PARIS – In a surprise press conference this morning, International Astronomical Union President Norio Kaifu announced that, unless funding goals were met within the next 24 hours, the body would move to revoke the planetary status of Neptune.
“It is simply too bad that the scientific community has been so uncooperative in our funding efforts thus far.” Dr. Kaifu announced to crowds of worried reporters, “And if this unfortunate trend continues, our consensus of world astronomers might just decide that the best and most scientific definition of planethood is ‘massive enough to clear its orbit of debris, and not fucking Neptune’.”
“And that would be such a shame, now, wouldn’t it?” he continued, smiling menacingly.
The definition of a planet has been a source of scientific controversy since a 2006 IAU ruling ‘demoted’ Pluto to the status of dwarf planet. It is as of yet unclear as to whether Neptune’s new status, if the demands are not met, will be ‘giant dwarf planet’, ‘dwarf giant planet’, or simply ‘a middle finger to astronomy fans everywhere’.
Dr. Kaifu concluded his speech by adding that the funding should be entirely in untraceable bonds and would go towards projects that were definitely not getting a Voyager II-shaped ice bar for the annual IAU karaoke and cocktail party. “Or else,” Kaifu continued with a knowing wink, “You may again be forced to consider the fact that what you learned in elementary school is fallible and uncertain in this strange and arbitrary universe.”
At press time, the International Paleontological Association promised that if it reached its $5 million funding goal, it would make brontosaurus a dinosaur again.