MAIN STREET with Roger Allen, publisher

Behind the clouds

Roger Allen, publisher. “Rockford is the Humor Capital of the World”

Behind the storm clouds that surrounded the debt ceiling bill, Americans found a silver lining: we all received a better idea of how Congress works (or doesn’t). The more we know about those guys, the better judgments we can make when it comes to re-election.

The actual passage of the bill, however, didn’t exactly bring silver linings. One of the three debt-rating agencies (Standard and Poor’s) went ahead and downgraded U.S. bonds anyway, to a bump below no-risk (first time in 70 years). One of S&P’s stated reasons was the ongoing political gridlock in Washington.

Maybe we should stick our tongue in our cheek and say that the debt ceiling storm clouds had a gold lining. S&P’s downgrade triggered a stock market plunge. Stocks down, gold up: investment money has to go somewhere. On Monday the price of gold climbed above $1,700 per ounce, an all-time record.

I’m taking tongue out of cheek so I can say, “Booooo.” Standard and Poor’s called it right: Congress played chicken with America’s financial reputation.

Fridge joke

Doris went to see a psychiatrist about her husband. “Doctor, my husband has a problem. Almost every night now he dreams he’s a refrigerator.”

“My dear,” said the doc, “that’s not really a problem. A lot of people dream that they are somebody, or something, unusual…”

“Yes, but,” said Doris, “it’s also a problem for me. Jake sleeps with his mouth open and the light keeps me awake.”

Newspaper joke

A newspaper boy was standing on the corner with a large pile of papers, shouting, “Read all about it. Twenty-five people get cheated! Twenty-five people get cheated!”

Curious, a man walked over, bought a paper, and checked the front page. What he saw was yesterday’s paper. “Hey, this is an old paper,” the man said. “Where’s the story about the big swindle?”

The newspaper boy ignored him and went on calling out: “Read all about it! Twenty-six people get cheated!”

Dog joke

A man takes his rottweiler to the vet. “My dog’s cross-eyed,” he says. “Is there anything you can do for it?”

“Let’s have a look at him,” says the vet. So he picks up the dog and has a good look at its eyes. “Okay,” he says, “I’m going to have to put him down.”

“Just because he’s cross-eyed?” asks the man.

“No, because he’s heavy,” says the vet.

Wedding joke

George, age seven, was attending his first wedding with the family. After the service, a cousin remarked, “I wonder how many women a man can marry.”

“Sixteen,” George said.

The cousin was amazed that his little cousin had that kind of information. “How do you know?” he asked.

“Easy,” said George. “All you have to do is add it up. Remember what the preacher said: ‘Four better, four worse, four richer, and four poorer,’ and that makes sixteen.”

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