A couple items from Al Kamen’s “In The Loop” column today in the Washington Post that made me chuckle:
Quick, Form the Box Office
Remember “Boxgate,” the incident last week at a St. Louis warehouse in which President Bush touted small business and things made in America? And the problem was, he was standing behind a bunch of boxes that had tape over the words “Made in China”?
Seems the person who did this, said by the White House to be an “overzealous volunteer,” may have committed a federal offense.
Covering up the “Made In” labels is against the law, a violation of venerable Title 19, Chapter 4, Subtitle II, Part 1, Sec. 134.11, which “requires that every article of foreign origin (or its container) imported into the United States shall be marked in a conspicuous place as legibly, indelibly and permanently” as possible, “in such manner as to indicate to an ultimate purchaser . . . [the] name of the country of origin of the article.”
Further, “any person who, with intent to conceal the information . . . defaces, destroys, removes, alters, covers, obscures, or obliterates any mark required under the provisions of this chapter shall — (1) upon conviction for the first violation . . . be fined not more than $100,000 or imprisoned for not more than one year, or both. . . .” A year in the slammer?
This is enforced by Customs, now part of the Department of Homeland Security. Might be a good place for Secretary Tom Ridge to start. Or wait! Is Ken Starr busy? Didn’t Watergate begin with some tape on a door?
Three Bottles of Aspirin Ought to Do It
White House spokesman Ari Fleischer treated those visiting the White House Web site yesterday afternoon to a brief preview of Bush’s State of the Union address. One component, he said, would be Bush’s proposals to strengthen and improve the health of tens of millions of Americans, “particularly for some 30 to 40 senior citizens who do not have prescription drug coverage as part of their Medicare plan.”
Shouldn’t be too hard.