That’s the way it is in Grasshopper land ~

Note: Frank Williford is a contributor not the author of this article. The author is unknown –

Something similar to this writing has been around before, but now is the time for a strong reminder, just before election time. Certainly what follows is satirical although some of the analogy is hard to deny. It brings a clear focus to what continual compromise on key issues can produce. Some readers will consider it a poor parody. Others may be offended. To all of them I say “Good!” At least you understand  the message it is delivering.  Now to the story………….

The squirrel has worked hard his whole life, building his house and laying up supplies for his old age when he will no longer be able to effectively engage in the gainful activity that allows him to save. To him this has been a very good year. He has been able to put away more than his normal average savings, which is not surprising, since he is nearing the end of a long journey of increasing knowledge and work experience, the very factors that make his efforts the most productive and valuable.

The grasshopper thinks the squirrel is a fool, and laughs and plays the days away. Then hard times arrive and the squirrel is well fed and sheltered. A social worker finds the shivering, hungry grasshopper, calls a press conference and demands to know why the squirrel should be comfortable while the grasshopper is cold and hungry.

The national news shows up to provide live coverage of the grasshopper’s plight while inserting occasional film clips of a smiling squirrel and also a banquet laden table. The obvious conclusion is the smug squirrel has very wasteful ways and is unwilling to share his excess good fortune with anyone else.

The national press publishes several hard hitting editorials by progressive thinkers reminding people they should be ashamed to live in a country of such immense wealth when a hungry grasshopper is allowed to go without. The progressive movement, Greenpeace, PETA, Universal Animal Rights and The Grasshopper Protective Society all demonstrate in front of the Squirrel’s house. The internet comes alive with testimonials about the squirrel’s previous activities which strongly indicate most of his good fortune has resulted from illegal or at least immoral activity. His family is ridiculed for allowing themselves to enjoy the results of the squirrel’s hard work. The national news interrupts a highly rated and much watched television program to broadcast a shot of a multicultural animal/insect choir singing “We Shall Overcome”.

Progressive members of Congress call news conferences so they can rant that the squirrel became well off on the backs of grasshoppers, and they call for an immediate and retroactive tax hike on the squirrel to make him pay his fair share. The government drafts the Economic Equity and Grasshopper Anti-discrimination Act. The squirrel’s taxes are reassessed and he is fined for willful underpayment. He is taken to court for failing to hire grasshoppers as workers when he built his house.

He is assessed a large fine for the work done on his home and another fine for contempt when he told the court he could not find any grasshoppers willing to do the hard work. The court awards the grasshopper free government housing, financial aid to furnish it and free transportation to ensure he can be socially mobile. A significant portion of the squirrel’s food is seized for distribution to more grasshoppers which have been deemed needy. The government has trouble with arranging equitable distribution of the squirrel’s food, much of which goes unused as investigations and commissions appointed to study the problem created by the squirrel allow the food to waste away.

Without sufficient savings to buy more food and pay the taxes and fines, the squirrel is forced to downsize and start building a minimum size home for his family. The local aid agency takes over his old home and uses it as a temporary home for asylum seeking cats that have left their home country because they had to share things with mice. On arrival they stage demonstrations on their country of origins National Cat’s Day as a protest against their new country’s apparent love of dogs.  The protests turn violent and some of the cats are arrested, but are then quickly released when it is learned the police fed them dry cat food instead of fresh salmon while in custody. The cats disperse and immediately start a scam to extract money from the credit cards of others.

A 60 Minutes special shows the grasshopper finishing up the last of the squirrel’s food while the government furnished house he is in crumbles around him because he hasn’t bothered to maintain it.

He is shown to be dealing drugs as an alternative to work. Inadequate government funding is blamed for the grasshopper’s drug illness. The cats seek recompense in the courts for their treatment since arrival as they were not told mice also live in their new country. The grasshopper gets arrested for stabbing an old dog during a burglary to get more money for his drug habit. He is arrested but released immediately as the police are suspected of profiling him before his arrest.  Within a few weeks he has killed a guinea pig in a botched robbery. A commission of inquiry, costing 10 million dollars, is set up to determine why the grasshopper had been forced to resort to crime in order to survive. Additional money is put into funding a drug rehabilitation scheme for all grasshoppers similarly situated.

Legal air for lawyers representing asylum seeking cats is dramatically increased. The asylum seeking cats are praised by the government for enriching the country’s multicultural diversity, while dogs are severely criticized by the government for failing to befriend the cats sufficiently. The progressive news media and press launch a campaign to brand all dogs as cat hating bigots.

The grasshopper dies from a drug overdose. The usual media suspects blame it on the obvious failure of government to address the root causes of despair arising from social inequality and the traumatic experience of being jailed. The media blames the government failure on conservative ideologues who have gained positions in Congress through questionable election practices.  The cats are paid one million dollars each because their rights were infringed when the government failed to inform them there were mice in their new country.

The squirrel, the dogs and the victims of burglaries and robberies have to pay an additional percentage on their credit cards to cover losses.  Their taxes are increased to pay for more government oversight and they are told they will have to work past 65 because of a shortfall of government funds being used to enrich their lives.

And that’s the way it is in Grasshopper land………. and some other places too if one cares to think about it!!  Think about this closely before you vote!!

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