Wednesday, October 02, 2013

government shutdown memes / shmoopie analogy

As we enter the second day of the government shutdown, the imbecilic facebook memes are gaining ground.  There seems to be this collective outcry.  And it doesn't matter if you're rich, poor or part of the rapidly dissipating middle class.  Everyone despises Congress. 

We gotta do something!  I can't take it anymore! 

Wait a minute!  I've got the answer.  We need to hit 'em where it hurts.  That's right!  Straight in the pocketbook!  Those worthless bums.

Here's the plan.  We'll dock their paychecks!  Those bastards!

First off, I think the tri-hearted extravaganza closer pretty much sums it up.  If you ever want to delegitimize your cause, just add a bunch of heart symbols or over-utilized "shmoopie" Seinfeld references.  Works wonders.

(Hey, is it me or does Jerry's girlfriend have the identical face of Timmi Calissie?)

Second off, I'm hardly a constitutional law professor, but there's an explicit statement somewhere in the 27th Amendment that makes it illegal to suspend the salaries of members of Congress.  These politicians are gonna git paid no matter what happens.  Of course, such information doesn't make for good a facebook meme or propaganda blip.  I know... I know... but it's a tea-party tantrum!

Third off, the amount of personal fortune most politicians devote to obtaining their respective office easily dwarfs their annual salary.

Fourth off, is the obvious request to "repost anything."  If you love wing dings and aren't afraid to submerge them in a gallon of ranch dressing... then please REPOST and spread the word.  Together, we'll change the world!  One artery at a time, sweet Jesus.

Alright, now I'm sorry to rain on your parade (in this case, it's the annual Dimmeydale 4th of July parade), but let's throw out a couple of inconvenient truths.

The annual U.S. House of Representative salary is $174,000
The annual U.S. Senator salary is $174,000

Here's some other facts that should be painfully obvious.

The average net worth of a member of the the House is approx. 7 million.
The average net worth of the U.S. Senator is around 11.5 million.

Granted, these stats are a little skewed by the likes of Darrel Issa (R-CA) and John Kerry (D-MA), but I think it's safe to say that very few in Congress would experience REAL financial pain if they lost a month's pay.

(Saf, you're such an asshole.  Mitt was a GOVERNOR.  Yeah.. I know.  I get it).

Regardless, these guys and gals don't live paycheck to paycheck.  Maybe 2-3 (out of 535) would have to do some belt-tightening if they lost a year's pay.

Now call me a cynic, but even if you took away a House member's pay for an entire year, that translates into a 2.4% drop in one's total net worth.  Some people experience that same net worth drop during a bad week on Wall Street.

Now for the average U.S. Senator, it translates to 1.5%.  And like I said, that's for an entire year. 

So let's say, we somehow suspend their pay for an entire month.  This seems like a more realistic time frame.  Guess what?  Now you're entering into the realm of fractions of 1%. 

The point to all this - Stop whining about outrageous congressional salaries.  The worst is when people bitch about how much President Obama makes - 400K per year???  Considering the job description, that's peanuts.  There are plenty of hedge fund managers and day traders that would view $400,000 for a DAY'S work as chump change.

How about some other professions?

My least favorite faith healer (Benny Hinn) is worth about a billion.  His job description - Scam his followers.  Sounds a lot like Congress.  Someone really needs to tar and feather that douchebag.

The average salary of a decent NFL nose tackle is around 4 mil.  You know what their job description is?  I can sum it up in 3 words. Clog the line.  Sounds a lot like the tea party faction of the Republican party.

Even though he shirks his moral responsibility to warn the unknowing occupants of PNC Park about the potential for an artificially generated stampede, my favorite newspaper magnate (Bob Nutting) is worth about a billion.  His job description - Maintain the status quo (with regard to outdated stadium emergency evacuation protocol and to a greater extent, economic class disparity).  Still, you gotta love him.  Go Bucs.

So Saf, what do you hope to achieve by writing this particular blog?  What's your goal?  What on earth are you hoping to accomplish?

Well... here's the end game.  For just ONE day per year, wouldn't it be great if everyone had to post something with ORIGINAL content on facebook?  That's right.  I'm gonna make a proposal.  Instead of using the words and pictures of George Takei or some clever kid at MIT, out of the entire year, let's have just ONE day exclusively dedicated to intellectual originality.  We could call it "Facebook Freshness Day" or "Take A PERSONAL Day" or anything else that makes me cringe.  And hey, no posts about the tv show you just watched, the food you just ate, the event you just attended or my all-time favorite --- the weather!  Then, and only then, will you get a true glimpse into the "hearts and minds" of your "facebook friends." 

The funny part - anyone who reads this will automatically think I'm ripping on them personally.  I'm not.  I've already assessed and defined all of you social media whores as collectively guilty.  For it is I, Sonofsaf, who will ultimately be condemned for the sins of Facebook.  And this is a noble cause I'd be willing to die for - just make sure to strap me to the remains of my neighbor's pole and sacrifice me accordingly.

Incidentally, I'm going to alter that pole into a modern version of an atheist-Jewish totem pole.  I just recently viewed an excellent display on Native American Indians in Washington state (Maryhill Museum of Art).  If you find yourself in the absolute middle of nowhere, make sure to check it out.

Anyhoo... I'm calling it the "dominipole."  Picture forthcoming.  If you have some old dominoes lying around, gimme a ring.  This concept is a work in progress.

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