When I Start Running This Place

1. No movie shall ever be made, from here on, containing a scene in which the hero and heroine have an argument about whether she’s coming with him or not any of the things on my list of things I don’t want to see in movies. This is to be punished by a fine equal to two percent of the opening weekend’s box office revenue.

2. All holidays except “fun” holidays are hereby abolished. I define a “fun” holiday this way: Ordinary people — not bank people, not postal service people, but real people — get the day off. Christmas. Thanksgiving. New Years, Labor, Memorial, July 4th. All that other stuff, from Columbus Day to Martin Luther King day…if non-bank non-mail non-DMV people have to work, the bank and mail and DMV people have to work too. Groundhog day. President’s Day. Keep printing them on the calendars if you want, but if we don’t all get to go home and get drunk, then none of us do.

3. Speaking of people getting the day off. Veteran’s Day. Each year on October 11, real veterans are invited to write in to their local newspapers with reports about whether they have to work on November 11. Within each county, if ten or more veterans have to work on 11/11, then all the non-veterans in that county have to work too. From this day forward, we celebrate Veteran’s Day for for the vets, or we don’t celebrate it for anyone.

4. The feminist movement is hereby suspended. Feminists have an opportunity to apply, annually, to re-instate their movement. Each year they are to announce whether they think Bill Clinton should be prosecuted for assaulting and/or exploiting Juannita Broadderick, Paula Jones, Monica Lewinsky, et al. If they answer in the negative, they can go away for another year. And they can keep that cycle going as long as they care to, but in the meantime they have nothing to say.

5. For a nominal additional charge, you can have your pizza delivered with beer. The goal is supposed to be to keep drunks off the road, so from now on we’re going to get serious about it. Also, the corner bar has parking spaces…just a couple of them, for the employees. That’s all. You get a ride down there however you can.

6. Franklin Roosevelt’s face is hereby removed from the United States ten-cent piece, otherwise known as the “dime,” because of his efforts to pack the Supreme Court and his violation of the fourth and fourteenth amendments when he locked up U.S. citizens of Japanese ancestry. The United States stands opposed to racism, and in picking out racism to oppose, we start with his.

7. “Torture” is a word used to describe things that permanently alter the body. Oh, one exception to that rule…if you’re committting suicide by starvation, and a guard force-feeds you so you don’t die, that isn’t torture either.

8. You have to be licensed to have a dog. Large or small. Dogs are only for non-lazy people. People who can pick up shit with their hands. No pick-up-shit, no dog. I expect my new rule to impact the dog-lovin’ ladies disproportionately. Too damn bad.

9. No efforts shall be made to “increase awareness of global warming,” be they funded publicly or privately, that involve abnormal emissions of carbon dioxide. That includes rock concerts, press conferences, flying around in private jets, motorcades, news broadcasts, symposiums, lots and lots of talking, consumption of electricity, or flatulence.

10. People who, for purposes of ingratiating themselves socially, are heard to brag about “not knowing anything about computers” are to be all gathered up and locked up in prison cells with many others guilty of the same crime. Each prison cell will be filled with a hundred socialites who don’t know anything about computers, and will be furnished with one Commodore 64 that they can all get together and figure out how to work. May they enjoy everybody’s refined social skills with a nice game of Parcheesi or Charades.

11. People who brag about hating blogs, will be gathered into an adjoining prison cell — with no computer, so they don’t have to be bothered with reading blogs. They’ll get a television set, through which they can watch old broadcasts from Cronkite, Jennings, Brokaw and Rather.

12. Term limits are hereby moved. The President can serve indefinitely, but no more than ten calendar years concurrently. However, no one with the surname, married name or maiden name of “Clinton” or Bush” may run for President until 2048. Representatives in the House are required to step down after three terms.

13. The Hooters restaurant chain is officially recognized as something that is not a strip club. All you ugly women who want to keep Hooters out of your neighborhoods so your husbands can’t get an eyeful of something nice, will have to be honest about your motives from now on.

14. The State Department is all finished with giving Americans lectures about being polite while travelling abroad representing America…until some lectures are given to others about being polite when they come to America, representing other countries. Americans love good manners, and we’re going to start encouraging them — in both directions. All services provided to non-English-speaking nationals, will be combined into one service: Learning to speak English. Public schools teach in English. After all, our strength comes from our ability to communicate with each other, and communication is easier in one language. This one really should have been obvious from the get-go.

15. When a trade union votes on whether to strike or not, they vote as individuals. Any individual who can’t afford to strike, can go ahead and go to work. A union of a thousand “workers” that approves of a strike by a vote of 501 to 499, should bargain with 501 empty chairs — not a full thousand. The 499 get to go ahead and go to work. We’ll just have to learn to live with garbage services and transportation services.

16. The seventeenth amendment is repealed. Senators are to be elected by the legislatures of the states from here on.

17. All “separation of church and state” activist groups are to be formed into a single union, which is to receive a stipend for one calendar year from the United States Treasury. That union’s mission during that year, will be to get the United States mail delivered on Christmas, which is after all just another day. If the union cares to get that done within that year, they can find other stuff to do…starting with things that would make life easier for others. Like making it legal to buy beer on Sundays. The days of being a secular activist just to be a pain-in-the-ass, are over.

18. The police pull you over for failing to signal for a lane change.

19. One year prison sentence for anybody who puts up a web page containing the words “Make this your home page”.

20. One hundred hours of community service from anyone caught asking, rhetorically, if “America is ready” for a woman President, a black President, a Mormon President, a disabled President, etc.

21. Automatic expulsion for any United States or state Senator, Congressman, representative or assemblyman, who takes the floor to ask someone a question, and instead indulges in a speech. Questions are questions. Speeches are speeches. You should understand the two are not synonymous, by the time you are sworn in.

22. A bounty to be placed on the head of whoever invented “Shopper In Training” grocery carts.

23. The police pull you over when the car in front of you signals to get in to the left lane, and you jump in to block them from doing so. This is a very common practice and is especially dangerous.

24. A week’s hard labor for any technical support or customer service representative caught lecturing people that nobody’s ever had this problem before.

Raquel25. Miniskirts to be back in style. And go-go boots. And big hair. Only for women who look good with bare legs, though. Also, by the power vested in me I decree the most tantalizying female body style to be the a composite of Marilyn Monroe, Raquel Welch back in the day, and that bellydancer at the very beginning of Goldfinger. The “skeletor” look is now officially yucky.

26. Cowboy hats and goatees to be officially out-of-style. Especially when worn together. Baggy pants, pants that show butt-crack: $100 fine.

27. A weekend in the pokey for anyone caught shouting “You go, girl!”

28. Gold standard.

29. Judicial activism is the decision of court cases based on a prediction of the social consequences, rather than on a preponderance of precedent and/or logic. Congress is to approve legislation codifying such a definition, with a binding resolution to automatically impeach any judge or justice caught engaging in such a practice. The incorporation of other resolutions or decisions from foreign countries, is to be recognized as a violation of the judicial oath to protect and defend the United States Constitution, and covered under this legislation as an equally impeachable offense.

30. The filibuster is outlawed forever. I don’t care who it helps or hurts.

Update 4-11-07:
31. Everything in this great land, all across the fruited plane from sea to shining sea, from the oceans, to the highlands…is done the complete opposite from the way Al Sharpton wants it done. Every little thing. Any television show that self-important media whore blowhard wants cancelled, is automatically renewed for ten more seasons. He orders Chardonnay, he gets Shiraz. Whoever he tries to get a job for, is instantly fired, and whoever he wants fired, has lifetime guaranteed employment. Just to tick him off. Asshole.

Update 5-10-07:
32. Dog owners are required to register their dogs, and upon doing so are provided with a unique twelve-digit serial number that uniquely identifies that dog. Every six months they are to pay for, and receive, a capsule that (somehow) imprints those twelve digits into the dog’s stools. They are then required to feed it to the dog. One pile of dog crap…I mean, so much as a teensy, weensy little speck…is found where it doesn’t belong — the local “funny chicken meat” factory gets some new raw material, courtesy of Fido. Yeah, cry a river. Dog meat becomes one of the largest exports of the United States, unless people start taking care of their goddamn livestock like they’re supposed to.

Update 5-13-07:
33. Recognizing that the intangible noun greed has no definition that isn’t entirely subjective, and that everyone seems to agree it’s an extreme form of something that would be beneficial in lighter doses, but that nobody anywhere has taken the time or energy to draw any sort of line — I hereby abolish the word. It has been reduced to a useless piece of snivelling agitprop, nothing more. Those who might want to keep it, so that they can use it, gave the word away when our hardcore collectivists began attaching it to hard-working Americans who simply wanted to keep more of what they themselves had earned. Now that it’s become commonplace to describe people who simply want to keep what belongs to them, as “greedy,” the word has lost all descriptive power and useful purpose. Futhermore, it has become something of a hazard to critical thinking, individual responsibility, motivation toward hard work, sense of achievement, and other values championed and relied-upon by America. Out it goes.

Update 5-17-07:
34. Wealth tax, exit tax, inheritance/death tax, corporate income tax, capital gains tax: Any and all taxes levied for any purpose other than raising needed revenue — in other words, so one economic class can stick it to another economic class — are hereby repealed, retroactive one year. Henceforth, taxes are collected to raise revenue that is needed for things — period. If you want to send messages to someone that you don’t like them and that you’re all big-n-bad, buy some airtime on a television network or ad space in a paper.

35. A special “border” prosecutor reports to the Attorney General. He is a czar, and possesses authority at all levels of government — state, municipal, county, federal. All he does is find elected or appointed officials who break our immigration laws, e.g., setting up “sanctuary cities” and committing other offenses, and level charges against them. That is all he does. If he can get an indictment and a conviction against a sitting mayor, or county supervisor, or governor, someone ends up making license plates and breaking rocks. We’ll call him the Gavin-Man or something.

36. Anyone who has been elevated to a job, any job, anywhere, that has something to do with gathering statistics on peoples’ racial backgrounds — loses that job. Immediately. Panels are dissolved, initiatives are rolled-back, legislation is repealed. No skin-counting going on, anywhere, for any reason at all. The commissioners, the governors, the auditors, the social scientists who used to do this work — they all have to perform a hundred hours of community service, which mostly consists of appearing in elementary-school classrooms to show kids what racists look like, how they think, what they do, and how they leech good money out of the wallets of innocent, hard-working taxpaying citizens. The hardcore cases who fail to see the error of their ways, get to live in museums as living exhibits. That way, our children and our childrens’ children, can see how people can genuinely imagine themselves as “racially sensitive” while, in fact, nurturing hard, bitter, cold racism all the way to the core of their very bones. Honestly, I wish my generation and my parents’ generation got an education like that.

Update 6-27-07:
37. Men can get tattoos if they’ve served in the military. Or…if they’re over age 25. Women, if they’re over age 35…or have served in the military. Gorgeous young nineteen-year-old women with otherwise-perfect bodies, covered with tattoos, just make me wanna cry. And I’m not alone, you know I’m not alone. Something must be done.

38. When you talk to someone on a cell phone, you can pace around aimlessly — in the privacy of your own home. If you do it in public, it’s a night in jail. Do it in a high-traffic area, and you’re looking at ninety days. Monopolize something like fifty feet in diameter, while innocent people struggle to find a way past you, and it’s a year of hard labor.

Update 12-6-07:
39. I will introduce Premium Do Not Call. When you go to the Do Not Call Registry, you can bill a recurring or non-recurring subscription to your credit card or PayPal account. For a nominal fee, you can then make it really, really super-illegal to call your phone number, rather than just kinda-sorta illegal. Think of it as a drug-free zone in which it’s really “we really mean it” illegal to use or sell drugs in a given area instead of being wink-wink nod-nod illegal. Or, think of “hate crimes” that make it extra-extra-wrong to hurt someone. If a telemarketer makes so much as one call to a Premium Do Not Call number, everybody responsible is subjected not only to fines, but to personal indignities. Something involving nakedness, smearing with syrupy confection products, bondage, sexual fetishes, live television…and with repeat offenses, insertions of foreign objects into bodily orifices, plus batteries in pillowcases. I think thirty dollars a year should do the trick. The proceeds will go to a research project to develop a wonderful new telephone system, in which the recipients of phone calls get to learn just as much about the caller, as Google gets to learn about me. From where was the call made, what is the name of the person “registered” to the phone, is it a business phone, if so what is the EIN of the business, how many times this year have they been busted under Do Not Call, what is the latitude/longitude. It’s time we got serious with these clowns. “Privacy” is something that seems to be becoming a distant memory in our society, and these chuckleheads seem to be the only ones who still have some.

Update 2-15-08:
40. Television shows can use one of three songs for background music: The theme to “Leave It To Beaver“; “March of the Cue Balls” by Henry Mancini; and “Popcorn.” Just to see what happens. Because I can’t help but notice, ever since reality shows have gotten popular, easily half the shows on that idiot box are saturated with irritating woodwind background music, droning away behind highly implausible dialog. And people in general have become breathtakingly stupid. I see a connection. Let’s see if some actual musical notes start smartening people up again.

Update 5-2-08:
41. Businesses can’t be taxed. At all. It’s just a big shell game, because people end up paying those taxes. So even if you can get drunk with me and spend all night long convincing me that corporations “aren’t being taxed enough,” as the sun rises we should still be able to agree that a corporate income tax isn’t the best way to get it done; we should be able to further agree that it doesn’t even work. Out it goes.

42. Corollary to 41. If you think people “need” to be punished, in whatever way, because they have too much or make too much, you have to leave this country. This country is supposed to stand for certain things, and if it stands for certain things then it can’t show hospitality to people who are passionately opposed to those things. You can’t own slaves here, and you can’t work toward overthrowing capitalism here.

43. Public funds will not be used to tell people there’s something wrong with women, blacks, homosexuals, etc. etc. etc. Public funds will not be used to tell people there’s anything inherently superior about them either.

Update 4-27-09:
So New York City is paying poor people to engage in the correct behaviors, which gives me an idea for a relatively cost-free alternative:

44. Spending ceilings for poor people on stupid behavior. Make it proportional. You are allowed to spend, per month, on your cable bill…a quarter of a percent of whatever the balance is in your retirement fund. The television set itself can cost up to one third of your net monthly take-home pay. Video game consoles and sneakers for all of your kids, can cost up to one sixth of what you manage to save in a year. And for every twenty dollars you put in your medical expenses account, you can put a dollar toward cigarettes and lottery tickets.

I also see FrankJ has some random thoughts. And I like one of them…a whole lot…so I’m going to make this the next decree.

45. All prominent buildings and monuments in our nation’s capitol deemed to be noteworthy, shall have the following random thought from FrankJ at IMAO chiseled all the way around their support columns. That includes the Lincoln Memorial, the Jefferson Memorial, the National Archives, the Capitol, the House Office Buidlings, the Senate Office Buildings, the Department of Justice, the White House, and the Pentagon –

If Innocent Lives Could Be Saved by Harming an Evil Man, Only a Sociopath Would Object.

Update 1-10-10:
46. Spyware is VANDALISM. Viruses are VANDALISM. We will return to our old habits of hunting these vandals down and prosecuting them to the fullest extent of the law.

I will expand the government to start a Bureau of Malware Damage Compensation. It will be responsible for filing civil suits against these guilty parties and placing liens on their property and income. It will accept and validate claims for anti-virus software licensing, computer services, and time lost by the victims, and as the proceeds of these liens are collected, it will compensate them. Persons and businesses.