Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 25 December 2014

Space meld illogical, Mr President

Barack Obama
Barack Obama

Barack Obama could not bring two battling political parties together to forestall the steep budget cuts, but did manage a feat of more cosmic proportions.

The president brought two universes together and did it by boldly going where no politician should ever go: confusing Star Wars and Star Trek.

Mr Obama's mixing of science-fiction metaphors crossed a final frontier, setting the nerdiest corners of the internet ablaze.

The president was answering reporters' questions in the White House briefing room shortly after the last-minute meeting with the House of Representatives and Senate leaders.

Mr Obama rejected the idea of using burly Secret Service agents to keep politicians from leaving until everyone agreed on a budget.

"I am not a dictator. I'm the president," he said, explaining that he would not do a "Jedi mind meld" with the US Congress' top two Republicans to persuade them "to do what's right".

But Jedis are from Star Wars, while mind-melds happened on Star Trek. Mr Obama might as well have joined the Dark Side.

The reaction from Yoda-quoting nerds, Washington insiders and even Hollywood heroes was swift, as the presidential mishmash of sci-fi references went viral.

Mr Obama turned off geeks who had considered the president to be one of them with a slip of the tongue that was almost as bad as confusing Klingons and Ewoks, or even Democrats and Republicans.

Even Mr Spock of Star Trek joined in. "Only a Vulcan mind meld would be effective on this Congress. LLAP," Leonard Nimoy emailed, signing off with the abbreviation for "Live long and prosper".

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