Even as crowds throng the nation's capital celebrating the inauguration of the country's first Hawaiian-American president, reports are beginning to surface of widescale vandalism and looting by the departing Bush administration. An unnamed spokesperson for the Obama transition team who was visibly shaken offered some comments.
"On the basis of just the quick first look, I am absolutely appalled at the damage we have uncovered. It is going to take decades to deal with this mess. Every time we turn over another rock, there's something worse underneath. Seriously, this is not a job for anyone with a weak stomach.
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Speaking off the record at one of the many inaugural balls, the spokesperson began painting a picture of wide scale devastation. A crowd gathered, both enthralled and horrified.
"Maybe some of you remember when Clinton left office, there was a surplus? I guess I don't have to tell you that's history. (pdf) Just about every corner of the economy is in ruins. Jobs, manufacturing, health care, you name it, it's taken a hit. The only bright spot - if you can call it that - is that with the job market so bad, at least the Pentagon is finding it easier to get recruits. Of course, if we weren't bogged down in two wars that have saddled us with trillions of dollars of debt, we'd not be facing so many tough choices.
Members of the crowd muttered "Yeah, Go Sarah!" and "Kill, baby, kill!" in a sardonic parody of GOP campaign rhetoric.
Another member of the crowd who wished to remain anonymous remarked "You think that's bad? I have friends who are career DOJ people. They're sick of working in just another Bush turkey farm, with partisan Dead Enders still trying to carry out a political jihad, or just walking away from the mess they've created."
A frazzled-looking partygoer spoke up: "Mess? You want to talk about messes? Take a look at my 401K - if you can find it. I don't even know what bank is managing my accounts any more - they're too busy buying each other out while looking over their shoulder terrified the Federal Government will start asking questions about what they're really doing with the bailout money. Thank God they didn't get their hands on Social Security!"
"Yeah," a woman chimed in, "and while they're partying on our dime, their stooges are telling us we have to sacrifice our pay and 'entitlements' because it would be fiscally irresponsible for the government to help non-bankers out because times are tough. We're not starving hard enough I guess. I say we should listen to that guy who wants us to invade the Caymans!"
At this point the transition team spokesperson got the crowd's attention again. "People, people - we all know why we're here, and how big the job is going to be. Tonight let's celebrate while we can, and then tomorrow go out into the cold light of morning to start turning this thing around.
It may not seem that way now, but in a way we are blessed. Everyone has now seen what happens when the country listens to the morally and intellectually bankrupt fools who believed their own lies and who still keep trying to shove them down our throats. They have set the bar so low, almost anything will be an improvement. We have a clear mandate, a clear path, and a clear call to duty; all we need are willing hands and true hearts guided by thinking minds.
Yes we did, yes we can, and YES WE WILL!"
With that, the celebration resumed.