Traditional Version: The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter. The grasshopper thinks the ant is a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away. Come winter, the ant is warm and fed. The grasshopper has no food or shelter, so he dies out in the cold.
Moral of the Story: Be responsible for yourself!
Modern Version: The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter. The grasshopper thinks the ant is a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away. Come winter, the shivering grasshopper calls a press conference and demands to know why the ant should be warm and fed while others are cold and starving.
CBS, NBS, PBS, CNN and ABC show up to provide pictures of the shivering grasshopper next to a video of the ant in his comfortable home with a table filled with food. America is stunned by the sharp contrast. How can this be, that in a county of such wealth, this poor grasshopper is allowed to suffer so?
Kermit the Frog appears on Oprah with the grasshopper and everybody cries when they sing, “It’s Not Easy Being Green.” Jesse Jackson stages a demonstration in front of the ant’s house where the news stations film the group signing, “We shall overcome.” Jesse than has the group kneel down to pray to God for the grasshopper’s sake.
Nancy Pelosi, John Kerry & Harry Reid exclaim in an interview with Larry King that the ant has gotten rich off the back of the grasshopper, and both call for an immediate tax hike on the ant to make him pay his fair share.
Finally, the EEOC drafts the Economic Equity and Anti-Grasshopper Act retroactive to the beginning of the summer! The ant is fined for failing to hire a proportionate number of green bugs and, having nothing left to pay his retroactive taxes, his home is confiscated by the government. Hillary gets her old law firm to represent the grasshopper in a defamation suit against the ant, and the case is tried before a panel of federal judges that Bill Clinton appointed from a list of single-parent welfare recipients. The ant loses the case.
The story ends as we see the grasshopper finishing up the last bits of the ant’s food while the government house he is in, which happens to be the ant’s old house, crumbles around him because he doesn’t maintain it.
The ant has disappeared in the snow. The grasshopper is found dead in a drug related incident and the house, now abandoned, is taken over by a gang of spiders who terrorize the once peaceful neighborhood.
Moral of the Story: Be careful how you vote in 2008.
Hat tip to Mark Clower