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Horace Heller Hedley IV » North of Center
 

The leek: a satirical take

By Horace Heller Hedley, IV

The evolving story of widespread NSA surveillance on ordinary Americans has taken a surprising turn. Dozens of citizens are reporting mysterious, helpful messages from an unidentified sender, popularly dubbed “the NSAngel.” In each case, the messages have appeared without warning on the screens of users, with no earmarks of a known program, and no trace of a sender’s address. They invariably pertain to events in the recipient’s recent life, and are polite and helpful in tone. Often the mysterious sender shows knowledge that indicates extraordinary access to information. All these factors point to a rogue, do-gooder element of the NSA that has so far escaped supervisory sanction. Continue reading »

 

The Leek: a satirical take

By Horace Heller Hedley, IV

Image by Christopher Epling.

Image by Christopher Epling.

A confidential source has provided The Leek with a surreptitious tape of a strategy session held by senior officials of the National Rifle Association (NRA). The recording was made on April 18, 2013, the day after measures banning assault weapons and extending gun buyer background checks were defeated in the Senate.

The confidential source told The Leek that he entered the meeting with a recording device concealed in an oversized ammunition clip attached to an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle. The weapon did not arouse suspicion and was not searched.

The Leek took no direct part in making the recording. Therefore, whatever the legality of the recording, The Leek is exercising its First Amendment right to publish the manuscript, and is held harmless from legal liability under Supreme Court precedent set in the case of Bartnicki v. Vopper.

The participants in the NRA meeting appear to have been senior policymakers and legal specialists within the organization, but could not be identified.  Continue reading »

 

The leek: a satirical take

By Horace Heller Hedley, IV

Breaking new ground in the movement to give corporations the same rights as people, the state of Texas has become the first to impose the death penalty on a corporation. On midnight of February 1, Lone Star Diesel and Fixins’ had its Articles of Incorporation blown to pieces by shotgun fire, in the first known state-sanctioned execution of a non-human entity.

Illustration by Christopher Epling.

Illustration by Christopher Epling.

Continue reading »

 

The leek: a satirical take

Illustration by Christopher Epling.

Illustration by Christopher Epling.

By Horace Heller Hedley, IV

In a bold initiative for solving stubborn Federal budget problems, the U.S. House of Representatives will, for the first time in its history, accept official corporate sponsorship. As anticipated, the move has created a scramble among America’s largest corporations which are now vying for exclusive rights to sponsor the House—an undreamed of branding and public relations coup for the winner.

The news sent shock waves through the Fortune 500, as at least a dozen of America’s top corporations jockeyed for position in the upcoming public auction, dubbed “the mother of all bidding wars.”  Continue reading »

 

The leek: a satirical take

By Horace Heller Hedley, IV

The familiar tour of Washington D.C.’s great monuments to our common past—The Lincoln Memorial, The Jefferson Memorial, the Washington Monument—will soon feature a new stop.  The new Ayn Rand Memorial, a tribute to the influential Russian émigré novelist and political philosopher, is due to begin construction in 2014.   Continue reading »

 

The leek: a satirical take

By Horace Heller Hedley, IV

In a bold move to open more payment options for financially strapped customers, Anthem Blue Cross will allow subscribers to pay premiums by offering their vital organs to the insurance giant. The new program, dubbed “Kidneys for Koverage,” provides a variety of flexible options, allowing both healthy and ailing customers to derive monetary value from their functioning organ systems.

“We asked ourselves, ‘Those subscribers who can’t afford monthly premiums — where are their untapped assets?’” said Ronald Hilfinger, Director of Customer Relations. “Their houses are mostly sold already—especially our customers in poor health. But with a healthy kidney going for $150,000, the average person’s most valuable asset is their excess organ capacity.   Since we already had access to an extensive network of surgeons, it was a natural fit.” Continue reading »

 

The leek: a satirical take

By Horace Heller Hedley, IV

In a stunning counterpoint to the recent video where Mitt Romney describes 47 percent of Americans as irresponsible and feeling entitled to government handouts, a second video has emerged showing the candidate expressing very different views. The second video, recorded secretly at a gathering of low-income women at a community center in an undisclosed city, shows Romney expressing empathy for his low-income guests, even raising questions of economic justice. Continue reading »

 

The leek: a satirical take

By Horace Heller Hedley, IV

The U.S. health care system, long criticized for poor accessibility, lackluster overall outcomes, and low health benefits per dollar spent, now ranks sixth among the world’s developing countries. These results from a recent World Health Organization (WHO) survey covering nearly all national health care systems place the U.S. among the top four percent of developing nations—trailing only Columbia, Morocco, Chile, Dominica, and Costa Rica. These findings from the WHO’s paper “Measuring Overall Health System Performance for 191 Countries” are expected to vindicate defenders of the U.S. health care system.

“The 96th percentile among two-thirds of the world’s nations,” said Richard Johansen, Deputy Director of the conservative Heritage Foundation, a staunch opponent of the Affordable Care Act. “Does that sound like a system desperate for a costly overhaul?”  Continue reading »