Hottest Heads of State

A scientific and unbiased ranking of world leaders in order of hotness.

Midwestern Manufacturer Threatens to Outsource Jobs Unless Demands are Met


ST. LOUIS, MO — Candle manufacturer JD and Kate Industries announced today that unless it receives massive tax breaks from the White House, it will outsource all two of its jobs overseas.

“We can’t help but notice that a certain Indiana furnace factory got millions in tax cuts and government incentives after agreeing to outsource only about 1,000 instead of 2,000 jobs,” commented JD and Kate Industries Managing Pardner Kate Dobson. “I guess the squeaky wheel gets the grease, and so I have a fiduciary responsibility to my shareholders to start squeaking. Or at least I would, if this were a publicly held company, rather than a made-up one.”

Dobson noted that she is subject to a number of onerous taxes, including the City of St. Louis excise tax on cars, the metropolitan sewer district tax, and guilt-trips about contributing to her local NPR affiliate. “That last one isn’t a tax per se, but it feels like one,” she vented.

Until recently, JD and Kate Industries manufactured candles in their kitchen, but an uptick in sales has required the company to shift production to the basement. Dobson pointed to this move as evidence that the company isn’t afraid to pull up stakes if its demands are not met. And, she added, a move out of the country would have devastating impact on overall U.S. exports.

“J.D. and Kate Industries has exported candles to important U.S. trading partners like Canada, Australia, and Singapore, improving our overall trade balance by literally dozens of dollars per year. But all that exporting will end tomorrow if we don’t get what we want. Or, I suppose, if the holiday shopping season ends.”

Dobson added that, like Indiana air conditioner and furnace manufacturer Carrier, she would be willing to negotiate a deal in which the planned job cuts are halved. Specifically, she is willing for her position to be outsourced to Paris, or Tahiti, while the position of Chief Morale Officer currently held by J.D. Dobson remains in St. Louis. “Just so long as I don’t have to take our kids with me to Tahiti,” she added.

Dobson said that simply using the tax code to encourage all U.S. manufacturers to preserve domestic jobs is a non-starter. “If this were a blanket national policy instead of having the president pick and choose who succeeds in the marketplace, then it wouldn’t feel as special.”

At this time, JD and Kate Industries has not announced precisely where it will outsource its candlemaking if it does not receive tax cuts, but under consideration are the Chinese, Mexican and Bangladeshi factories where President-Elect Trump manufactures his Trump-brand ties, shirts, eyeglasses, and so forth.

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Reasons Not to Feel Hopeless

Washington Crossing the Delaware

Kate and I have different political perspectives (I’m a former GOP Senate staffer, Kate went to Brown), but we both oppose Trump. We didn’t sleep well election night, despite repeated doses of Miller Lite and Alka-Seltzer Plus “Night” (which we nevertheless endorse).

We are worried, and we didn’t write this to reassure you that everything is going to be OK. Trump ran as a nativist authoritarian and a lot of our fellow Americans voted for him, either despite that or because of it. That is a big deal, and we think anyone who cares about democracy should be worried. By which we mean worried enough to fight to preserve the republic. We DON’T want you to be so worried that you sit around drowning your sorrows in Alka-Seltzer. Do as we say, not as we do, at least with respect to Alka-Seltzer.

So with that it mind, here are the things that are keeping us from losing hope.

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The “Best” of Trump Twitter Memes

You might be blissfully unaware of this, but there is a whole culture of Trump supporters who use their free time and rudimentary knowledge of Photoshop to create pro-Trump “memes” to be distributed on Twitter.

Like scientists trekking deep into the fever swamps to collect an exotic tropical virus, we scrolled through literally tens of thousands of pro-Trump tweets to pick out some of the most bizarre images. And then we wrote captions for them, because that is what we do.

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How to Make Candles

Did you know that, in addition to running the amazing website you see before you, Kate and I also make candles that smell like world leaders? It’s true! I’m surprised you didn’t already know, because we bring it up ALL THE TIME.

And today, dear readers, we are going to teach YOU how to make candles. That way you’ll be prepared to come work for us when our candle empire grows out of control and we need to hire staff, or at least bring on an unpaid intern.

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Andrzej Duda

President of Poland
Andrzej Duda

Here is something we’ve learned from checking our email inbox every month or two: a lot of people have strong opinions about where we’ve ranked Polish president Andrzej Duda on our list of hottest world leaders.

We have received a few angry-ish comments regarding our ranking of President Duda, and now we are going to respond to them all at once, because that seemed like the most efficient way to deal with the whole Duda situation. It’s like killing 14 birds with one stone! And if there’s one thing we really want, it’s a bunch of dead birds.

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Donald Trump’s July 21 NYT Interview, Illustrated

Since antiquity, illustrated manuscripts have helped bring clarity to confusing, ambiguous texts. And, like a monk toiling away in some secluded monastery, I have illustrated the transcript of Donald Trump’s July 21 interview with the New York Times. Its mysteries and occluded meanings have been brought to light, via the magic of the mechanical pencil Kate uses for crossword puzzles.

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Vladimir Putin Fan Fiction: Ch. 6

Previous installments: Chapter 1 | Chapter 2 | Chapter 3 | Chapter 4 | Chapter 5
Vladimir Putin in a mailroom,

Chapter 6: Putin the Moves On You

Alexander Lukashenko insists on walking you home after dinner, even though it is freezing outside and you keep hinting that you would rather him take you home in a cab.

“I wonder if it would be more cold or less cold inside of a cab,” you hint.

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Midwestern Manufacturer Threatens to Outsource Jobs Unless Demands are Met

2016 U.S. Election

Reasons Not to Feel Hopeless

2016 U.S. Election

U.S. Election Halloween Costumes