April 1, 2005
Scientists at a leading research university recently announced the completion of a project that has been underway for years to perfect a device that can detect the flow of muons -- among the lightest particles known to modern physics -- which are emitted from residual psychic matter which persists after bodies have ceased to function. This, for the first time in history, allows us to know definitively who goes to heaven and who goes elsewhere.
In the Muon Origination Center of Omnium University, sociologists are collaborating with physicists to correlate the new data with the occupations of those who have reached their final destination. The results, in most cases, are not surprising. They fit closely with what any commonsensical person would have supposed. The highest rate of ascent to paradise occurs among baseball players, and the lowest, slightly less than 8%, is reserved for college and university presidents. Priests and other members of the clergy go up and down in about equal numbers, as do physicians. And, in what is, perhaps, the only unexpected result, it was shown that a mere 62.5% of lawyers find themselves on the descending track.
The discovery that may carry the most serious policy implication has to do with former members of the U. S. House of Representatives. It turns out that only 22% of them go to either place. Dr. Reginald Oakem, when asked how this could be, responded that the only feasible hypothesis is that these entities had never been human beings. They must have been operated, he said, by fairly complex computer chips, programmed to mimic standard liberal or conservative reactions. "In other words," he announced, "somebody 's making these guys up. One thing's for sure; they were never born."
Dr, Doris Delcovey, who heads the sociological unit at the Muon Origination Center, says that the new data explain rather nicely a great deal of formerly mysterious Congressional behavior. "Have you ever watched these people on the Sunday morning talk shows?" she asked. "It should have been obvious to us long before now that nobody with an actual human brain could say the things they do."
Neither Dr. Oakem nor Dr. Delcovey had any theory about where these Congressmen were coming from. Unfortunately, they said, the muons don't tell us anything about them until they're dead. But they promised to get to work, immediately, on an upgraded device that will work with living brain tissue. When it comes on line it will be interesting to see what it shows us about Dennis Hastert and Tom DeLay.
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