As a vaunted member of the fourth estate, it is my duty to inform you, the average citizen, of the happenings of your government. Now, if you're anything like me, you like to read the newspaper after waking up at 4 a.m. to go for a peaceful 15-mile jog and eating a ten-egg, egg-yellows omelette. But recently, this ritual has become something of a chore. There are so many articles concerning "congressional deadlock" and "budget reconciliation" that by the time I finish the front page, I am too tired to find out who won the local pie eating contest.<br /><br />
Something must be done, and clearly these socialist, moose-killing, pork-barreling, big-government congresspersons are not doing it. At least that's the impression I get from rapidly flipping back and forth between cable news channels. But when the government fails to solve a problem, who will step into their place? The citizenry, of course. I am, by no means, suggesting revolution. Revolutions are in most cases blood-soaked, tedious, drawn-out affairs, harmful to all involved--with the possible exception of the sexual revolution, which I think we can all agree sounds pretty good. <br /><br />
I am trying to say that the citizenry needs to come up with a solution, instead of overthrowing the government. And before you say, "Well, here's another guy with a newspaper column and a great haircut acting like he can tell me what to do," please listen. You personally need do nothing. I have already devised a solution. <br /><br />
We are all familiar with the issue at hand: Congress is broken. It resembles less a bipartisan lawmaking body and more a group of civil war reenactors who have eaten psilocybin mushrooms and are furiously fighting a dead war. Which is roughly where I come in. From what I have read, the Senate is struggling to pass some sort of bill. I think it is either a health care reform bill or a bill to create a national holiday celebrating Heath Ledger's performance in The Dark Knight. I am in favor of both initiatives. <br /><br />
But regardless of the specific bill, there is a deeper problem. It comes down to teamwork. We elected these people for one reason: we, as Americans, hate thinking. Which is why we get so furious when the government fails to do its job--it forces us to think even more than we originally wanted to. But no more thinking need be done, fellow patriots. I have a solution: team-building activities.<br /><br />
I'm sure all of you have spent at least some time at a summer camp, corporate event or juvenile detention center. So you know the sort of thing I am talking about. Trust falls, blind-partner puzzle-building, the human knot, the works. The members of Congress are not working as they should; in any corporation or nursery school on Earth, they would be fired or spanked. So why should we accept this level of performance? Congress is currently in what experts like to call the "storming" phase of team development and what I like to call the "retarded" phase. To combat this retardation of progress, we must teach our respected senators and members of the House how to cooperate.<br /><br />
I cannot be sure that this will work. Some senators (I'm looking at you Robert Byrd!) are too frail to participate in many of the activities. I doubt he is capable of great physical effort these days, so to put upon him the responsibility of catching a plummeting Nancy Pelosi in mid-trust fall would be too much. But as FDR might have said at some point in his life, "We have to try something, even if it sounds moronic and is clearly infeasible." And in the end, is that not what America is all about? No? Well fine, I'll admit it: I just want to see blindfolded senators desperately trying to piece together a puzzle before time runs out. Because that is what America is truly all about--exhibiting disrespect toward authority figures.