Bush Lifts Ban On Vigilantism

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Vol 41 Issue 23

NBA Playoffs Interrupted By NBA Preseason

DETROIT—Game Six of the NBA Eastern Conference finals between the Miami Heat and the Detroit Pistons was postponed Saturday so that the Heat could play their first preseason game against the Seattle Supersonics. "It would've been great to have determined who would've been in the finals, but this exhibition game was already on the schedule," said Heat coach Stan Van Gundy. "Sonics fans have been looking forward to this game all off-season." Representatives for both teams expressed hopes that the 2005 NBA Finals would be over by the start of the 2006 All-Star Game.

Eighth-Grader Hasn't Missed A '69' Joke Opportunity All Year

LEBANON, PA—According to Lebanon Central Middle School staff, Mike Eichstadt, 14, leapt on every possible occasion to make a "69" joke during the entirety of his eighth-grade year. "If a teacher said 'Turn to page 69' or a classmate got a 69 on a quiz, Mike Eichstadt was there with a smirk and a quip," principal Melanie Reinke said. "Sometimes, Mike only needed to be asked a question involving a number—such as 'How many years did Ford serve as president?'—to make a '69' joke." Despite his aptitude for "69" jokes, Eichstadt received a D in math.

Congress Relieved To Admit It's Not Going To Accomplish Anything This Year

WASHINGTON, DC—Members of Congress breathed a collective sigh of relief Tuesday when Speaker Dennis Hastert successfully introduced a resolution averring that the legislative body was "probably not going to get much done in 2005." "Whereas, we have been debating the same bills for months," the resolution read in part. "Whereas, we have been getting nowhere; Resolved, let's not force it."When asked what they would do for the rest of 2005, given the passing of the resolution, many said they might go see some movies or visit constituents.

Garden Too Much For Grandma This Summer

TULSA, OK—Though she has tended the same 10' x 25' backyard vegetable plot for more than three decades, local grandmother Helen Fischer, 74, said Monday that the task would be too much for her this year. "My knee hasn't been the same since I hurt it weeding the kohlrabi last summer," said Fischer, slowly lifting a bag of seeds to the mouth of a hanging bird feeder. "I might plant some marigolds in the window box, though, if Kerry's Greenhouse has any nice ones." In a related story, Fischer's husband Ralph said that, while he doesn't believe he'll be stringing the front-yard trees with holiday lights this year, he will still put out the wreaths.

Kuwait Starting To Notice Girls

KUWAIT CITY—In light of the country's recent decision to allow women to vote and hold public office, observers around the world have noted that Kuwait appears to have discovered the fairer sex. "The boys in Kuwait are really taking notice of how much the girls have changed over the country's long political winter," said Fouad Ajami, an expert in Arab affairs. "They're no longer shyly avoiding women they're not related to or clumsily shooting them for not wearing veils in public." Ajami added that he was not entirely surprised by Kuwait's discovery, given its long history of teasing women, calling them names, and stoning them to death for being unclean.

Repressed-Memory Therapist Recovers Rockford Files Episode

OTTUMWA, IA—After months of hypnotherapy, local repressed-memory therapist Brian Marnard has helped Joan Spees, a 37-year-old farm-equipment sales consultant, recover an entire Rockford Files episode from the darkest reaches of her subconscious mind.

I'm Sick Of These Money Problems

Hola, amigos. What's goin' on? I know it's been a long time since I rapped at ya, but it's like life keeps raining shit down on me and I don't have a shit shovel big enough to clear it all away. My ride is giving me grief. The muffler is coming loose, so it's making a lot of noise. The car might sound badass if it were, like, a Thunderbird or something. But it's a Festiva, so it sounds like a souped-up lawn mower. I took a tin can and some muffler tape and patched the pipe up, but my repair job isn't going to last for long.

Deep Throat Revealed

Last week, former FBI agent Mark Felt revealed that he was Deep Throat, the anonymous source that helped break the Watergate scandal. What do you think?

Well, I Guess That Genocide In Sudan Must've Worked Itself Out On Its Own

I was pretty worried a year or so ago when the news came out that thousands of people had been indiscriminately slaughtered in Darfur. It was unsettling to hear that citizens of one ethnicity (Arab, maybe?) were systematically mass-murdering the population of some other ethnicity (Was it the Ganjaweeds? It's been so long since I've read their names!) But lately, the main stories in the news seem to be about Deep Throat, the new summer blockbusters, and something about stem cells. Since I'm sure I would have remembered if the U.S. had intervened in some way to stop it, I can only assume that the whole genocide-in-Darfur thing has somehow worked itself out.
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Scientists Posit Theoretical ‘Productive Weekend’

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Bush Lifts Ban On Vigilantism

Bush makes a call for more vigilante justice.
Bush makes a call for more vigilante justice.

WASHINGTON, DC—In a striking departure from centuries of American belief in rule of law, President Bush gave his approval Monday to a limited experiment in public vigilantism "to see if it works."

"Groups of dedicated citizens who band together for a common cause—be it rounding up car thieves or castigating suspicious loiterers—strengthen and reinforce the social order," Bush said at a White House press conference. "I've never supported government intrusion in people's lives; I've always put more faith in the private sector. So I say, what the heck! Let's give vigilantism a go and see how things shake out. Why not?"

Bush's self-described "plan to have no plan" permits elected and appointed government authorities to "look the other way" while bands of U.S. citizens enforce both the community standards that the existing legal code overlooks and those laws that police fail to enforce.

"From bordello-busters to subway shooters, vigilantes have a long history of pinpointing and resolving the problems plaguing their communities," Bush said. "Let's give 'em a shot."

A vigilante group patrols a Colorado Springs, CO highway for litterers.

Bush's remarks came in the wake of criticism among his ultraconservative supporters, who argue that "activist judges" often make decisions that contradict the will of the people. To help remedy this problem, many special-interest groups had been calling for an official tolerance of "vigilante judicial committees."

"Vigilantes have an undeserved reputation for recklessness," Republican pollster Jennifer Mendenhall said. "As we phase vigilantism in, be prepared to hear a lot of talk about 'mob-ocracies' and 'tyrannies of the bat-wielding, roving majorities.' That rhetoric is meant to scare peaceful citizens into thinking they need magisterial authority to protect their interests. But vigilantism is not about crazed drunkards clustering in town squares, waving pitchforks and crying out for blood. It's about an opportunity to let the citizens of America serve as their neighbors' meter maids, correctional officers, chiefs of police, or, if necessary, SWAT teams."

Bush's decision has already mobilized vigilantes across the country.

"Who needed the police and the courts when I already knew who vandalized the restrooms at McDonnell Park?" Roy Kunz of Katy, TX said. "Bush has it right. It's high time we threw a few necktie parties around here."

Murphysboro, IL's Jo Crockett formed a vigilante committee to forcibly evict neighbor and "dirty, no-good slut" Haley Uhrig and her family from her neighborhood.

"Does the government care that [Uhrig] litters her yard with stinky diapers, blares her music around the clock, and steals our men? Hell no," Crockett said. "We couldn't wait around for an arrest warrant or a Jerry Springer segment producer to come to our aid. It's simple: That woman had to go."

Bush's endorsement of vigilante activity caught Capitol Hill Democrats off guard.

"I'm not sure vigilantism is in the best interest of the nation," Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) said. "Vigilantes are bad, aren't they? I read The Ox-Bow Incident in high school. They ended up hanging the wrong guys in that book, I think. That sort of situation could lead to a major problem for the government."

Bush stressed that his move was experimental, characterizing vigilantism as "practical."

"Frankly, government officials have all they can handle right now, overseeing foreign wars and doling out unemployment benefits," Bush said. "The truth is, we'd really appreciate some help maintaining domestic order while we take care of the important stuff."

"Let's see what happens, America," Bush added. "After all, our government is supposed to be of, by, and for the people. That's from the Constitution."

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