MY HOME, S.C. (Sept. 7) — The passing of Labor Day typically means the start of election campaigns, and it’s appearing ever more likely that the cats’ majority in the house is in jeopardy due to the rise of an energized squirrel movement out in the yard.
The cats have held a firm majority in the house since 2008 when three of them were swept into power as part of the Obama landslide. Since then, however, a rising tide of public opinion has turned against the felines for their infighting, partisan bickering and inability to get much accomplished. Polls indicate that the public is ready for a change, and the squirrels are gathering their forces to offer an alternative to the cat agenda.
As the nights grow cooler with fall in the air, evidence of the squirrels’ ascendancy is everywhere. The trees are alive with activity, shattered acorns litter the driveway and high-pitched squeaks lay out the group’s plans for changing the trajectory of American politics.
“The public is tired of career politicians occupying seats of power like the window sill, the large cushion near the fireplace and the plush rug in front of the TV,” said Grey Tail, organizer of the Squirrel Party Express. “Those fat cats are too cozy with special interests, like the person who dispenses the food each night. It’s time for the house to stop wasting resources on big government, and returning power to the majority of small, furry mammals who aren’t cats.”
The cats seem to realize that their fate is precarious. Not only do mid-term elections historically reward the party that’s out of power, but a widespread mood against the status quo is also working against incumbents. Even traditionally safe seats, like the perch atop the cat condo near the sliding glass door, are facing a serious challenge in the 2010 cycle.
“We fully understand the frustration being felt out there in the heartland,” said Taylor, whose chairmanship of the House Sink, Counter and Cooking Surfaces Committee is one of the seats being threatened. “We would just remind people that it was the squirrels and their disregard for proper government regulation that got us into this fix in the first place. Their emphasis on using seeds and bits of pine cone for currency wrecked the economy. It’s why we’re still suffering in the current recession.”
The squirrels had held a majority in the house until 2006, when a nuisance wildlife firm was hired to clear the attic of the colony that had settled there after a woodpecker had broken a hole in the eaves. The cats promised a cleaner government, and initially had widespread support for the way they would lick themselves all hours of the day and night. But as the cats failed to stimulate economic growth despite their lavish eating habits, the squirrels claimed their brand of fiscal responsibility would return the house to prosperity.
“We know a thing or two about storing resources away so we’ll be ready for hard times,” said Tail, whose only prior government experience involved being nearly run over by the mail truck earlier this year. “By investing the acorns we harvest in holes in the ground over the winter, we would anticipate a return to sustainable growth by the spring of 2011.”
Observers give the squirrels a better-than-even chance to reclaim power in the house, though it’s unlikely they’ll also be able to win the storage shed out back, where roaches and other insects have a stronger grip on the reins of power.
“We’re confident that the electorate will see these challengers as a fringe element, and reject them on Nov. 2,” said Tom, a Demo-cat from Ohio. “Some of them even want to dismantle the Department of Warm Towels and the President’s Commission on Empty Boxes. I can understand that folks favor a more responsible budget and monetary policy, but a lot of their proposals are just plain nuts.”