LEAKED WHITE HOUSE TRANSCRIPT, February, 2003
PRESIDENT BUSH: Let’s get going, Gentlemen. I don’t like what’s going on.
VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY: Calm down, George. Things are under control.
PRESIDENT BUSH: Well, I don’t think so. What’s with that damn United Nations? China. France. Germany. Who the hell do they think they are?
KARL ROVE: Don’t worry, sir. We’ve got answers for all of them.
PRESIDENT BUSH: Just nuke ’em, dammit. I want a war. God tells me we have to have a war. And they’re standing in the way. The economy’s tanking. Gas is going up. And Armageddon is long overdue.
KARL ROVE: Well, I’m not sure Colin’s speech really did the trick. Polls here went up, of course. But he kindof laid an egg in the rest of the world.
VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY: The homeland comes first, Karl. I love how not a single talk show or TV commentator raised the least question about anything Colin said. And, of course, the polls fell right in line, even Oprah’s. I was mighty impressed.
KARL ROVE: We’ve got every one of those networks in our pocket now. And thanks to Colin’s boy Michael promoting the free market over at the FCC, it’s going to stay that way for a long long time. This nonsense about diversity in the media, it’s over. Every media outlet in the US will soon be owned by one of our corporations, and we’re getting the polls pretty well rigged now, too.
PRESIDENT BUSH: What about that Phil Donahue guy? How come his hair is white? I hear he’s raising some questions.
KARL ROVE: Not for long, Mr. President. We’ve sabotaged his ratings. And he’s wimped out anyway. Nobody can stay awake watching him. Why these liberals still believe in balance is beyond me. Now he’s just another liberal snooze.
SECRETARY RIDGE: That’s what I love about Rush. Nasty sells. Then he says he’s just a showman. And now you got Spielberg and Tom Cruise lapping it up. Let’s invite them to the White House.
PRESIDENT BUSH: OOOh. Maybe they’ll make a picture about me. I love those Star Wars movies.
VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY: It was a master stroke setting up Colin for the UN, Karl. Nothing like a darkie to confuse the liberals. I think we better have Harry Belafonte rubbed out, though. He’s been pretty rough on Colin, and for some reason they keep giving him air time.
KARL ROVE: They all just want him to sing “Day-O” one more time. I suppose we could do a Wellstone on him. Tom, will you check his flight schedule?
SECRETARY RIDGE: Yes, sir. But I’m afraid he’s not alone. These peace marches have been getting pretty big.
KARL ROVE: Well, you don’t see anybody covering them, do you? I can tell you they had 500,000 in DC and 250 in San Francisco. But the newspapers said 50,000 or less and gave them no coverage. Not even the New York Times. NPR devoted more time to the Queen’s pants.
ATTORNEY-GENERAL ASHCROFT: National Public Radio is a nest of terrorists.
KARL ROVE: You can use that as your operative phrase, John, and arrest them all whenever you want. But NPR is a bunch of gutless wimps. Britt Hume, Fox, Russert, those are the attack dogs we love.
VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY: You even got Bob Woodward licking George’s feet, Karl. Damn I gotta love you for that. What’d you do, give him some deep throat?
PRESIDENT BUSH, VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY, KARL ROVE: Loud, prolonged laughter.
KARL ROVE: And that was a nice job you did at the astronauts’ funeral, George. Your graveside manner has really improved.
PRESIDENT BUSH: Well I’ve got you to thank for that, Karl. Showing me those tapes of President Reagan and the Challenger was a really good idea.
KARL ROVE: Yes, although that one didn’t really work out as we had initially planned. The idea was to have the Challenger up in space while Ronnie gave the State of the Union. He was going to talk to them directly from the floor of the Congress. But the damn thing blew up.
SECRETARY RIDGE: Yes sir. The weather in Florida was too cold for the launch. The administration was warned there could be problems with the O-rings that could lead to an explosion. Then all those experts testified and it made the administration look really bad.
KARL ROVE: Who cares? The Challenger killings didn’t hurt us at all. It might’ve been better if it hadn’t exploded. And we probably shouldn’t have pushed so hard to get it up that morning. But when you control the media, these things can be turned into a plus.
VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY: I remember it very well. Ronnie looked very stately and concerned. Shed some tears with the families. Gave a speech. All the pundits soiled themselves about how presidential and compassionate he looked. If Carter or Clinton had blown up the damned thing we would have crucified them. But when you’ve got the press core in your pocket you can get away with anything.
KARL ROVE: Right, Dick. Same with the Columbia. We knew sooner or later one of those shuttles was gonna blow. That design is 30 years old and those crates are like rickety old school buses. The Boeing boys are holding them together with bailing twine. But who cares? One blows on our watch, George gets to furrow his brow and look heart stricken. But if it’d been Gore we’d’ve ripped his throat out.
SECRETARY RIDGE: But now the experts are all talking about how they warned this was going to happen and how they testified in Congress and wrote letters to the president.
PRESIDENT BUSH: I never saw any letters about the shuttle blowing up.
VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY: Not to worry. Nobody’ll remember. And if they do, we’ll blame it on Clinton.
KARL ROVE: I don’t think we should blow up any more shuttles, though. It doesn’t exactly enhance the image of our crack high-tech war machine.
ATTORNEY-GENERAL ASHCROFT: Criticizing the Administration’s performance in space is an act of terrorism.
VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY: They don’t notice here, Karl. But overseas they’re saying if we can’t bring a shuttle home how can we precision-bomb Baghdad?
PRESIDENT BUSH: What the hell do the French or the Chinese have to say about what we do? We’re going to invade and that’s the end of it. Now what’s the hold-up, Karl?
KARL ROVE: Well, sir, right now the only substantial ally we have is Great Britain, and Tony’s approval ratings are in the toilet. If Blair goes all we’ve got is a few of the east Europe commie leftovers, and even they haven’t come cheap.
PRESIDENT BUSH: Well none of them vote here, dammit. And none of them will be saved when the Heavenly Fire comes down and cleanses us all, starting in Babylon.
VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY: Lets remember to keep that to ourselves, George. We all share your deep faith and we’re all certainly eager for the Final Battle to begin. But perhaps we shouldn’t be too public about that aspect of our strategic thinking. Let our sky pilots handle that for us.
PRESIDENT BUSH: I jog. I lift weights. I wear blue jeans. I am God’s messenger.
KARL ROVE: And that folksy Texas accent works too, Mr. President. But we need the public to believe they still live in a democracy, or we can’t pull this off. They need to think we care about democracy in Iraq.
PRESIDENT BUSH: I’m all for a dictatorship, as long as I can be dictator. And that’s the problem with Iraq. Saddam Hussein is dictator there, and I’m not. There’s just too much damn freedom.
VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY: I couldn’t agree with you more, George. And we’re nearly there. The voting machines are almost all computerized, and we’ve got the codes and the corporate control. No more exit polling, no ballots, no paper trail. We can win any election in any state at any time with five or six keystrokes. Look at Florida. Look at Georgia. It’s over.
SECRETARY RIDGE: But don’t you think there should be a little discretion, sir. I just don’t believe it’s wise for Senator Hagel to retain direct ownership in the voting machine company that arranged his re-election. Some of those numbers in the black and native American communities were way over the line.
KARL ROVE: But that’s Nebraska, Tom. Nobody cares about Nebraska. And you don’t see the story on the networks, do you? Our voting machine coup is just about as well known as our intercepts of the meetings between the Iraqis and the Al Queda when they stopped yapping and learned to really hate each other.
VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY: Too bad that got out at all, Karl. Saddam’s people have always hated Osama’s. But to Americans, they’re all just towelheads. And when you’ve got the media, the judiciary, the Congress and the voting machines all lined up, you can start talking a thousand years.
ATTORNEY-GENERAL ASHCROFT: Wearing a towelhead is an act of terrorism.
KARL ROVE: I’m afraid we may need some real fireworks to get this war going. We can’t pull this off without the Brits and they’re about to kick Blair into the sea. We need to arrange a few terror bombs over there. Maybe the Parliament. Or a couple of schools. Blair needs some face time with some dead bodies. Just make sure they don’t think it’s the IRA again.
PRESIDENT BUSH: What’s this got to do with my tax cuts?
VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY: I’m sure we can get Rummy to set that up. Can’t trust the CIA these days, but I’m sure the NSA can blast a few of the right places.
KARL ROVE: I’m afraid we’re going to need some of that here, too. A school, a bridge, maybe a nuclear plant. Definitely some kids. Run a hit or two simultaneous with some blasts in England so George and Tony can go tandem on the satellite. Give Fox the scoop, as usual. That should move the polls where we need them.
ATTORNEY-GENERAL ASHCROFT: Terrorism is the health of the state.
KARL ROVE: Meanwhile, John, you keep those idiot liberals busy. Jack up the death penalty. Keep busting the medical marijuana people. Throw the enviros in the clink. Lock up some liberal commentators. Dust off the concentration camps. Scare the pants off those do-gooder creeps.
ATTORNEY-GENERAL ASHCROFT: The Bill of Rights is an Act of Terrorism. Free speech is an act of terrorism. States rights is an act of terrorism. Smoking marijuana is an act of terrorism.
SECRETARY RIDGE: But sir, they’re starting to compare us to the Nazis.
PRESIDENT BUSH: My grampa made great money bankrolling the Nazis. They had some good ideas and they paid their bills right on time.
KARL ROVE: We need the usual suspects to play the Church card now. Get Billy Graham back out there on the war path. Rev up Falwell and Robertson. Get Rush on the prayer circuit.
PRESIDENT BUSH: Revelations and Ezekial are the only UN resolutions we need. That’s our oil and that’s our Armageddon. I am the anointed, chosen to bring down God’s holy judgment, starting in Babylon.
VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY: Right, George. Let the games begin.
LEE WATERS writes for the Columbus Free Press .
Copyright 2003 by LEE WATERS.