With Air Conditioning, It’s Time to Relocate the Capitol

August 20th, 2010

By Dan Miller

AC made D.C. much too comfortable. I’d prefer someplace the congressmen can’t stand to be.

*  *  *

From the August 10 edition of Jonah Goldberg’s The Goldberg File:

Washington, D.C., … we all know, is a pestilential swamp where the horseflies and water snakes have been replaced with congressmen and senators. And that’s not a fair trade, because horseflies and water snakes leave your wallet alone when they bite.

That’s where the Seat of Government (SOG — one of the few acronyms which makes sense as a stand-alone word) has long been located. There are lots of possible reasons why the SOG came to be in Washington, D.C., including the proximity to George Washington’s Mount Vernon. However, in recent heretofore secret discussions with Messrs Washington and Jefferson, I have discovered the real answer.

The SOG was put in Washington, D.C., to keep the federal government as small and non-intrusive as possible, and to have only those truly dedicated to public service spend time there, as it was a horrible personal sacrifice.

While a scientific genius in many respects, Mr. Jefferson simply did not anticipate that the evil of modern air conditioning would settle upon the Earth and proliferate like cockroaches. Back in the Pre-Air Conditioning (PAC) days, the SOG was a place to go only when absolutely necessary for only as long as absolutely necessary and otherwise to avoid as one might avoid parts of Haiti. The SOG remains eminently avoidable, but not sufficiently so — hence, the exponential proliferation of government.

There are few ways out of this dilemma, since the political will to make D.C. the totally unpleasant place it was PAC does not exist. Outlaw air conditioning? No way. Move the SOG elsewhere? No matter how currently undesirable a place might be found it would — with one possible exception — eventually change sites again. How about D.C. term limits? People have been kicking that notion around for a long time, but nothing has happened beyond some sore feet; people with terms (other than jail terms) will never want them limited.

Annexation of Haiti and moving the SOG there is the only viable answer.

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3 Responses to “With Air Conditioning, It’s Time to Relocate the Capitol”

  1. Tom Carter |

    Having lived many years in Washington and its environs, I have to say that it’s still pretty miserable in summer, as I’m sure you remember, too. But I guess it’s tolerable if you live and work in air conditioning, travel to and from in air-conditioned limos, imbibe with your favorite lobbyists in air-conditioned bars, and have illegal immigrants to do your yard work.

    I don’t think Haiti would be the ideal location for the SOG, however. For one thing, it ought to at least be on U.S. territory. Why not Puerto Rico? It would be far enough away to be inconvenient, and it would be surrounded by people on welfare. That’s a politician’s dream….

  2. Dan Miller |


    Thanks for the suggestion. Puerto Rico might be a good alternative, and others have been suggested: 250 miles east of Washington, D.C., anywhere along the Mexico-Arizona border, and an apparently abandoned nuclear waste dump site. When elected, I shall take all of these alternatives into consideration in a post-partisan fashion and do my best to arrive at a viable solution.

  3. Tom Carter |

    While you’re at it, Dan, you might look for another site for the UN. Your Haiti idea would work well for that. It would get some of the cost of hosting those bums off our backs, and it will be fun watching the limo-loving, free-shopping, third-world kleptocrats scurrying around in Port-au-Prince. And there would be a huge benefit for the UN — they would be surrounded by poverty stricken people with no qualifications to do anything, and their home-grown kleptocrats could find high-level UN employment without having to relocate!

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