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Tuesday, June 25, 2024 | Back issues
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Fresh Out of the Box

More fresh-out-of-the-box solutions:

MAKE EVERY NON-PERSON COUNT. OK, we've heard - over and over again - how important the census is. We've heard how undercounting costs communities all sorts of money and services.

So this solution is pretty obvious: overcount.

I know I'm a little late on this, but if you haven't filled out your census form yet, think creatively. Make up names and relatives. There's no reason why 10 people can't be living in your house.

If a census taker comes to your house, recruit local unemployed actors to appear as residents.

Don't be afraid of getting caught. If the government knew who was in your house, what would be the point of the census? Besides, have you ever heard of anyone being prosecuted for census fraud? Have you ever heard of anyone penalized for reporting too much income?

If everyone in California tripled the size of their household, our fiscal problems would be over.

HOUSING STARTS. See if you can spot the solution here yourself.

Problems: Housing construction is lagging in the United States. Israelis are building in the West Bank.

Need I say more?

The trick is shipping Israelis to the Arizona desert while they're sleeping.

PRO BONO JUDGING. If there aren't enough judges, why not let anyone who offers to judge a case do it?

I think there would be a lot of volunteers. Imagine how much fun it would be to throw on a robe - or perhaps a Batman costume - and assume power.

I know some of you are thinking that most of the volunteers won't know enough about rules of evidence and/or laws. A lot of volunteers won't be very smart. But does that stop people from voting? Does that stop people from running for office?

All we've got to do is use a system already in place - jury selection. Let the lawyers ask all the usual questions and then pick one guy out of the pool for the big prize.

Jury duty could become a whole lot more popular.

LEAVE A CHILD BEHIND. As everyone knows, the real problem with our educational system is inadequate students. It doesn't matter how good your teachers are - if your students are stupid, they won't pass any exams.

This is why the savvy schools that want government funding ship lousy students to schools with no hope of getting any money. The problem then in a lot of places these days is that the schools stuck with the lousy kids get closed down, the lousy kids get dispersed again, and the whole process starts over.

Pretty soon there will be one school left and the dumb kids will still be there.

So, clearly, stupid kids need to be left behind or no one will get funding.

Importing some smart children from, say, India could help a lot. We could have a sort of cultural exchange of kids. Then we could ship low-paying jobs out of the country to our own offspring.

But don't stupid kids need schooling too? Might not some of them become smart under the right circumstances?

Probably not. But, OK, maybe a few of them.

So here's the obvious solution: STOP TESTING!

Weren't we all happier before all this statistical analysis and teaching for tests? Wouldn't it be better if we all relaxed and students learned stuff without worrying about destroying the school?

If you must have a test, give it to the teachers. Weeding out dumb teachers is more important than weeding out dumb students.

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