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Rainforest Iowa: Right For America, Right For Puppies

IowaHawk Blog

September 2005

Hello everyone, this is David Burge. In my role as the internet’s ‘Iowahawk,’ it has been my privilege to entertain tens of readers like you around the globe with my quirky brand of wacky wisecracks, rib-tickling funny boners, and good ol' slapsticking ‘think-chucklers’ – or, as I call them, ‘thucklers.’

Yes, we’ve enjoyed a lot of wonderful thuckling together, you and I. But today, I’d like to take a moment to wipe off the greasepaint, put down the seltzer bottle, remove my baggy pants and bring your attention to a very important topic near and dear to my heart: the endangered Iowa rainforest.

As many of you know, my home state of Iowa has worked for years to promote the Iowa Child Project – a grassroots effort to restore Iowa’s depleted rainforests, which were destroyed some 400 million years ago by unregulated brontosaurus development and careless asteroids. The centerpiece of this critically needed environmental program is the Iowa Rainforest Project, a planned 85 acre glass-enclosed tropical bio-vegi-dome/ entertainment complex/ factory outlet mall slated for construction next to the I-80 Citgo Truck Haven in Coralville. This important project has earned the rave reviews of environmentalists, public officials, media, and glass contractors across the Hawkeye State. Their enthusiastic support has, in turn, spurred a major public-private partnership funded with federal, state, county, and township grants, as well as a major $150 private investment from the Truck Haven gift shop.

Mmmm, Trees.

Yet, just as Iowa breaks ground on this mission to regain its long-lost Jurassic environmental heritage, a shadowy group of agenda-driven internet extremists has emerged who now have placed this vital project squarely in their crosshairs. Their mission: deprive the hardworking families of Iowa jobs, trees, as well as the trees' life-giving oxygen. Shamelessly using Hurricane Katrina relief as a clever subterfuge, these well-funded extremists have bombarded voters with a barrage of disinformation, distortions, and outright data to sabotage Iowa's tropical "Field of Dreams" at Exit 235. Today, it's time to stand up to this outrageous stealth campaign of fibbery. America needs to know the real facts.

FACT: The Iowa Rainforest is cost effective. To illustrate, just take a look at these bar chart asterisk graphs, comparing the cost of the current proposal with two alternatives: (1) invasion, conquest and annexation of Costa Rica as a colony of Iowa; and (2) manipulation of the Earth's mantle, through plate tectonics, to carefully navigate the state of Iowa down the Mississippi River, through the Gulf of Mexico and Carribean, and up the mouth of the Amazon.

    Current Proposal: Coralville Rainforest
    Alternative 1: Conquest of Costa Rica
    Alternative 2: Relocate Iowa to Amazon

As you can see, the current plan represents a significant savings of more than 30 asterisks over the other options. Bottom line: this is exactly the kind of no-nonsense fiscal responsibility that you,  the American voter, have come to expect from the hardworking folks in the Heartland of America's corn basket. Some opponents have pushed for an unworkable third alternative, limiting Amazon relocation to Johnson County only. While this so-called "Fitzcarraldo Lite" option might offer some up-front savings over the Coralville Rainforest, in the long run it would create a major hardship for tens of thousands of Hawkeye fans across the rest of the state who travel to University Iowa home athletic events. This option would also leave several smaller Johnson County towns like Solon and Hills at risk for blow-dart attacks from headhunters.

FACT: The Rainforest will benefit Iowa children. Imagine for a moment, the wide-eyed wonderment of Iowa school children walking atop the Rainforest canopy, exploring and learning about the "Circle of Life." As anyone who has ever taken a child to the zoo knows, after 15 or 20 minutes exploring the wonders of nature, children generally become bored and fidgety. To keep Iowa children from whining, the Rainforest Project has also secured federal grants for a fully-stocked souvenir shop, the Circle of Life video arcade, and the very first Rainforest Chuck E. Cheese.

Rainforests, children, and puppies... an unbeatable Iowa combination.

Best of all, this vital center will help at-risk children confronting the corrupting influence of Iowa's pool halls. Pool you say? I'm thinkin' of the kids in the knickerbockers shirttails, young ones peekin' in the pool hall window after school. I'm gonna be perfectly frank. Would you like to know what kind of conversation goes on while they're loafin' around that hall? They'll be tryin' out Bevo, tryin' out Cubebs, tryin' out tailor-mades like cigarette fiends and braggin' all about how they're gonna cover up a tell-tale breath with Sen-Sen! Now one fine night they leave the pool hall headin' for the dance at the Armory, libertine men and scarlet women and ragtime, shameless music that'll grab your son, your daughter into the arms of a jungle animal instinct- massteria! Friends, the idle brain is the devil's playground, trouble! Trouble, Right here in Iowa City! With a capital T and that rhymes with P, and that stands for pool!

FACT: The Rainforest will benefit Iowa's adorable puppies. As any dog lover can tell you, there's nothing that "man's best friend" loves more than trees. Don't we owe the next frollicking generation of young Hawkeye State puppies a bright future of lush, tropical hardwoods on which to urinate?  And if by chance these puppies should be devoured by pythons or piranhas while doing "number one" in the Rainforest, wouldn't this also be a good way to teach Iowa school children about the magical Circle of Life?

FACT: The Rainforest will benefit Iowa education. Located near the University of Iowa and its world-class faculty, the Rainforest will transform UI into an important world center for the study of tropical plants, insects, and the exotic, disfuguring epidemic diseases spread by tropical insect bites. Iowa's soon-to-be renowned Rainforest scientists will work closely with other famous international scientists, like those at the University of Bombay's Snowmobile Research Center and The University of Dublin's Sobriety Institute.

The Iowa rainforest: promoting hardworking heartland values.

FACT: Project Rainforest will create high paying jobs for Iowans. In 2006, the Rainforest Project will create over 2200 jobs for Iowans in skilled construction trades -- 600 in the glass industry alone. This represents the biggest economic development boost to the Johnson County commercial glass trade since the "golden era" of 1969-70, when campus peace demonstrators in Iowa City went on dozens of window-smashing economic development rampages.

But the economic benefits don't end there. Once completed, the Rainforest is expected to draw millions of yearly visitors from as far as Newton and Muscatine. These visitors will stay at local hotels and eat at local restaurants, leaving generous tips for Iowa City's highly-skilled, highly-educated bellhops and waiters -- 48% of whom have Masters or Doctorate degrees from the University of Iowa. These spendthrift visitors will also pump millions of dollars into the agricultural economy, stopping by local farms to buy a bag of delicious Iowa soybeans. The economic windfall from this non-stop spending will easily offset the tiny number of forecasted farmer-crushings resulting from escaped rainforest boa constrictors.

Evil Tennessee blog fat cat in foreign car.

FACT: Opponents of the Rainforest are evil. Make no mistake, the well-financed opponents have an ideological agenda. They are driven by an agenda of hatred that scoffs at hardworking heartland values -- values that value school children, puppies, and good jobs for Iowa's farmers and Dengue Fever specialists. Although some of these opponents laughably claim to be Iowans themselves, but we know who is really pulling the secret strings on their agenda: out-of-state Tennessee internet fat cats who control their every move with promises of backroom sweetheart 'Instalanche' deals. Meanwhile we bloggers who dare oppose their extremist, slash-and-burn anti-Iowa agenda are left in the cold, going months without a single crummy "HEH" link.

Their real agenda? Even more Iowa pool halls.

FACT: The Rainforest is supported by a broad, non-evil coalition. Contrast the special interests behind the opposition with the diversity of voices who have lined up to support this important initiative. The Rainforest project has been praised by both the Des Moines Register and the Iowa Malaria Specialist News. It has received bipartisan support in Congress, including sponsorship by Democratic Senator Tom Harkin and Republican Senator Charles Grassley. It has been endorsed by the Iowa Glassmakers Association's Executive Committee to Re-Elect Grassley, and Glassworkers Union Local 162's Campaign to Re-Elect Harkin.

The Iowa Rainforest: strengthening American families.

Now that you know the facts, it's easy to see why the United States Congress was first in line to invest in this incredible opportunity for America. These elected leaders recognized the shrewd wisdom of Iowa's unofficial motto -- "if you build it, they will come." And if for some reason they still don't come, America's leaders know that they can can always rely on Iowa's time-honored Plan B -- add slot machines. Then, visitors to Coralville's famous Rainforest Casino will be repeating Iowa's other unofficial motto: "Is this Heaven? No, it's the Lounge's $8.95 Dinner Buffet."

Friends, this project is far too important for America's homeland security to be sacrificed to bunch of unelected blog outsiders. That's why I'm asking you to join me to fight back against the fat cats: let's work together with supporters of other important national economic development projects -- like Florida's proposed indoor Caribou Tundra, Connecticut's proposed 'Rhode Islandland' BioDome, and Lousiana's new Levee of C-Notes -- to preserve the future for Iowa's children.

Together, we can make a difference. Please contact you federal representatives and tell them you support all of these crucial initiatives. Remember to be polite, and remind your representives to vote for House Amendment 467.11(s), which will provide additional funding for the Iowa Rainforest's vitally important Dave Burge Pre-Owned Car Annex.