You know, this whole thing about this tiny church in Florida has got me thinking. It’s got lots of other people thinking, too – instead of doing useful, productive work. There’s no need to recapitualte everything they’re thinking, because you can find it all over the place.
But what I was thinking was this: burn the right book. And if you wanted to burn a book as an act of protest, to express your First Amendment rights for a cause that really matters, why not instead burn the Federal Budget for Fiscal Year 2011 and its appendix? The Federal Budget for Fiscal Year 2011 is 186 pages and costs $37.00, or almost 20 cents a page. The Appendix to the budget is 1424 pages (because it describes what actually goes on in there) and costs $73.00, or just over 5 cents a page. It’s good to see, I guess, that the government applies a volume discount on the number of pages it prints, particularly when you need the Big Book to understand the Small Book. And really, the most important threat to most people’s livelihoods in this country is the endlessly increasing size of the federal budget.
In fact, burning the Koran will arguably make Americans less safe and sound – even the threat to do so has already made one preacher at a tiny backwoods church and his small congregation less safe, although whether they were really ever “sound” in terms of mind is a big open question.
On the other hand, burning some copies of the Federal Budget might have an entirely beneficial effect, since very few people read them anyway, but everyone pays for them.
My firm belief is that the Second Coming isn’t going to arrive at the behest of isolated Florida preachers, no matter how hard they try. On the other hand, the Federal Budget arrives every single year here in the United States, and look at all the damage it is doing.