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American Jobs Act Starts The News Corp. War On Office Supplies

First Posted: 09/13/11 01:14 PM ET Updated: 11/13/11 05:12 AM ET

It goes without saying that you should expect some sort of contentious political battle over the newly introduced American Jobs Act, but did anyone think, in their wildest imaginings that the fastener used to clip the actual pages of the bill together would become the flashpoint for criticism? Apparently, this is exactly what we should have thought.

Today's New York Post contains an article titled "O gives jobs 'clip' service," that specifically targets the binder clip that bound the bill together at yesterday's Rose Garden roll-out. Here is the sub-hed: "$447B 'tax hike' plan bound by chintzy fastener." I'm sorry, but is this something that actual grown-ups are reporting on for major metropolitan newspapers, circa 2011?

Here is the lede:

WASHINGTON -- President Obama's plan to reverse the nation's staggering jobless rate is held together with a paper clip!

"Here it is," Obama said, waving a copy of his jobs plan during a ceremony in the White House Rose Garden yesterday, an enormous paper clip binding the pages together.

Have you ever shown up for you first day of work at your new office job, gone to your assigned seat, and opened the desk drawers to see what office supplies your cubicle's former owner has left for you? Typically, the desks former resident takes home all the good stuff for themselves, and their coworkers make off with the best of what's left behind, leaving you very little. Usually, it's the blue and pink highlighter pens that come in the multi-pack that no one ever uses, and binder clips. Tons of binder clips. I bet the Bush administration left lots of binder clips behind during the transition. There is nothing wrong with that! After you've printed off your copy of the American Jobs Act, to show the White House Press Corps, you know what's good to have lying around? A big ol' binder clip.

You can buy a box of twelve similar binder clips at Staples for $3.29. That's pretty economical. And hey, aren't we supposed to be in the middle of some kind of massive debt crisis? If so, why are we decrying the noble, utilitarian binder clip for its "chintziness?" Can you imagine the reaction of Obama had whipped out an iPad 2 to show people the cover of the American Jobs Act? The New York Post would have yelled, "Oh, look at the fancy pants elitist!" At least the binder clip isn't manufactured in a Chinese sweatshop. (I mean, maybe.)

Media Matters' County Fair blog reports that the issue of the terrible, awful Binder Clip Of Enduring Cheapness was also a topic on this morning's edition of "Fox And Friends." This is not altogether surprising, because Fox News -- like the New York Post -- is a News Corp. property, and most of the content on "Fox And Friends" has to be pitched at Brian Kilmeade's level of educational attainment.

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