Friday, May 05, 2006

Irony: I'm Pro-Competition, But I Hate Declaring Losers 

Yeah, I'm a total "market forces" rah-rah kinda guy. When it comes to competition, I totally dig Darwin (all those other theories are LOSERS). But I don't just believe in competition between species of birds and fruit flies. I also believe in the value of competition for finding free-market price points, winnowing out market losers to free up investment for the winners, and to strengthen everyone in general because they know they have to try really super-duper hard to win.

It irks me no end when I see some of this namby-pamby feel-good, everyone's-a-winner, anti-competition stuff:
I tell you, I want to see losers dropping by the side of the road as winners race on past them. This to me is the sign of a healthy economy and a healthy culture. Of course we can have some private charity leaving a few care packages by the side of the road as we race past the losers so they don't starve to death while we can still see them.

Ok, I admit it, that does sound a little bit over the top. But does having the government leave the care packages on the side of the road instead of private charities make things any better? I think not, except that there are now some extra "winner slots" available in the government for people to manage the care-package-anti-starvation drop-off program.

And yet, with all this reckless capitalism coursing through my veins, I've still somehow become a tad squeamish when it comes to personally declaring someone a loser. Imagine that. Has the politically correct education establishment managed to brainwash me, despite my best defensive mental efforts, with their insidious "There Are No Losers, Just More Winners" message?

I'm afraid so. How is that despite strong initial enthusiasm about hosting the Carnival of Comedy, the enthusiasm suddenly went POOOOF the moment I realized it was required that a few posts be lumped into the lowly "Flea Allergy Dermatitis" category instead of the lofty "Ebola" winners' group? I just hated that. I really wanted to put them all up there as eyeball-hemorrhage-inspiring Ebola posts. Heck, they're all winners in my book just for having the guts to write a little comedy and risk being told "Hey, lice-for-brains, you're just NOT FUNNY!" -- I've been there.

Or what about the seemingly benign caption contest I ran recently? Seemed like a great idea while I was writing it up and posting it. Everyone else would do the dirty work of making my blog funny in exchange for a few worthless AbbaGav links, while I would just sit back and reap the extra traffic and inflated comment count. It was only after I hit the submit button that I realized a caption CONTEST would require that I judge some nice people's captions less worthy than others, which could of course hurt feelings and stunt those fine folks' burgeoning captioning abilities. It's just like giving grades in school, or keeping score in bumper bowling -- some kids inevitably end up scarred for life.

But does it really matter? After all, when MacStansbury removed me from his list of 40 Favorite Blogs it didn't bother me one bit. Well, not much. Not very much. That is to say, however much it bothered me, it wasn't so much as to scar me for life and prevent me from ever blogging again -- the therapy should see to that.

Hmmm. You know, maybe this whole steaming pile of Socialism I've been stepping over all these years isn't so stinky after all. Maybe I've learned something about myself. Maybe from now on I won't host the Carnival of Comedy -- at least not until they rescind that hurtful rule about judging some posts less funny than others when in reality they are all deserving of at least a little laughter, if only out of pity. And maybe if I do any further Caption Contests, I'll declare up front that no one should worry about bruising their fragile egos because EVERYBODY is a winner at AbbaGav.

I like the sound of that. Everybody is a winner at AbbaGav. Let's keep repeating that to ourselves as we look for more care packages to pick up. I'm getting hungry.

If you really, really liked this -- or even really, really hated it -- there's lots more: