Paul Greenberg

For those fortunate souls who didn't have to sit through the president's State of the Union speech Tuesday night out of a sense of duty, or maybe just masochism, here is a brief summary and free translation -- very free:

Mr. Speaker, Mr. Vice President, Members of Congress, distinguished guests, fellow Americans and faithful subjects:

The State of the Union is much better thanks to my efforts over the past three years to improve your poor wretched lives -- efforts unparalleled since Abraham Lincoln, Lyndon Johnson, and maybe Martin Van Buren -- to restore our nation's economic health. Those efforts have been highly successful, no matter what you think. Or feel or see or know.

Thanks to our federal government's having invented the fracking process to extract natural gas from shale formations, much the way Al Gore invented the Internet, we are making dramatic progress in solving the Energy Crisis and generally repairing the damage done to the middle class by the previous administration. (Middle Class: a general term for everyone in the sound of my voice who can vote.) Rest assured: If anything's wrong with this country, it's George W. Bush's fault. But I must be honest: It wasn't all his fault. Some of it was Dick Cheney's.

But now, every day in every way, we're getting better and better thanks to my brilliant leadership. My fellow Americans, you can take my word for it. Who are you going to believe, me or those lying unemployment figures? You can feel the progress. Just look around you, but not too closely. I told you we would keep joblessness below 8 percent, and I only missed it by a percentage point or two. Why quibble? Besides, I killed Osama bin Laden.

I say we can restore an economy where everyone gets a fair shot, everyone does their fair share, and everyone plays by the same set of rules, except maybe Solyndra and a few other companies, banks and investment houses too big to fail, or that have political connections with my campaign, or that have had the foresight to become Government Sponsored Enterprises.

We are fast approaching that messianic time when the oceans begin to recede, the planet to heal, and payroll taxes are put off again. Deficits? What's a few more millions/billions/trillions between friends? Pay no attention to that national debt behind the curtain. Just remember that I killed Osama bin Laden.

Paul Greenberg

Pulitzer Prize-winning Paul Greenberg, one of the most respected and honored commentators in America, is the editorial page editor of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.