Every four years, in that grand old country we call America, The People go out to do their duty and participate in what is known as “the electoral process”:
This is the time-honoured American tradition that we have observed from generation to generation, a practice passed down from father to son, between spells of vomiting. However, we are now in a new era of change and progress, which basically means that there are a lot of total morons. It’s not many, but a small percentage of people (and you know who you are) choose to ignore this example of classic American tradition, and actually go out on Election Day to vote.
In some cases, such as young people, this is understandable. Young people are usually first time voters, and they’re stupid to boot, so you can’t really blame them for thinking they’re helping matters. But you do have to look with some pity at those tragic cases of American citizens pouring into polling stations, clearly thinking: “It’ll be different this time!” And the sad thing, of course, is they’re right, provided that “different” is code for “worse”. Just look at this election, which pits a corrupt, propagandistic harpy against something that crawled out of Jim Henson’s Creature Shop. And you may wonder: Where are all the good candidates? Isn’t it time we got somebody different?
Enter Willy the Weasel. I’m a different breed of politician, one who will fight for you and your country, no matter how many expensive lunches it takes to do it. I’m also a different breed of weasel, given that all of the rest of my family were put down for having rabies. That means I’m a totally unique candidate, the likes of which this country has never seen, but sorely needs. Forgive me if I start foaming at the mouth. I’m just so damn pleased to see you.
As you are about to read, I’ve got big plans for this country, almost all of which you’re guaranteed to survive. You’ve probably heard a lot of bluster this past election about nationalism and patriotism and the yearning to “Make America Great Again”. A noble sentiment, but we can do better. I firmly believe that if we all band together, every man, woman and child, and put aside our differences for the greater good, we can make America the greatest country on Earth, by systematically eliminating all the other ones.
A bold dream? A foolish vision? A half-baked plan I concocted after eating that slice of salami I found under the fridge? Maybe. But it’s bold dreams like this that have made our country what it is today. (And I mean that in the sense of “great”, rather than “broke”.) So please, friends, let me take you on a trip into my dream world, a vision for the future of ourselves and our children. (By which I mean “your children”. I, of course, am prohibited by law.) We’re about to embark on a rollercoaster of a journey, with twists and turns and a barf bag at the ready. So grab the handlebars, hold on tight, and enjoy this tour of the radical new world of tomorrow!
Since 9/11, we have had to confront many dangers that face air travel. We have had to face the risk that someone would blow up a plane, or hijack a plane, or carry a bottle of water on a plane, or God knows what other kind of heinous deed. We have not, of course, had to confront the fact that a plane is a heavy metal box travelling miles above the ground or sea in complete defiance of the laws of physics, but you take these things one step at a time.
However, over the last four years, an even more pressing problem has reared its ugly head. These days, it seems you can’t open a newspaper without reading an article like this:
WILLIAM AND KATE BOTH PREGNANT BY SAME MISSOURI PIG FARMER
No, wait. Hold on. This is the one I meant:
AIRCRAFT COMPLETELY OBLITERATED
On Tuesday, a Virgin Airlines plane was reportedly struck by lightning, then set on fire, and then the wings blew off, and the body cracked in half, and the fire reached the fuel tanks and blew it apart over a span of ocean so desolate and uncharted that it doesn’t even have a Starbucks. A $980 million search is underway for survivors.
If you’ve been paying attention over the last four years, you’ve seen this over and over again: Planes crash into rivers after take-off, planes flat-out disappear, and, most mysteriously of all, planes abruptly fall out of the sky while flying over war zones where people are using anti-aircraft missiles. You might wonder if this is some kind of sign from Almighty God that He wants us to engage in all long-distance travel by canoe.
But luckily, thanks to some technological innovations, and some brilliant ideas of mine, I can announce that these problems are finally at an end. Once my proposals are in place, air travel will once again become the completely safe thing we always liked to pretend it was, and never again will there be any mysterious dis
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In the meantime, please enjoy some light music. To enjoy light music, simply sing “I Feel Pretty” as loudly as you can until they come to take you away. Thank you.
Just a few years ago, we were getting ready to pull out of Iraq and Afghanistan. Everything was getting a bit samey: You had the same old bad guys with the same old tactics, in the same old dirt. It wasn’t fun anymore, and we badly needed a change. You could tell the country was yearning to get out of the region entirely and invade somewhere nice and relaxing, just so we could let our hair down a bit. We were just about to march into Switzerland when all this ISIS stuff came along.
ISIS, or ISIL, or IRS, or Daesh, or Goulash, or whatever the hell they’re called, are a brand-new threat to Western society, and the premier baddies of our time. Already, they’ve caused hundreds of thousands of Syrian migrants to flood into Europe, creating a gigantic refugee crisis and making countless people pass out from the smell.
And they have even more diabolical plans for the West. We don’t yet know what they are, but they have made it their mission to undermine every aspect of Western society, invading our countries slowly, taking advantage of our generosity and humanity, until they’re everywhere and it’s too late to stop them. If you look closely, you can already see suspicious Muslim institutions popping up all over the place. I don’t know what the hell a “shawarma” is, but they’re clearly up to something.
This is great news! After years of declining morale, once again there’s a clear cut Evil Country to fight, and it’s time for America to step right back in and save the world. And the best part is, you can participate from the comfort of your own home!
How? Simple! Over the last few years, President Obama has worked hard to create a modern, sophisticated air force of remote-controlled drones, and they’ve played a crucial role in the advancement of modern warfare. I mean, sure, if the guy who coded the drones’ software missed a colon in the wrong place or something, they could conceivably get confused and go bomb Connecticut, but Connecticut doesn’t have any sports teams worth talking about, so I say it’s a price worth paying.
Drones have become the backbone of the U.S. Air Force, allowing us to destroy precise targets without even having to march anywhere. The downside to this, of course, is that without marching, all the soldiers are going to get out of shape, and once they actually do have to storm in somewhere, it will look a bit stupid and embarrassing, like watching a bunch of middle-aged men try to run. But overall, this system is vastly improved and far more likely to save lives, unless you count the lives who happen to be standing next to the targets.
But there’s more: Commercial drones have also become popular as toys, delivery systems, and even camera tools, finally bringing dogging into the 21st century once and for all. Yet the government has failed to capitalize on the obvious implication of this trend: You can help fight the forces of evil anytime, anywhere! You can blow up a terrorist while waiting for the bus, or monitor a suspected terror cell while you’re waiting for Jeopardy! to start, or talk on the phone while you get revenge on Billy Bogert for stealing your lunch money in 7th grade. The possibilities are endless!
Of course, some safeguards would have to be implemented. An armed drone is like a gun: It needs to be handled safely and responsibly, or someone could end up with a major boo-boo. Therefore, prospective pilots will obviously have to undergo a weekend of intense training, in which they learn how to fly, and how to aim (i.e., away from the face). If there’s time, they can also learn a few tricks, such as the loop-de-loop, or how to manoeuvre at low altitude so they can film up girls’ skirts.
And that’s not all! When you operate your drone, you’ll be staring at a computer screen, dropping bombs on enemy targets. That’s right: It’s just like a video game! That means that we’ve already got millions of qualified new pilots, ready to take to the skies and unleash death and destruction upon the Bad Guys. Because, honestly, who can you trust more with our nation’s beloved instruments of death than a bunch of teenage boys?
It’s little innovations like these that President Weasel will use to help make the world a safer place, although I personally plan to start spending a lot more time indoors.
All referees will be encouraged to make consistent, accurate and unbiased calls by a team of trained snipers.
Thank you for your patience in awaiting the arrival of the Air Travel section. We interrupt this page to bring you the latest developments on the situation, live from CNN:
WOLF BLITZER: We’re now in Hour 16 of our search for the Air Travel section, and new reports are just coming in. To explain these, we go now to an expert of some kind, Dr. Prof. Robert Shinkleboner PhD of the University of Calgary. Good evening, Doctor.
EXPERT: Hey, Wolf.
WOLF BLITZER: Mr. Professor, let me start by asking: What do these new reports tell us?
EXPERT: Well, this is a complicated issue, Wolf, and it really requires expert analysis. I mean, let’s look at planes in general, here. Now, I have never technically flown an airplane per se, but I have seen a lot of movies about them, and I know for a fact that this would probably not have happened if Samuel L. Jackson were involved. What is far more likely, in my view, is that he would have seized somebody’s head with one hand, and slapped them so hard across the cheek that their teeth shot out like confetti.
WOLF BLITZER: I see. And what is the—
EXPERT: I should stress that we don’t know for sure what happened at this point, but if this does become a feature film, I would like Mr. Jackson to play me. I think he would be the best person to fully characterize my bravery, resolve and no-nonsense attitude under pressure. And if it turns out to be terrorists, I could have some really cool fight scenes.
WOLF BLITZER: Yes, but we’re not talking about an actual pla—
EXPERT: I’ve been working on my catchphrase. Ready? ‘You motherf**kers gonna get yo tickets punched!’ Now, I know that doesn’t sound so good when I say it, but I think Samuel could pull it off. I’ve suggested things like this to Mr. Jackson before, but I haven’t heard much back since his security started detonating my fan mail.
WOLF BLITZER: Right. But I think, ultimately, the question we’re all asking is: How did you get in here?
EXPERT: You really ought to change the locks, Wolf.
WOLF BLITZER: All right. Prof. PhD, thank you for your time. Stay tuned for Hour 17, when we’ll be re-enacting the disappearance step-by-step in glossy, state-of-the-art CGI, or maybe sock puppets if Fred can’t get the program to work. More Air Travel Mystery coverage, right after this.
For years now, the United States has had to deal with an unfortunate quirk of nature, namely the fact that Mexicans are magnetic. Try as they might, they just can’t seem to stop themselves from moving further north. In some rare cases, a Mexican labourer will go to bed after a hard day’s work and wake up hundreds of miles away outside a Texan hardware store. Unfortunately, a lot of Mexico contains nothing but lush marijuana fields, so there’s nothing to impede their progress. It’s only once they get to America that they’re forced to stop because of all the civilization in the way. If we didn’t have any of the things that bare the fruits of the American Dream (skyscrapers, bus stops, shooting ranges, etc.), they would probably waltz straight up into Canada and get eaten by bears.
So, as we can see, it’s not the Mexicans’ fault that they’ve caused an immigration crisis. If you asked one, they would probably say something back in their mongrel taco language, so I’ll tell you for them: Most of them would be perfectly happy to go back to sunny Mexico, where there are lots of exciting things to do, such as mysteriously disappear. But owing to this magnetism, no matter how many times you deport them, they’ll just end up back in the States. They can’t help it. We don’t ask the birds why they fly south for the winter. It’s just nature. (Alternate theory: Taxi interference.) So, eventually, the Mexicans come to accept that they’re stuck in this strange new place where the food is bland and you expel your waste into the magic flushing pot, and they start taking up residence.
As a result, the southern United States is festooned with Mexican immigrants, who now take up over 80% of the jobs that Americans wouldn’t touch with a ten-foot pole. Down there, you can’t throw a stone without hitting a Mexican immigrant, and I have the arrest record to prove it. The effects of this infestation are sometimes devastating, and something simply must be done. And, if you’ve been paying any attention to this issue, I think you know just what that is.
We need to build a wall. Walls have had a long and storied history of keeping unwanted people out. Just look at the Great Wall of China. It was built at some point in the past to keep invading Mongol hordes from getting through to the rest of China. Of course, so much of it was eventually stolen by tourists and farmers that it now contains just enough stone to pave a small driveway, but by the time this happened all the Mongols were very old and couldn’t pass over any object higher than the wheels of their Rascal scooters. The advantage of the Great Wall of China is that it became a Wonder of the World. This meant that it could be put on postcards, backpacks, keychains, and all sorts of other things. The Great Wall became a major tourist hotspot, and even to this day, you can go stand on it with a lot of other intrepid globetrotting travellers, gazing upon its magnificence and thinking: “This is it?”
Just think: Our wall could be a great monument to American independence, an enormous thing that people will pay by the pantload to visit, and to simply admire in an astonished, stony silence, marred only slightly by the muffled thuds of Mexicans smacking into it on the other side. I’m serious here: Why just build some ugly gray concrete thing when we could build the biggest, grandest, most gobsmacking wall in the world?
Think of another famous wall, the wall of Troy. According to legend, the Greeks had taken time out of some important triangle calculating to wage war against the Trojans. Unfortunately, Troy was surrounded by great, impenetrable walls, which stumped the Greeks for years, inasmuch as they couldn’t afford an army. They did try hurling some philosophical remarks over the walls, but that only got them two minor book deals.
Now, eventually they did find a way to get through the gate without tearing down the wall (namely, by building an enormous wooden refugee, and watching the Trojans just wheel it in, no questions asked), but that’s not the point here. These were the days of the great ancient empires, and Troy’s walls wouldn’t have just been large and imposing: They would have been beautiful examples of classical Mediterranean architecture, replete with carved statues and decorated pillars and things. Or, like pretty much all buildings from that area, they would have just been a bunch of crumbling rocks that looked like they were carved by drunkards in the dark. Architecture from this period is never really as impressive as you imagine. Just look at the Coliseum: I’ve seen better-made high school football bleachers. And, as we all know, there were a lot more injuries inside it than at a modern football stadium, because all Roman technology was based on primitive materials, such as stone. The careers of many aspiring cheerleaders were tragically cut short by having to wear the dreaded granite thong.
So we don’t actually want to use classical architecture as an inspiration for our wall, but we should make it big and grand, the way we would imagine the Trojan wall to be. Of course, given the existence of a certain brand of contraceptives, we should probably downplay this theme as much as possible: If you connect the word “Trojan” with words like “pillar”, or “erect”, or “massive throbbing welcome center”, that’s just asking for trouble. It’s hard enough getting people from Mexico away from our border, without having people from San Francisco flock to it as well.
We will also need some sort of way to get up on top of it, so tourists can point and laugh at the Mexicans. Traditionally, this would be a staircase, but this is America, which these days is less the Land of the Free and more the Land of the Free Soda With the Purchase of Any Regularly-Priced Value Meal. It would be safer to install an escalator, since the average American tourist would probably be quite winded after that gruelling trek from the parking lot. We would also need to patrol the top of the wall in case one of the Mexicans brings a ladder, or they eventually pile on top of each other so high that it causes a literal flood of immigrants to overflow and engulf the surrounding towns, leaving a path of destruction and sombreros in their wake. I would recommend furnishing our side of the wall with long nets, so we can catch any who make it over and release them back into the wild.
But most importantly, we will need somebody to build it. Unfortunately, due to the nature of today’s property market, just finding a home has become ridiculously expensive. You would be looking at well over three million dollars just to live in one of those boxes they use to ship flat-pack furniture, and that’s assuming you supply the pellets yourself. And seeing as the U.S. government is currently subsisting on food stamps and I.O.U.s to legitimate Italian businessmen, building this dream wall of ours would probably bankrupt the country once and for all. This presents the ultimate Catch-22: Due to the damage illegal immigration has wrought upon the economy, we can’t afford to build the wall we need to prevent it.
So, as an aside, let’s talk about judo. This is an ancient martial arts style from the East, which involves standing around in your bathrobe as you pay another person in his bathrobe to beat you up. Once you have been slammed around for an hour and your bones have the consistency of marmalade, you then leave the “dojo” (Japanese for “mini mall”) brimming with confidence and radiating a strong “ki” (Japanese for “body odour”), secure in the knowledge that if you do meet any violent street thugs who wish to do you harm, at least they’ll be doing it for free.
Anyway, one of the famous principles of judo is to use your opponent’s force to your own advantage. This has many practical, day-to-day applications, none of which come to mind right now. In principle, it’s pretty simple: Let’s say that you’re in the back seat of the car on a long family trip. You’re seated right next to your older brother, who is a young, vigorous teenage boy, and therefore needs some sort of outlet for his violent impulses, but has run out of spitballs to fire at cars. Now imagine that he suddenly takes your hand, crumples it into a fist, and then directs it towards your own head at 40 miles per hour.
“Why are you hitting yourself?” he asks. But you cannot answer, since you are not skilled in the ways of judo, and are unable to explain how your own body is being cleverly used against you.
“Why are you hitting yourself?” he repeats, as he strikes you with your own hand yet again. Knowing that you can’t explain, he will continue to press his advantage and ask the same question until he wins the match, or Mom and Dad get fed up and pull into the next gas station to buy some emergency fireworks.
We can use this principle of judo to our advantage to help solve our immigration woes. One of the problems that illegal immigration has caused for the economy is the number of Mexican construction workers who undercut American businesses. Since they are already living here illegally, they can be paid under the table for less than the minimum wage, and they are willing to take on just about any task they can get paid for. Typically, this would have a negative impact on hard-working Americans, but in this case it’s just what we need. If we get the Mexican Discount, we can afford to build our wall for a fraction of what it would cost using legal, skilled, licensed workers who know what they’re doing. So not only are we saving our economy, but we are saving huge amounts of money, and, since we’re not using American contractors, there’s a possibility they will show up when they say they will, and actually complete the project at some point while humans still walk the Earth.
This is the kind of unique genius that only I can bring to the world of politics. If you wish to find out more about my radical new plan to solve immigration, please refer to the case of “Mexican Defense League v. Weasel”, available upon request from any reputable bailiff.
(LEGAL DISCLAIMER: The Campaign to Elect a Weasel is partially funded by Moss-Neurich Petroleum Refineries. This has not affected the policies of the campaign. The Campaign to Elect a Weasel denies claims that this is a conflict of interest, as no portion of this policy paper was actually written on board the free corporate jet.)
There is nothing in this world quite like the sight of rich, wholesome American oil, dripping off some truly American bird such as an eagle or a seagull hanging around a McDonald’s parking lot. For this is the lifeblood of America, the sweet job-creating nectar that allowed our country to grow so big and strong that we could spit on all the other nations and have them beg for more. And even today, America is the world’s leading producer of oil, thanks to good old American innovations such as fracking, a process which basically purées the Earth until the oil gives itself up. Only a brain-dead simpleton would oppose all the good that oil has done for us. In fact, oil is so much a part of who we are that you could say opposition to it is inherently anti-American! We ought to lock those sort of people up for their hate crimes until they learn to be more tolerant of opposing views.
Unfortunately, we live in dark and disturbing times. There are crazy people out there known as “environmentalists”, who think that America’s current energy policy is hurting the environment. To this I say: Duh. Have you ever seen the environment? Try making a hole in your wall. I bet there’s lots of environmental things back there, scuttling around and just waiting to crawl up and eat the dead skin off your face. You really want them to stick around? You want them having sex on your eyelids while you’re having a nap? I didn’t think so. Nature gets in the way of civilization. It should be kept to parks and zoos, and stay the hell away from the rest of us. The only elements of nature this country should tolerate are creatures who prove that they have some value to society, just like I did when I got my internet diploma.
Yet the environmentalists think that just because they can make energy by churning granola or whatever, that means we should do away with oil entirely. That, in my opinion, is a very ignorant view. We need oil, for a whole host of plausible reasons.
For starters, it’s a job creator. Why, it creates so many jobs that you can’t even count them with just ten fingers! And not just in the energy sector, either. Oil creates growth all throughout the economy, from the stationary companies who make the signs that people use to picket BP, to the clerks in gas station convenience stores, who get paid despite having nothing better to do all day than pick their nose and wipe it on the donuts. And this even extends to those who actively oppose oil. Did any of those big shots at groups like the World Wildlife Fund ever stop to consider that? Have they ever sat back and contemplated: “Hang on! If we actually saved the planet, I wouldn’t have a job anymore!” Of course they haven’t. Frankly, to me, basing your job on attaining a goal that will put you out of work seems like a very short-sighted career path. But that, my friends, is because these people cannot see the big picture—whereas, with my greater economic insight, I can. I’m not a PhD in Jobanomics for nothing.
But oil is not the only game in town. There’s also clean, sustainable American coal. This is a lump of black rock that you can burn or flambé or something, and energy comes out the other end. This also creates a lot of American jobs, as depicted by rugged, hard hat-wearing individuals in about every third commercial on CNN. Many people want to get rid of coal production as well, but they simply haven’t been thinking. Apparently, according to the ads, a huge percentage of Americans rely on coal-based power, so if it were taken away, they would obviously go without electricity. Thus, we can’t actually get rid of coal without plunging half the country into darkness, thereby inviting street riots, burglaries and violent crime. It would be like one big, endless night in Chicago.
So, in case you’re wondering, the score currently stands at:
Next, we come to nuclear power. Despite its reputation, nuclear power is healthy, clean and safe, provided that you’re nowhere near it at the time. In fact, it’s got so many benefits that you can’t even count them with just twelve fingers! The only problem with having a nuclear power plant (aside from the occasions when Al falls asleep with his hand on the “Meltdown” button) is that it produces a lot of radioactive waste, which, if left unattended, can create mutations and deformities in the local wildlife. This is how we got Rob Schneider. Nuclear waste needs to be disposed of safely and responsibly in secure remote locations, or (if I get my way) in the backyards and swimming pools of people I don’t like.
Unlike the other two, nuclear power is not much of a job creator. An oilrig job can be given to any old goomba at the YMCA, but nuclear power needs to be kept in the hands of highly trained and qualified scientists with no previous record of blowing everyone up. To become a nuclear physicist, one has to attend at least three years of community college and then pass a tricky power plant entrance exam, which reads:
America’s association with nuclear power dates back several decades to when the U.S. Army was routinely vaporizing bits of Nevada just to see what happened. As we now know, however, this was very, very wrong. They should have done it to California. But these were different times, back when the world was ruled by codgery old men who wore tweed suits and smoked up to fifty cigarettes a day, yet never noticed the connection between these things and a spate of frequent garment fires. They weren’t the safe, responsible generation of today. We live in times of safety and responsibility, which is why we invented the electric car, a modern, “green” type of vehicle that can travel upwards of nine miles on a single charge, thus reducing the likelihood that you might ever go anywhere dangerous.
Anyway, nuclear power is here to stay, because the world (for all its faults) is still basically run by men, and men like blowing things up. Just look at North Korea. That’s a real guys’ country. You can tell because the only time you ever see the women there, the guys are making them all do little Broadway marching routines while dressed up in chic military-style costumes, similar to what Officer Frisky would be wearing when she jumps out of your cake. And the leader, King John-Something, may look like the pudgy plastic mascot for a bizarre communist donut chain, but you can tell he’s a real guy at heart. That’s why he’s always having his government fire off nuclear weapons into the sea. If you leave a little boy alone with ants and a magnifying glass, you can hardly be surprised by what happens next. And similarly, you can’t really be surprised when a government full of guys with a burgeoning nuclear power program and some basic weapons technology suddenly realizes it would be really cool to go and nuke some fish.
Nevertheless, we always get very cross about this, as if they were our fish or something. In fact, if that’s how we’re going to play it, we should break into a melodramatic fit over every single fish they kill. We should all fall to our knees in dramatic fashion and scream, “Ethel! No!” But instead, we do the boring thing, and issue warnings and speeches until everybody gets sick of hearing about it. In an ideal world, North Korea would be our nuke buddies, and we would invite their diplomats over for a barbeque every once in a while and then detonate a part of Idaho together. In reality, though, they are considered one of America’s deadliest enemies, but that’s fine, because it gives us a justification to use nuclear power, which we can also use for our energy needs, which (in case you forgot, and I would not blame you) is the point of this section.
So, nuclear power may not create jobs, but that doesn’t mean we should abandon it just because a bunch of enviro-nuts are complaining about having grown some extra ears. In fact, I have a way of using nuclear power to boost the economy enormously! It’s the sort of brilliant idea that you can only get from Willy the Weasel, assuming it comes before they give me my pills.
As we all know from movies, nuclear power causes radioactivity, and radioactivity causes things to grow abnormally large. Now look at the agriculture industry, a sector of the economy that has fallen on some pretty hard times. Once, it was the #1 agricultural sector in the world, exporting millions of tons of produce all over the planet. But then times changed, and the sector shrank and shrank, and now, it basically consists of a 43-year-old man named Earl. For decades, politicians have been wracking their brains about how to get America’s agricultural sector moving again, when the answer has been right in front of them: Use nuclear waste as fertilizer! Obviously, we know that radiation causes health problems in people and animals, which is why we’ve been storing it away. But plants don’t get organ failure. Imagine planting a crop of corn in a field of nuclear waste! I mean, sure, it would be radioactive, and probably a little angry, but a single cob would feed a family of four!
Overall, my friends, America’s energy sector has never looked better. That’s why we need to protect it from all those faceless bureaucrats and radicalized eco-nuts who want to see it destroyed just for the sake of their own agenda. We need somebody who will stand up for hardy, traditional American energy, not someone who’s just a slave to the whims of powerful lobbies and pressure groups.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I want to see if this thing can do a loop.
BREAKING NEWS UPDATE ACTION JESUS CHRIST TAKE A LOOK AT THIS
WOLF BLITZER: It’s now Hour 1862 of Air Travel Search, and we are running out of stimulants. All we have left are a few biscuits from the break room, but we’re pretty sure they’ve got coffee in them, so they’re at least worth a shot. For the latest update on the continued search, we now go live to the Indian Ocean, where our correspondent is on the scene. Dave, what’s the situation?
REPORTER (floating in the sea): It’s f**king cold, Wolf, that’s the goddamn situation!
WOLF BLITZER: Dave, have the authorities issued any further updates as they comb the sea for clues?
REPORTER: They all went home, Wolf! I’m bobbing in the ocean like a goddamn fishing float! Get me out of here!
WOLF BLITZER: So, does this mean that the recovery crews have now changed their search area?
REPORTER (choking on sea water): They’re gone, you puhbffftph! Gah, get me the hell plughubuhh! Ah God, pfft! Help me, I’m gobluhgubuhgubluhbluhbluh…
WOLF BLITZER: All right, thanks, Dave. I’m sure they’ll fish you out eventually. Keep us updated as this story develops.
REPORTER (eerily still): .........
WOLF BLITZER: Dave Pardopolous, in the sea. Now, as you’ve just heard, the search crews have moved on for reasons unknown. Hmm. Who haven’t we done in a while?
(He scans the room. The other presenters look at each other nervously.)
WOLF BLITZER: Don! What do you make of these shocking new developments?
DON LEMON: Well, I… Um… Oh, for God’s sake, Wolf, it’s over! Nobody cares anymore!
WOLF BLITZER: Do you think that sentiment is starting to impact the search?
DON LEMON: What search, Wolf? What search?! They’re never going to find it! We’re all tired and hungry! Let us go home!
WOLF BLITZER: Never, Don. Your soul is mine, now and forever. Now, dance, mortal!
(Don starts doing an involuntary jig, a look of horror on his face.)
WOLF BLITZER: All right. Don Lemon, thanks for the report. Coming up next, a report from CNN’s Poppy Harlow. And it’s going to be very informative, isn’t it?
(Poppy shrinks back, and nods in silent terror.)
WOLF BLITZER: Good girl. Stay tuned for Hour 1863 of Air Travel Search 2016, right after this.
Back in the day, America was the world’s #1 country, home to the largest manufacturing corporations, and boasting an enormous wealth of valuable substances such as gold and diamonds, divided fairly evenly between Fort Knox and Liberace’s wardrobe. We were known as the bastions of freedom and democracy, and we saw it as our big sacred duty to share these things with the world whether they liked it or not. All it took was the cry of a small child suffering under the weight of communist oppression, and we would march straight in with our freedom rifles and liberate the hell out of them. We were a strong country back then, as documented by the many classic war movies where all the heroes have bulging abs that make them look like they’re wearing decorative hams.
But these days, America has roughly the same might as an elderly man trying to mash his peas with a spoon. We may have one of the greatest military forces on Earth, but we don’t feel any particular need to use it. We also go around trying to reason with people instead of just beating sense into them. This doesn’t go down terribly well with old-fashioned countries like Russia, who have been known, upon discovering that the Kremlin’s toilets are dirty, to go right out and annex a town with cleaner ones. We used to be forceful diplomatic players, and now we’re utterly ignored.
Now, I’m not blaming President Obama here: I’m just saying it’s all his fault. Take the infamous “Red Line” incident. After weeks of talking and talking and trying to persuade the Syrian government to resign, he announced that there was a Red Line, and that if they crossed it, well, boy were they in trouble. We’re America! We fight for what’s right! We oppose dictators! We kick ass around the globe! They didn’t want to mess with us, no siree!
And so, the Syrian government went straight out and crossed the Red Line, thereby forcing Obama to take Drastic Action and implement his ultimate killer tactic: Keep talking a lot, but this time, very firmly. You could practically hear the President threatening Syria that he was going to turn this car around.
Anyway, the upshot of all this is that international power dynamics have completely changed. Now that America is out of the picture, all of the power-hungry governments who value prestige and strength over life and liberty are starting to dominate the globe, and we have to be ready for them. Savouring this newfound international power, two particular countries have risen to become major threats to America. In order to combat them effectively, we will need to have a deep understanding of their cultures, histories and political climates, not that this has stopped me writing about them anyway.
So let’s start with the biggest threat of them all:
Russia is a gigantic whack of land in northern Asia. It’s famous for vodka, buildings that look like Christmas tree ornaments, and women with more body hair than a cocker spaniel.
It’s also one of those countries that has both a Prime Minister and a President, which is a slick diplomatic move designed not to let foreign diplomats realize they’re being snubbed. If we send the Vice President somewhere, it’s pretty obvious to everybody that we’re not taking the meeting very seriously, inasmuch as the Vice President’s only real job is to remember not to pick his nose during speeches. But if Russia sends their Prime Minister, is that better or worse than the President? The host nation’s leaders will still be scratching their heads over that one, well beyond the point where all the Russian dignitaries have gone home, annexing the hotel towels with them.
Like America and Ashley Madison, Russia is very interested in other people’s affairs. They employ legions of spies and hackers to do their bidding, and their interference in American society via propaganda and manipulation is unparalleled. They will do anything to damage our way of life, and there’s no telling where it might end. Just yesterday, in the paper, I read a story about a company trying to make yoga pants trendy for men. There’s just no reasoning with monsters like that. In fact, there has even been speculation that Russia has tried to interfere in this very election somehow, but so far, the only solid link between this election and Russia is an increase in vodka consumption, which is frankly to be expected.
Russia and the U.S. have a pretty frosty relationship thanks to something called the Cold War, which was a period of several decades during which every communication between the two countries began with “Oh yeah?”, or the ever-popular, “Well, your mother…” Also, they’re pretty jealous because we’re just clearly better: We beat them to the moon, we have HD television, we have a version of Disneyland where the characters aren’t likely to mug you, etc. They, meanwhile, have to stand around in the cold wearing funny hats until they get eaten by passing wolves. This is why so many Russians become spies in the first place, typically in nicer, more palatable climes. 82% of the KGB is currently undercover in Aruba, just waiting for a moment of weakness. One of these days they’re going to run out of little cocktail swords, leaving the entire country defenceless, and then we’ll see what’s what.
Right now, we have to deal with Russia in a number of different diplomatic situations. One good example of these is Crimea, which the Russians annexed as part of a long and bitter civil war. They just snuck in one night while the Ukrainians were busy executing Operation Beat the Shit Out of Each Other and took Crimea when no one was looking. America’s official position on this is that it was a very bad thing to do, and they had better give it back, or America is going to impose Sanctions™, which is a special diplomatic tactic that all the Good Guy countries like to use so that it looks like they’re actually doing something. Russia, on the other hand, denies that it did anything wrong. The Russian government believes that it is their duty to take back all the nations they deem to be Russian territory. I’m sure we all remember the time they declared all-out war against Georgia, and they would have taken on Alabama, too, if they weren’t so scared of its firepower.
We need to stand up to Russia before it’s too late. Do you want to wake up one morning to discover that you’re wearing an ushanka and you write all your Ns backwards? Of course not! We need to man up, march right in there and hit these guys where it hurts the most. I’m guessing that would be the groin, but I’d have to consult my strategists.
China has a long history, which stretches back to ancient times. Strange as that may sound, it’s actually not a coincidence: China is really old. There are also quite a lot of Chinese people in it. A real head-scratcher, yes, but as it turns out, there’s a reason: Chinese people come from China. It’s no wonder they call it the “Mysterious East”!
Despite modern improvements, China has a very traditionalist culture. For example, Chinese medicine doesn’t involve anything as fancy as X-rays or CAT scans. You just get the doctor to brew up some nice beet root stew, and then you gulp it all down while the wind is blowing to the east, and that’s that. The entire health care process is over and done with, quickly and cheaply, and you can just get on with living your life, until the tumour gets to the point where you have to buy a bigger hat.
Chinese traditional medicine also solves problems that our so-called “modern science” can’t. For example, let’s say there’s a 90-year-old man who can’t get an erection. Now, in our American health care system, the correct response to this would be: Good. We don’t want 90-year-old men getting erections. That’s just creepy. Besides, at their age, they would probably keep forgetting where they put them. But the Chinese know just how to solve the problem: The man hasn’t been eating enough rhino horn.
As any safari guide can tell you, rhinoceroses are now endangered due to being shot all the time. There are countless tragic stories of rhinos being found dead with their horns gone and their wallets empty. The reason the muggers take the horn is specifically because of its use in Chinese medicine. Rhino horn is made of pure concentrated Viagra, and is therefore very prized among living fossils who have got a hot date. A good Chinese doctor can just grind it up, put it in a stew, and bingo: The man has a new place to hang his coat.
But the Chinese government is now trying its damnedest to modernize China, and that means big cities, new corporations, bigger exports, major sports teams! This is the result of the ruling Communist Party’s infrastructural improvement scheme. Basically, the government gives money to a provincial official, who gives money to a regional official, who gives money to a local official, who gives money to a policeman, who gives a stern beating to anyone who dissents. But eventually, some money does get into the system, and it’s spent on building up rural farming communities into enormous manufactured metropolises. This is probably for the best, anyway, since domestic Chinese food is about 80% cardboard by volume.
Instead of farming, these Chinese towns are being turned into manufacturing hubs. Just take a look at your smartphone. Every single component in it has been assembled by a team of Chinese workers in an enormous factory complex, who work all day and all night, not even allowed to rest until they finally make a mistake, and are gratefully bludgeoned unconscious for their incompetence. This is the kind of edge that China has over American workers, who probably wouldn’t dream of making products until their fingers fell off. You really have to wonder what’s wrong with people in this country.
But this modernization comes at a price. As China gains power in the world, they have started to exert control over “their” territory. The most notable case of this is in the South China Sea, which, they argue, must belong to them, because it’s got the word “China” in it. Accordingly, the Chinese government came out and announced that they intend to control the ocean, from their top-secret base inside a hollowed-out volcano. Then, using their super-efficient manufacturing techniques, they went out and built some islands for themselves in no time flat. The government says that these are legitimate parts of China, and that they will be used purely for purposes of regional stability, not international antagonism, so there is nothing malicious about them whatsoever. America, on the other hand, strongly contests these assertions for a few reasons:
There’s also a lot of tension over the issue of cybersecurity. China keeps hacking into American businesses to steal our industrial secrets, which would present a major security and economic threat if we actually had any industrial secrets. They seem to keep forgetting that they’re the ones who make all our stuff. As a result, the only things they ever get out of us are stationary receipts and footage of Bob from the supply room copying his body parts at the Christmas party. But thanks to the language and cultural barriers, they come out thinking that these are valuable bits of data that will really give them an edge against foreign competition. Within days, corporations all across the country are dragging their employees over to the copiers and training them to squat in unison. This, I think we can all agree, is the true benefit of globalization.
Like Russia, I firmly believe that we need to stand up to these bullies. We need to exploit their greed and their cunning, and turn it back against them. We can build our own islands! We can leave fake footage for their hackers to find! I won’t rest until every business in China is convinced that American workers get ahead by doing the Hokey Pokey! We can beat them, friends, and I can show you how! Just step up, take my paw, and put your left foot in.