Today, George W. Bush announced that the United States will hold a second week of mourning, with another national holiday on Monday, June 14, because of the news that former president Ronald Reagan is still dead.
The unexpected news of Reagan's continuing death came upon the heels of Reagan's national memorial service. When asked to predict how long Reagan's death would last, an anonymous White House official would only comment, "We do not like to make predictions about such things, because it could go on for some time, but we believe that we're turning a corner on the situation."
Long lines of mourners who waited for hours in the mid-day sun to walk in a circle around his casket expressed shock at the news. "When I heard that Ronald Reagan was dead I was devastated," explained Rodney Stillwart of Red Rush, Oklahoma. "Now they're saying that Mr. Reagan is still dead, and I know that when I tell my mother, it's just going to break her heart. I don't know if we can take much more of this."
On every major television channel, news of a series of memos implicating the involvement of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney in the planning of legal strategies to enable American soldiers to conduct brutal acts torture without restraint was interrupted by Mr. Bush's announcement of Ronald Reagan's ongoing death. The announcement ended with a special request that all Congressional resources be re-allocated from ongoing investigations into alleged misdeeds by Republican politicians to a new, bipartisan commission to investigate the causes behind Reagan's failure to revive.
Attorney General John Ashcroft held his own press conference soon afterwards in order to provide information about a new program intended to contribute to the national effort to end Reagan's death. Code-named Operation Gipper Rise, the program will consist of new powers for FBI agents to spy on Americans' private activities, including the authority to force children to sing gospel tunes written by Ashcroft. "This is a new phase of the war on terror," said Ashcroft, wiping a tear from his cheek. "Those who conjure phantoms of lost privacy should be reminded that they are only helping America's enemies in their evil campaign to keep President Reagan dead." Asked for evidence to prove of a terrorist plot to keep Ronald Reagan dead, Ashcroft pointed to the fact that Reagan is, in fact, still dead.
When the news came out that Ronald Reagan was still dead, Senate majority leader Bill Frist called a halt to Senate business in order to speak before his colleagues, who appeared dazed by the revelation. "Now is not the time for partisanship," Frist said. "We must now come together, not as Republicans and Democrats, but as Republicans, to pass Dick Cheney's energy bill allowing drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge."
The Fox News network has declared that it will hold a Reagan death vigil, using new theme music with bugles and snare drums along with graphic logos of the phrase "America Mourning: Reagan's Death Continues". Fox News executives promised that the vigil would not end until Reagan's death came to an end. "Sure, we're journalists," explained Brad Friendly, Vice President of Patriotic Communications for Fox, "but we must never forget that we're Americans first. The American public can rest assured that we will never stop reporting on Reagan's death until Reagan is no longer dead, or until Election Day this November."
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