate

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Postmaster General John Potter

Postmaster General John Potter

As the debate over health care reform boils over, both sides are now using the U.S. Postal Service to score points. House Minority Leader John Boehner, June 11:

If you like going to the DMV and think they do a great job, or you like going to the post office and think it’s the most efficient thing you’ve run into, then you’ll love the government-run health care system.

And President Barack Obama at this afternoon’s health care town hall meeting in Portsmouth, N.H., as reported by the Associated Press:

[Obama] also disputed the notion that adding a government-run insurance plan into a menu of options from which people could pick would drive private insurers out of business, in effect making the system single-payer by default.

As long as they have a good product and the government plan has to sustain itself through premiums and other non-tax revenue, private insurers should be able to compete with the government plan, Obama said.

“They do it all the time,” he said. “UPS and FedEx are doing just fine. … It’s the Post Office that’s always having problems.”

That sound you just heard was Postmaster General John Potter’s head hitting his desk.

There’s one man, however, who will stick up for the embattled Postal Service: Jon Stewart. Video after the jump:

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