Editor’s note: Michael Ackley’s columns may include satire and parody based on current events, and thus mix fact with fiction. He assumes informed readers will be able to tell which is which.

“What do you think?” asked Jill Poke, an aide to the terror cell’s second in command. “Have we gone too far, too soon?”

“Look,” replied Doroteo Arango, her counterpart in the chairman’s office, “we have to start somewhere, and we’re not using suicide bombers just yet.”

“Yeah,” said Poke, “but it’s still terrorism.”

“This is a revolution, isn’t it?” asked Arango. “Remember the words of Robespierre, that ‘government during a revolution is virtue combined with terror.’ We’re dealing with counterrevolutionaries. Those reactionaries are going to get what they deserve.”

“Of course you’re right,” said Poke, “but how do you know the chairman really wants us to unleash this attack?”

“I know because he climbed up on his chair, rubbed his hands together and laughed – like ‘mwah-ha-ha-ha-ha!'” said Arango, miming his boss.

And so Arango, operative for Chairman Henry Waxman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, and Poke, adviser to Subcommittee Chairman Bart Stupak, drafted letters to the CEOs of AT&T, Deere and Co., Caterpillar Inc. and Verizon Communications.

The letters “invited” the executives to testify how they determined health-care “reform” would cost their companies hundreds of millions of dollars. They “requested” “1) any analyses related to the projected impact of health care reform … and 2) any documents, including e-mail messages, sent to or prepared or reviewed by senior company officials related to the projected impact of health-care reform.” They also asked for an explanation of corporate accounting methods.

As they left Waxman’s offices, Arango smirked, “Remember what Felix Dzerzhinsky said way back when, ‘Terror is an absolute necessity during times of revolution.’ Corporations will have to think twice before releasing counterrevolutionary data.”

“But testimony before a congressional committee,” said Poke with a shudder. “The horror!”

“Brace up,” said Arango. “Mao Tse-tung said there is no revolution without blood. Comparatively, our terrorism is pretty moderate.”

This then brings us to a new entry in the Blind Partisan’s Dictionary:

terror – n. detonations – including those of verbal dynamite – where they will instill the greatest fear, as in corporate executive suites.

Meanwhile, Nancy Pelosi’s sub-sub-chief of staff, Amy Handleman, was near tears over threats to Democratic Caucus members following passage of the aforementioned health-care “reform.”

“This isn’t how democracy is supposed to work,” she said, unburdening herself to her friend Howard Bashford. “It’s one thing to challenge legislation through the courts, but quite another to throw bricks through windows.

“Speaker Pelosi has been so upset by un-American actions.”

“Like an unconstitutional bill?” ask Bashford, feigning innocence.

“Don’t you start,” Handleman said sternly. “The health-care law is constitutional under the commerce clause. It says Congress ‘shall have power … to regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian tribes …’

“If you hold that the states are creatures of the people, by extension Congress has the right to regulate how people spend their money. And if Congress has the power to regulate spending, it logically has the power to regulate non-spending.

“Under the new law, you can’t non-spend on health insurance.”

Handleman slumped and she whimpered, “Debate is one thing, but the violence! And threats of violence! Why, there’s a campaign map out there putting Democratic representative’s districts in cross hairs!”

Bashford interjected gently, “Amy, what if the threats and bricks reflect how far Congress and the president have gone out of bounds? Look at it this way: If you’ve made mainstream America angry, aren’t those on the fringe likely to go over the edge? And if Congress and the president have flouted the public’s will, isn’t an extreme response at least partially their own fault?”

Handleman’s lower lip quivered.

“How can you compare our representatives to those nut cases?” she demanded. “Even if Congress and the president did violence to the Constitution, they did it through a civil process – without throwing bricks!”

“So,” said Bashford, “it wasn’t violence, just subversion?”

“That’s a nasty term!” hissed Handleman, stalking away.

And so we add yet another entry to the BPD:

civil process – n. the sanctimony of raw power.

Apart from health care and student loan stuff, what was the top question last week? It had to be: How could an employee of the Republican National Committee think it OK to expense an outing to a bondage/sex bar?

The probable answer: Political operatives of all factions come from the ranks of party professionals – in other words, “the culture of corruption.”

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