The US national debt was estimated to be $16.085 trillion as of April 2, 2013. At first glance, this looks like a lot of mullah, and the knee-jerk reaction might be to repay it. However, by applying the principles of my wife’s epiphany-worthy economic principles, I’m about to show you why we actually have another $16 trillion at our disposal.
For most couples, one person is generally assigned the role of family comptroller and is responsible for monitoring all finances. This person is known as the “Tight-Ass,” or TA. The TA’s functions include repeated uttering of the word “no,” excessive sighing, and choosing those leftovers in the back of the fridge instead of dining out because this month’s budget is shot.
The spouse of the TA is typically referred to as “Cash Clueless,” or CC. The CC leads a charmed existence, trusting entirely in their spouse to stress out about the family budget. The CC always enjoys a longer lifespan than the TA, and gets the added benefit of partying with the TA’s life insurance policy, which thanks to the TA’s TA-like tendencies, is quite hefty.
You’ve undoubtedly surmised by now that I am the family TA, while my wife flits along as CC. In all fairness, it should be noted that she worries about all non-material items, such as the children’s health, my health, the dog’s health, and probably even your health. (Even though she’s never met you, she’s still probably worrying about you.)
It may not seem possible that a CC could be the source of an epiphany that will completely transform our economic system, but that’s just what happened.
The Economics of “On Sale”
Somewhere in the world, a shrewd, extremely rich bastard is laughing at the TAs of the world. This is the jerk who developed the economic principles of “On Sale,” to which my wife and many of her fellow CCs passionately subscribe.
Here’s how the principle works: When something is on sale, you don’t save money – you gain merchandise. This dialogue between a CC and a TA illustrates the concept:
Cash-Clueless: Guess what? I got 50% off on this $100 dress!
Tight-Ass: That’s great. So you only spent $50?
Cash-Clueless: No, silly. Because the sale saved me 50%, I had another $50 to spend, so I bought another dress!
The CC logic causes much weeping, wailing, and gnashing of the TA’s teeth. Yet, somehow my wife has persevered through life following this principle. It made me think that perhaps instead of being completely clueless about cash, she actually had an answer to America’s perennial fiscal shortcomings.
As is the case with most marriages, money is usually the root cause of conflict. Case in point: Washington, D.C., where our two political parties blather about ideology, but the true fight is over control of the sheckles.
CCs, on the other hand, don’t argue about money. My wife is always smiling, always happy, and a friend to all. Everyone loves her, and she loves everyone. And for some reason, the CCs always win out over the TAs. Perhaps it’s because fun and frolic trumps eating that crap at the back of the refrigerator.
Because this nation has grown tired of eating leftovers, I decided to apply CC economics to our fiscal policy. My wife and I flew to DC, set up headquarters in a hotel room, and after unpacking jammies, got to work.
Doubling-Down on the Debt
My wife’s first call was to Beijing, where she asked to speak to China’s Treasury Chief. In fluent Mandarin, she convinced him to offer the US Treasury even more cash for our debt by pitching it as “Money on Sale” – 50% off!
“Don’t worry about the price,” my wife said. “No one will compare the cost to last week’s price tag. They’ll just buy it because it’s 50% off. Be sure to tell the US it’s for ‘This Weekend Only’!”
China agreed to run the sale, and quickly printed out a mailer advertising the deal. The mailer is the equivalent to a dog whistle for the CC; no matter how diligently a TA tries to hide it, they’ll find the sales coupon enclosed.
The “Money on Sale” flyer was sent to the homes of the President and members of Congress, and my wife hit the phones once again. Through covert research, we had identified the CCs among all the elected officials and their spouses. My wife called the CCs directly, and mentioned the 50% off mailer.
The mere mention of the discount sent the CCs into a frenzy, and they browbeat their TA spouses like there was no tomorrow.
The President got hit the hardest. Our research had revealed that Michelle Obama is thoroughly CC (check out the never-ending supply of new duds), and that the quickly-greying Barack Obama is the TA that just sighs and signs the checks.
Our plan worked. Within two days, the besieged TAs presented a new piece of legislation which allowed the Federal Government to double its budget.
Tea partiers, comprised primarily of divorced TAs, cried out in unison and tried to storm Capitol Hill. The uprising was swiftly crushed. The government, its coffers now bulging, paid any available police officer, National Guardsman, Navy Seal, and Boy Scout triple-overtime to come to Washington to split the skulls of the Tea Partiers. Which they did with much gusto.
For the next twelve months, the US spent like crazy. We improved the nation’s infrastructure, beefed up our ailing schools, and took care of our sick and elderly.
We didn’t stop with social ills, either. We also doubled up crop subsidies, oil subsidies, and subsidized organizations seeking out new people to subsidize. To top it off, the defense department got enough cash to start building a Death Star, which inspired citizens all over this great nation to utter, “So cool.”
How will all this play out? Will we eventually run out of cash? Will the Chinese eventually shut down our party? No one seems to care. As long as we pay the “Minimum Monthly Charge,” all is good.
My wife was hailed as a national hero, and Congress decided to award her the Medal of Honor. A presentation ceremony was held at the Rose Garden, but only President Obama and I attended. Michelle had picked up my wife earlier, and they were headed to the mall.
Wouldn’t you know this morning there was a huge sale? 75% off! “I’ll have to skip the ceremony,” she told me moments before she jumped into Michelle’s limo. “The sale is this weekend only!”