A top political scientist’s claims that he witnessed several varieties of US presidents previously thought extinct roaming free on a pacific island, have been dismissed by the media as the wild ramblings of a demented madman. However, Professor Christopher Turnpike, who was found washed up on a Costa Rican beach last month, is steadfastly sticking to his story. “God damn it! I saw them with my own eyes – a lumbering Lyndon B Johnson crashing through the trees and a whole family of Abe Lincolns, their stovepipes so tall they could reach the highest branches,” gibbers the formerly highly respected Yale academic, who claims that the island was host to a secret project to recreate America’s greatest leaders through cloning. “I even saw a young Woodrow Wilson locked in mortal combat with a fully mature Warren Harding over the issue of US isolationism! It was terrible to behold; in an ironic inversion of historical fact, the youth and vigour of the Wilson won out, with internationalism triumphing as the old Harding was dismembered and devoured!” According to Turnpike, he and two other top social scientists – Harvard historian Dr John Nettlebed and Chicago University economist Emma Medlar – suffered a terrifying ordeal when they were chased halfway across the island by a rogue Richard Nixon. “It broke loose from its enclosure – a detailed replica of the Oval Office – when the island suffered a massive power loss! I told them it was a mistake to buy their electricity from California,” claims Turnpike. “One minute he was saying ‘There’ll be no whitewash in the White House’ and raising his arms to give that trademark double vee gesture, the next he was crashing through the electric fence, bringing those deadly clawed hands down on us!”

The trio of social scientists had been secretly flown to a clandestine research establishment on the island in order to evaluate the accuracy of the recreated presidents. “We were given no idea what we were going there for – we’d been led to believe that we would be attending some kind of secret quasi-governmental conference, with all expenses paid, obviously,” he explains. “Imagine our astonishment when, as we were being driven from the airstrip to the main research facility, a herd of gigantic Calvin Coolidges broke cover and ran across the road ahead of us, chanting ‘no right to strike against the public safety’ in unison! It was a truly magnificent sight!” The clones had apparently been created with genetic material taken secretly from the tombs of the dead presidents, although in most cases the genetic code was so badly deteriorated that the gaps had to be plugged using genes from other animals. “The Lincoln clones, for instance, incorporated giraffe genes – hence their extremely long necks and habit of stripping the leaves from tall trees. Judging by his long floppy ears, I’d say that Nixon was part beagle,” says Turnpike. “The embryos were injected into ostrich eggs to develop – we actually witnessed a brood of Thomas Jeffersons being hatched! The scientists ensured that the first thing they saw was a photo of Janet Jackson baring her breast, so as to instil the historically correct instincts into them!”

Despite initially being overawed by the scientific recreation of the past presidents, the social scientists quickly suspected that all was not as it seemed. “I should have realised that something was seriously amiss and asked to leave immediately when it was revealed over dinner that the entire island was actually owned by the Haliburton corporation and that our genial host was to be none other than Vice President Dick Cheney,” rues Turnpike. “He claimed that the preservation of America’s political heritage is one of his key duties as VP. Naturally, the best way to carry this duty out was to harness the financial might of Haliburton and create an historic theme park populated by living recreations of our greatest presidents! Of course, he assured us that only dead presidents would feature, as he considered the cloning of living presidents unethical.”

Anomalies began to emerge as the academics took the park’s tour and viewed the various presidents in their enclosures – economist Medlar, for instance, quickly picked up on the fact that Franklin D Roosevelt seemed to be advocating the collectivisation of farms and industry and the abolition of private property in his fireside chats to the nation. “Whilst the recreations seemed to be highly accurate – so long as you could ignore the animal characteristics – it quickly became clear that all the Democrats had been cast as proto-communists and degenerates! Lyndon B Johnson was proposing that homosexuality be made mandatory, for God’s sake,” explains Turnpike. “Not only that, but all the Democrats had been crossed with evil predatory animals like wolves, hyenas and bears, whilst the Republicans were all somehow more noble, or loveable creatures like lions, horses and dogs! Consequently, even the dullest came over as more entertaining than any Democrat – who could resist Herbert Hoover swinging, monkey-like, from the chandeliers and urinating on observers, for example?”

The social scientists’ investigations were abruptly halted by the power failure, which brought chaos to the island. “All of the presidents were loose – we only escaped Nixon when a Johnson turned up, grabbed him by the ears and swung him around his head before flinging him into the jungle,” explains Turnpike. “Of course, at the first sign of trouble, Cheney and his cronies took the only plane out of there, we were forced to trek across the island to the dock, in the hope of finding a boat to escape in.” In the course of this journey they found themselves threatened by a bear-like FDR. “Thank God they hadn’t given him a wheelchair, only walking sticks, or he would have caught us. Luckily a passing Teddy Roosevelt blew him away with both barrels,” the Professor recalls. “But before we could reach the safety of the dock, we were stampeded by a herd of reptilian Jack Kennedys – that was the last time I saw Emma Medlar, as she was overrun, screaming, by that pack of fork-tongued sexual predators!”

However, just as Turnpike and Nettlebed thought themselves safe, sailing away from the island in a small boat they had found, they came under attack from an unexpected quarter. “A huge shadow passed over the boat, I looked up to see a gigantic eagle-thing flying over us – I swear it had the face of Ronald Reagan! It grinned, mouthed ‘Here’s one from the Gipper’, and crapped all over us, capsizing the boat,” says a still shocked Turnpike. “That bastard Cheney had lied to us – he had cloned a then living president!” Apparently the only survivor, Turnpike drifted for three days before being washed up in Costa Rica. Not surprisingly, both Vice President Cheney and Haliburton have denied Turnpike’s claims, branding him a lunatic and a liar. All attempts to locate the island have failed. Naturally, Turnpike alleges a massive cover-up. “The only good thing is that they can’t pose a long-term threat to mankind,” he says. “The lack of females means that they can’t breed, they’ll slowly die out – thank God the US has always had the good sense to avoid electing a woman president!”