Let’s sell the Capitol

To the editor:

I visited the Iowa state Capitol recently and was struck by the opulence of the place – the woodwork, the marble, the paintings, the statues, the gilded borders on hand-painted trim that decorate every wall and all this under a gold dome. So what’s the problem? Well, first is that the government has no money of its own. Every penny they spend must be taken, with the threat of violence from the working class first. Secondly, such an ornate building makes those who occupy it have a greater sense of self-worth than they deserve and this luxurious setting makes them think that everything they do in it, no matter how stupid or expensive or how it may trample our freedoms, is good.

My thinking is that lawmakers ought to meet in a big canvas tent out in the middle of a barren pasture with no heat or air conditioning. That way they’d be humbled and realize that they don’t deserve the money they take from us. It would also entice only truly humble people to attend because self-important people wouldn’t be caught dead in a tent out in a barren field.

Therefore, I’m suggesting we sell the Iowa state Capitol building to some flamboyant celebrity like Richard Simmons or Dennis Rodman. They can buy it as their new home in Des Moines. The proceeds would easily buy the big tent I talked about and the rest of the money could pay our property taxes for the rest of our lives. Who’s with me?

P.S. While we’re doing this, let’s sell off all the public buildings in Washington, D.C.

Jim Hirschberg