Wednesday, February 27, 2013

My Sequestration Requestration

I have a requestration:  that the word "sequestration" be banned from everyday life... starting, of course, immediately after I finish writing today's rant. 

Now, I realize that "requestration" isn't a real word.  I just made it up.  But as I obviously live in a world where reality has no meaning, it's a word that works for me.  Anybody out there know what "sequestration" -- as it applies to all this doomsday stuff you're hearing on your TVs -- really means?

Here's the definition from www.m-w.com :

Definition of SEQUESTRATION

1
: the act of sequestering : the state of being sequestered <a jury in sequestration> *
2
a : a legal writ authorizing a sheriff or commissioner to take into custody the property of a defendant who is in contempt until the orders of a court are complied with
b : a deposit whereby a neutral depositary agrees to hold property in litigation and to restore it to the party to whom it is adjudged to belong 

Examples of SEQUESTRATION

  1. the sequestration of a jury
  2. During their sequestration, jurors were not allowed to speak to reporters.

First Known Use of SEQUESTRATION

15th century**
 
Okay...it would seem none of this has anything whatsoever to do with all the penis-waving*** and chest-pounding that's apparently eating up every elected official's valuable time in Washington, correct?  So, out of frustration, I clicked on the link for the Kid's Dictionary, and here's what it said:
 
se·ques·tra·tion
Pronunciation: secondarystresssemacronk-wschwas-primarystresstramacr-shschwan, secondarystresssek-
Function: noun
: the act of sequestering : the state of being sequestered****
 
Consequently, the bottom line here is that "sequestration" was the first college word a flunky found in a dictionary, who then said, "Hey, Mr. President, let's use this one, none of these voters will know what it means anyway."
 
I always enjoy it when our federal government redefines our reality...and, as this happens all the time, my consciousness is the happiest place on earth.  Too bad for you, Disney World.
 
But if The Powers That We Elected are going to do that, why not go all the way?
 
They could have called it flooperization, or frustrationquation or The End of The World.*****  My philosophy is, pretty much, if you're going to risk looking ridiculous, go all out and KNOW you're going to look ridiculous.  Risking anything suggests uncertainty and fear, but if you go for the Big Loss, you'll be much more comfortable and will probably live a lot longer. 
 
Okay, so no ... the word doesn't begin to describe what's happening in Washington.  Of course, to choose a word that aptly describes a situation, one must be able to comprehend what the situation IS ... right?  So, what exactly is going on, you ask?  What IS happening in Washington (I mean, other than Congress and The President going on vacation while The World is Ending?).  Let's see a show of hands ... anybody out there know? I sure don't.  But I do have a few theories:
 
1) The woods are on fire, and two firemen aren't putting it out because they can't stop arguing over which hose to use.
 
2) A plane is crashing into the side of the mountain because the pilot's hands are around the co-pilot's throat and not on the controls.
 
3)  A lot of millionaires (aka: "elected officials") are only pretending to work, because we the American People had an election to decide who would be the most useless in a crisis, and these are the idiots who won.
 
4) A lot of millionaires are confused over which Lobbyist of the Month is holding which puppet string.  (There's just SO many to keep track of, you know?)
 
5) A series of severe, mindless budget cuts will automatically trigger at the end of the week because nobody ever got around to putting out an actual budget (even though I think ... I THINK ... that's part of the "Elected Official" Job Description).
 
6) Each side is secretly building a Death Star to destroy the other side.******
 
So, maybe I'm being a tad unrealistic.  Maybe "sequestration" works as a word to describe this mess because no real word with any real meaning can describe the meaningless insanity that is torching the trees and flying our planes into mountains. 
 
For the sake of this argument, I'm not a Republican or a Democrat.  I'm not anything.  I think everybody's the problem because I also think everybody's the solution.  I personally believe that the reason nobody can come up with a reasonable solution to our budget crisis is because all that's on the table are tax hikes and spending cuts, and NEITHER WILL ENTIRELY SOLVE THE PROBLEM.  Even a combination of both won't solve the problem.  Our real problem is we aren't collecting the taxes that are already owed us. The Tax Gap******* in this country is the real problem.  We don't need MORE taxes.  We need to collect the TAXES THAT ARE OWED US.  Of course, with the Dept. of the Treasury facing budget cuts like everybody else, fat chance we're going to collect more of THAT money.  This country is full of liars and cheats when it comes filling out tax returns, and guess what?  Even if there were no liars or cheats, we have a growing population vs. a shrinking number of jobs that produce ... uh ... income .... that would then generate the ... uh ... income TAX.  (And because we like to give people child credits as a reward for having more children, our population isn't going down anytime soon). 
 
So, the "income tax" has become a joke, and needs to be replaced.  Some intelligent people have suggested a flat tax for everybody ... but I don't believe that would fix the problem either, because it's still based on income nobody seems to have anymore, and, well, there still would be cheats and liars filling out tax returns. 
 
The only obvious solution is a federal SALES tax, which would replace the income tax.  Maybe everybody doesn't have income they're willing to declare that the government can tax, but EVERYBODY buys stuff.  I'd like to know that my brother ... poor as he is, collecting Social Security, would still have to cough up his fair share by paying tax on all that booze and all those ciggies he's buying over at the food mart.  And I'd like to know the drug dealers are paying their fair share when they purchase all those cars, boats and vacations their lucrative, formerly tax-free gains have enabled them to buy. 
 
This is common sense ... and therefore has no place in Washington, I do realize. 
 
So, forget that.  Instead, let's all sit on our hands and watch the Big, Meaningless Washington Reality Show play out on TV.  As a federal worker, I don't even care anymore if sequestration happens.  Let whatever's gonna happen, happen, so we can move on with our lives.  Frankly, I'll bet this is going to be a replay of the whole Y2K doomsday scenario where everybody expected the world's computers to crash on Jan. 1, 2000, and then NOTHING happened.   
 
 
*Yeah, okay, that cleared it all up nicely.  Thank you for playing.

** And the last known use of the word "SEQUESTRATION" will be, God willing, the 21st century.  Isn't it dead YET? At the very least it's in a coma, and somebody somewhere must have the authority to pull this plug.

***Yes, I do realize there are women working in DC ... but I also believe that they are issued penises when they take the oath of office so they won't feel left out.

****And we wonder why our kids are so screwed up.

*****The Media would have you believe it's the End of the World, so it must be true.

******Everybody thinks they're Luke Skywalker ... but the trouble is everybody is really Darth Vader, and that's before he turned back into Anakin the Good Guy. 

*******The "tax gap" is basically the ridiculously huge chasm between what people already owe in taxes and what they've actually paid. Here's a newsflash ... you might be paying your taxes, but your neighbor probably isn't. Your neighbor is probably earning money under the table and not declaring it as income.  Your neighbor is probably on a payment plan during which he will continue to claim 8 exemptions on his W-4 and then cry to the government about how he can't afford to pay what he owes.  Your neighbor might even be a drug dealer who has never paid a dime for the privilege of living in the greatest country on earth ... and his sister is probably collecting thousands in Earned Income Credits and Child Tax credits as our government's reward for working a little and breeding too much. 

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