German Poverty Initiative: Let Them Catch Rats

250px-marie-antoinette_koningin_der_fransenimages5Germany now has its own Marie Antoinette, but, instead of eating cake, Henner Schmidt would like the poor to catch rats for one euro a rodent. Schmidt is the head of the Free Democrat party in the Mitte district of Berlin and would like to pit the poor against the rats to deal with two social problems at once.

Schmidt explains that “[e]specially people who usually collect bottles could get one euro for every dead rat.” Of course, most bottles do not carry diseases or bite.

This has not proven a popular idea in Berlin. Schmidt timing just before the holiday is truly impeccable. Ah, the memories of all those little German urchins chasing rats in the streets of Berlin as holiday music plays from the homes of the appreciative well-heeled families. It is enough to bring a tear to the eye of the urban haute bourgeois.

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10 thoughts on “German Poverty Initiative: Let Them Catch Rats”

  1. Neocon Bush War Monger Stephen Hadley was recently overheard stating, “Let them eat rats.” I smell a new GOP initiative coming soon to a welfare office near you.

  2. I love the smell of dead rats in the morning. You know, one time we bombed the attic with rat poison. When it was all over, I walked up. We didn’t find one of ’em, not one stinkin’ rat. The smell, you know that dead rat smell, the whole attic. Smelled like… victory.

    Someday this war’s gonna end…

  3. These jokes are good but I have been appalled lately with the depths of the class war against the poor and middle class. On NPR two depraved commentators actually said there was a bright side to the economy–people couldn’t get jobs so more were joining the army–HA, HA, HA. You’d think the auto workers have single handedly brought down the entire economy with their wages and goddam retirees health care costs. Today on the BBC I again heard that lenders making loans to poor people had brought down the financial markets (Paul Krugman has an excellent anaylsis of that one on his blog–in the form of a single chart). These people need better drugs! The hatred I’ve heard directed at the poor and middle class has been astounding. It is very striking, especially when even a cursory examination of reality just doesn’t support these ideas and attitudes.

  4. Herr Schmidt, listen to Jill!

    Let them catch the real rats out there and have every busted crook sentenced to catching and eating a rat. You’d solve three issues!

  5. Hmmmm, a wide spread rat catching program in Germany, are we sure this isn’t part of some government plot to allow pipers to freely infiltrate poor communities? Maybe this is just an opening move in a strategy that will culminate in 13 years with an army of brainwashed, well trained, soldiers.

  6. Herr Schmidt!

    Just change the terms a little and you’ve a wonderful idea. If by rats you mean corrupt banking, corporate and govt. officials, then by all means deputize the poor to investigate and bring charges against the rats. The salary will be better and the results, no doubt, of social benefit.

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