Transmissions from the alternate universe

New controvery over NASA’s canceled Mars trip

Posted by oldancestor on April 19, 2010



By Eric J Baker


HOUSTON – The Obama administration’s recently announced plan to cancel NASA’s return-to-Mars program has put the once-proud space agency in an embarrassing position. Just three years after then-President George W. Bush promised, with great fanfare, that America would land on Mars within a few decades, NASA officials were forced to contact their Martian counterparts and request they land here instead.

“I’m red-faced,” said NASA’s red-faced program director, Jett Rockett. “I sincerely hope the President will reconsider his plan.”

Speaking through a universal translator, Martian Supreme Leader Brian Highwycomb-Miller offered a terse response. “I see red-faced cliffs, mountains, and rocks everyday. Now I have to foot the bill for a four-month trip to Earth to see red-faced humans? Is that what abject humiliation looks like on your planet? Cuz it should.”

He later added, “I feel like I’ve been asked on a date only to discover I’m expected to pay for both dinner and the movie.”

On Mars, women traditionally pay for dinner.

The diplomatic snag is unlikely to improve already tense relations between the two planets. Many Americans still haven’t forgiven the Martians for their attempted invasion of October, 1938, often referred to in popular literature as “the Red Scare,” which began in Grover’s Mill, New Jersey and soon spread across the continent. The attack failed when Martian soldiers became sickened by an airborne virus, leading the Martian military to accuse Earth of engaging in germ warfare, a claim the US government denies to this day.

In the 1970s, controversy erupted anew when NASA’s Mars-exploration spacecraft, known as the Viking Lander, crashed into a Martian residence, killing two.

More recently, NASA’s twin Mars rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, were arrested and held in a Martian jail for two weeks on charges of spying. They were released only after civil rights activist and former presidential candidate Reverend Jesse Jackson was able to negotiate a deal with the Martian Defense Ministry.

While this latest incident plays out between the White House, NASA, and Martian dignitaries, average Americans offer differing opinions.

“Jobs,” says Lu Chaching, a part-time retail cashier. “It’s hard enough to get full-time work with illegal immigrants taking all the jobs, and now the Martians are coming. With their four arms, they can run a register, bag products, and swipe credit cards at the same time. I’ll be out of work.”

Dianne Horseface, a regular customer of Chaching’s, was more welcoming of the news. “Who the hell wants to go to Mars?” she asked. “I mean really. It’s a bunch of friggin’ rocks.”

Angry, irrational ranter Pinky Middleton, speaking all in caps, said, “IT’S JUST ONE MORE PIECE OF OBAMA’S SOCIALIST AGENDA!!!!!!!! YOU IDIOTS!!!!!”

Though none would speak on record, some NASA employees and White House staffers believe Obama’s cancellation of the Mars program is meant to free up money for a return to Venus, which is much closer to Earth than the red planet, and, considering fuel prices, far less expensive to visit. The President may be courting controversy by doing so, however, as Venusians contributed heavily to his 2008 election campaign. Critics could accuse him of using his executive authority to pay back political favors.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: