A Thief in the Land
16, 2000, is a day I will long remember. It was the day I was robbed.
The thief got $ 4.07 of my money. But, I got a good look at him; I can
describe him. Im sure the authorities will get him.
The thief looked a lot like Bill Richardson, the Secretary of Energy.
He didnt have a gun, but he told me if I didnt give him the
money, he would send the dreaded Internal Revenue Service to get me. I
was scared; I gave him the money.
As he was walking off with my money, I asked him who fingered me? He said
it was his boss, Pres. Bill Clinton. He said Clinton told him to find
$ 725 million to be given to people in the Northeast to help pay for heating
oil. He told me he didnt care who I got the money from, as long
as it was those who pay the taxes.
I told him that this didnt seem right to me -- him taking my money
and giving it to someone else. This feels a whole lot like theft to me.
Its not so much the money; its the principle.
His response: Its called redistribution of income. He said it is
a favorite pastime of his boss. His boss has a lot of special friends
that he likes to please with gifts. His wife also has a lot of friends
that she helps.
I told the thief that I was as charitable as the next guy, but I liked
to choose my own charities. He responded that his boss, not me, would
make those kinds of decisions.
I told him that I was going to complain to my representatives in Washington.
He laughed. Then, in a sneering voice, he said, good luck, theyre
in on it too. They have their own special friends. With them its
I felt violated. I was being taken by the most powerful man in the world,
and there was nothing I could do. The authorities were scared to help
Then, I did a shameful thing. I asked him how I could get on the list
for some of that charity.
is a retired NASA executive who writes about community matters. Some of
his articles are accepted for publication in The Huntsville Times; some
are not. This one was not.