"The President for Life, um, misspoke, sir," Chief of Staff Rick Santorum looked uncomfortable. "The Selection applies to offspring of GuestJobbers, sir.. Not Goodjobbers. The media has already been alerted, and the correction is out now. If I may, sir," and without waiting for an answer touched a switch on Boykin's desk.
The screenbank came to life. Every screen had the correction in its crawl line.
Boykin sat back, relieved. "Ah, Mexican kids."
"And only in support positions sir. Kitchen and whatnot."
"Well that makes sense," Boykin grinned. "In their blood, isn't it?"
"Not that I object on the basis, but the logistics, you know, there are advantages to small troops in operations, but you can go too far in that direction, and what have you got? A C-130's worth of Honorable Unusables every couple of hours, and DOV will raise a stink unless you bring back actual remains for a Christian burial."
Although Boykin was a Man of Faith, his relationship with Secretary of Values The Reverend Jerry Falwell was not without friction. Both men attributed it to wartime tension.
Santorum, sensing his audience was over, collected his papers. Neither noticed the man with the cleaning cart outside the open door.
Roger pushed his cart down the hall and into the next office. Unlike Boykin's, it was empty. In this administration, it was only the bigwigs - and Roger - who were still around at 4 AM.
Roger had avoided GoodJob status by virtue of his long-time Federal employment. He was grandfathered in as a Federal Protected, and even assigned a Preferred card, which carried with it the privilege of living off-compound. It did not, however, carry with it the privilege of an Approval Exemption for MariLuz, and he had had to throw himself on the mercy of his boss and a long chain of higher-ups to get an exemption for Chuchito. "Jesus Rogelio," MariLuz had whispered to him, when their son was only a few minutes old. It seemed like another lifetime, but it was barely seven years ago. And barely three when they came for MariLuz.
"Approved," they called it. Approved for the GuestJob program. GuestJobbers did not enjoy the same luxuries as the GoodJobbers. Instead of bunks, they had thin foam mats, 100 to a cell, one communal shower a week, and one Nutri-Loaf for every twelve hours worked. Hours were steady, 24 on, 8 off. There were no Vacation Hours. Phone calls, letters, visits, were forbidden, and no Family Hours. The silver lining was, unlike GoodJobbers, GuestJobbers actually received a small amount of cash for their work, which they could either deposit into a bank account to take care of their final expenses, or opt for General Disposal when that time came, and have the money sent directly to family back home.
GuestJobbers' children were kept in cells identical to those inhabited by workers, the only difference being smaller mats for the younger children. Infants received formula for one year, then a gradual weaning to pureed, then solid Nutri-Loaf. At age five, they began their year of Intensive 3R, after which they were assigned cleanup and landscape tasks around the facility. Unless they were Selected, or Empowered as Givers. Few GuestJobbers voluntarily brought children with them. Almost all the kids in the facility were the result of Approval Roundups.
Roger's job required very little thought, so he was able to spend every waking minute trying to figure out some way to get MariLuz out of the Approval Facility to which she had been assigned, and be a father to Chuchito, who still cried for his Mami at night.
He had a ray of hope. A lawyer, an old friend from Back Then, had found some text in a forgotten corner of Patriot IV that could possibly be interpreted as a provision for Compassionate Deportation.
Roger didn't know much about subsistence farming, and had no illusions about the quality of life he was likely to find in the Mexican Semi-Autonomous region, where things were so bad people were streaming into the US to get jobs as GuestJobbers, but if men and women were not segregated at the Approval Facility, and he didn't have Chuchito, he would gladly have claimed to be Mexican and Approved himself, just to be with his wife again.
The Reverend Jerry Falwell bowed his grey head. "Thank you, Lord, for blessing the work of this great Task Force, and thank you for the gift of this miracle of technology, thy Blessed Rod of the Latter Days."
Falwell raised his head and smiled at the men at the conference table. Before him sat the newest revision of the Juvenile Tasering Guidelines prepared by the Task Force for Chastity and Godliness.
"Brethren, I commend you," the Secretary of Values smiled. The Task Force was one of his favorite projects.
"I don't mind telling you that I believe it is another Heavenly Sign that within the framework of the Constitution of the United States, remember, Congress has passed no law - that we have been able to bring so many souls to Christ."
"Sir, you know there's a new video -" began the man on Falwell's right.
"Yes, Mr. Reed, I have heard about it, the CIA has not yet confirmed its authenticity, but in any event, it was to be expected. That the enemies of America, the messengers of Satan, attack our every move toward bringing our Homeland to the Path of Righteousness is no surprise."
They were referring to a video received that morning by Al Jazeera, purportedly from the head of the European branch of Amnesty International. Now in its fourth year on the Pentagon's list of terrorist organizations, AI did little, at least publicly, besides issue communiques delivered by men in ski masks. This particular videotape excoriated the US for the routine use of Tasers on children and elderly people.
"Nobody takes these thugs seriously. Except the Anti-Terrorism Agency," Falwell chuckled.
"And our mortality rates in all tests were well within range," replied Reed.
"Richard, here on earth, our mortality rate is one hundred percent," Falwell rested his hands on the report. "I prefer to see the forgiveness of a loving God who rewards even these young sinners with Eternal Life. Now I don't know about you gentlemen, but I'm ready to accept some of God's bounty in the form of lunch!"
Haley was having a slow day. Buoyed by recent success, she had decided to try her luck on a new street. Apparently the Preferreds in this neighborhood were not interested either in reading or giving the impression that they did. She was just about to flip the tarp and move on when she saw the man and the little boy.
"Hey, is that what I think it is?" the man asked eagerly, pointing to a book whose cover was only partly visible behind some others.
Smiling, Haley took it out. "It's new," she said. "As you can see, most of them aren't."
"Chuchito, I think we've found your birthday present," the man handed the book down to the little boy. "He had one, well, Back Then," he said to Haley, his voice low. "It was his favorite." He shrugged. "Weird kid."
"DAD!" Chuchito shrieked, "This IS it!" He sat down on the sidewalk and began turning the pages. "There they are!" The blue people!" He looked up at Haley. "They are so cool!"
"Whoa, son," laughed Roger. "We haven't bought it yet. How much?" he looked at Haley, hoping he had enough money. No-Read books weren't cheap, and this one was new, not to mention...
Haley noticed the embroidered nametag on Roger's shirt. He might be a Preferred, but he was no professional, and if this was the kid's favorite book, so much so that he remembered it from Back Then...
"Twenty bucks," said Haley, grinning at Chuchito. "Birthday present."
"Thanks, but I can't let you do that," Roger opened his wallet.
"You just did!" Haley's hand darted out, grabbed a twenty, flipped down the pushcart's plastic tarp, and was halfway down the block before Roger was quite sure what had happened.
"Thanks, Dad!," breathed Chuchito, cross-legged on the sidewalk, happily re-acquainting himself with his Forbidden Book, "The Kid's Guide to World Religions." posted at
Actions like Sep 11 do not happen in a vaccuum.
Long before those hijackers ever stepped foot on the planes the damage
had been done. They were brainwashed with the same type of garbage
propaganda that is spewed from Fatwa's weblog.
Middle Eastern countries are so much more barbaric today and preAmercia than America can ever hope to be...America has only been around 230 years...who did you blame for everything before that Ductape? I am calling a Fatwa on your bullshit!
IMO - terrorist plain and simple. He is an Al queda operative who
should be put in a cage on gitmo Skinner
My favorite..."In Defense of Holocaust Deniers"
I always thought that "The Enemy Within" was just a metaphore for liberalism, that is, until I encountered Ductape Fatwa. He should be in an orange jumpsuit for sure.
peopleforchange.netductape is either a commie, al queda, or a deep cover mole
Tells you something about this asshole doesn't it. He's really serious.
I believe that DF is nothing but a Republican plant...
Ductape is a commie, a terrorist, and he drinks blood too. He drinks
Capitalist blood. He eats unborn babies too
Give me your address and I'll send you $20 and a thank-you note for taking your hatred elsewhere.
A terrorist with a sense of humor!
He ain't nuthin' but shit
inadequate, halfway house bullshit
You are a dumbass. Fuck you and your condescension about us "benighted sheeple." hamletta
Untruthful, damaging bullshit
no better than the neocons and no different than Timothy McVeigh
dailykos.coma turd in the punchbowl...if DF were Joe Hill he probably would have killed himself rather than get put to death.
A compost pile of fecundity
dailykos.comdespicable and literally mentally ill