Church and State
In a shock move, the King-Emperor Henry IV of Germany was today appointed to replace John Ashcroft, who has reluctantly resigned his post as US Attourney General. The move is seen as an unusual one, as it had been thought that the Bush administration would be keen to keep their allies in the Church onside. Appointing such a vocal champion of the separation of Church and State to such an important post, especially following the ultra-religious Ashcroft's tenure, may be an olive branch to the Democrats, still smarting from their defeat at the hands of the US evangelical voters.
Speaking from his palace of Goslar in Saxony in a move hailed by the left as a great blow for in the fight for freedom and the salvation of the Constitution, Henry re-applied his words to the tyrannous Pope Gregory VII, first written on 24th January 1274, to his new boss, President George W Bush:
"Thou hast won favour from the common herd by crushing them; thou hast looked upon all of them as knowing nothing, upon thy sole self, moreover, as knowing all things. This knowledge, however, thou hast used not for edification but for destruction... Let another ascend the Oval Office, who shall not practise violence under the cloak of religion, but shall teach the sound doctrine of St. Peter. I Henry, king by the grace of God, do say unto thee, together with all our bishops: Descend, descend, to be damned throughout the ages."
The departing Ashcroft, in turn, repeated his words from December 2001, used to justify the US PATRIOT Act, "To those who scare peace-loving people with phantoms of lost liberty, my message is this: your tactics only aid terrorists, for they erode our national unity and diminish our resolve. They give ammunition to America's enemies, and pause to America's friends."
He then seemingly denounced the more secular approach of his successor, implying America may be less safe with a less religious man in the post, stating that "Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain."
Today, America breathes more easily.