Sunday, September 23, 2012

In the Public Self-Interest

The American Psychological Association found that Americans would benefit from more psychotherapy.      
                                                                   - Harper's Magazine, "Findings," October 2012

  • The American College of Surgeons found that Americans would benefit from more frequent surgical procedures, whether as a necessary medical intervention, demonstration of support for a loved one, or simply as a conversation starter.

"Charge her for a lobotomy and a shoe shine."

  • The American Petroleum Institute found that Americans would benefit from buying more gasoline, engine and automotive lubricants, and remembering to hunt for bargains in brake, transmission and power steering fluids in larger "family sized" containers.
  • The American Homebuilders Institute found that Americans would benefit from owning more than just one or two homes, adding that many additional home sites are still available in flood plains and remote Western forests.


  • The American Dental Association found that Americans would benefit from having a second tooth drilled, preferably the tooth nearest the one with the cavity.
  • The National Association of Evangelicals found that Americans would benefit if everyone would just learn to agree. With them.
  • The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) found that Americans would benefit from naming the AARP as their sole beneficiary and dying sooner than the sell-by date suggested in actuarial tables. 

"Our actuaries suggest sooner rather than later."
  • The American Restaurant Association found that Americans would benefit from celebrating every month whose name has a vowel in it as National Restaurant Month.
  • The Professional Beauty Association found that Americans would benefit from the self esteem that comes with more elaborate hair styles.


  • The American Dairy Association found that Americans would benefit from taking up sculpting in butter as a hobby, church or sports team fundraiser, community league sport or simple family pastime.


  • The American Association of Anesthesiologists found that Americans would benefit from weekly applications of any approved, professionally administered general anesthetic, and recommended daily applications during presidential campaign cycles.
  • The American Association of Advertising Agencies found that Americans would benefit from believing whatever they read in the New Yorker or hear on television.
  • The American Philosophical Association found that Americans would benefit from something in particular, albeit something on which there was no immediate consensus although a consensus was not ruled out at some future time under the terms of its bylaws, which were still somewhat a subject of discussion and possible revision, albeit revisions falling within parameters set forth by a quorum of the procedural committee. Except they were generally, if provisionally and informally, agreed that it would not be "reading Schopenhauer."
  • The American Association of University Professors found that Americans would benefit from unionizing in the workplace if they felt like it, though it would be better for everyone if they could just find a job with tenure and not worry about unions.

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