Vol. 2, Issue 3, January 20, 2004
Bush to Help Frozen Northeast With Heat From Down South
As punishingly low temperatures persisted in the northeast through the weekend, the White House announced an unorthodox plan to provide assistance to the frozen region.
"We understand that fuel oil and natural gas are expensive, and American families are struggling to make ends meet," said the president in a press conference on Saturday. "But this great nation has other resources besides fossil fuels, especially down South. I'm talking about a natural resource so abundant we take it for granted. Ladies and gentlemen, I'm talking about warm weather. I'm talking about heat."
Under the new plan, trucks will transport containers full of heat gathered in warmer southern climates to the northeast. Details on distribution of the heat once it arrives in the northeast have not been provided, though the president said this should not be a problem since all the trucks have to do is "throw their doors wide and let the heat do its job."
Some are skeptical of the plan, but the White House is confident the interstate reallocation of temperatures will be effective. When one perplexed reporter asked whether the trucks would have heated trailers, Bush brushed aside his concern. "Of course they won't be heated," said the president with a wry smile. "Why would we heat a truckful of heat?"
The effort will involve at least 30,000 trucks and cost $350 million. In order to avoid such high costs in the future, Bush is also proposing a permanent pipeline from "somewhere in southern Texas" to Massachusetts to enable the rapid and permanent transfer of heat cross-country as needed. Experts are divided on the merits of this proposal.
"I am quite at a loss for words," said Rice University physics professor Jenna Tremain. "Is this a real plan?"
The White House later acknowledged that there would be some substantial hurdles to overcome after all.
"Upon consideration, we do realize that we cannot simply carry boxes of heat into a cold environment and expect this to have an impact," said White House spokesman Scott McClellan later that day. "For one thing, the cold will need somewhere to go. So as we send trucks with heat up north, we'll also have to be sending trucks full of cold down south."
Residents of the American northeast are enthusiastic about the plan and eagerly awaiting the arrival of the first truckloads.
"I have full confidence in the president on this issue," said Boston resident Spenser Macintosh. "If there's anything he knows about, it's hot air."