From the Left



The Baboons at the Top of Our Governmental Banana Tree Must Stop Hooting!

Marc Munroe Dion on

I paid $20 for a ham and Swiss cheese omelet this morning. The omelet came with fried potatoes, two slices of white toast and coffee. It wasn't an upscale restaurant, either. The guy sitting next to me at the counter had plaster dust on his boots. A couple of years ago, one of the patrons had a dope seizure in the booth by the back door.

But I paid $20 for an omelet in there this morning, and I could have gotten the same omelet for $12 when Barack Obama was president. Not that Obama personally held down the cost of my omelet. I'm just using his name to provide a time frame.

The price of my omelet rose throughout the Trump administration and has continued to rise during Joe Biden's time in office.

And I'm not one of those old guys who is always complaining that things don't cost what they cost when he was 6 years old. Yeah. I remember 30-cents-a-gallon gas. I also remember my old man making $65 a week.

And I rolled up to the diner listening to the radio reporting on the squeaking little struggles of the elected officials who aren't doing anything to help with the omelet problem. They're too busy to screw around with the price of eggs in side street breakfast joints.

They're "big picture" people. One side is committed to me being able to wear a dress when I'm eating my omelet. The other side wants to make sure I can carry a loaded automatic rifle into the diner.

I live in Massachusetts, so the government is a lot more comfortable with the dress than it is with the rifle, but the omelet continues to cost $20, and probably would if I rode a horse into the diner.

In the diner, you can tell when the old couples get their Social Security money for the month. They come in, smiley as hell, and order the $12 ham and eggs because they can't afford the $20 omelet even on payday. And you can tell when the tax refunds come out because moms with kids are in a lot more often for two or three weeks.

Because that's how it works. Down here at the scratch ticket end of the economy, people have to plan for the $12.99 ham and eggs, and they get to dream about the $20 omelet.


How many of the people currently battling over the speaker of the House position know that most diners offer a two eggs, home fries and toast deal that is usually the cheapest thing on the menu? That little deal costs maybe $5.99 because it doesn't include meat. I used to eat that cheap diner breakfast when I was young and poor, but I stopped because all I did was look at the bacon on other people's plates.

There are people in Congress who used to be poor, but they had the good sense to get the hell away from poverty as soon as they could.

In general, Republicans don't give a damn what I eat or if I eat. Democrats are so disdainful of capitalism that they'd rather just give me $20 and tell me to go run along and buy an omelet. In my heavily Democratic city, all the schools offer the kids a free breakfast. What a hell of a shock those kids are in for when they find out someday that they need to work more than an hour to buy an omelet.

The fight over who leads the House of Representatives is inevitable. Ever since people invented government, somebody had to be in charge of the damn thing, and that led to a lot of lying, bargaining and firing squads.

Let's hope the baboons at the top of our governmental banana tree eventually stop hooting and ripping each other's fur out by the roots. Maybe then, they'll give a thought to the people who are eating the $5.99 no-meat special, because there's more of them every day.


To find out more about Marc Munroe Dion, and read features by Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit Dion's latest book, a collection of his best columns, is called "Devil's Elbow: Dancing in the Ashes of America." It is available in paperback from, and for Nook, Kindle, and iBooks.




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