Chap. 70: World War T: Part 1: The MenaceDateline: Sept. 2, 2013; Washington D.C.
Oval Office: President Obama is sitting at his desk when Secretary of Education Arne Duncan is ushered into the room by his security detail.
Obama: I'm sorry to interrupt your Labor Day festivities, General Duncan, but we have a pressing issue of vital national security on our hands.
Duncan: I assumed as much, Mr. President.
Obama: I regret to inform you, General, that the enemy is now in our midst.
Duncan: You have confirmation of this, Mr. President?
Obama: I just met with the director of Central Intelligence. There can be no doubt. In fact, the infiltration of this enemy is far more advanced that we thought.
Duncan: Who is it, sir? Communists?
Duncan: Drug lords?
Obama: I'm afraid it's much worse, General. It's our worst nightmare. This insidious enemy has insinuated itself into the very fabric of our most cherished institution.
Duncan: The family, sir?
Duncan: The church?
Duncan: Not, the Boy Scouts of America, Mr. President? Surely not that!
Obama: I'm afraid it's beyond your wildest imagination, General Duncan. I'm talking about our public education system.
Obama: Yes, the enemy has struck at the heart and soul of our democracy.
Duncan: You can't mean ....
Obama: Yes, General. I'm talking about teachers.
Obama: Under the guise of educating our youth, teachers have infiltrated our educational system from top to bottom. They're in every school district, in every school, every classroom.
Duncan: My God! They're even in ....
Obama: Yes, General, even in every study hall.
Duncan: How did we let this happen, Mr. President?
Obama: We were duped. Very cleverly they spent years getting educations. They spent tens of thousands of dollars on their own training.
Duncan: An excellent diversionary tactic.
Obama: Often they even went to graduate school and gained advanced degrees in education with the sole purpose of weaving themselves into the public education system.
Duncan: The deviousness is almost beyond comprehension.
Obama: Yes. And then they went underground as novice teachers, working their way up through the system, devoting years to their strategic covers.
Obama: On an unprecedented scale.
Duncan: I see the urgency of the situation, sir. The new school year begins tomorrow.
Obama: Quite right. But step one of the counter-insurgency is already in place, General.
Duncan: You mean the race to the top money, sir?
Duncan: School closings?
Obama: I'm talking about the new teacher evaluation system, General. See this red telephone on my desk?
Duncan: The Doomsday Phone, sir.
Obama: Exactly. I can pick up this phone and annihilate 98% of the earth.
Duncan: A last resort, sir.
Obama: I'm afraid that's what we've come to, General. The situation is that desperate.
Duncan: You can't mean ....
Obama: That's exactly what I mean. You've seen this other phone on my desk.
Duncan: The chartreuse one.
Obama: That's right. You were here when I had it installed.
Duncan: The No Child Left Behind phone.
Obama: I can pick up this phone and get a direct line immediately to Bloomberg Radio.
Duncan: Desperate measures, sir.
Obama: Within minutes, Bloomberg will have put every superintendent, principal, assistant principal and payroll secretary on high alert. They will be ready to spring into action on your orders, General Duncan. You are the supreme commander of our armed educational forces.
Duncan: I'm ready, sir.
Obama: Armed with the new teacher evaluation system.
Duncan: The one that is based 40% on student performance rather than on their own teaching.
Duncan: So that we can place teachers in classrooms full of overage, under-credited students who have no chance of passing their standardized tests.
Obama: And if the teachers fail in that 40% of their evaluation ....
Duncan: We can rate them 100% "ineffective."
Duncan: No matter how hard they try and how well they teach.
Duncan: And we can then get them out of the system within 2 years.
Obama: During which time we can excess them into the netherlands of the ATR pool.
Duncan: Never to be heard from again.
Duncan: We're armed and ready to fight, Mr. President.
Obama: Good. Now we move to step 2. With the new teacher evaluation systems in place, it's time to mobilize the education forces, General.
Duncan: You mean the Common Corps, Mr. President.
Obama: Precisely. We don't have a moment to lose. Starting tomorrow, tens of thousands of teachers will once again be pursuing their subversive agendas. Under the guise of educating our children, they will in reality be pursuing their own insidious goals.
Duncan: You don't mean ....
Obama: Yes, personal days.
Duncan: It's even worse than you said, sir.
Obama: And health care. Central Intelligence has discreetly recorded them at some of their secret meetings.
Duncan: I know. I read about it in the Snowden leaks.
Obama: They laugh at Obamacare, General. They've got all the health care anyone could want.
Duncan: They won't be paying any health care fines, sir.
Obama: Imagine. A generation of youth growing up believing that you should have personal days and health care and not be fined for not having a health plan.
Duncan: It's un-American.
Obama: They might even grow up thinking that the single payer plan is what we should have in this country.
Duncan: You mean like the rest of the civilized world has.
Obama: We have to act quickly, General. Can you rally the forces?
Duncan: Yes, sir.
Obama: Good. If we act now, we can defeat this menace before it gets to the point where it is in that Brad Pitt movie.
Duncan: World War Z?
Obama: Where the virus has spread throughout the world and infected every school child sitting in every classroom in every school.
Duncan: And every study hall.
Obama: If we act now, we can avert disaster.
Duncan: World War Z?
Obama: World War T. It's up to you now, General Duncan. The counter offensive begins immediately. Your plane is ready.
Duncan: Where am I off to, sir?
Obama: Parma, Ohio. That's where we take our stand.
Duncan: Yes, sir.
Obama: You'll be briefed further in flight. Now get going, General. But remember. Do not underestimate the enemy.
Duncan: Teachers, sir.
Obama: Right. They're a devious lot. It will take every bit of ingenuity and strength we can muster to defeat them. Our way of life depends on it, General. We're depending on you.
Duncan: I won't let you down, Mr. President.
Obama: Good. Now, on your way out tell my secretary to send in that pizza. The game is about to start.
Duncan: Yes, sir!