WASHINGTON (AP) – A controversial decree issued Tuesday by the Federal Aviation Administration designates reindeer-powered aviation vehicles as falling under the purview of the Transportation Security Administration. This has led to a variety of problems for North Pole residents. Powerful unions such as the Workshop Elves Local #252 have decried the decision as extremely invasive, for a variety of reasons including but not limited to the humiliation undergone by elves who wish to perpetuate the convenient fiction that elves have no reproductive organs of any kind.
Santa himself will be subject to a TSA screening each time the sleigh moves across state lines; short rooftop-to-rooftop hops are considered sufficiently low security as to obviate the need for such scans. Nevertheless, this means a minimum of fifty-one scans added to Santa’s annual odyssey.
|Americans are asked to avoid leaving any alcoholic treats for Santa, so as not to add to the time required for the TSA to conduct their screening processes. “Drunk in charge of a sleigh is a serious offense,” said Mr. G. R. Inch, a TSA representative. “Infractions of this nature could lead to Santa’s inclusion on the ‘no-fly’ list.” As it is, Rudolph and Blitzen will have to remain home this year, since their names are believed to be on a list of known Nazi sympathizers.|
The extraordinary quantity of carry-on baggage necessary for Santa to continue operating under his current business model has also presented difficulties. “During Santa’s early-December dry run,” says Inch, “he was asked to empty his sack. We failed to anticipate the magical properties of the sack, and the sheer number of packages involved led to a level of delay unacceptable even by our generous standards.” Henceforth, Santa will be accompanied on his journeys by two TSA representatives using a handheld version of the scanner, so that packages can be scanned at destination prior to what the TSA designates their ‘structural entry point’ and the rest of us call a ‘chimney’. The handheld scanners produce the same objectionable images which have caused uproar among airline passengers, and as such have instantly become this year’s highest-demand gift, particularly among teenage boys and representatives of the pornographic movie industry.
North Pole Workshops Corporation (currently headquartered in Delaware for economic reasons), while grateful for their recent tax breaks and happy to contribute to certain political campaigns since the Citizens United decision, have complained bitterly about the extra security measures, saying that the extra time added onto Santa’s travels will require additions to headcount. A elven spokesperson for the corporation, Mr. K. E. Ebler, informed the AP that many tiny tots will not receive visits from Santa himself this year, but will have to content themselves with receiving service from Dave Claus. Dave Claus has only recently received his sleighing license, but has risen high in the organization due to family connections. The A-list band of elite reindeer will also have to be separated between the two teams, meaning that all Christmas 2010 operations will be forced to include second-tier reindeer. “This is the price of doing business in the modern world,” Ebler supposes, “but it’s hard to explain that to the kids who won’t even know the names of the magical creatures on the roofs of their homes.”
It is unknown whether Dave Claus has yet been vetted by the TSA. Recent incidents where TSA employees’ stockings were hung by the chimney with care and found to be full of reindeer excrement well in advance of Christmas have further complicated matters, though as yet nobody has been charged with any crime.
Other groups have expressed concern about overreaching by the TSA – specific issues include the possible hampering of cross-continental travel by the Easter Bunny, Mr. Sandman and the Tooth Fairy. The State Department has already contacted these individuals to warn them of possible disruptions, according to a highly secret cable posted online by WikiLeaks. WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange could not be reached for comment.