Magazine May 2, 2011, Issue

To: Archives, From: West Wing Staff

(Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)

TO: Archives
FROM: West Wing Staff
RE: Attached notes

Please file these contemporaneous notes of the latest budget negotiations. Marked CLOSE HOLD.

Thank you.

Meeting begins.

Present: POTUS, Speaker of the House, Mr. Plouffe, others.

POTUS begins by reminding SOH that government shutdown would be bad for everyone. Devastation, etc. Family vacations ruined by federal-park closure, sad kids, etc., etc. SOH reminds POTUS that his family never had vacations — too poor, etc. — but that he understands on an intellectual level that they’re important. SOH becomes emotional, asks for a moment to regain composure.

SOH returns to room and demands further cuts to Planned Parenthood and assorted …

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The market functions well enough to bring Walmart to its senses. Alas, for Big Government, there are no such corrective mechanisms.

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