Courtesy of Postcards
Salvation Army Surge Begins on Black Friday
By Biff Scuzzy
ALEXANDRIA, Vir. - Inspired by reports touting the success of the military surge in Iraq, which is credited with driving an 8-percent increase in foot traffic and impulse buying at the Baghdad Mall, the Salvation Army has announced plans to roll out a similar strategy beginning on Black Friday.
"If we're going to win the war on poverty, we have to put enough troops in the malls to guarantee maximum contributions," said General Edward Carrson, head of the Salvation Army's College for Officer Training. "The greater our troop presence, the greater the amount of donations we receive."
General Carrson told reporters that the Salvation Army's 15th Strip Mall Patrol, the 17th Kmart Brigade, and the elite Big Box Rangers have set the tone for Kettle One, as the Salvation Army has dubbed its surge, by canceling all troop leaves between now and Christmas.
"We hope to deploy another 100,000 troops this holiday season," said General Carrson. "With a beefed-up front line, we will have sufficient troop strength to challenge anyone who tries to hurry past one of our kettles without making a donation."
Much of the troop increase, according to a source close to General Carrson, will come from the ranks of the Salvation Army's 430,000 adherents. An adherent is someone who has not elected to enroll as a Salvation Army soldier but who nevertheless considers the Salvation Army to be his or her place of worship.
In order to boost the ranks of soldiers, who sign the declaration of faith and practice known as "A Soldier's Covenant," the Salvation Army has taken the controversial step of offering signing bonuses to adherents.
Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani was quick to praise the Salvation Army surge.
"When I was mayor of New York," said Mr. Giuliani, "we used a similar approach to drive homeless people and other criminals off street corners. As the only candidate with the hands-on experience necessary to combat poverty, I am uniquely qualified to help the Salvation Army reach its goals."
Barack Obama, looking to put some ideological distance between himself and Democratic frontrunner, Hillary Clinton, said, "There isn't a dime's worth of difference between Mayor Giuliani's hawkish approach and Senator Clinton's.
"I favor a more unifying policy that embraces the technology of the future not the failed policies of the past to raise money."
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