The documents referred to in this editorial are part of a trove of classified files provided to The Onion by an anonymous whistleblower in the White House. All of these documents can be found here.
As soon as Donald Trump won the presidency last November, it became clear to every editor, journalist, and indentured Laotian typesetter at The Onion that we would soon be contending with an unorthodox administration. Now, as our employees ceaselessly analyze a vast trove of classified White House documents on ocean barges floating outside the jurisdiction of the Fair Labor Standards Act, we are finding ample evidence that the path being pursued by this president and his cabinet is, as anticipated, startlingly unlike any other in history. In fact, every American should cower in fear at what we have uncovered.
While it is evident to even a casual political observer that the Trump administration is determined to reverse numerous Obama-era norms and regulations, the precise details of such efforts are particularly shocking. Notably, we have obtained evidence that the Department of Homeland Security is moving to reauthorize enhanced interrogation techniques for suspected terrorists, illegal immigrants, and the White House Press Corps. According to the highly classified material in our possession, the federal government plans to circumvent the Geneva Conventions by detaining these individuals within a timeless, lightless extra-dimensional realm known as The Void, where prisoners can be deprived of sleep for up to 40,000 years at a time and forced to watch their families grow old and die across billions of alternate universes.
The new administration is also poised to discontinue Obama-era green energy initiatives and return the nation to a greater reliance on fossil fuels, which could have dire implications for every citizen of this nation. Specifically, Energy Secretary Rick Perry delivered a classified presentation to the president in April addressing the nation’s energy crisis, noting forebodingly that “human bodies are made of carbon which can become oil” and that “there are over 320 million sources of oil in the U.S. today.” At present, it appears the Energy Department is piloting a “carceral production plan” to tap this new source of fuel as soon as possible.
The ecosystem also appears to be at serious risk under this cabinet, based on the presentation that Administrator Scott Pruitt delivered to the president in March outlining the Environmental Protection Agency’s objectives and goals for the next four years. Furthermore, Pruitt himself confirmed he is actively subverting his own agency’s efforts to protect the environment in a series of updates he sent to the White House regarding the progress he was making in destroying his office with a hammer.
It should be noted that the decisions now being made in Washington are not only placing the future of the planet in peril, but also the future of our nation’s children. According to The Onion’s analysis, the only effort Education Secretary Betsy DeVos has so far made to bolster the public school curriculum was her recommendation to instate a nationwide after-school polo program for underserved students, which she claimed would “instill important skills like leadership and field etiquette into these kids that they will need later in life.” Additionally, the sole memo she has thus far issued in office was titled “Addressing The Growing Trend Of Students Drawing Dongs In Textbooks,” which decried the negative learning conditions that result when children encounter a variety of hand-drawn dongs—from large dongs, to curved dongs, to dongs with excessive curly black hair—throughout the pages of their course books.
While DeVos’ initiatives raise serious and troubling questions, perhaps no cabinet member’s behavior is more perplexing than that of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson. According to a strange, rambling presentation delivered in February, Carson warned the Oval Office that his agency was unable to “translate the language spoken by ranch houses,” that skyscrapers “have threatened to get even taller,” and that some vague but menacing figure known as “Grathshashon” had “returned.” Carson’s bizarre beliefs were no further clarified in a series of emails to Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, in which he attempted to persuade his fellow cabinet member to sign a treaty bringing an end to the “senseless war between houses and cars.” Even more puzzling, though, was a series of urgent emails that Carson sent to White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus on February 28 in which he stated that he had become trapped in his email and could not find his way out.
Such peculiar and unsettling behavior appears to be pervasive throughout the president’s cabinet. The Department of Health and Human Services, for instance, compiled a disconcerting list of alternatives to Obamacare for the president to look over, which included such options as conscripting all citizens into the military and raising the price of specialist visits to $158,000 apiece. Moreover, the nation’s new secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, signaled a sharp turn from the diplomacy pursued under the Obama administration by issuing a memo laying out an ambitious slate of new global initiatives, ranging from “working to restore American-sponsored coups to pre-1990 levels” to having the United States create a “new catastrophic power vacuum somewhere else in [the] world to take pressure off [the] Middle East.” Additional documents showed that Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin tried to personally redesign U.S. currency as he saw fit. In an email to a colleague regarding the new $20 bills that feature an image of Harriet Tubman, Mnuchin asked if there was “any way we can get someone like Dwight Eisenhower or General MacArthur on there instead?” and proceeded to list off dozens of other individuals, from James K. Polk to Milton Friedman, whom he considered more deserving of adorning U.S. money.
Given the nation’s deepening concerns about the commander in chief’s impartiality and fitness to lead, it would be heartening to know that the individuals around him—the heads of the various executive departments who are charged with carrying out the many functions of the federal government—were making sound decisions in our nation’s best interest. However, the documents obtained by The Onion cast serious doubt on this hopeful notion. What is certain is that each and every one of us will face dire challenges in the four years ahead, whether by entering a diminished health care or education system, being processed into oil, or succumbing to an uncontrollable Superfund site that has gained sentience and begun swallowing our local communities whole.