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OBAMANESE: ‘Rosetta Stone’ to Help Translate President Obama, Admin Officials



by Ledge Slater, DP stud and intern

Monday, November 11th, 2013,

(WASHINGTON) —Stonewalling, contradictory statements, incoherent responses, garbled messages, indiscernible excuses, faux excuses, finger-pointing, hostility, belligerence, denials, denials of denials, complete ignorance, abject confusion, even blatant lying, then lying about previous lies…

     All those descriptions can adequately describe the Obama administration, particularly over the last year. Confusing to many have been inconsistencies —sometimes blaring and dramatic— in statements by President Obama and top administration officials on matters ranging from the 9/11 Benghazi attacks, to the IRS’s abuse of power, the NSA’s intrusive domestic spying and spying on U.S. allies, secret deals with Iran, the catastrophe that is the Obamacare signup website, to millions of people being kicked off their health insurance plans.

   But now there is hope in discerning what exactly the President and his officials are saying on a daily (sometimes hourly) basis, thanks to none other than world-renowned language learning software program, Rosetta Stone.

     Indeed, the world’s leading software program that promises “fast and fun” adaption to any world language has altruistically gone out of its way to produce a series of lessons designed to help average Americans understand just what the hell President Obama and his top officials are generally saying these days. Rosetta Stone calls this series of learning software “Speaking ‘Obamanese’.”

   “We actually had the idea for deciphering ‘Obamanese’ during (Obama’s) first presidential race,” said Rosetta Stone Chief Technology Officer Greg Keim. “With all his simple, vacuous talk of ‘hope’ and ‘change’ and ‘transforming America’, many of us were seeing a need to decode what exactly this man was saying.” 

   Although the temptation to translate Obama’s endless stream of hackneyed platitudes sprinkled with some catchy New Age sound bites for the public stuck with Rosetta Stone’s senior executives, the company says they never thought that trying to get people to understand “Obamanese” would be worth producing.

     “But that all changed after Benghazi,” Keim said via phone interview to Duh Progressive, Sunday.   “The evasive answers given by Press Secretary Carney, the absence of Secretary of State Clinton for so long, then her very, umm, ‘memorable’ testimony to Congress, not to mention the line of bullshit by U.N. Secretary Rice. …We knew it was time; time to allow people to understand; time to teach people ‘Obamanese’.”

   Rosetta Stone says it will later release another edition of “Obamanese” (“Obamanese 2.0: Let Me Be Clear”), designed exclusively to help Americans further understand the current statements administration officials have made about the Obamacare debacle, then have rephrased, then denied that they were ever said, then said again in reverse, then said that someone else said them, then blamed the press for misconstruing and falsely reporting on what they said they had not said they said.

   “Our efforts have always been aimed more at getting people to understand what language (Obama) administration officials are speaking first, then learn how to speak it themselves,” Keim said.

     According to Rosetta Stone senior linguist and translator, Beth Korczik, deciphering Obamanese has been harder than any language she and Rosetta Stone’s linguists have had to interpret in their careers. It’s not just a matter of trying to figure out what the President and his top staff are saying, according to Korczik, but how to decode it for the average person to fully understand.

    Said Korczik to Duh Progressive, “Just Obama’s statement alone of ‘If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor, period. If you like your health-care plan, you’ll be able to keep your healthare plan, period. No one will take it away, no matter what’, was challenging enough. Combine that with his November 7th apology to those that have totally contradicted that statement by losing their existing healthcare plans, and we’re left in a conundrum, a ‘mystery speak’ if you will of just what the hell does this man actually, really mean?”

    Rosetta Stone’s “Obamanese” edition features detailed lessons such as “Jay Carnage” (learning how to evade, duck, and mock uncomfortable questions from reporters), “Hillarity Clinton” (understanding when someone is guilty as hell of being deceitful and/or neglectful by simply yelling “What difference at this point does it make?”, followed by a completely countering statement of, “It is our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from ever happening again, Senator.”), President Obamanese himself saying “…the Fast and Furious program was a field-initiated program begun under the previous administration,” and his latest of “We’ve got to work hard to make sure that they know we hear them and that we’re going to do everything we can to deal with folks who find themselves in a tough position as a consequence of this” regarding the Affordable Care Act’s patently predictable consequences of forcing millions off their current private healthcare insurance plans.

   Rosetta Stone’s CEO, Stephen M. Swad, said Rosetta’s edition(s) of “Obamanese” has tested his employees’ commitment to helping people around the world understand each others’ languages like never before. Said Swad to reporters Sunday, “The work of translating Obamanese to straight, plain talk has been daunting, to say the least. Some of our best linguists have quit because of the grueling task of interpreting precisely what Obama and his senior staff mean in their statements. Remember, ‘Obamanese’ is not just one official’s single statement, but a holistic intake of all of their statements on a given matter over time. …That’s what’s been so frustrating.”


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   “For example,” continued Swad, “when you piece together all of President Obama’s statements on the NSA’s domestic spying program, from ‘I didn’t know the extent of it,’ to ‘I had been informed there was a program in place,’ to ‘it was conveyed to me that the previous administration had started this program,’ to ‘We will do everything to ensure no American’s rights have been violated,’… it all adds up to this ultimate translation: ‘I knew of the (NSA’s) practice of spying on as many Americans’ electronic communications as possible. I expanded that practice as much as I could. I, your president, may use the information collected via that program to target my political enemies if I wish. And for all those who don’t like that: go fuck yourselves!’ …But that’s just one example of the Obamanese translations we’ve discovered. To learn all of the rest we urge everyone to order their edition of ‘Rosetta Stone: Obamanese’ as soon as they can.”


If You Can’t Convince Them, Confuse Them

   Regarding the translation-to-speaking Obamanese aspect, according to Swad, if a consumer fails to adequately learn to speak the lingo of the Obama administration fast enough, as a last resort they are instructed to feign fainting, fall down and hit their head and not be able to speak about and/or remember whatever uncomfortable subject they were supposed to speak about in order to get out of discussing it, at least for another five weeks

     Rosetta Stone’s editions in “Obamaese” are scheduled to be released this coming week. But already there are reports of its remarkable affects in understanding intentionally misleading, mangled, incoherent and contradicting statements from those who worked on the tedious program.

     According to Saul Metzger, a Rosetta Stone linguist assigned to decipher former U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice’s litany of statements on the September 11th Benghazi attacks, his experience with learning how to decode and then adopt the posture and lexicon of administration officials helped him immensely in a recent and personal confrontation with his wife, Barbara. Metzger, 39, said his “so beloved wife” discovered a receipt for a one night’s stay at a Motel 6 along with an empty condom wrapper in his pants as she was doing laundry three weeks ago. As expected, Mrs. Metzger was hardly pleased with the evidence of infidelity she found.

     “Barb was furious at first, calling me a cheating bastard, threatening to take the kids and leave, demanding I tell her the name of the ‘tramp’ I was allegedly seeing,” recounted Metzger to Duh Progressive, Sunday. 

   But Metzger remained calm throughout the confrontation, he said, remembering all he had learned from studying Obamanese, handling the explosive situation “uber suave.”

   “Honey,” Metzger recounted telling his wife, “there have been some misunderstandings recently about my whereabouts over the last few weeks. We are aware of that, and we are addressing these misunderstandings as fast as the information on them is coming to us. …But whatever may or may not be revealed, we will be just as not shocked as you won’t be once it’s not discussed.”

   Metzger said his wife initially did not understand what he was exactly saying, but still accused him of cheating, as she sent a coffee mug whizzing over his head.   Metzger slept on the couch the next few nights, but awoke one morning and held a press conference before his family over their kitchen table during breakfast.

   “Now look, we have received some intelligence that have made us aware of some distress that recent misunderstandings in matters pertaining to laundry and ‘transient domicile receipts’ may have brought about,” Metzger told his family. “But let me be clear: the stability of my union with Mrs. Barbara Metzger has never been stronger. The former ‘administration’ (Barbara’s previous husband), had such issues too, and it’s not beyond reason to suspect those issues may have carried over for us to deal with today. So the work on resolving those issues has yet to be finished. Just let me be clear…”

     Mrs. Metzger promptly dismissed the couple’s two children from the kitchen before hurling another coffee mug passed Saul’s head, smashing it against a cabinet, to which Saul responded, “…Look, we’re all still recovering from the worst divorce since Ivana and Donald here, but that does not mean we cannot pull together and see out way through this. Let us not forget, the previous administration left us with so much grief and betrayal, that a simple misperception of plastic wrappers in pants may seem a bit…”

   “Shut up, Saul! You lying, cheating bastard! You’re a fucking liar!” bellowed Mrs. Metzger.

     “Oh,” recounted Metzger, “I see you understand ‘Obamanese’. …Shit.”

     After this “respectful disagreement on unfortunate perceptions” Metzger said he simply pretended to faint, hit his head, and was rushed to the hospital for a concussion. According to Metzger, he and his wife have forgotten all about the “laundry incident” since his fainting and are happier than ever. Mrs. Metzger, meanwhile, is awaiting paperwork from her attorney’s office.

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