Democratic Underground

White House Denies Barney the Dog Knew About Enron Collapse
January 18, 2002
by Gil Christner

WASHINGTON — The White House refutes reports that Kenneth Lay, Chairman and CEO of Enron, tried to get President Bush's Scottie dog Barney to put in a good word for the failing company during the last months of 2001.

In a press conference last week, presidential spokesman Ari Fleischer repeatedly denied that Barney even knew Kenneth Lay. However, in an internal a memo leaked from Enron's executive committee, the happy-go-lucky Scottie dog was apparently being contemplated as a possible scapegoat for the missing documents from the Arthur Andersen company.

"When we were in school," the memo from Lay to his top executives states, "the best excuse we knew was The Dog Ate My Homework. I propose we just blame Barney for eating all those auditing documents." The memo goes on to contemplate various ways to "get that stupid mutt to sign off" on the idea.

Some of the ideas mentioned in the memo were to use Beggin Strips as a bribe, or trying to manipulate Purina Puppy Chow stock, as was allegedly done with Enron, to entice Barney to go along with the scheme.

President Bush, at a neighborhood Petco in Muncie, Indiana, to promote his Economic Recovery Stimulus Plan, vowed to investigate any possible wrong-doing on the part of his animal companion. "If Barney was involved," the President said, "it would be very bad. Even worse than when he does his business on the Presidential seal in the Oval Office. Bad dog. Bad, bad dog, Barney."

Barney, on his way back from the funeral of President Clinton's dog Buddy, could not be reached for comment. However, Spot, the Bush's other dog, was quoted as saying "Woof. Woof woof woof. Arroooooo!"

When asked to respond to Spot's impromptu statements, spokesman Fleischer said, "If Spot wants to go on the record, that's certainly his prerogative. But Spot does not speak for all the dogs in this administration."

Karl Rove, reached for comment, agreed.

Gil Christner is an actor and writer in Los Angeles. He's the guy on the IBM commercial who yells "Ned, the servers, they stole all the servers!"

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