Bush's Shark Wars: The Imbecile Strikes Back

It is the controversial centerpiece for the military of the future. Supporters say it is the only way to protect America from unprovoked attacks. Critics claim the system is not technologically feasible and the costs to build it would be staggering. Around the globe, allies and foes alike are unanimous in their condemnation of the project. Yet President Bush pushes forward, eager for deployment at the earliest possible date. And what this president wants, this president usually gets.

Which is why aides, advisers, Cabinet officials and select members of Congress fanned out across the Sunday talk shows to drum up public support. In spirited debates they expressed outrage over the recent epidemic of shark attacks in U.S. waters and touted a national dorsal defense shield as the only way to keep Americans safe from these ruthless predators.

By all accounts, this is the president's baby. He came up with the idea for a national dorsal defense shield (NDD) while vacationing on his Texas ranch. During one of the balmy 100 degree afternoons, Mr. Bush commented to reporters about how he "loved to get back at nature." He was then observed chain sawing several small oak trees. Later, when Secret Service agents were helping the profusely-sweating president back to the air-conditioned ranch house, he could be heard babbling about "this was no boating accident" and the "blood-lust that must be stopped."

What doctors feared at first to be a heat stroke turned out to be an early vision of the NDD. Working feverishly for two days, even staying up past his bedtime, the president designed a rough prototype using toothpicks, construction paper, Elmer's glue, leftover pieces of model airplanes, part of a Rock 'Em, Sock 'Em robot and a jalapeno pepper as the shark.

He then summoned his advisers, the Joint Chiefs of Staff and several military contractors to the ranch, an event pointed out by spokesperson Ari Fleischer who gleefully announced to reporters, "See! See! It is a damn working vacation."

The goal for the NDD: "To make sharks explode before they chomp them some peoples," Mr. Bush explained.

Reportedly, his assembled guests were quiet for a very long time before setting to work.

Finishing touches were applied to the president's rudimentary design. For detection and tracking the NDD will incorporate X-band phased-array tracking radars and upgraded early warning sensors to be mounted on lifeguard chairs and in unobtrusive NORAD-style beach bunkers, which could also sell concessions.

To eliminate incoming sharks, rogue groupers or any other sea creatures posing a threat to America's shores, the exoaquatic kill vehicle (EKV) would be launched from interceptor silos housed thousands of feet underwater. Using a passive infrared seeker the nuclear-tipped EKV would fire small thruster rockets to maneuver into the shark's path, destroying it before it can settle into a feeding mode.

Estimated costs for the NDD system have not been made available to the public but Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld has stated that the Social Security coffers will have to be drained, just for starters.

As Secretary Rumsfeld told a recent luncheon of wealthy landowners and robber barons, "It's been proven time and time again that the elderly only squander their Social Security checks on luxury items like insulin and new hips. We need this money to protect America's swimmers, surfers and boogie boarders. Sharks are like the Terminator in that movie, the first one when Schwarzenegger was evil. They're out there. They can't be bargained with, they can't be reasoned with. They don't feel pity or remorse or fear. And they absolutely will not stop until you're dead, until we're all dead. That's what they do."

The first test of the NDD took place over Labor Day weekend when one of the animatronic sharks from Jaws II was released in shallow water off Florida's Daytona Beach. But in a setback for the administration, the system failed to acquire or destroy the target. In fact the system failed to do anything. A preliminary investigation into the failure seems to indicate the system shorted out because it was underwater.

Work has begun on Phase II of the comprehensive plan which involves airlifting the sharks to dry land before weapons are launched. Early reports suggest this technology holds great promise.

As a backup plan, President Bush has urged his advisers to contact Aquaman and enlist his help. The president vows to set up a meeting with the superhero at his first opportunity.

While watching a game of Smear the Queer between elementary school students, one of many sports activities scheduled for the White House lawn this fall, the president spoke to reporters. "Aquaman and I will have a face to face meeting so I can look into his eyes and judge his watery soul. That's how this thing will get done."

The leader of the free world then turned his attention back to his corndog.

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