Thursday, October 26, 2006

The Ant and the Grasshopper

THE OLD VERSION:

The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his
house and laying up supplies for the winter.

The grasshopper thinks he's a fool and laughs and dances and plays the
Summer away.

Come winter, the ant is warm and well fed.

The grasshopper has no food or shelter, so he dies out in the cold.


THE MODERN VERSION:

The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his
house and laying up supplies for the winter.
The grasshopper thinks he's a fool and laughs and dances and plays the
Summer away.

Come winter, the shivering grasshopper calls a press conference and demands
to know why the ant should be allowed to be warm and well fed while others
are cold and starving.

CBS, NBC, CNN and ABC show up to provide pictures of the shivering grasshopper
next to a video of the ant in his comfortable home with a table filled with
food.

America is stunned by the sharp contrast. How can this be, that in a
country of such wealth, this poor grasshopper is allowed to suffer so?

Kermit the Frog appears on Oprah with the grasshopper, and everybody cries
when they sing, "It's Not Easy Being Green."

Jesse Jackson stages a demonstration in front of the ant's house
where the news stations film the group singing, "We shall overcome." Jesse
then has the group kneel down to pray to God for the grasshopper's sake.

The politicos exclaim in an interview with that the ant has gotten rich off the
back of the grasshopper, and both call for an immediate tax hike on the ant to make
him pay his "fair share."

Finally, the EEOC drafts the "Economic Equity and Anti-Grasshopper Act,"
retroactive to the beginning of the summer. The ant is fined for failing to
hire a proportionate number of green bugs and, having nothing left to pay
his retroactive taxes, his home is confiscated by the government.
A Jewish law firm represents the grasshopper in a defamation suit against the ant,
and the case is tried before a panel of federal judges that they
appointed from a list of single-parent welfare recipients.

The ant loses the case.

The story ends as we see the grasshopper finishing up the last bits of the
ant's food while the government house he is in, which just happens to be
the ant's old house, crumbles around him because he doesn't maintain it.

The ant has disappeared in the snow.

The grasshopper is found dead in a drug related incident and the
house, now abandoned, is taken over by a gang of spiders who terrorize the
once peaceful neighborhood.

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