The Washington Post

Friday Rant: Ray Bradbury Edition

The public employee unions had gotten out of control. It was time to freeze their pensions and bargaining rights under the new state policy guidelines known as Fahrenheit 32. This was necessary because the taxpayers had grown weary of paying for pensions that were so much larger than their own. These taxpayers formerly had pensions similar to the ones they were about to freeze, but they had lost them to a private-industry cost-cutting strategy known, coincidentally as Fahrenheit 32.

These worker rights had to go because the economy was smaller now than in the gravy days of big paychecks and pensions. One worker wondered aloud how this could be true because the reported size of the economy kept getting larger. “Where is all the money going?” he asked. He was quickly shouted down by a group of ordinary self-described patriots who said the conversation needed to be about austerity for workers, not the distribution of wealth. They called themselves the Iced Tea Party and their motto was Fahrenheit 32.

Meanwhile behind the golden gates of the mansions up on the hill, the conversation was about Class Warfare. They were very much against such a thing as it was ordinarily understood. They understood it very differently. Their idea of Class Warfare was the civil-war variety, in which workers were turned one against the other in a battle to see who could impoverish whom to the largest degree. In this version of class war, the mansion dwellers were doing very well indeed. They lit their cigars, poured their drinks to toast their victory, and slipped into their Jacuzzis, Fahrenheit 102.

Tom Toles is the editorial cartoonist for The Post and writes the Tom Toles blog. See all of his cartoons here.


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