Another Modest Proposal
Forget Detroit. It's long past time we restructured America.


Now that MSNBC’s fondest wish has come true, and the U.S. economy really is collapsing thanks to *&%#BUSH#!@%, all this talk about restructuring, and lean and mean, and less is more, etc., has got me to thinking . . .

I mean, out here in Hollywoodland, people are actually getting canned. Not just the studio suits who, like their counterparts in Major League Baseball, are hired to be fired and then spin through the revolving door and land elsewhere. I’m talking about big-name producers like Scott Aversano and Kathleen Kennedy being let go from their housekeeping deals at Paramount and Universal, along with the Industry grunts like junior execs, baby agents, and the development execs at hapless independent production companies that haven’t actually made a movie in years. Things could even get so bad that we’d have to stop spending $230 million on a movie that consists entirely of chase scenes, like Quantum of Solace. As Mrs. Lovett sings to Sweeney Todd: Times is hard.

Not, however, for our political class. My guy, Barry Hussein Junior II, managed to scarf up nearly a billion dollars in order to run against Grandpa Munster for an election that was, in retrospect, never really in doubt, and is getting ready to party hearty in Washington on January 20. And then there was the one-third of the Senate who had to fundraise, not to mention every single freakin’ one of the honorable Representatives who — for some obscure reason hidden in the penumbras of the Constitution — now spend their entire two-year stints in Washington running for re-election. There’s gotta be a better way.

And there is: Downsize America!

Let’s start with this foolish election business: thanks to gerrymandering, House districts are almost all “safe” for whichever gangster organization — I mean, “political party,” to use the Chicago term — controls them, so why bother with campaigns? Just have a lottery every two years in which a random 5 percent or so of the incumbents arbitrarily lose their seats and are replaced by the other guy. Who would be able to tell the difference? Campaign cost: $0.00.

As far as the Senate is concerned, the solution is even more elegant: repeal the 17th Amendment and have the Senators appointed by the state legislatures, the way the Founding Fathers envisioned until some crackpot “progressives” came along and gave us the Four Worst Amendments of All Time, and right in a row, too: 16 (the income tax), 17 (elected senators), 18 (prohibition) and — sorry, ladies — 19 (women’s suffrage). One of them, you’ll notice, has already been repealed, so we only have three to go! Campaign cost: $0.00.

But why stop there? Is there really any compelling reason to have 50 states? Talk about massive redundancies — governors, legislatures, hookers. . .  Let’s get rid of a few:

New England: It’s patently ridiculous to have a dipstick state like Maine, which used to be part of Massachusetts anyway. Why not reunite them, merge Rhode Island with Connecticut and combine Vermont and New Hampshire? (You know you want to.) Presto: three fewer states, governors, legislatures, bureaucracies and sets of elected officials. Since there are basically no Republicans left in New England, we could go even further and combine ‘em all.

Mid-Atlantic: Savings abound when we merge three of the worst states in the Union — New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey — into one vast, ugly, smelly, sprawling toxic-waste dump. Since none of these commonwealths provide any meaningful services other than the lifetime employment of corrupt politicians and shiftless government workers, or have any real identities beyond their foul weather and their terrible roads, no one would miss them, and the IQ-challenged residents who haven’t moved elsewhere are too dumb to notice. We also merge that ridiculous place, Delaware, with Maryland — which it’s obviously a part of, geographically. Plus New York City becomes its own city-state, like Berlin. It’s a win-win situation!! (I still haven’t figured out what to do with Long Island.)

The South: Who needs it? This redneck backwater rarely votes for us, anyway, so downsize away: Alabama, Georgia, and Mississippi — who can tell them apart? — become one, as do Virginia and West Virginia (that slavery beef is so yesterday), and Kentucky and Tennessee; besides, the reunification of your Carolinas is long overdue. We keep Louisiana and Arkansas as theme parks of fine food and hillbilly culture, respectively.