Dec 31, 2009

Mayor's Economic Development Plan 'Shot Down In Flames' By Cantankerous And Dismissive Lamont Town Council

In what amounts to a cold, gloved slap on both turned cheeks (and a swift, booted kick to the other two!), the Lamont Town Council less-than politely said "No Thank Ye" when the Mayor presented his quite elaborate plan to revitalize Lamont's economy during these challenging financial times. The Mayor's plan, long in the works and chocked full of marketing gimmicks and "bells and whistles", took months to develop and its less than subtle rejection represents a major setback for the only guy dumb enough to run for Mayor in the 2nd smallest Town in the State.

"Well, I cannot and do not speak for the whole Council, and no one is more sensitive to the economic well-being of our beloved Town than I am, but I just don't see how turning the Town of Lamont into an actual leper colony can really help us long-term" said an unnamed Councilperson. "I mean, at some point this recession will be over and we are struggling to keep our population up as it is. It just doesn't make sense to put forth all that effort to bring in citizens with - well - you know - a potentially less than normal lifespan. Sure, some might feel that encouraging any group with a frighteningly contagious disease is a less-than solid idea, I just don't happen to share those same concerns, however. One never knows what modern medicine or a few good rabbis can accomplish these days, but I just so happen to feel that if we are going to make Lamont a tourist destination for some hideous disease or horrific plague or whatever, it just makes more sense to work in a more "tropical theme" - you know - maybe Beriberi or Amazonian Spotted Fever or one of those new strains of malaria or whatever - you know - a life crippling and sociologically devastating disease from someplace warm and festive to counteract Lamont's reputation for being a nightmarishly frigid winter hell for 5+ months of the year. If the Vikings could name that frozen chunk of waste ice between North America and Iceland "Greenland" and have people actually move there, then surely Lamont should be able to capitalize on a tropical theme for our humble quarantine colony, too!" he said sagely. "I mean, come on! The Vikings were mere barbarians - so if they could pull it off, certainly we should be able to, too! And there are just so many fun tropical diseases to choose from that require confinement in a restrictive colony setting. I just can't help but feel that leprosy is just not a very imaginative scourge - given the challenges we face economically" he concluded. "We could do better!"

"Well, that is representative democracy at work, I guess" said the downtrodden and emotionally devastated Mayor. "Being so small and not on a major highway and having basically no business infrastructure whatsoever puts Lamont at somewhat of a disadvantage to those bigger, disease-friendly towns - thus forcing me and my crack economic team (Bubba Bodine and Skeeter Snopes, for Pete's sake!) to "think outside the box". Although this very workable plan was rather-too-quickly slid onto the bottom of the Town's proverbial birdcage, if you will, we are already working on our 'Plan B' - a half-way house for the criminally insane! They have to be housed somewhere, don't they - and as my pappy used to say, 'No one ever went broke giving people a place to live!' But in order to get it past that doggone council, I am just wondering if the tropics and the equatorial region have a surplus of homicidal maniacs and crazed sociopaths on work release so we could get our economic boost while the council gets that whole 'tropical theme thing'. This is when small town negotiations can get a little Machiavellian. But we need to do something, don't we? If we don't, we could very easily become the 'SMALLEST' doggone town in the State - and no one wants that!" he shuddered. "Sitting on one's hands never got anything done either, now did it?!" he said annoyingly.

(Editorial Note: This article highlights the challenges faced by small towns that have limited resources to stimulate growth during hard economic times and any reference to unfortunate yet very real human diseases was purely for dramatic effect to show how limited those town-centered options really are and should not be taken in any other way. Our prayers go out to all individuals afflicted with tragic conditions outside of their control - and prayer seems to be the only logical choice now for this troubled, wayward world!)

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