Looking for savings this holiday season? When you’re out shopping, take
advantage of the George W. Bush discount. You will need unmitigated gall and
several accomplices. Here’s how it works.
Load up with all sorts of items that you want and take them to the checkout.
When the clerk gets to an item that will not scan on the first attempt say,
petulantly, “My brother says that all these items are mine.” The clerk will
insist on rescanning the item. Look bored and incredulous that anybody could be
so incompetent as the clerk tries unsuccessfully to scan the item. Turn to the
people in line behind you and say, “Can you believe this is taking so long?”
At this point, the clerk will attempt to enter the bar code information by
hand. Insist loudly that the item is yours and that since it didn’t scan after
two attempts, it must be free. Get so worked up that your face starts to break
out. The clerk will still attempt to enter the bar code. At this point, bring
forward your first accomplice who will introduce herself as the Secretary of Bar
Code Scanning and say to the clerk, “I’ll give you two seconds to enter that bar
code. Ready… Set… Times up!”
The clerk will probably call for the manager, and the two of them will insist
on manually entering the bar code into the cash register. Have dozens of your
accomplices run to the media talking about possible mistakes and mischief that
could arise from manually entering the bar code. Raise questions such as, “How
can I make sure the price is being entered fairly when the clerk works for the
owner?” Say, “These items have been scanned and rescanned. They just want to
keep entering bar codes until they get the total they want.”
At this point, the owner might try to take you to court to get some more time
to manually enter the bar code. He’s really playing right into your hands.
While he’s getting a time extension from the court, call the office of
Congressman Tom DELAY and ask him to send down a couple of henchmen to lead a
crowd of angry demonstrators into the store to shout and bang on the doors.
Simultaneously, file an appeal with the Supreme Court asking the highest court
in the land to bring a halt to all manual entry of bar codes.
In the midst of this confusion, have your first accomplice declare that all
the items are legally yours and that if the owner doesn’t like it, he can take
you to court. The owner will now have to drive to the state capital to file a
lawsuit in which he will ask the judge to manually enter the bar code of the
item that would not scan. Invite some celebrities over for a photo op and
announce that you’ll share the items with them once the items are found to be
Meanwhile in court, the owner will ask the judge to transfer the item from the
checkout line to the courtroom. Have your lawyer tell the judge that that is
simply not enough, that the judge needs to move the entire inventory from the
store lock, stock and barrel to his courtroom.
When the owner contemplates that this will tie up all his merchandise till
well after the holidays, he will surely give up. But just to be safe, have the
legislature pass a law giving the entire store to you.
Some people will tell you that you won’t enjoy the goodies you’ve thus
obtained because they are not really yours.