GreatAs recently reported in the media, an Alabama defense contractor named Cathy Maples was the winning eBay bidder (along with four of her friends) to a dinner with Sarah Palin and her husband. The winning bid was $63,500, and the proceeds will go a charity called Ride 2 Recovery, which helps rehabilitate military personnel injured in our various wars.
Good deeds aside, I am intrigued as to what one would obtain from a dinner with Palin, as opposed to simply giving $63,500 directly to the charity itself. For example, which unique insights into the psyche of Palin, or the inner workings of American government, will the attendees take home with them?
Foreign policy? Once Sarah's guests visit her home, they will possess the same foreign policy experience as she, assuming its a clear day and Russia is still visible from her porch. Perhaps they'll learn about the American work ethic, like sticking with a job you sought and won until your term is complete. Economics? I'm still waiting for a treatise from Palin in National Review, or at the least, in Parade or Reader's Digest. Health care? Can you say "Death Panels"??? After much thought and using some complex mathematics, I determined the donor's Return on Investment, relative to knowledge gained vs. dollars expended would be zero, to wit: 0 insights/$63,500 = 0 ROI. Sadly, the answer is the same if the winner were to spend, say $1.47 for the "Dinner with Sarah".
However, Palin's idea is not a bad one. Thus, I am offering an alternative for a much lower price. Read on.
You can win a chance to go to dinner with the two most famous bloggers in Nags Head, NC. Bob Muller, the Wobbly former Mayor of Nags Head, and yours truly, the defender of individual and property rights (as long as you don't build a pink house next door to me).
The cost? I would guess less than $150. The requirements? Unlike Palin, who reserved the right to reject the winning bidder "if the winner fails to meet 'subjective standards of suitability, professionalism, background and other factors"; Bob and I could care less about any of these things. All we ask is that you pay the dinner bill for the both of us; the restaurant chosen must be in Nags Head, have waiters, and a wine list. Dinner courses not to exceed $25, and wine bottles (one each) not to exceed the same amount.
What do you get in return? From Bob, a history of how Nags Head evolved to its current lofty state as the premier town on the Outer Banks. Also, both our insights on the proposed convention center, beach nourishment, consensus government, Derb Carter, ORV Restrictions, wind power, and loud, hateful protesters of either stripe. In fact, our entire body of political opinion is a matter of public record and available for free on the internet. We can also discuss wine, food, wine, and food.
As to foreign policy, both Bob and I have seen Bermuda from the top of Jockey's Ridge (on a clear day and with proper amounts of wine), and he has been to Wanchese several times. Best yet, there is NO LIMIT on the number of winners. You supply the dinner and drinks, Bob and I will show up. Everyone wins.
And that's how it should be.
PS: Don't ask Bob to show you his pictures. He takes lots of them. They number in the thousands.
PSS: Disregard the above if you agree to buy wine for as long as Bob shows you his pictures. I can be bought, you see.