Vol. 6, Issue 10, November 11, 2008
Wall Street Bailout Plan Actually Depends On Lassie
When Congress finally passed the $700 billion bailout package for Wall Street, the financial world heaved a sigh of relief. However, financial analysts nationwide have been startled to learn that the bill actually relies on retaining the services of Lassie to rescue the ailing firms.
"Let me assure you, that was not what I was expecting to find in the fine print," said Marcus Weiss of the Wall Street Journal. "The trouble is, I find myself oddly reassured by the idea. It makes more sense than the veneer of financial technobabble that Paulson has been using to sell the bill to Congress."
Apparently, the plan calls for young Timmy to ride his bike to the financial district in New York and call to his faithful dog to pull the rapidly sinking banks out of their respective holes one at a time.
"Lassie! Come quick! Little Wachovia's fallen down a well!" reads a prototype script from the bill.
"The plan is carefully arranged so that Lassie will only be expected to pull one bank out of the hole at a time," said Weiss. "We're not sure how the dog would react to find what amounts to an entire field of wells full of banks needing rescue. Might well conclude that the human race is so stupid it doesn't deserve saving."
Timmy, Lassie's owner, is cautious about the plan.
"I don't know," he said, scratching his head and pushing his baseball cap up on his head. "Lassie's kind of the smart one in our family. If she wants to do it, I guess it'll be okay. But Mom will be awful sore if the whole thing takes too long. I've got chores, you know."
President-elect Barack Obama declined to comment on the news, though sources in the beltway note that, in the weeks prior to the election, John McCain lobbied strongly behind the scenes against the use of Lassie, aggressively pushing for a plan using Rin Tin Tin instead.
"Rin Tin Tin is older and had experience with the Great Depression," said anonymous tipster Clare Gordon, a staffer in the McCain Senate office. "The Senator also felt that Rinty is a more masculine-looking dog. Collies have all this flowing hair and whatnot. Rin Tin Tin looks like he means business, even though he hasn't saved so many kids from wells. Which is, admittedly, more relevant experience for the task at hand. But don't tell the Senator, please. He gets so mad when we disagree with him."
Analysts expect that Lassie will have no trouble pulling out financial institutions from the holes they have fallen into, as most of them are "truly lightweight" these days. However, there are some concerns about the size of the job. "There are over 8,000 banks in the United States," said Weiss. "Even Lassie can't be expected to rescue more than three or four a day. At that rate the bailout could take years, assuming the dog didn't get bored."
There was some concern about the total price tag for the bailout package, however, as Lassie's services generally run no more than $10 a day.
"Well, $699,999,999,000 of the total is actually just pork," said Gordon. "How else did you think we could get Congress to vote for it?"