Digital Casserole

WHAT I BELIEVE: I believe in the power of a single idea. A single good idea, anyway. Frankly, there’s just not a lot of power in a single bad idea, like scheduling “Bat Day” when the Red Sox play at Yankee Stadium. I believe in long, slow downloads that last 3 days. I believe in the designated driver, the fungo bat, and keeping words like gazebo and zamboni around just because they’re fun to say. I believe in naps but not Napster.(more..)

Location: Strongsville, OH, United States

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

What's Next?? Nickels for Pickles??

With the government's recently completed Cash For Clunkers program safely in the rear-view mirror, the time is ripe for unveiling the NEXT interventionist idea for the reallocation of capital in this country. Like that childhood allowance from your father, America is now conditioned to expect - every few weeks - another feebly disguised handout from our increasingly paternalistic government, unveiled and trumpeted amid fanfare suitable for the next media darling.

Using a well-worn recipe as tired as it is predictable, the conjunction “For” is sandwiched between two nouns (linked by some cryptic form of rhyme or alliteration) promising the exchange of money from one party to another, and which (so far) has followed a linear, alphabetical pattern. After starting with their questionable Assistance For Assets and Bailouts For Banks programs, the government has begun scrolling through the rest of the alphabet – and the economy – with customized programs for people of every color and creed, every region and religion. Rather than endure the withering water-torture of these programs leaking out every few weeks, I’ve decided - as a service to the voting public – to preempt the entire system, do an “end run” if you will, and provide a sneak peak at the puns and programs awaiting you over the next 24 months.

While you’ve most likely read about the $300 million set-aside by the Obama Administration to fund Rebates For Refrigerators, and the launch of the new Toys ‘R Us Cash For Cribs program, I predict you’ll be hearing a lot more about Earmarks For Energy early this fall, along with new “shovel-ready” programs including Riches For Ditches and Savings For Pavings. In addition, the powerful farmers union (EIEIO) has successfully lobbied for several constituent bailouts including Checks For Chicks, Dollars For Collards, Salary For Celery, Nickels For Pickles, Coins For Loins, Money For Honey, and the ever-popular Cashola For Granola. Clothiers have also united and will soon launch their Payment For Raiment exchange while encouraging people to recycle their old dungarees with their ill-faded Green For Jeans program.

The Quarters For Mortars plan was so successful in Iraq that the government is planning on launching it here, and the Stocks For Clocks and Moolah For Fuel-ah, while not the best grammatically, will prove far superior to the confusing Dough For Ho debacle set to play out for Santa’s this Christmas. Dividends For Citizens has already shown a lot of interest, as has Oil For Soil, and finally it appears that Congress is nearing an agreement on their new Wealth For Health exchange program.

So there you have it. Two years of rhymes and rationing, pork and policy, all in one excruciating essay. I apologize if it felt like yanking off a Band-Aid – fast and painful – but at least it’s over, and you won’t be snow-blindsided this winter when these political programs hit the professional pundit podiums.

In closing, while the primary cause of our current economic downturn was the introduction of the government’s wildly unsuccessful Houses For Louses program, I am pleased that the individuals responsible have at least given us Food For Thought in return. I can only hope that our politicians will never become so desperate that they would be willing to trade Toys For Tots. Whoops!

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