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Solution to National Debt Crisis
(original, topical, smirk)

This piece is original, written by Larry Jacobs and Josh Bloch.

    I just had a thought that might cast a new light on our current
federal budget problems:

    Here are some estimates I heard on NPR today:

        1991 Proposed Budget      $  1,200,000,000,000
          Est. Revenue                 800,000,000,000
          Military Budget              290,000,000,000
          Debt Service                 260,000,000,000
          National Debt              3,000,000,000,000

    So I thought I would do my part to help eliminate the national debt
by organizing a bake sale.  (If it's good enough for the Girl Scouts,
it's good enough for Uncle Sam.)

    Let's say we bake the chocolate mint cookies: they've always been
my favorites.  If we put 40 cookies in a box, sell the boxes for 2
dollars a piece and it costs us $1.25 a box to bake them, we can make
75 cents per box!  Now let's see... We need to raise 3 trillion
dollars... That's a mere 160 trillion cookies.

    But who will eat the cookies??  We all will!  Assuming the
population of the United States is 250 million, that makes 640,000
delicious chocolate mint cookies for every man, woman and child in the
US.  What a feast!

    But wait - we'd have to bake the cookies before we could eat them.
No problem.  I can fit 3 baking sheets in my oven, with 48 cookies on
a sheet.  (6 by 8 always works nicely.)  It takes about 12 minutes to
bake a batch of cookies, so that means I can bake 720 cookies per
hour!  Now I could bake all of the cookies myself but it would take me
8.5 billion years.  Since the sun will burn out in about 500 million
years, maybe you guys better help me.  If everybody in the US were to
help, it would take only 34 years.  Of course everybody would have to
quit their jobs to bake cookies 40 hours a week, but what the heck;
it's for a good cause.

                        Bon Appetit,

                        larry & Josh

P.S.  When I thought about it a bit more, I realized that some of us
might eventually get tired of eating 30,000 cookies a week -- even the
chocolate mint ones!  Then I had a great idea: we could export some of
the cookies!  Let's assume that Americans only wanted, say, half of
them.  That leaves 80 trillion cookies for the rest of the world.
Let's say we distribute these cookies evenly among the balance of the
world population, about 4.75 billion people.  That comes out to 16,800
cookies per person for the rest of the planet.  Not only would our
bake sale solve the current US budget problem, but it would end world
hunger and balance the US trade deficit to boot!

(From the "Rest" of RHF)

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