GateHouse — $700 billion. Man, that’s a big figure. BILLION. With a B. And TWO L’S. And a DOLLAR SIGN. It’s a massive number, one so large as to be almost mythological, one you can’t quite twist your feeble human brain around, like everlasting life, or Sarah Palin’s non-stump speech quotes. To put it in perspective, if the government decided it had to bail out a number of extremely massive and obscenely wealthy Wall Street banks that you don’t really know exist and have even less of an idea of how they operate, do you know how much it would cost? $700 billion. Yeah, I know. IT ROCKS YOUR FACE OFF.
Thankfully, Balding Desperate People in Suits are meeting frequently to quell this problem as soon as possible, which is a fine idea and almost certainly being done to minimize the disruption of America’s standing in the global economy and not so that people have a few days to stop and think, “Um, you know, I sure could use a little piece of that for juice money this week.”
Which brings me to something that might shock the suspenders right off regular readers of this column – and hello again to my Mom and people who think I’m Mike Vrabel – a real point: I can be on the hook to save the well-dressed butts of hundreds of people whose job it is to push other people’s money around, but I can’t pass someone in the right lane or – and here’s an idea you’re not hearing a lot of these days – opt out of this fairly infuriating ridiculousness?
By the time this column runs, I have no idea what will be happening, as it seems equally as likely that everything will be just fine as it is that giant yawning sinkholes will have opened up on Wall Street and created all manner of chaos and traffic problems.
Many Republicans and Democrats have been spending a great deal of time, sometimes up to two hours IN A ROW, meeting to solve the crisis, and – you may want to take a seat before I blow your mind here – nothing happened.
Unlike 98 percent of the other people writing about it this week, I will not pretend to have any last fragment of a shred of shrapnel of a ding-dang clue what is going on, other than to form this brilliant hypothesis: Several dozen, maybe hundred, doughy 60-year-old men in shiny suits got filthy greedy, did 300 stupid things in a row, and now I owe somebody $700 billion. If some part of this hypothesis is wrong, e-mail me.
Well, that’s a little misleading: $700 billion is, of course, absurd, and by the time this sees print has probably been knocked back down to a slightly less eyeball-bursting figure, like $250 billion, which is like chump change, an afterthought, Zingers-in-the-vending machine money.
And since we’re talking about figures that are nearly insignificant anyway, let me just pose the question that I think we’re all kicking around: Um, can I have some?
Listen, guys, seriously, if you could throw me just a fraction, a sliver, like $50 billion, it’d be nearly enough to wipe out my credit card debt. And then I could start purchasing all kinds of songs off of iTunes’ Genius bar, which would totally jump-start the economy. Sure, it’s a longshot, a Hail Mary, and it benefits only a select few more than everyone, but, hey, when in Rome.