Nationalized pizza three years later
by Craig J. Cantoni
(Washington - 2013) The Obama administration's promises about the benefits of nationalizing the pizza industry have not materialized. Since the industry was nationalized three years ago, Americans are facing pizza shortages, pizzas in only one size and topping, and pizzas that taste like the cardboard box they come in.
When announcing the pizza program in 2010, President [sic] Obama had promised that pizza prices would fall, pizza quality would rise, and there would be universal access to pizza. "After all," he had said in his typical all-knowing manner that Americans have come to hate, "the pizza industry is much simpler than the medical industry, which we completely nationalized last year."
Before pizza was nationalized, virtually every American, whether rural or urban, rich or poor, white or black, or a race somewhere in between, could order a pizza customized to his liking and have it delivered hot to his door in about 45 minutes. Now, in the rare cases where someone actually answers the phone at one of the government's regional pizza kitchens, it takes six hours on average for a pizza to be delivered.
The cost of the standard 12-inch pizza is $140, or a 20-fold increase in three years. Half of the increase is due to the skyrocketing inflation caused by the president's stimulus spending in 2009. A dollar now buys only half as much as it did back then.
Moreover, pizzas are now being delivered by bicycle in rural areas and by mass transit in urban areas, due to the president's climate laws, which have made gasoline unaffordable for the typical delivery person. Although delivery personnel in Minnesota replace the front tires of their bikes with skis in winter and put snow chains on the rear tires, pizzas still arrive at customers' doors frozen solid. In the summer in Arizona, pizzas leave the government pizza kitchen uncooked and cook along the way.
The Federal Department of Pizza is now bigger than the Department of Agriculture. Thousands of central planners have discovered that without the magic of market price signals, it's impossible to coordinate all of the variables involved in getting a pizza to someone's door.
Hundreds of Pizza Department employees try to determine months ahead who will order a pizza, at what time, on what day, and for what address. Hundreds of other employees then calculate how much flour, cheese, tomato sauce, and cardboard should be delivered to the regional pizza kitchens. Once this is determined, the information is sent to the Department of Labor, so that the kitchens have enough employees when they need them. Due to ongoing computer glitches, the pizza kitchens are fully staffed on Monday mornings but have a skeleton staff on Friday nights. During the last Super Bowl, the kitchens were shut down because no employees showed up for work.
The pizza forecasts are also sent to the Department of Agriculture, which has to tell farmers how much wheat and tomatoes to grow, cheese makers how much cheese to produce, and box makers how many boxes to make. The Department of Transportation also has to be notified to have 18-wheel trucks available to deliver the goods to the pizza kitchens. It's to no avail, however, because the Department of Energy is still trying to develop battery-powered trucks to replace the trucks that were banned by the EPA for having internal combustion engines.
Clandestine pizza operations have sprung up across the land, and anchovies are even being snuck into the country from Portugal in travelers' suitcases. Customs personnel at New York's JFK Airport recently walked off the job after one Customs agent opened a suitcase and cracked open his head on the counter when he passed out from the stench.
The Justice Department has started a War on Pizza to shut down the clandestine operations, but this has just shifted the problem to Mexico. The Mexican government is on the verge of collapsing, due to the violence and corruption of Mexican pizza lords who sneak contraband pizzas into the United States. Vinnie Rodriguez is said to be the kingpin of pizza in Mexico. Someone in Cleveland can order a pizza from Vinnie in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico, and have it delivered piping hot with the toppings of his choice in a tenth of the time it takes a government pizza kitchen to fill an order for a cardboard pizza.
President [sic] Obama's popularity has dropped to five percent, showing that Americans can tolerate having their medical care screwed up by the government but not their pizza.
An author and columnist, Mr. Cantoni can be reached at email@example.com.
Monday, July 13, 2009
Nationalized pizza three years later