Tuesday, February 3, 2009

An Economic Stimulus for Mexico

We keep hearing about the new Economic Stimulus Package but nobody seems to know anything about it except that it will make everybody rich by bankrupting the country. I was eager for more information so I asked a contact of mine in Washington. Like everybody in Washington, he spoke on condition of anonymity. Everybody there is anonymous. Nobody knows anyone else’s name.

He was obviously very excited about it. “It is a fabulous initiative,” he said. “This economic stimulus package will really stimulate the economy in Hyderabad.”

“Hyderabad?”

“Somebody has to do the engineering. You don’t think we’re going to get it done in this country, do you?”

“That would seem rather strange,” I had to admit.

“We think the stimulus package will really stimulate the economy in India. And then there’s Shanghai.”

“But Shanghai’s in China,” I said.

“The materials have to come from somewhere. We don’t want all the stimulus money going to India. The economy is depressed in China, too. Spread the stimulus around.”

“That does seem more equitable than giving it all to India,” I said. “So what about Americans? Are they at least going to do the grunt work?”

He shook his head. “There’s too much unemployment in Guadalajara,” he said. “We have to stimulate the economy there, too.”

“I wouldn’t want Mexico left out of all this stimulating,” I said.

“And since the folks from Guadalajara are illegal we don’t have to worry about all those pesky labor laws.”

“Which your pals passed in the first place.”

“Indeed.”

“But who’s going to pay for this with Americans out of work the way they are?”

“Pay for it?” he asked.

“Yeah, you know, who’s going to pony up for salaries for all the Indians and Chinese and Mexicans who are going to get stimulated by this with Americans out of work? Nobody has any money.”

“K.T.C.” he said.

“Katy See? Who is that?”

No, no, K.T.C. is Washington speak. It means ‘Kick the Can.’”

“So nobody pays for it, then.”

“It’s like who’s going to pay for social security? Kick the Can. Who’s going to pay for all those wars George Bush started? Kick the Can. Who’s going to pay for the stimulus package for India, China, and Mexico?”

“Kick the Can,” I said. I was beginning to understand how all this works. “Well at least we’ll have new roads and bridges,” I said. I was trying to stay positive. “There won’t be anyplace for anybody to go, but at least the roads will be there.” Then I hesitated for a moment. “The roads will be built in this country, won’t they?”

“Negative,” he said. “The network is being built in Afghanistan. We like to call it The Al Qaida Superhighway System.”

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