Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Dear Mr. President,

Dear Mr. President Obama,

Talking to my friends now and no one is flaunting their money; on the contrary - everyone is wryly ticking off lists of things they no longer do or own. It's suddenly chic to be poor. One woman said she was afraid to look at her investment portfolio - she's already lost a third of what she had in it. "A hundred thousand dollars, down the drain," she sighed.
Since I have exactly 700 euros in my bank account, and zip-zero in savings, and none in any kind of investment, I found it hard to sympathize. I mean, I felt sorry for her, sure, because she's a friend and her pain is real. But for me to really empathize, I think I'd have to had lost something too, and the only thing I've lost is my faith in capatalism.
A lot of my US pals are happy about you, Mr. President - and the richest ones are heading towards Switzerland to tuck their money in Swiss banks and out of your tax reach. That pisses me off. On one hand, I like these people - again, they're real friends. On the other hand, how on earth is any economy going to get back on its feet if it's leaking out the open doors and windows of high finance?

Mr. President, may I lay out my restructuring plan?

Step one: bring home the troops - and send them to Switzerland. We've honed our mountain attacks on Pakistan and Afghanistan, so we should be able to rout a few well-fed bankers. That money should be taxed at a fair rate. Most of those people are driving on roads paid for by taxes, using bridges built by taxes, and getting treatment in hospitals paid by taxes - maybe they should hold up their end of the deal?

Step two : point your missles at the off shore tax havens. An exonomist has said that the money stored away in those places would be enough to shore up the economy for years to come. Since most of that money comes from shady deals anyhow, you shouldn't feel any qualms about taking it all and spending it on a new deal to fix up America's wretched highways, trains, dams, and school system.

Step three : Do away with any kind of bonus and level the playing feild by capping saleries for everyone, including movie stars and sportsmen. Then raise minimum wage so that a person can have an honest job and still pay for rent and food. Now, wouldn't that be loverly?

Follow these three easy steps, and you'll have the economy back on its feet in no time.
Sincerely yours,


Charles Gramlich said...

although I don't have much money in the back either, I did have a fair nest egg in my retirement that just got blasted. Sigh. Guess I'll be working another few extra years.

John Nez said...

Great ideas! It is hard to fathom why the 'american dream' has tipped so far off balance.

I'm hoping this whole financial mess will be like the recent gas price bubble... which has now returned to reality after a tripling in price. It just shows how flexible economic reality seems to be...

Hayes R said...

Thought you would be interested in a new SCI-FI short story writing contest. Winner receives $250 and a free copy of the anthology put together with other entries from the contest.
Winners are decided by visitor voting on the PublishYourself.com web site.

Wynn Bexton said...

Well, I'm poor now and I was poor then and I expect I'll be poor tomorrow. But I like your plan. Fortunately I have no retirement savings to lose. On the other hand, I seem to be offered more teaching jobs these days than before. So isn't that nice to know that we 'poor' writers seem to be the ones who are not suffering as much as those 'rich' investors?