Obama Read that back to me.
I have fantasizedâ€“don’t get me wrongâ€“but that what if we could just be China for a day? I mean, just, just, just one day. You know, I mean, where we could actually, you know, authorize the right solutions, and I do think there is a sense of that, on, on everything from the economy to environment. I don’t want to be China for a second, OK, I want my democracy to work with the same authority, focus and stick-to-itiveness. But right now we have a system that can only produce suboptimal solutions.
Obama What do you think?
Emanuel I think that c^%*& earned his lunch with Gibbs. He does what he’s told without having to be told.
Axelrod I don’t know what he meant by that “we” business. I mean, he’s useful, but he’s an idiot.
Gibbs Yeah, but he’s a good indicator of the mood out there.
Obama Maybe. Read the other one.
Axelrod I’ll skip to the best part:
It would be good if he could be dictator for a few years because he could do a lot of good things quickly.
Emanuel Gibbs’ is right: the mood’s there.
Axelrod We’d never get it if we acknowledge that &*^%ing child molester. First thing we’d do is send him over.
Biden [Muffled] Hey, guys? Guys? Can I come in yet?
Obama Ignore him; he’ll go away.
Gibbs What’s our move?
Axelrod We need the Senate.
Axelrod Gotta have some kind of historical precedent.
Emanuel Need some kind of crisis, too.
Obama Not strong enough.
Axelrod Wars are no good, either. Everybody shut up about them since we got here.
Emanuel I got it! Secure the borders.
Gibbs That could be spun. I can make it so both sides think they’re going to get what they want.
Obama What do we need from the Senate?
Axelrod Rule change. We’re in luck, there. Vice President Hair Plugs’ gotta lean on the parliamentarian, make it so that a majority is all it takes to appoint you dictator.
Obama What about the House?
Emanuel Put it out that we don’t need ’em. We’re on solid ground, here. Classic law, Rome, Cicero–get it?—and all that. No House necessary, those ^&*%%s.
Obama Hmm. They’ll never go for it.
Axelrod We don’t ask for dictator perpetuo….
Emanuel Ha! Not right away.
Axelrod Just six months.
Biden [Muffled] Hey, guys. I got the frappucinos, guys.
Gibbs Yeah, I just checked. Six months works. It’s already been done. “The rich history of Western law allows for the contingency. Finally, we can cut through the partisan bickering and needless logjams. We can implement solutions we have proved are optimal” and yada, yada, yada.
Axelrod Don’t forget “crossroads of history.” Anyway, we guarantee that after six months we revert back to the status quo. Unless they insist on more. “Yes we can.” [Laughter]
Obama [After prolonged silence] There’s a reason I carry this picture in my wallet…No, no; stand up, stand up. This is what he would have wanted. [Sobbing heard] Do we have the list?
Emanuel Of course. I always keep it right here. [smacking sound] Right by the boys. Safe and sound.
Obama Who’s at the top?
Emanuel Limbaugh, that %Y^^*&^; who else?
Obama He stays. [Loud swearing]
Axelrod No, I think that’s right. Start with the Right and they’ll think we were only after our enemies.
Emanuel Fine. Number two: Clinton. Both of them.
Emanuel What else? Murder-suicide.
Gibbs Nothing wrong with cliché.
Obama Who’s next?
Emanuel I don’t know. We made this list before. Now I’m thinking we gotta shift it around a bit.
Axelrod Yeah, the office of dictator will be pretty tempting. We forget that and next thing you know our Ovaltine’s poisoned.
Emanuel Definitely Pelosi.
Gibbs “We are sad to announce that Speaker Pelosi died today from complications of her latest facial stretch surgery…” [Laughter]
Obama Who do you have at the Times?
Gibbs Pretty much everybody.
Obama Get rid of anybody who’s written for the editorial page in the last year.
Axelrod Smart move. Those brats will think they deserve credit. They’ll start whining when they don’t get their way. Could be dangerous.
Obama Not at first. We want opposition. We need somebody to blame if anything goes wrong.
Axelrod We can do this thing.
Emanuel Sounds like a plan.
Obama OK. Let him in. [Door opens]
Biden Hi, guys. You guys having a meeting?
Obama Joe, I have something I need you to do.