I was recently astounded to read that the USA has more prisoners per capita than any other country in the world, easily surpassing #2 Russia. Did you know that the USA makes up just 5% of the world’s population but 25% of its prisoners? All I can say is WAY TO GO, AMERICA!
We now have over 2 million Americans living in prison (several million more if you include New Jersey). The cause of the explosion in our inmate population over the past thirty years is primarily thanks to the incredible success of our War on Drugs, and only secondarily because of the many cast members of Jersey Shore who have served time.
A thoughtful examination of America’s War on Drugs leads to only one obvious conclusion: By any standard (other than reducing the level of our nation’s rampant drug abuse problem), this war has been an overwhelming success. The only thing left to do is hang a Mission Accomplished banner atop the fence along the U.S. – Mexican border.
Thanks to our impressive victory in the war on drugs, we have corralled thousands of our nation’s most dangerous habitually stoned South Park viewers and thrown them into the Graybar Hotel. Law-abiding Americans can now sleep safely, knowing they no longer have to fear that a deranged pothead might break into their home during a late night Harold and Kumar movie marathon in search of Doritos or other snack foods with dangerously unhealthy levels of high-fructose corn syrup.
Hey there, America! Does the depressed economy have you feeling DOWN!!!!??? Are you concerned because our government can’t seem to solve our spiraling debt crisis? Confused about how to end the stalemate between Republicans and Democrats over how to restore America’s former greatness and still balance the budget?
Well, worry no more. At View from the Bleachers, our dedicated staff of economic analysts and female impersonators has come up with a brilliant solution to our nation’s economic and political problems.
Now, you can finally break the governmental gridlock that is ruining our country and TAKE BACK OUR GOVERNMENT – literally, with our new Take Back America, Do-It-Yourself Self-Government Tool Kit.
When George Washington delivered the Gettysburg Address on the deck of the Mayflower, he spoke of a government “of the people and by the people.” Finally, thanks to our Take Back America, Do-It-Yourself Self-Government (TBADIYSG) Tool Kit, government will finally be by the people once and for all – people like YOU!
Last week I shared with you some bold new initiatives planned by America’s leading Tea Party politicians to wipe out the entire US Debt before the end of the year. Think of it as a gigantic Christmas present to America from the Tea Party (so long as you’re not elderly, disabled, poor, a member of a labor union, Muslim or, worse yet, gay).
You can read last week’s post here, where you will learn about brilliant ideas put forth by some of the brightest stars in the Tea Party caucus of Congress to save trillions in wasteful spending in the areas of healthcare, education, and financial regulatory reform.
As brilliant as those thoughtful plans are, I’ve saved the best of the best for this week’s conclusion. So let’s get started, shall we? Here are some even more brilliant debt-reduction schemes waiting to be implemented by the Tea Party-controlled Congress* (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Koch Brothers Industries*).
Earlier this month, after a long and contentious fight between Democrats and Tea Party Republicans, our federal government narrowly avoided its first-ever credit default. People all over the world waited anxiously to find out whether our elected officials were going to voluntarily inflict economic suicide on the nation. In the final nail-biting hours, they reached a compromise to avert disaster – much to the bitter disappointment of every Tea Party member in America.
As a result of the gridlocked debate, at least one major credit agency has already downgraded the USA’s credit rating. At our current rate of spending, our $14.5 trillion debt will explode to over $29 trillion in ten years unless we do something to stop this runaway train. Thankfully, the freedom-loving Tea Party members of Congress have come up with several innovative solutions which – when approved by the Tea Party-controlled Congress – will help us pay off our nation’s debt completely – by December 17th – just in time for Christmas.
I have previously discussed my own bold solutions to our nation’s debt crisis. But my debt reduction schemes pale next to the brilliance of these new Tea Party solutions. These unprecedented initiatives give me hope that America may once again become a great nation of predominantly white, 6th grade-educated, patriotic, flag-waving, NRA-supporting NASCAR fans who occasionally like to dress up in wacky Colonial attire and carry misspelled signs with phrases like “Repsect Are Country – No More Alliens.” Take a look at some of these clear-headed proposals initiated by our most capable Tea Party leaders.
Here’s a number that might scare you: $14,132,959,955,340. That’s 14 trillion dollars, give or take a few hundred billion. That’s the current estimate of our national debt according to the OMB (Office of Management and Budget). Here’s a slightly smaller but equally frightening number: $1 million. That’s the amount our nation’s debt is expanding – per minute. The clock is ticking. Depressed? Don’t be. Because I have a brilliant solution to the nation’s debt crisis. And it doesn’t involve painful tax hikes, closing down your favorite park or eliminating daily delivery of your mail.
As many of you know, I (often imagine that I) am a highly sought-after, award-winning, Harvard-educated economist. I won’t drone on about my many notable achievements in the fields of econometrics or applied macro-economic asset price modeling theory (because there aren’t any). Suffice to say, I took both Econ-201 and Econ-202 in my second year of college. I have successfully balanced my family’s checkbook 9 of the past 12 months. And I have completely paid off our family’s credit card debt on all but 5 of our 17 credit cards. I saved $4,000 by the time I was 18 years old by doing summer jobs, and I didn’t blow it all until late spring of my freshman year of college (hey, I needed a new stereo system). So when I say I have a solution for the nation’s debt crisis, I think my credentials speak for themselves.
[To view Part I of the Year in Review – January – June, click here.]
Welcome back. What took you so long? We continue now with Part II of The Year in Review for 2010 (July – December), as seen from the Bleachers. Now where were we? Oh yes……
July: The world (and by “world” I mean every single country on the planet besides the USA) is riveted to the exciting FIFA World Cup of Soccer in South Africa. A new craze is born as people from Tokyo to Paris to Sydney are getting hooked on the endearing monotone droning sound of the buzzing vuvuzela horn (as first reported here in VFTB).
Soon these colorful one-note plastic horns are popping up everywhere – at baseball games, political rallies, shareholders’ meetings, birthday parties, weddings, and, most recently, at my friends’ Bernie and Gwen Weinberger’s baby boy’s circumcision ceremony. Perhaps I should have asked permission first. My bad.
Also in the news, American television raises the bar for highbrow entertainment even higher with the explosive popularity of the hip reality series Jersey Shore. Colorful characters like Snooki and “The Situation” become well-tanned, breast-implanted role models for our kids. Every week is a new life lesson, like this one from episode 17, when cast member Snooki reminds us: “I’m not trashy. Unless I drink too much” or when Pauley cautions impressionable young viewers: “One minute you got three girls in the Jacuzzi, the next minute somebody’s in jail.” Sure beats the pointless tripe they try to fob off on us from the BBC or the National Geographic Channel, if you ask this reporter.
Thank goodness that annoying “Recession” is behind us. I can hardly even see it in my sideview mirror. It’s been a little over a year since the floor dropped out of the economy. and institutions once considered too big to fail, like Lehman Brothers, did just that.
In the midst of the near collapse of our financial system, there was a lot of finger pointing. Politicians and Economists argued lax oversight and inadequate regulations of many financial instruments (like sub-prime mortgages and Credit Default Swaps) were to blame. Read More…