And here’s an even better deal, for those who, despite the roaring economy, can’t afford even $7,500 for non-dinner with Obama: The president of the United States is raffling himself off! For the cost of a $3 non-refundable online-application processing fee, you and your loved one can have your names put in a large presidential hat from which the FBI background-check team will pluck two to be ushered into the presence of their humble citizen-executive. That’s to say, somewhere across the fruited plain, a common-or-garden non-celebrity will win the opportunity to attend an Obama fundraiser at the home of Sex and the City star Sarah Jessica Parker, co-hosted by Vogue editor Anna Wintour, the British-born inspiration for the movie The Devil Wears Prada. I wish this were a parody, but I’m not that good. But I’m sure Sarah Jessica and Anna will treat you just like any other minor celebrity they’ve accidentally been seated next to due to a hideous faux pas in placement, even if you do dip the wrong end of the arugula in the amuse-bouche.
If you’re wondering who Anna Wintour is, boy, what a schlub you are: She’s renowned throughout the fashion world for her scary bangs. I’m referring to her hair, not to the last sound Osama bin Laden heard as the bullet headed toward his eye socket on the personal orders of the president, in case you’ve forgotten. But that’s the kind of inside tidbit you’ll be getting, as the commander-in-chief leaks highly classified national-security details to you over the zebra mussel in a Eurasian-milfoil coulis. For a donation of $35,800, he’ll pose with you in a Seal Team Six uniform with one foot on Osama’s corpse (played by Harry Reid). For a donation of $46,800, he’ll send an unmanned drone to hover amusingly over your sister-in-law’s house. For a donation of $77,800, he’ll install you as the next president-for-life of Syria (liability waiver required). For a donation of $159,800, he’ll take you into Sarah Jessica’s guest bedroom and give you the full 007 while Carly Simon sings “Nobody Does It Better.”
There are monarchies and republics aplenty, but there’s only one 24/7 celebrity fundraising presidency. If it’s Tuesday, it must be Kim Cattrall, or Hootie and the Blowfish, or Laverne and Shirley, or the ShamWow guy . . . I wonder if the Queen ever marvels at the transformation of the American presidency since her time with Truman. Ah, well. If you can’t stand the klieg-light heat of Obama’s celebrity, stay out of the Beverly Wilshire kitchen.
— Mark Steyn, a National Review columnist, is the author of After America: Get Ready for Armageddon. © 2012 Mark Steyn