Independence Day Special: THE PRESITRON!
On Saturday, I was seized with a patriotic fervor, so I went out and bought a paperback copy of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. If you don't already have it, go buy yourself a copy. I picked one up for about a dollar and it's fundamental to have an understanding of them and what they represent.
I was pleasantly surprised to find that I still remembered most of the Ammendments (I used to have them all memorized), but that wasn't the real shock that I found.
While reading through today, I noticed something in the Constitution that I'd never seen before. It's not exactly a treasure map that leads to a Masonic conspiracy or anything, but it bears mention:
Section 1: The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses deem it necessary, shall vest a group of former holders of the Executive Office whose members shall not number more than five with special emergency powers in order to deal with threats that the militia of the Republic is ill-equipped for.
Section 2: The powers vested in these former Presidents shall be centered upon a mechanical contraption of the Honorable Mr. Franklin of Pennsylvania's design, which he has dubbed "totally frigg'n sweet."
Needless to say, it wasn't something I'd heard of in school, so I decided to do a bit of research. The story of Article X is shrouded in mystery, but thanks to Wikipedia and some alleged "facts" that I may or may not have made up, I was able to piece together the whole story, presented here for the first time as an ISB 4th of July Exclusive.
While attending a meeting of the mysterious Lunar Society in London in 1775, Benjamin Franklin partook of a new hallucinagenic herb created by Society member and noted biologist of the time Erasmus Darwin. In addition to the psychotropic effects, Darwin's herb reacted strangely with the chemicals that remained in Franklin's system from a four-day bender outside of Paris the previous month during which he'd allegedly drank a quart of absinthe from a chalice belonging to Charlemagne.
The records are a little sketchy.
Regardless, the reaction allowd Franklin to "pierce that silveréd veil into the lands beyond," where he claimed to exist in all possible times at once. When he awoke the following morning, he reportedly wrote in a letter to John Hancock that he had imagined in his sleep plans for a series of devices, the first of which "combines my stove with the awesome power of lightning to obtain the [illegible] essences of man from differing points on the [illegible] stream!"
Evidence survives that shows that after the Constitution was officially ratified in 1789, Franklin utilized his plans to build a machine that allowed him to assmble a team of the toughest, smartest, luckiest, and most ass-kickingest men to ever hold the office of President for the next two hundred years:
Thomas Jefferson: Fueled by his rage over his anti-slavery segments being edited out of the Declaration of Indepencence, Jefferson brought his incredible scientific knowledge, a dream of a perfect agrarian republic, and a dead-eye aim to the project.
Andrew Jackson: The seventh President, a man who once survived an assassination attempt when the assassin's pistols both misfired. He then chased his would-be killer down and beat him with a stick.
John F. Kennedy: War hero. Ladies' man. So powerful that he could only be harmed by a magic bullet.
Abraham Lincoln: Statesman, Emancipator, and former Illinois State Wrestling Champion. The Mike Haggar of his day.
The Vengeful Spirit of William Henry Harrison: After serving as President for only thirty-two days, Harrison died of an illness contracted during his two-and-a-half hour innauguration speech. Frustrated by his inabilty to actually serve, he was doomed to wander the earth until Franklin rescued him from the aether. Now, Tippecanoe is out for vengeance!
[And yes, that might be the best picture ever linked from the ISB.]
Each man was given control of a robot of Franklin's own design that, when linked with the others, would form the most powerful Defender of Democracy the world had ever seen.
Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you... THE PRESITRON!
Art by J. Martinez, my most awesome buddy.
Click to Presi-Size It!
[Edit: THAT is the most awesome picture to ever appear on the ISB.]
There are only a few recorded instances of the Presitron's appearance after its creation by the top-secret engineers (dubbed "Poor Richards" due to long hours attempting to understand Franklin's advanced designs) in 1789. The greatest of these was the Presitron's involvement in the defense of Fort McHenry during the War of 1812, when the devastating blasts from Lincoln's Emancicannon inspired Francis Scott Key to pen a certain song about the Rocket's Red Glare.
All of which, in retrospect, seems slightly less plausible than the whole treasure map thing.