Dear Politicians, you need a demerit system. You start with 100 points and each lie costs you two, five or 10 points. Fudging the facts = 2 points. Stating opinions as facts = 5 points. A whopper of a lie (70% to 100% BS), or the refusal to admit something you were videotaped or recorded saying =10 points. Each of these will result in a fine and/or wage deduction. You only get 100 points for each elected term. Once you reach 0 points you will be asked to go home, and you lose benefits and pension.
Where would this lead? I would think a significant number of politicians across the ideological spectrum would not last more than a couple of months. Citizens of supposedly democratic nations are much too accepting of, or perhaps overwhelmed by, false promises, outright lies, and carefully crafted omissions.
What has led us to this precipice? Voting(or not voting) is often less about policy than it is the initial spark of self-fulfilling prophecy. The scraps of willful ignorance, obtuse apathy, and blind acceptance make efficient kindling for the bonfire of our freedoms.
At the mechanic
Customer: Will this take long?
Mechanic: It’s going to take as long as it takes.
Customer: May I ask you a question?
Customer: Is this going to cost a lot?
Mechanic: How much do you have?
Mechanic: Have you brought a lot of money?
Customer: Have you lost your mind?
Mechanic: It’s a joke. Can I ask you something?
Mechanic: Do you like slamming on the brakes?
Customer: Why do you ask?
Mechanic: The brake pads are in horrible shape. I’ll have to replace them.
Customer: I don’t want you to replace anything.
Mechanic: Maybe you’d enjoy crashing.
Customer: I’m not going to crash.
Mechanic: Have you ever been in an accident?
Mechanic: You’re going to be in an accident if these brakes fail.
Customer: Okay. What else is wrong?
Mechanic: Have you hit something?
Mechanic: Your radiator is leaking.
Customer: You’re going to replace it?
Mechanic: No. It’s a small hole. I’m going to fix it.
Customer: Good. I don’t like paying for extra work.
Mechanic: It’s okay for me too. I don’t enjoy doing extra work.
Customer: It’s hot in here. May I turn on a fan?
Mechanic: Have I ever visited your office?
Mechanic: Have I ever eaten your cooking?
Customer: I don’t think so.
Mechanic: Have I ever slept in your bed?
Customer: I hope not.
Mechanic: Good. Don’t touch my fan.
Customer: It’s so hot in here. Have you ever noticed that?
Mechanic: Why don’t you take a walk?
Note: This is an exercise to illustrate the use of the present perfect simple in statements and questions. It could also be used for pair or group practice of emphatic statements and responses.
Receptionist: Hello. Dr. Spock’s office. How can I help you?
Kirk: Hi. I’d like to see the dentist.
Receptionist: Okay. Can you tell me what’s wrong?
Kirk: I broke a tooth. It really hurts.
Receptionist: You’d better get here soon. Can you make it tonight?
Kirk: No. I’m out of town.
Receptionist: How is tomorrow for you?
Kirk: That would be great. What time is available?
Receptionist: Is 7:30 okay for you?
Kirk: That’s a little late.
Receptionist: No. 7:30 in the morning.
Kirk: 7:30 am? You’re open that early?
Receptionist: Yes. That will be okay, won’t it?
Kirk: That’d be great.
Receptionist: Can I get your name?
Kirk: It’s Jim. Jim Kirk. K-I-R-K.
Receptionist: Okay Mr. Kirk. We’ll see you tomorrow.
Kirk: I’ll see you bright and early. Bye.
At the dentist
Dr. Spock: Hello, How are you feeling?
Kirk: Okay. It really hurts though.
Dr. Spock: Well, it’s broken almost in half.
Kirk: Can you save the tooth?
Dr. Spock: I’m not sure. I’ll have to look at the x-ray. Oh oh.
Kirk: Is it really that bad?
Dr. Spock: I’m sorry, but I’ll have to remove the tooth.
Kirk: Is there no way to save it?
Dr. Spock: No. You’d be in constant pain.
Kirk: Okay. How much will it cost?
Dr. Spock: About 200 dollars. Do you have insurance?
Kirk: No, I just changed jobs so I’m not covered yet.
Dr. Spock: Sorry. I’ll give you a shot to freeze you. It may hurt.
Kirk: Ow, ow, ow!!! That really hurts!
Dr. Spock: I haven’t given you the shot yet.
Kirk: You’re standing on my foot.
Dr. Spock: Oh, sorry.
Kirk: Me too.