January 14, 2013
Darth Vader
You are not a Jedi yet. (Associated Press)

Time to start bargaining down to an AT-AT walker, I guess.

This weekend brought sad news:

The Death Star will not be completed on schedule.

Our effort to “secure resources and funding, and begin construction of a Death Star by 2016″ has failed. The White House has offered its official response, which, while delightfully rife with Star Wars references (well-played, Paul Shawcross), informs us that everything will not be proceeding as we have foreseen. Our overconfidence was our weakness, I guess. That, and the facts, as Shawcross sensibly notes:

  • The construction of the Death Star has been estimated to cost more than $850,000,000,000,000,000. We’re working hard to reduce the deficit, not expand it.
  • The Administration does not support blowing up planets.
  • Why would we spend countless taxpayer dollars on a Death Star with a fundamental flaw that can be exploited by a one-man starship?

In short, “This isn’t the petition response you’re looking for.”

It also concludes by begging us to go into math and science, which is how all White House press releases are now required to conclude, in order to prevent America from spiraling out of relevance.

I said before that this plan was not what America needed right now. I stand by that. But it still hurts to see the Death Star exploded so summarily. This is not what I envisioned Obama’s America would be like.

America used to dream big dreams. Now, we can’t even build a comically oversized platinum coin. The only dangerous fictional thing looming over our heads is the debt ceiling.

Also, White House, you cannot just say, “We have built space stations and lasers” and think that we will be appeased. All space stations are not created equal. The International Space Station couldn’t explode a planet if its life depended on it. It could bore the planet a little, but that would be about as far as it went. Furthermore, the statement, “We are living in the future! Enjoy it” is objectively false. This is not the future. It is the present. If it were the future, we would have flying skateboards.

I think the only appropriate response is to do what the Empire would do in a situation like this: Take no notice of the setback and begin construction on another Death Star immediately. 

Alexandra Petri writes the ComPost blog, offering a lighter take on the news and opinions of the day.