|By A.D. Freudenheim||
13 May 2001
Sea of Tranquility, The Moon, 4 July 2003 - Marking the anniversary of American Independence Day, President George Bush - with Interplanetary Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld at his side, and Secretary of Space Tourism Dennis Tito behind him - made a series of major policy announcements, as he gave the commencement speech to the first graduating class of American Space Cadets.
"You people, good American boys and girls that you are, are strong and brave to come up here on this historic and important mission. And I am proud to stand here on this spot and come before you as someone who wishes he was a fellow Space Cadet - though I have done much 'flying high' in my life. It is because of Secretary Rumsfeld's vision two years ago that you are gathered here, and I know that as you proceed out into your Space Corps platoons, you will think back on these days, remembering fondly that, in fact, the moon is not made of green cheese. You will go forth and do your best to defend the interests of the United States here in space."
The assembled class of 150 Space Cadets cheered wildly through their microphones, built into their space suits, creating what appeared to be a painful cacophony over the President's headset. Mr. Bush recovered his composure quickly however, pointing out one Cadet who had yelled the loudest as "a major league asshole."
As is traditional for presidents making speeches before graduating classes of American military academies, President Bush followed his introduction by proposing a series of policy initiatives, beginning with a reclamation of American independence and moving on to tax cuts. With GOP stalwarts Newt Gingrich, Jesse Helms, and the ghost of Barry Goldwater joining him next to the historic flag that American astronaut Neil Armstrong placed on the moon, Bush announced that the U.S. would withdraw fully from participation in the United Nations.
"It has been a dream of mine, ever since childrenhood," Bush said, "to correct this great, Roosevelt-era mistake. Teddy was a wise man, and a good Republican, but the United Nations stands as his greatest error. One thing I know for certain is that I was elected by the majority of an Ivy League electoral college as chosen by the United States [emphasis added]. And I simularly know that those nations we would like to call united would not have voted for me if they had the chance. Therefore, it is time for America to stand firm and reclaimate its sovereignty and independence, by withdrawing from the United Nations."
Instead, said President Bush, the United States would seek to broaden its defenses, and those of its allies, through the creation of a United Planet Society, and in which the Space Cadets would play a leading role. Modeled, Bush said, "after the League of Justice established by Superman and his friends, and also the work of [Captain James T.] Kirk," the UPS will organize defense operations between the earth and the moon, making possible pinpoint military operations using the Space Cadets. "The United Nations has become unnecessary," the President said, "now that we are able to monitor and control global activities from the safety of our 'Moon Shot' defense base."
President Bush acknowledged that, for now, membership in UPS would be limited to the United States as the representative for Planet Earth. However, he promised that he would continue to reach out to other constituencies as the Space Cadets began their work. The President also said that Vice President Richard "Dick" Cheney would be leading a blue-ribbon panel to examine possible resolutions to the dispute over the internet address "www.ups.com", and working closely with Jim Kelly, Chairman and CEO of United Parcel Service, on the matter.
To address the tremendous costs of his ongoing defense and foreign policy space initiatives, the President announced a change of course in domestic policy as well. Mr. Bush said "As a nation, we have for years pursued the objective of being 'progressive' in our tax policy. No longer. Now, we must be 'aggressive,' with a major overhaul in our tax codes that will flood our American economy with money for luxury goods - by completely reversing the tax rates scale. The rich will pay the lowest rate of 8.8%, as a reward for their success. The poor will now pay the highest rate, 39.6%, which in my firm estimization will motivate underprivileged Americans to try harder. And, as an acknowledgement of my fellow citizens we call "middle class," who have worked so hard to get to where they are: their tax rates will be unaffected."
The President's advisors noted that they have no way of estimating how much money this will free for new or existing policy initiatives, but assured reporters that "it will be totally awesome," according to one unnamed source, and "will open a can of 'whoop-ass' on poverty" said another.
As Bush finished his speech, the first graduating class of Space Cadets began to unbuckle their helmets, to follow the earthly tradition of tossing one's mortar board in the air. However, they were quickly stopped and reminded that however pleasant the atmosphere on the moon during graduation, scientists had not yet solved the moon's environmental problems and restored oxygen to earthly levels.
Copyright 2001, by A.D. Freudenheim.
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