In light of
New Yorker-gate Cartoon-gate Blitt-gate Have-We-No-More-Sense-Of-Humor-gate Cover-gate, the Times today bears sad tidings: Barack Obama’s not funny. Yep, the guy’s as un-comical as they come. He’s not buffoonish! He’s not robotic! He’s not sleazy! He’s not old or fat or stupid! Or anything!
Sigh. It’s almost enough to make us mirth-deprived masses long for the heady days when A Man Named Bubba roamed the West Wing. Or when we could unite in knowing laughter when discussing Potatoe-gate. Or when our leaders sported mutton chops. (Those are always funny.)
So leave it to Andy Borowitz, that Puck of politics, to come to comedy’s rescue. He provides, today (h/t: Politico), a fake press release entitled “Obama Releases List of Approved Jokes About Himself: Bid to Help Late Night Comics.” The jokes Obama “provides”—their humor being precisely their lack of humor; their punchline being their lack of punchline—are as follows. Settle back, ye humor-hungry citizens of America, and prepare to laugh once again!
Barack Obama and a kangaroo pull up to a gas station. The gas station attendant takes one look at the kangaroo and says, “You know, we don’t get many kangaroos here.” Barack Obama replies, “At these prices, I’m not surprised. That’s why we need to reduce our dependence on foreign oil.”
A traveling salesman knocks on the door of a farmhouse, and much to his surprise, Barack Obama answers the door. The salesman says, “I was expecting the farmer’s daughter.” Barack Obama replies, “She’s not here. The farm was foreclosed on because of subprime loans that are making a mockery of the American Dream.”
A horse walks into a bar. The bartender says, “Why the long face?” Barack Obama replies, “His jockey just lost his health insurance, which should be the right of all Americans.”
A Christian, a Jew and Barack Obama are in a rowboat in the middle of the ocean. Barack Obama says, “This joke isn’t going to work because there’s no Muslim in this boat.”
And finally there’s this:
Q: What’s black and white and red all over?Megan Garber is an assistant editor at the Nieman Journalism Lab at Harvard University. She was formerly a CJR staff writer.
Barack Obama: The New Yorker magazine, which should be embarrassed after publishing such a tasteless and offensive cover, which I reject and denounce.