PRESIDENT IS ABOUT TO EXTEND Most Favored Nation status
to a certain populous country. Anticipating this vast new
market, a soft drink companylets call it "Loca-Cola"has
already invested billions of dollars in roll-out plans and
has also just made a huge donation to the president's party.
On a diplomatic tour of the populous country, the president
takes a wrong turn during a routine prison visit. He stumbles
upon a room where interrogators are using car batteries, jumper
cables, corkscrews and pencil sharpeners in ways the Underwriters
Laboratory would frown upon. Between shrieks, a dissident
manages to communicate that this sort of thing is pretty standard
practice in hundreds of gulags across the countryside. Within
two weeks, that trade bill will be on the presidents
THE ADVICE of his father, George W. Bush would normalize
trade as scheduled but send in a covert CIA force to monitor
the situation and foment a rebellion against the regime.
He would then consult his Vice President, Dick Cheney, who
would advocate pressuring Loca-Cola for more soft money.
Bushs popularity would remain high, but the horrors
he witnessed in the prison would drive him right back to
the bottle. Way back to the bottle. His loyal White House
staff would spend the rest of Bushs flailing term
covering up his crippling but occasionally comedic alcoholism.
A LITTLE VOICE inside Al Gores head would
tell him to normalize trade and not to worry so much. "Dont
try to be all things to all people," that little voice
would say. "You cant save the world all by yourself.
Youre doing your level best, after all. You dont
have anything to prove
except to yourself!" Gore
would act on these daring hunches and sign the bill.