WashPost's 2012 Humor in Review Prefers to Mock Obama for Getting Osama bin Laden

Liberals always think humor has a liberal bias. That wasn't certainly true when The Washington Post magazine published "Dave Barry's Year in Review" on Sunday. Barry mocks Obama for his victories: "President Obama, in the State of the Union address, boldly rebuts critics who charge that his economic policies have been a failure by displaying the scalp of Osama bin Laden, which a White House aide carries in a special briefcase."

Mitt Romney has all the "easygoing natural human warmth of a parking meter," and Newt Gingrich needs to be tranquilized with darts:

Meanwhile the race for the Republican presidential nomination, which began in approximately 2003, continues to be a spicy political gumbo of excitement. The emerging front runner is Mitt Romney, who combines a strong résumé of executive experience with the easygoing natural human warmth of a parking meter. Still in contention, however, is Newt Gingrich, whose popularity surges briefly, only to wane when voters begin to grasp the fact that he is Newt Gingrich.

In March, "It is now clear that Romney has won the nomination, but Gingrich vows to continue his campaign, lurching gamely onward despite the tranquilizer darts fired into his neck by his own advisers."

In May, Obama's flip-flop back toward gay marriage can only come with another Romney joke: "In other political news, President Obama, who supported same-sex marriage when he ran for the Illinois Senate in 1996 but opposed it when he ran for the U.S. Senate in 2004, clarifies his evolving position, which is that he once again fully supports same-sex marriage, for now. Mitt Romney reaffirms his long-standing position on the issue, which is that he is in favor of sex during marriage, but only at night."

Then came the convention:

Hurricane Isaac fails to dampen the mood in Tampa at the wild and crazy spontaneous wacky funfest that is the Republican National Convention. The Republicans — eager to disprove the stereotype that they are the party of old, out-of-touch rich white men — give their highest-visibility prime-time TV spot to: Clint Eastwood. Clint wows the delegates by delivering a series of fascinating sentence fragments to a chair that he either does or does not realize has nobody sitting on it.

In other convention highlights, the Republicans declare their support for the Middle Class and pass a platform calling on the nation to get the hell off their lawn.

In September this is when Barry really goes after Obama with all his satirical weapons (well, not exactly):

...the Democrats gather in Charlotte, N.C., for their convention, during which they declare their near-carnal passion for the Middle Class and celebrate the many major achievements of the Obama administration, including the killing of Osama bin Laden, solar energy, the winning of the War on Terror by killing Osama bin Laden, the Chevy Volt, bold presidential leadership in the form of making the difficult decision to order the killing of Osama bin Laden, wind power, and many, many other major things that the administration has achieved, such as killing Osama bin Laden. The Democrats acknowledge that the economy is not totally 100 percent “there” yet, but promise to continue moving steadfastly forward with their relentless attacks on the root cause of economic stagnation and continued high unemployment, namely, George W. Bush.

Abroad, the big story is a deadly 9/11 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya. It soon becomes apparent that the attack either was or was not a spontaneous protest to a movie that either does or does not actually exist, or possibly it was an organized terrorist attack that either did or did not involve al-Qaeda and either could or could not have been prevented if there had been better intelligence, which maybe there was, or maybe there was not, although if there was, it was not acted on, possibly for political reasons. Or not. But beyond these basic facts, little is clear. The White House issues a strong statement assuring the nation that President Obama was not in any way involved in this, “or anything else that may or may not become known.”

Obama's worst failure in liberal eyes -- the first presidential debate -- is skewered, with a brief nod toward a TelePrompter joke, but it must be matched by how Romney is robotic:

President Obama is widely faulted for his performance in the first presidential debate, during which he appears moody and detached, several times stopping in mid-answer to go outside to smoke a cigarette. The debate moderator, veteran PBS newsman Jim Lehrer, at first seems a bit overwhelmed by the task, but after a few minutes he falls asleep. This leaves the field wide open for a confident and assertive Mitt Romney, who, in a span of 90 minutes, manages to explain his five-point economic-recovery plan a total of 37 times, running up an indoor record presidential-debate score of 185 points. Romney also demonstrates his understanding of the issues facing ordinary Americans by promising to cut federal funding for Big Bird.

Stung by the defeat, Obama closets himself with his advisers, who coach him on debating techniques such as smiling, pretending to listen and forming complete sentences without a teleprompter. Obama is much more aggressive in the next two debates, at one point pulling out his BlackBerry on-camera and ordering a missile strike against Syria.

In the vice presidential debate, Joe Biden gives Paul Ryan a noogie.

Hillary Clinton isn't really mocked, but Southerners who shop at Wal-mart are apparently worse than Hamas:

Toward the end of the month, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is dispatched on an urgent mission to try to bring peace to one of the world’s most troubled spots: the Moultrie, Ga., Walmart, where mobs of crazed Black Friday shoppers are viciously assaulting each other over discounted cellphones. Clinton soon realizes the futility of her mission and heads for the Middle East, where people are more reasonable.

PS: In non-presidential politics, Barry does repeatedly make fun of Mayor Bloomberg’s War on Large Soft Drinks, even if it devolved once into mocking New York police brutality:

A tragic fatal drama plays out on the streets of New York City, where police officers fire 183 bullets into a man who, according to witnesses, was about to take a sip from a Big Gulp, which he apparently obtained in New Jersey. The shooting is defended by Mayor Bloomberg, who notes that if the officers had not acted quickly, the man “could have placed himself in very real danger of becoming obese.”

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis