I cocked my head expectantly.
“Can’t you see?”
“Surely you are not on welfare,” I said.
“Are you kidding?” he said. “Do you have any idea how much we receive in tax subsidies?”
“You couldn’t begin to imagine.”
“If they drug test the corporation, we might lose that assistance,” he swallowed hard. “If our profits drop below 40 billion a year, I’m toast.”
I thought for a moment. “I don’t think you have anything to worry about,” I said.
“As I understand it, tax breaks, although a direct giveaway from the government to corporations, are not considered welfare.”
“Your corporation is not a single woman with a dependant child, is it?”
“Then you are fine.”
“Oh man, he said, “That is such a relief,” he started to leave but then turned. “Could I use your telephone?”
“C.W.,” I said. “What’s up?”
He avoided eye contact. “Nothing. Can I use the phone?”
I gave in. “Use the one in the bedroom. But tell me what’s going on.”
”Nothing,” he said, heading for the bedroom. Then, as he closed the door, “I just need to call the Koch boys. They’ll be so relieved.”
Immediately there was another knock on the door. I groaned and opened it. Another nattily dressed man faced me.
“I need help,” he said. “Got your name from Big Dope dot com.”
“Let me guess. A corporation?”
“Dave Lesar,” he said. “CEO of Halliburton. We’ve been enjoying cost overruns on our federal contracts for years.”
I comforted him and ushered him in out, only to hear another knock. This time it was a young man dressed in starched and pressed work khakis and a stockman’s hat.
“I’m Johnny Benson,” he announced. “I just took over Benson Farms and I’m worried about our farm subsidies.”
This time it took longer as he was neither well educated, nor very bright. Finally, I was able to relax and work on my daily quota of Proust.
|The CEOs provided me with this|
archetypal image of a welfare queen.
Not to be confused with an
honest corporation (inset) - C.W.