Archive for June, 2010

I say we pay legislators NOT to legislate

June 20, 2010

For years, our government has paid farmers for NOT producing crops on some or even all of their land. It’s a policy that’s logical only if you’ve spent your career in the halls of Congress.  There are hungry people in the world and we have some of the best farmland and best farmers on the planet, but we pay them not to make something the world needs.

Ironically Congress used to be a part-time job performed by (among others) farmers who reluctantly came to the swamps of DC for brief legislative sessions before returning to productive work on their farms. But over the years we’ve been paying legislators to make more and more of something that the country needs a whole lot less of — legislation.

This presents a huge opportunity for the next phase of government paying people not to work: paying legislators NOT to legislate. Along the lines of the famous saying, “That government governs best which governs least” I propose a per diem, personally payable to each Congressman or Senator, for every day Congress is not in session.

And let’s not skimp, either. Keep in mind, on a single day in 2010 Congress passed a healthcare bill which — in addition to destroying the most innovative medical system in human history — is likely to cost the country a trillion dollars (or more) before it’s done with us.  Throw in TARP and the Stimulus and lets estimate that in 150 legislative days this year Congress will pass laws that will eventually cost 4 Trillion dollars. That works out to $26.7 Billion for each legislative day, which is roughly $50,000,000 for each of the 535 members for each day they are in session.

Now, if we can keep them HOME for only $1,000,000 per member per day, as you can see we’ll be earning roughly a 50-fold return on our investment. We could cancel an entire year’s worth of legislation for the paltry sum of $80 Billion. Moreover, the massive increase in economic activity by entrepreneurs and companies no longer living in fear of the latest vilification by the President will pay us back the $80 Billion in increased tax revenues by Jan 31.

As the President is fond of saying, “the time to act is NOW”. “The Status Quo is simply unsustainable.” “We can’t afford NOT to take action”.  Please call your Congressman today and urge them to vote to “Making Our Rules Open Necessary and Sensible by Gutting Obviously Harmful Outright Manipulations of the Economy Act”, otherwise known as the M.O.R.O.N.S. G.O.  H.O.M.E. Act.  Thank you for your support.

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OCR’ing directly onto the White House website

June 19, 2010

UPDATE: Welcome PowerLine and HotAir readers. Be sure to check out today’s proposal on paying Congress to stay home — it’s the bargain of the century!  Please enjoy the site and come back often!

If you saw the WhiteHouse  “ji’Qlllework memo” this morning at PowerLine, or later at HotAir, you’ll be interested to know that they’ve finally gotten around to fixing it at the White House website.

They corrected it by posting a PDF here which makes obvious how such nonsensical text made it onto the White House’s official website.  Someone OCR’ed the PDF (Optical Character Recognition) then simply pasted that text up WITHOUT EVEN READING IT, rather than using the original text or at least proofreading the OCR. Amazing.

I just now OCR’ed the PDF in Adobe, and came up with ji’Qlllework. OCR is pretty weak to begin with, but whoever OCR’ed the letter obviously failed to even check the results. The letter is filled with italicized words, which does to OCR what talking with a mouth full of marbles would do to voice transcription.

You’d kind of think that someone would have just found out where the PDF came from and gotten the text, no?  Stay tuned for this explanation from The One, “It’s come to my attention that one of the memos we inherited from the previous administration was filled with the kinds of typographical errors that got us into this mess in the first place. We are, as usual, working to clean up the mess.”

I probably made similar mistakes at my first “real” job.  That was working at a Frozen Yogurt stand at the beach. I suppose this is what happens when you make running the country someone’s very first real job.

UPDATE 2: Link to a full-length screenshot of the original HTML version of the letter is here.  Read it and weep.