Screwtape The Third: 28th Amendment

wagetrash “So what we have here is a proposal to change the salary structure for elected officials of the United States, topside, made by a person who can’t spell ‘we’?”

“Diabolical, isn’t it, Master Screwtape?”

“Indeed, Wormsap, and entirely appropriate for the Hadean Estates. Especially if it brings us contracts. Your work?”

“Ours, sir.”

“Diplomacy is a virtue, Wormsap. Watch yourself.”

“Yes, sir. What part?”

“Don’t give me any ideas. Your report spoke of a ’28th Amendment’. What’s that, and how’s that tied to this?”

“Well, sir, the persons behind the one are the persons behind the other.”

“That would be corporate types like Warren Buffett? People who make billions of dollars a year, complaining about ‘the leader of the free world’ making $450K, less than one of their entry-level district managers?”

“Yes, sir. They’ve proposed that, any time the U. S. Government saddles itself with a deficit, the elected officials responsible get thrown out and are ineligible for reelection.”

“I .. see. That would have made it a bit difficult for the previous set of elected officials …”

“Ah, they weren’t all exactly elected …”

“Yes, yes, that was a nice stratagem of mine. Don’t interrupt. As I was saying, that policy would have made it a bit difficult for the previous set of elected officials to prosecute their little war of conquest in the Middle East.”

“Business decision, sir. If it had worked, the oil profits for those backing the policy would have been enormous. They would have found a way to buy themselves off the rule. The current deficits are all about little people having jobs and medicines. All cost, no benefit. Unsupportable.”

“So this amendment would have the effect of slashing the salaries of elected lawmakers, and making their working conditions intolerable?”

“Yes, sir.”

“Then who would stand for election?”

“Only the members of the millionaire’s club, who can afford to ‘serve’ without compensation.”

“You mean that’s not how it is already?

“Pretty close, sir, but this policy would make it explicit. And, of course, those club members would consistently vote the interests of the club. After all, it was that ‘democrat’, Thomas Jefferson, who wrote that ‘workingmen contribute as much to a healthy polity as sores do to a healthy human body.’ So excluding people without independent wealth from government is entirely in keeping with the founding principles of the United States.”

“And the ‘little people’, as you call them, stand for this?”

“Well, sir, the little people don’t care to recognize that, as usual, they are the authors of their own distress. They choose, and especially reject, candidates for office on the silliest of pretexts, and hardly ever consider whether the candidates actually have the necessary qualifications and abilities for the job.

“Once there, they scream about how much the elected officials make, failing to recognize how little they make in comparison with people with comparable responsibilities in large businesses, and failing also to realize that they could pay the electees at least 10 times as much, and, in the context of an annual government budget of multiple trillions of dollars, the compensation package increases would make exactly no difference to the bottom line. Whereas, a $50 increase in a Social Security benefit, multiplied by tens of millions of people, would significantly bulge the budget.

“And the people have this nasty habit of busting benefit budgets. For example, if they get an effective government health plan, they stop taking care of their own health, because ‘the government doctor will fix it’. Which, of course, means that the health plan budget balloons past all reasonable forecasts, and its deliverables become microscopic.”

“So you can have a reasonable universal benefit package only on condition that you don’t use it?”

“Now that, sir, is definitely a policy worthy of the Hadean Estates. You might even have come up with it in a Luciferan Council meeting.”

“Who says that I didn’t? So at what point in this timeline does the United States acknowledge that it’s turning into a network of feudal keeps? And how does this development benefit us?

“Well, sir, we’re projecting that all this activity will produce clashes of self-interests that can only increase in number and severity, and will compound individual and corporate sins. Sooner or later, the situation is bound to implode. You haven’t seen my guillotine stockpile, have you? When that happens, if history is a guide, we can count on at least 50 years of social and political turmoil, quite possibly engulfing the world. Especially when you throw human overpopulation and human-induced global eutrophication and climate change into the mix. And in that turmoil, a contract with H.E.L.L. will seem like a blessing.”

Agh! Wormsap! Watch your mouth!

“Yes, sir. I’ll get a mirror.”

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