I’m Probably Going to Blow Off My Lunch With Hank Today
We finish up our tour this evening in Washington DC, which believe it or not, is our nation’s capital. While in town, I am supposed to have a luncheon with the Secretary of the Treasury, Henry “Hank” Paulson, but I am probably going to blow it off. Paulson wants to hear me expound on some of my recently published transformative theories regarding American monetary policy (See: “Transformative Theories Regarding American Monetary Policy,” Journal of Fiscal Policy, December ’07), but I am honestly not in the mood.
My thing is: if he’s so interested in my theories, then why didn’t he “have time” to meet last year when I called his office and wrote several urgent letters to him regarding the impending sub-prime mortgage crisis? At that time, I couldn’t even get past his secretary’s secretary, who told me my ideas were “very interesting,” and that she would be sure to pass them on to Paulson.
Eight months later, we’re on the verge of recession, people are losing their homes, the international stock market is teetering like one of those giant balancing rocks in a Road Runner cartoon, and now he decides to return my call?
From his point of view, I can understand why he didn’t take me seriously when I first started calling his office. After all, I am a marginally well-known basic cable comedian, which doesn’t necessarily translate to a holistic understanding of the American and global economies. Truth be told, if I was the Secretary of the Treasury, I would probably think to myself “That guy’s hilariously funny, but why should I listen to his transformative ideas regarding American monetary policy?”
How about because I’m awesome?
I tried explaining this to his staff, but when I started reeling off my various television credits, they were decidedly unimpressed. I wanted to say, “What cult films have you been in?
At one point, I got in touch with somebody in his office who was willing to hear me out, but I told him I was only going to speak to the Big Man, and then I told him (perhaps foolishly) to fuck off. He was understandably insulted, but the truth is, I wasn’t interested in talking to an “Under Secretary.” If you’re the not the guy making policy, we have nothing to say to each other, Chico. (His name wasn’t Chico.)
Anyway, so now I’m in DC and of course my phone has been ringing off the hook. Paulson wants to meet, Bernake wants to meet, Greenspan wants to host a dinner, blah dee blah. I finally told the front desk to shut off my phone. I am about a five minute walk from Hooters. If they want me, they know where to find me. In the meantime, I’m going to be transforming some of my own American money into spicy hot buffalo wings and brew. The only inflation I’m worried about tonight is the kind that might occur in my pants.