A trip down the conspiracy theory rabbit-hole -- if that even is a rabbit, and not a groundhog in a costume -- had Stephen Colbert convinced on Monday that the threat of a federal ammunition buyout was real. And it wasn't stopping there.
"If Obama can't take our guns, he'll make sure you can't put anything in them," he said, echoing a claim by radio host Rush Limbaugh. "After that, he's gonna come after Rush by buying up all the hookers and canned frosting."
In fact, an anxious Colbert explained, the buyout had already begun.
"Out of fear of government hoarding, ammo sales have skyrocketed, making it harder to find ammo," he said. "Which can only mean that the government is hoarding it, which means we have to buy more ammo before the government gets it all because none left because we got it. Oh my God, it's too late!"
Declaring that "the feds" already have Americans outgunned, a distraught Colbert pulled out a pistol and aimed at his temple, yelling, "They're not gonna take me alive!" before pulling the trigger ... and hearing a click.
"Shit, I'm out of ammo" he said. "I'm still alive and rich and I'm happy. You win this round, Obama. If that is you."
Colbert said he was twigged to (debunked) reports that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) bought more than 1.6 billion rounds of ammunition after attending the National Rifle Association's (NRA) annual convention in Houston, Texas -- not to be confused, he said, with the daily NRA gathering that is Houston, Texas.
"1.6 billion rounds," he exclaimed after playing clips of Fox News reports on the controversy. "What are they trying to do, filming a Quentin Tarantino movie?"
After making its way through online forums and conservative radio circles, Colbert explained, the DHS buyout theory reached "the furthest fringes" of our society in Congress, after Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) -- if that really is Inhofe, and not a groundhog in a costume -- who introduced a bill on April 26 that would ban federal agencies from exceeding its average ammunition stockpiles during George W. Bush's administration.
But Colbert found himself agreeing with the theory that President Barack Obama wasn't after people's guns -- he was after their bullets, in order to keep Americans in line in case, as radio host Mark Lewin put it, "the civil society collapses."
"Yes. There's no other explanation," a glassy-eyed Colbert told his audience. "I mean, the government is buying up ammo. So that following the economic collapse, they can outgun the American people. And they need it. 'Cause right now all they've got are tanks, airplanes, helicopters, Predator drones, nuclear missiles and laser cannons. But, if I get my hands on a box of shotgun shells, it is go time, Uncle Fatty."
Watch Colbert's descent into ammo paranoia, aired Monday on Comedy Central, below.