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"From sea to shining sea!" It roared across every television set in America. The new President was standing proudly in front of the most dramatic eagle we had ever seen. He was smiling with white teeth. His advisers and dour looking Congress men stood behind him.
"This will unite all of our people," he said. "For once we have completed this mighty project we will have eliminated all class differences and all economic barriers, while simultaneously solving unemployment and poverty. Today is a truly great day."
He happily held up a copy of the bill that was called the Mandarin-Bryan Bill, but we all knew it as Pave America.
The advisers smiled almost as broadly as the President and the Congress men grinned tightly.
"From sea to shining sea!" the President proclaimed and placing the bill on the stand
in front of him signed it with a flourish.
And so it began. Pave America. Some said the project would be a disaster. There were the predictions of floods and catastrophic global warming. It was said by scientists that the effects would be felt for millions of years and that it was economically unfeasible anyway.
Not so! Soon the naysayers disappeared and new smarter, better informed scientists began to say that the chances of a global catastrophe were greatly exaggerated by certain special interest groups. These groups were uncovered shortly enough as certain big businesses that had no desire to help Pave America, but only to subject its people to their greed.
Soon the CEOs found themselves digging the very first strip mines that were to proceed the concrete from East to West Coast.
The mine, which was really a long trench, was necessary for materials needed. The television told us this through the ever popular slogan, "From sea to shining sea!" So much could be put just in the images alone and we didn't mind the endless chant of the slogan over all of pictures of oceans and beaches and children playing.
Soon we were called to work on the concrete. It was hard work, but we did it gladly for the President's Christina Ricci clones were always nearby and willing to give helpful advice and to repeat the slogan if any of us thought of slacking.
The Canadians asked us what we were doing. Their questions became more alarmed as the concrete spread and they claimed it was killing their maple forests.
Our beloved President talked to the Canadian Prime Minister on television in a nationally broadcast forum.
The Prime Minister asked if we had gone nuts, but the President looked him in the eye and offered sage words and wisdoms which the Canadian was unable to grasp.
Our President said the Canadians just didn't understand what we were doing. He offered to lend the Canadians money and a few of our laborers to get started on a small test of their own. He said that if they just gave our glorious idea a try they too would see the necessity.
The Prime Minister politely refused and the President went back to his administrative duties while his Ricci clones marched the Minister back to his jet.
The President just shook his head and said that it was sad when people did not recognize the truth.
And the work continued. When we had reached Ohio, the sun was hot and bright, it had seemed like summer was lasting forever! But we were nearly halfway done and we couldn't stop. We were almost there and besides, the authorities reasoned, we had lost too many people to heat stroke to let their lives be wasted.
On and on we worked through the great summer and finally we reached California and the West Coast. We had Paved America.
I remember standing on the brilliant concrete, miles and miles of it, reflecting brilliant sun up into my air-conditioned spacesuit as our brilliant Emperor with his brilliant Christina Ricci clones and their brilliant assault rifles ascended a small hill of cement in his own gleaming spacesuit. Everything was brilliant and well it ought to be from the 9,631,418 square kilometers of concrete laid down from Maine to California reflecting all the light from the sun.
Our Emperor smiled with gleaming teeth at us through his brilliant visor. I remember looking up at the great man as he said, "Today we have achieved a great thing. We have paved America. We have stopped corruption and greed, we have ended hunger and strife. Our country is now truly the best in the world. There is but one task left for us and we must do this for the good of society and so we do not fall back into our old ways of tyranny and greed. We must now Un-Pave America!"
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