Thursday, April 22, 2004

Iraqi Sovereignty to be Auctioned off on eBay 

WASHINGTON, DC (Ant Farmer's Almanac Newswire) In a move that surprised many Beltway insiders, the Bush administration announced today that it is selling the sovereignty of Iraq on eBay®.

"In the absence of any viable, willing or, for that matter, even particularly interested, entity to whom we could hand over the sovereignty of Iraq on the June 30 deadline," said White House press secretary Scott McClellan, "The decision was made to let the free market resolve this problem and to just sell the place to the highest bidder."

"It has long been the philosophy of this president and this administration to let the private sector handle situations that government has no business meddling in," continued McClellan, "And, we believe that rebuilding a nation's infrastructure and establishing in it for the first time a judicial system and representative democracy that reflects the will of its citizens is exactly that kind of situation."

The eBay listing, which will be posted on May 1 and is scheduled to end on the handover date, reads in part: "Fixer-Upper with great potential for rebuilding or resale! Semi-industrialized. Semi-secular. Location, location, location. Energetic populace. Could be broken up into three or four smaller sovereignties. Oil rights not included. May or may not have advanced weaponry someplace."

In a section of the web page that addresses why the United States is auctioning off Iraq rather than taking advantage of what it has described as such a good deal, the text says that "...We are selling this country's sovereignty at this time because we've already occupied another country that we're not done with, yet, and we just don't have the time or resources to devote to liberating and rebuilding both at once."

McClellan would not respond to questions about whether bidders with zero or negative feedback from previous eBay auctions would be automatically disqualified, saying only that, "This is a No Reserve auction and the highest bidder wins. 10% deposit mailed or paypal within 3 days of bid closing. Remainder of funds due upon buyer inspection and acceptance of terms. Cashiers checks and money orders only please. No personal checks. No warranty. Property is sold as is."

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