Burt Prelutsky

There are times when my brain reminds me of those kitchen drawers filled with buttons, rubber bands, pieces of string and old recipes for sponge cake. If you’re anything like me, you finally reach the point where you decide that if you don’t clear the stuff out, you’ll soon find yourself up to your knees in clutter.

So, here I am doing my version of housecleaning, tossing out some of those notions that have been piling up in the dusty old drawer I call my mind.

The only two groups of people in America who actually get to decide how much money they’ll be paid are politicians and CEOs. As a result, all of them are paid far, far more than they deserve. It could honestly be said of politicians that anything over the minimum wage is excessive. After all, their main job is to decide how to spend the tax dollars of people who, unlike themselves, are productive members of society.

Speaking of the riff-raff who hold elected office, I recently saw a list of what the 50 states pay their state senators. Although their duties are obviously similar, their salaries range from Alabama’s $10-a-day to California’s $113,098-a-year. New Mexico somehow gets away with paying their 42 senators nothing in salary, but a $142-a-day per diem allowance, plus mileage. Which, I think you’d agree, is still better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick.

As for CEOs, probably the less said, the better. After all, I wouldn’t want to be accused of provoking widespread bloodshed. Still, when I hear about people whose sole function seems to be firing employees and outsourcing American jobs in order to temporarily improve the bottom line and, thus, inflate the value of their stock options, I find myself thinking that a certain amount of bloodshed in corporate boardrooms might not be such a bad idea.

But even the obscene salaries are not the most galling aspect of the present system of executive compensation. Worse yet are those things known as golden parachutes, whereby CEOs who have failed to be quite as effective as some of their cut-throat colleagues are paid tens of millions of dollars to just go away and mismanage some other company.

Moving on, how is it that so many priests are pedophiles? I realize that the majority of priests are honorable men, but how can they stomach interacting on a daily basis with the perverts in their midst? I know I couldn’t do it. And how is it that these degenerates, who are supposed to have Jesus as their role model, can live with themselves, knowing that they have debased Christ’s loving “Suffer the little children to come unto me” into their coming on to the little children?