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Laid out end to end, the premise of this post would barely reach semi-amusing


 

As fascinating as it is to read about Barack Obama’s proposed budget, and his attempts to arrest the financial and economic crisis gripping his nation and his presidency, I’m a little disappointed that Republicans are so far letting us down in one fundamental way: telling us how far the budget’s $1.75-trillion deficit would extend if it were laid out, stacked or otherwise measured in dollar bills.

Translating large numbers into semi-comic images is a staple of political dissent, in that it achieves the twin goals of a) attracting the attention of innumerate journalists, and b) clearly conveying to your constituents that you think they’re bone stupid.

Obama’s stimulus plan met with an abundance of creativity on this front, with the $787-billion price tag being described as:

  • stacked one on top of the other, a pile of dollar bills 44,000 miles high.
  • laid end to end, a line of dollar bills stretching from the Earth to the sun.
  • wrapped side-by-side, a row of dollar bills that would encircle the Earth nearly 39 times.

(Coincidentally, these examples will actually be enacted as part of Obama’s effort to create jobs.)

Perhaps the Republicans have temporarily run dry of ideas for how to talk down to people. (Hey, it happens to the best of them. For a terrifying three-hour period in 2005, Stephen Harper completely forgot how to not have charisma.) In the meantime, let’s help them out:

If put into dollar bills…

… and stretched out end to end, the $1.75-trillion deficit would be able to circumnavigate Jessica Simpson three times.

… and piled on one top of the other, the $1.75-trillion deficit would totally blow that Vegreville Easter Egg out of the water, man.

… and placed into a blender, the $1.75-trillion deficit would make 280,000 delicious cash smoothies.

… and formed into origami birds, the $1.75-trillion deficit would stalk, attack and ultimately peck to death Tippi Hedren.

… and then changed for quarters, the $1.75-trillion deficit would make America jingle as it walked.

… and stacked in a huge pile that is then dropped on Joe Biden, the $1.75-trillion deficit would make Barack Obama very happy.


 
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Laid out end to end, the premise of this post would barely reach semi-amusing

  1. “… and piled on one top of the other, the $1.75-trillion deficit would totally blow that Vegreville Easter Egg out of the water, man.”

    No it wouldn’t! This is what western alienation is about, right here!

    • But it would get you an awful lotta new eggs. That’s what stimulus spending is about right there! :)

  2. …if every patriotic U.S.millionaire donated under 5% of their wealth to their government, there would be no deficit.

    • They’ve already done that (cabinet nominees excluded), and yet there’s still a deficit!

    • They should borrow all the money from China,and renege. What they gonna do, start a war?

      • possibly

  3. …and piled on one end of a see-saw, the $1.75-trillion deficit would weigh just enough to lift Rush Limbaugh off the ground.

    • …and if ground into a fine powder, he could snort it in less than a week….

  4. … and placed into a blender, the $1.75-trillion deficit would make 280,000 delicious cash smoothies.

    Didn’t I see that on an episode of Family Guy?

    The problem with large sums is that people are rarely provided with anything to compare them with. It behooves the average person to be aware of a country’s GDP, government budget and the deficit/surplus. Whether it’s in millions, billions, trillions, quadrillions, it doesn’t really matter.

    Journalists should also report large figures in nice round numbers and not worry that some pocket-protector-wearing know-it-all is going to point out that the figures aren’t exactly accurate.

    • But Ti-Guy, Kevin (above) cleared things up for me at least.

  5. “Perhaps the Republicans have temporarily run dry of ideas for how to talk down to people.”

    When Party ‘A’ fails, they are booted out of office and Party ‘B’ gets to hold the Megaphone of Lies. Then Party ‘A’ has to spend a few years sputtering and fuming until they can regain power. That is what you mistake for “running out of ideas”. Both parties have only one idea.

    And speaking of which, I wonder if you can answer me this.

    Which political party reacted to the severe downturn of the 1930s with the following policies – expanded credit, started huge public infrastructure programs, protected domestic industry from foreign competition, bullied private companies into behaving in the way the government expected, expanded the military, enforced capital controls, funded family planning programs, legislated against tobacco, implemented national health care and unemployment insurance, expanded and tightened public education standards, and ran huge deficits.

    Progressive eh? You must be thinking, what a far-sighted and enlightened leader they must have had. This is the democratic socialist’s dream party.

    And when the policies didn’t work, and caused far more problems than before, they started seizing the financial assets and businesses of the people they blamed for the failures and then started invading neighboring countries in a desperate attempt to secure the resources and food that they were no longer able to buy thanks to their devalued paper currency and the trade barriers which had been erected against them.

  6. C’mon Obama you can do better than that! Real estate got us into this mess, it should get us out. How bout a yard sale America? Put…say Hawaii up for auction. Do i hear any offers? How bout Vagraville…oops! There goes AB!

    • Vegreville…sorry AB.

      • For a minute I thought Feschuk referred to Viagraville with the BIG EGG, now that would sell to a high bidder.

  7. Is it just me getting tired of the Jessica Simpson jokes?

    C’mon, Scott, try a bit harder… I’m sure you could come up with something funnier and less hurtful to young women. I know we don’t make up the majority of your readership, but we’d appreciate the effort all the same.

    • Meg

      It is either Simpson or Palin jokes. Scott’s shtick is to make fun of women who don’t measure up to his lofty standards.

      • Palin or Simpson does not or should not measure up to anybody’s standards, lofty or otherwise.

  8. Scott, I don’t understand how one man can be so funny. If I was gay, I would probably go for you.

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