In an early-morning 1 April 2008 press conference the National Park Service (NPS) announced a novel plan to bottle Crater Lake water and also sell it in bulk to Las Vegas, a scheme that would finance the War On Terror (WOT), build the USA-Mexico border fence, resolve the sub-prime mortgage fiasco, fund Social Security, Medicaid, and Medicare in perpetuity, and solve the NPS's financial woes by endowing a national park trust fund. The plan, dubbed the Crater Lake Aqua Project (CLAP), will be implemented immediately by the Bush Administration under the guidance of Vice President Dick Cheney.
"CLAP will be the crown jewel in the tiara that is already President Bush's legacy," said U.R. "Bud" Uggley, White House spokesperson. "He is already known for WOT, No Child's Left Behind, his memorable behavior during the Hurricane Katrina crisis, the Bear Stearns bailout, the Palestinian-Israeli Superhighway Toll Road to Peace plan, and the semi-solution to the sub-prime mortgage crisis. This will be his pièce de résistance - that's French, by the way - I mean really big, and he will be fondly remembered for the CLAP," he said. Uggley then introduced Ima Bedd-Wetter, newly-appointed NPS Director, who described the CLAP.
"The Crater Lake National Park Superintendent, Hazel Nutt, tells me that the lake, which holds 5 trillion gallons of water, is the purest natural water in the world. Crater Lake is one of the most recognizable landmarks in the world. It's also apparently in Oregon, which imparts additional cachet. So anything associated with it will automatically achieve marketing nirvana." Nutt seconded Bedd-Wetter's assessment with a resounding "It's awesome!"
Bedd-Wetter then elaborated upon the CLAP. "We'll reserve 4 trillion gallons of the lake's water for bottling, which means we can fill 32 trillion 16-ounce bottles with the purest water in the world. We will sell that for an average of $3 a bottle over the life of the project. Do you know how much money that is? That's $96 trillion!" she said. "Do you know how much of that will be profit? $90 trillion! And that's after paying the Halliburton subsidiary, Cheney Recycling And Bottling Systems (CRABS), to do the bottling. All we do is collect the money! Can you believe the profit? We can probably pay for the BULSHIT (Baluchistan-Uzbekistan-Lebanon-Syria-Hamas-Iran-Turkmenistan) War," she gushed.
The novel aspect of the CLAP is that Crater Lake will appear unchanged. Sophisticated engineering provided by the Halliburton subsidiary, Pipeline Laying And Maintenance Engineering (PLAME), will do the trick. PLAME's Chief Engineer, Anita Mann, waxed enthusiastically about her team's ingenious plan. "We'll install a thick, watertight Lucite slab about 15 feet below the lake's surface, which will be painted to look like the lake bottom. That will create the illusion that all the water is still there. We will then tunnel through the crater wall to the lake bottom and start pumping out the water via a huge PVC pipeline almost 20 feet in diameter," she said. "But we're not done. The energy provided by the water rushing out will be used to run electrical generators to supply most of western Oregon's needs. It's really quite remarkable," she added.
Freda Press of the Bend Bloviator asked how much water would remain in the lake above the slab. "No hay problema! About 200,000 acre-feet, or about 64 billion gallons," replied Mann. "That's still a lot of water left behind, so who's going to miss the rest?" she said.
Eileen Dover of The Oregano questioned the plan. "Won't people know what's been done, having seen the massive construction project and pipeline?" she inquired.
"Aha!", proudly replied Bud Uggley, "We've figured that one out. We are going to do all the construction only at night, so no one will see what we're doing. And since no one fishes or swims in the lake, they won't know that it is only 15 feet deep! Are we smart or what?" Uggley then added that it was President Bush himself who conceived the plan to work at night, thus avoiding detection.
Mann added that the scheme is not a new one, but is based upon one proposed by former University of Nevada hydrologist Dick Bateman in the 1970s to mitigate Nevada' s drought. Since the state could not extract more water from Lake Tahoe, Bateman proposed installing a watertight Lucite slab 50 feet below the lake's surface, drilling a tunnel west from Carson City, and sucking out all the water from under California's nose. Mann noted that Nevada has been doing this for 30 years, and no one's caught on. "It's foolproof," she said. "Hey - get it? Foolproof on April 1!" she exclaimed.
April Fulz of the Las Vegas Review-Urinal asked if it were true that the remaining one trillion gallons would be sold to Las Vegas. Bedd-Wetter corroborated that and said, "That's about 3 million acre-feet, enough to supply Las Vegas' current needs for almost 10 years. At $10,000 an acre-foot, that is $30B.". Although that is just a fraction of what could be made by bottling the water, Bud Uggley suggested that this was an example of President Bush's putative "compassionate conservatism" -- sacrificing some profit to ensure that a national treasure like Las Vegas would endure and thrive. Bedd-Wetter added that if Las Vegas needs more water, the NPS could always cut down on amount of water it would bottle.
PLAME Chief Engineer Mann said that the construction of the pipeline to Las Vegas will be subcontracted to the Mexican firm, ABRIL-TONTO, which will help mitigate the USA's "illegal immigrant" problem by hiring thousands to dig the the pipeline trench in return for a couple of bus tickets to Nogales, AZ. The firm's Chief Engineer, retired U.S. Army Gen. Alberto "Al" Muerzo, mastermind of the Colorado River Access Project (CRAP), commented, "No hay problema!"
Project Environmental Manager Sonny Summer-Day noted that the EIS completed by the Halliburton subsidiary, Research Environmental Action Management (REAM), found no significant impacts. "It's just a bunch of rock we're drilling through, and laying a pipeline through the desert. I mean, what lives in a desert?" he stated.
Muerzo added that the evacuated space in the crater will be leased to ABRIL-TONTO, who will use it to house illegal immigrants and all the USA's waste for 50 years. "This will solve the USA's illegal immigration problem because the government can keep an eye on them so they don't commit terrorist acts, and the public won't be able to see them around. The illegals can also unload the trash," said Muerzo.
Uggley interrupted Muerzo, noting that the benefit-cost ratio for the entire project was calculated at 345,000.071/1 by Professor Lotta Krapp at the Meyer Lanksy School of Accounting at the South Henderson Institute of Technology in Henderson, NV. "Or maybe it was 1/345,000.071? I always get that stuff mixed up," he chuckled.
But Gen. Muerzo vehemently denied that the 20-foot pipeline would be used to ship the illegals to the Southwest USA, and then to Mexico. They presumably would be strapped to "surfboard-like objects" and "floated" to Las Vegas, a process known as "waterboarding". "Besides, even if we planned to do that, waterboarding is not torture; we don't torture people," he said.
Uggley concluded the press conference by introducing some Las Vegas dignitaries: Pat Yorlum, Chief Person in Charge of the Southern Nevada Aqua Grabbers (SNAG); Dwayne "Botox" Newman, famous entertainer who was recently designated Nevada State Fossil; and Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel III, grandson of the famous entrepreneur whose vision created modern-day Las Vegas. Mayor Oscar "Nolo Contendere" Goodfellas, unable to attend because of an arraignment hearing, was represented by Las Vegas City Attorney Anthony "Tony the Mole" LaPuca, who attempted to read a prepared statement: "Hiz honnah sends his regrets. He's reely sorry he can't bee hear. He tanks da government for da wattah to keep Las Vegas a-float. And I tanks ya as well."
Expected CLAP completion date is 2025, when USA troop strength in the Middle East and Central Asia is expected to be down to 500,000.
Press Release Date: 1 April 2008
Contact: Stu Pendous 1 202-555-1212 firstname.lastname@example.org
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