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Chapter 41
November 5, 2017

President's Top Advisor in a Pickle [ARNS]

by LAURIE NEIDERGAARDEN, Alternate Reality News Service Medical Writer

Jared Kushkushinthebush, the adviser-in-law of President Ronald McDruhitmumpf, suffers from Socially Induced Memory Plasticity Legerdemain & Effluvia Syndrome. And, here, you thought he was just trying to pull a fast one. Shame on you!

"SIMPLE Syndrome afflicts politicians across the country," explained Szenovia "I'm a doctor in real life, dammit, I don't play one on TV!" Sasquatchewanite. "It presents as a befuddlement over simple facts, an inability to remember such things as names, dates and obscure television show references. The common person who is not a doctor often mistakes it for disindigenous - disgenuisity - disingren - lying! Okay? They mistake it for lying! What do you want from me? I'm a doctor, dammit, not a linguist!"

Kushkushinthebush has become the poster child for this dubious medical condition because of the recent discovery that he had communicated with representatives of the Duchy of Grand Fenwick on over a dozen occasions, the most recent of which was one day before he signed a security clearance request in which he claimed that he had had no contact with or financial dealings...umm, also with a foreign government.

The Constitution is very clear on matters such as this. The emoluments clause (which predates Jergens by decades) states: "Thou shalt disclose all contact with foreign agents prior to seeking security clearance for an government office lest thou shalt be ridiculed mercilessly in the press and possibly, even, if thou art truly unfortunate, chastised by an Congressional committee. Oh, and be smited. They're every big on smiting in the Bible, and if it's good enough for the Supreme Being, it is good enough for the government of the United States of Vesampucceria for ever and ever, amen."

Kushkushinthebush spoke to Serge Gherkinpickelness, the Chairman (and Tableman and Deskman - he had complete control over the decorations in his office) of Fennickbanc, the state-owned bank of the Duchy of Grand Fenwick. But, not only is he a banker, he also graduated from the Grand Fenwick Academy of Cloak and Dagger Stuff, which trains people to work in the country's intelligence and security forces. In other words, he's a bankerspy! A spybanker! A banksper! A spyanker! A...a...a...

Sorry about that. My attempt at gratuitous cleverness kind of got away from me there.

It appears that Gherkinpickelness, a protege of the Prime Minister of Grand Fenwick, is a puppet who does his bidding (although Prime Minister Mountkilamanjoy plays the hand and, if he makes the contract, takes the points for himself). Hmm... Suggestive.

When knowledge of the meeting became public, the Grey House claimed that Kushkushinthebush met with Gherkinpickelness as an official (if only just barely) representative of the Vesampuccerian government. "Have you seen the state of the State Department?" rhetoricked Press Secretary Sean Spirochetericer. "I mean, you could roll a bowling ball down those hallways and not hit anybody! I'm not sure why you would want to - I mean, it...it...it's not like anybody set up pins at the end of any of the hallways or anything, so the ball would just...hit the back wall, I guess. I...I can't imagine that would be very exciting. And...and...and, anyway, I'm not sure you could even get a bowling ball past security, so I'm not sure what that even - okay, look. The point is that we didn't have a functioning State Department, so we had to improvise. Jared Kushkushinthebush was the administration's Second City Night Live!"

Gherkinpickelness told a different story. "I...I met with Jared Kushkushinthebush..." he looked to his left at where Prime Minister Mountkilamanjoy was nodding encouragingly. "To discuss...umm...you know, I -" Prime Minister Mountkilamanjoy mouthed the word "business." "Bustiness? Yes, we discussed the, err, endowments of the fair maidens of Grand Fenwick." Slapping his forehead with his palm, the Prime Minister hissed, "Business, you moron!" "Ah, yes. Business. We discussed the business...of the finely endowed maidens of Grand Fenwick."

Observers were amazed that Prime Minister Mountkilamanjoy didn't have a stroke.

The implications of the meeting are...implicatory. If Gherkinpickelness' version of events is correct, Kushkushinthebush might run afoul of the emoluments clause. If the Grey House's version of events is correct, what, exactly, could the subject of the meeting have been? Hmm...Highly suggestive. Either way, it is easy to see why Kushkushinthebush might not want to discuss the meeting publi -

"No, no, no, no, no," Sasquatchewanite insisted. "Jared's not evil. He's just SIMPLE."

"Have you noticed that people close to President McDruhitmumpf have a pattern of covering up their connections to the Duchy of Grand Fenwick?" a voice whispered on the wind. It could have been token smart person Amy Sheshutshotshitbam. Or, it could have been the Candyman. But, we're not saying Sheshutshotshitbam three times in a row to find out!

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