Bush Vacation To End; Error Alert Raised

Faced with the imminent return to Washington of both the President and the Congress following their lengthy August vacations, the National Error Alert, officially conceived after George Washington's infamous "Rhode Island is not a god damned state" remark, is now "blown off the charts", according to Hiram Miasma, spokesperson for the respected Cassandra Institute, a wingless think tank.

The alert covers both verbal and political gaffes, both of which the President and/or Congress are expecting to commit.

"It’s sort of like an astrologer's worst nightmare, as every bad celestial omen comes together, with the Death Star thrown in for good measure," Miasma groaned. "I'm sure we're in for something, whether it's referring to 'Palestine' as 'Plimistin' or enabling the oil industry to profit even further by letting them write off 'extracting oil from ground' as a business expense."

Past errors committed under Bush include talking about the bewildering "two-working families", claiming that he has "been to war", confusing the word "gracious" with "grateful", saying that the "life of children living in the dark dungeons of the Internet" is important, saying that "families is where our nation finds hope, where wings take dream", sympathizing with workers by saying "you're working hard to put food on your family," claiming that "free nations do not develop weapons of mass destruction", complimenting his wife on "doing a wonderful day", asserting that except for Pearl Harbor and September 11th the U.S. has never been "hit" before, and starting the war in Iraq, among others.

Although the alert has not yet been officially raised, since Congress itself is on vacation, Miasma is certain that it will be, citing limited reports coming from the Crawford ranch.

"According to the President’s spokespersons, he's shot and killed 2,000 jackalopes this month while hunting with Dick Cheney," he said. "This was after supposedly killing all the snipes on the ranch by using night goggles and Claymore mines. I think it’s more than just chicken wings that have been fried out there."

Congress is included in the alert as well, due to the "extreme nature" of their vacationing.

"July 26 to September 6 is long enough for each member of Congress to forget virtually everything they know about government, democracy, freedom, et cetera," Miasma said. "I wouldn't be surprised if they put through legislation to turn off the hot water in 46 states, or to keep marijuana criminalized."

When asked if such an impairment might actually benefit the country, Miasma speculated, "Well, we could get another one of those little desktop calendars with a Bush misquote for every day out of the whole thing. Those can be funny."

Miasma added that the likelihood of avoiding an error attack is slim, although there is a small chance.

"There could be some hope for the country in the short run if the President forgets to leave the ranch, and stays there until New Year's. Congress would have to forget to reconvene, too, for good measure. If all that happens, we might come out of this okay," he said. "Otherwise, there will be hell to pay."

Some Democrats were critical of the heightened alert.

"These silly alerts are no more than a tool to keep the public more alerted to the President's errors," said Hilary Clinton (D-NY). "We should be helping him to conceal...I mean, the alerts are..."

"No, that's not right, is it?" she said, furrowing her brow. "Oh hell, I don't know what to say, I haven't even gotten my daily poll results yet."

"What in the hell was Bush doing on vacation, anyway?" said Joseph Biden (D-DE). "I don't think anyone should be taking vacations in this country."

Others, such as Democratic National Committee Chair Howard Dean, were more accepting.

"I don't know, I'm not going to be too harsh on the President here, or the Republicans in general," said Patrick Leahy (D-VT) carefully. "I know both of our parties share certain ideas, and sponsorships."

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