George W. Bush campaigned on a promise to change the atmosphere in Washington, D.C., and he was sincere. Soon, the air over our nation’s capital will be Houston brown.
But that’s not the first thing that will happen. Every president is allowed to redecorate the White House and issue a number of orders to put their own stamp on the patch of festering Maryland swampland that is our nation’s capital.
The first thing any president has to think about is his desk in the oval office. No one thing symbolizes the power of the office and the personality of its occupant more than the desk. Nixon’s had buttons for trapdoors, poison gas and lasers, while Clinton’s had extra legroom for interns.
As I imagine it, Dubya’s will be a large desk, with a comfy hiddey-hole under it for emergency naps. The top will be finished with a mirror for upcoming Colombian foreign policy discussions. Instead of a globe, our new president will master geography with a McDonald’s “funny foreign places” place mat. As for the Button, it is being replaced with a joy buzzer. The actual button is being relocated – Dick Cheney and Colin Powell are slap fighting over it.
The White House itself will get a face-lift to clean out the eau de Clinton. After the bleaching and the scrubbing, the volumes in the presidential library will be replaced with books on tape. The tapes will gather dust. Honoring his true Republican heritage, Bush will replace the Lincoln Bedroom with the Reagan Bedroom, complete with rubber sheets. In a bold foreign policy move, our new president will push back the yellow peril by demolishing the China Room. The War Room will be converted to the Rumpus Room.
In a rare step for conservation, the natural gas heating system will be replaced with a homeless person incinerator. “For people who are complaining about being cold all the time,” Bush will say, “they sure do keep me toasty warm.”
All kitchen staffers will now be expected to perform their jobs barefoot and pregnant. They will also be instructed that white bread will be the only bread and mayonnaise will be the only condiment. Any minority servants will be fired, except for those who can perform an amusing rendition of “Mammy.”
If John Ashcroft is appointed attorney general, he plans to trump the president’s hotline to Russia by installing a direct line to God to make sure He sorts out everyone after they’re killed.
Every Cabinet meeting will begin with a dark incantation and the sacrifice of a hundred acres of virgin forest. Policy briefs will have to be short enough to be written on a pair of briefs. Cabinet members will be required to settle all policy disputes by a Bud Lite pound-off.
At all times, a Secret Service agent will accompany our new president. That agent will screen incoming phone calls to make sure news of hospitalized daughters does not interrupt duties of state, such as fishing or playing solitaire.
Transportation: the presidential helicopter, Marine One, will be replaced with a Huey, allowing the commander-in-chief to fire an M-60 during fly-overs of urban Washington, D.C.
The looming energy crisis is a large concern. Our brave new president will soon announce plans to open Richard Gephardt’s house to exploratory drilling.
Brendan Buhler is an assistant campus editor and columnist. His brain is currently showing “Crouching Gin, Hidden Vermouth” on four screens.