Causey: That's what I call stimulus

What does an alligator have to do with an economic stimulus plan? You'll have to read on.

We have all seen details of the tax rebate plan, assuming we can keep track of what legislation actually got passed. Most people will get between $600 for singles and $1,200 for married couples.

We can spend the rebate — which apparently is taxable — any way we want. The checks will be in the mail any time now, except for those who get direct deposit. The idea is to prime the economic pump, whatever that means, and stave off a recession unless we are already in one.

When the economic stimulus plan was explained to me, I immediately thought of a former classmate who stole an alligator, then stuffed it down his pants.

I hadn’t given this much thought until the president and the Democratic House leadership came up with their tax rebate plan. The fact that it’s either your money or money loaned to us by the Chinese is trivial. You’ve gotta see the big picture, which is what we do in D.C.

Mike Causey As soon as the plan was explained to me I put two and two together. The answer: Stolen alligator down pants. By the way, this is not me we are talking about.

Let’s be clear on that.

It happened while I was doing time at Gordon Junior High School in D.C. I think it is now a retirement home for geese, but at the time it was a thriving educational factory.

Gordon had three tracks: 1) Language (French or Latin) for kids going to college. 2) Commercial (business arithmetic) for those not going to college, and 3) The Ungraded section for those going to prison. I was on Track 2.

One of my comrades on Track 2 scored a coup over the summer. As I said, this was not me. He went to Adele’s Pet Shop and made off with a baby gator.

He did it by shoving same down the front of his pants. This was a first for him, and for the reptile, too. The kid’s name escapes me.

Because I can’t remember his name or face, only his daring deed, I begin to think maybe he is now a member of the White House staff. Or perhaps part of the House Democratic leadership. You know, one of the people who thought up this rebate concept.

I can almost see him now. I try to imagine what he would look like after nearly half a century. I know he’s not the president or vice president. They didn’t go to Gordon, I’m sure. But who could it be? The faces blur before me. But I’m sure gator boy had a hand in this economic stimulus plan.

After all, anybody who would decide to steal an alligator to raise in Washington and then spirit it away stuffed down the front of his pants is the kind of person that would propose something like the pending rebate. I’ve eliminated the secretary of the Treasury, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi who, after all, grew up in Baltimore.

And is a woman, too.

Two things are crystal clear: First, that anybody with the drive to steal an alligator, then stuff it down his pants, is clearly destined for a political life. Maybe as a congressman or senator. Or as an economic adviser to some political type, like the president.

Second, it definitely wasn’t me. And I don’t have the scars to prove it!

Causey ( is a senior correspondent for Washington, D.C.’s Federal News Radio AM 1050. He writes a daily column, which can be found at Before joining WFED, he wrote the Federal Diary column for the Washington Post.


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