Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Joe the Plumber

The more astute observers saw it coming. First it was the clogged toilet of the international space station and then the defective plumbing in the offices of Lehman Brothers forcing them to spend precious time to walk to the public toilet. Insiders say that the financial engineers at the legendary investment bank couldn’t handle being torn between the fear of an opportunity loss of millions of dollars by their temporary absence from their desks and the urgency of relieving themselves. Plumbers sabotaged further by connecting the plumbing pipeline with the financial pipeline and substituting debt paper with toilet paper.

For John McCain and Barack Obama It was the fear of being forced by unusable toilets in the White House and the prospect of walking up to the public WC at the Capitol in the middle of a discussion on the Iraq war, that prompted them to reach out to the plumber lobby with unprecedented concessions and incentives.

Needless to say that members of other professions are not amused at this blatant discrimination. A representative of the baking industry issued a statement, “Our products are the reason why plumbing is so important”. Jack the baker remarked that, “the inspiration of the financial experts to make the stock market rise to such frothy heights came from our success in use of self-rising flour. It is unfair that the plumbing industry is singled out for tax breaks”.

Bill the butcher is also peeved and contemplating his next move. His industry’s effortless shift from prime-cuts to poor quality sub-prime cuts provided the relevant theoretical foundation and the terminology for sub-prime mortgages. The industry has been facing significant hardship as misplaced health concerns drive more and more consumers from steaks to grilled fish and sausages to cucumbers. If special incentives are not provided to stimulate consumption of meat and butchers’ cleaver not supplied at a subsidized rate, there will be more financial havoc for all and more will be sent to the slaughterhouse. “Don’t kid with us – the steaks are high,” Bill the butcher warned.

However, the most telling response came from Sally the stripper, who has been unsuccessfully lobbying for several years for exemption of entertainment tax on strip dancing by demanding it to be declared it an art form. “We are the only ones with untainted assets now,” she proclaimed. “And they are available for inspection to anyone for a small fee. If only there was as much transparency in investment banking as in our profession, we wouldn’t have been in this mess!”

Written by Ashok Sethi

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