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7 Ways Congress Could Be More Productive

Christopher Coppock |
October 9, 2013 | 10:41 a.m. PDT

Executive Producer

Congress is so ineffective right now they might as well watch the WNBA (Jeffrey Zeldman/Flickr)
Congress is so ineffective right now they might as well watch the WNBA (Jeffrey Zeldman/Flickr)
1) Underwater Basket Weaving

You might be wondering why underwater basket weaving is a more productive activity than what congress is currently doing. This could only, happen, however, if you have failed to realize that congress is doing exactly nothing. (Repeated arguing and bickering doesn't count). Underwater basket weaving is a pretty cool thing to be able to do, mainly because if you're ever at a party or on a date and run out of things to talk about you have a solid backup story that should interest just about anyone. 

(Emre Ayaroglu/Flickr)
(Emre Ayaroglu/Flickr)
2) Origami

If Congress is going to refuse to even make an effort to solve the shutdown crisis, they might as well learn origami. Why? Well there are a couple good reasons. First off, when they're sitting in those huge chambers for hours, not listening to their fellow senators or members speeches, what better way to pass the time than by making hundreds, perhaps even thousands of paper cranes. 


Doesn't this look like fun? (bradleypjohnson/flickr)
Doesn't this look like fun? (bradleypjohnson/flickr)
3) Tanning

Okay, so winter is coming, why bother tanning right? Well, when you're in congress looking good is at least 3/4 of the battle, and what better way to stand out than with a deep California tan. So instead of make speeches in Congress about how it's the other parties fault and no one is willing to negotiate, why not come down to Malibu while it's still warm for a couple weeks. Enjoy the sun, go for a swim, don't make things any worse. Sounds like productivity to me. 

4) Playing GTA

Grand Theft Auto 5 is a game infamous for its over the top violence, language, drug use and blatant sex. I would imagine that the vast majority of Congress is disgusted by this game and think its popularity is just another signal of the failure and degradation of young people in our country. Stress, however, is a huge problem in Congress right now, mainly because the government is shutdown and our country is 8 days from default and no one is making progress and all that fun stuff. Maybe if our representatives were less stressed they would be better at negotiating. If that is the case, there is no better way to blow off steam than by playing GTA, where anything goes as long as you can stay alive. 

5) Watching the WNBA

This one is probably the biggest stretch, mainly because of the social stigma associated with watching the WNBA. The quality of basketball isn't actually that bad, but try staying on a channel showing a WNBA game for more than 5 seconds and be prepared for some serious heckling from whoever is in the room. Congress should try watching the WNBA together, however, because if they can sort out their differences over how bad the WNBA really is, the can sort out anything. 

6) Marriage Counseling 

The Republicans and Democrats in Congress are acting like an old married couple right now. Or at least a couple in the middle of divorce who can't agree on one darn thing. Ever seen the opening scene of wedding crashers? "Shut, shut, shut your mouth when you're talking to me!" Yeah, that's what the two parties remind me of right now. Some marriage counseling for John Boehner and Harry Reid might help at this point. It certainly can't hurt things. 

7) Reaching a Deal 

This last one is in here because it seems relevant. Whatever congress is doing right now, it certainly isn't this, so maybe if the took a day or two to do all the things above they could come back fresh, ready to go. Because let's face it, the way things are looking now isn't good. A lot of people are out of jobs for no good reason and even more people don't have access to services they need or aren't getting paid. 

This piece was meant to be satire, but it was only written because of the dire state Congress really is. I don't know how or when it will be resolved, but in the meantime on of the best therapies for the rest of us is to make fun of them. Maybe eventually they'll realize how foolishly they are actually acting. 

Reach Executive Producer Christopher Coppock by email.



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