Cockroach Economics

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By: Wayne Brown

(Writer’s Note:  This hub was written in response to a request from a fellow hubber, alijafar. I have no idea what the basis or reason for the request might be but I thought that I would give it my best shot. Hopefully you will find it enjoyable! WB).

 

 

No one could believe the news when they first heard it on the television evening newscast or read it in the paper the next morning.  It was so unbelievable that even a person who did not believe in miracles had to step back and reconsider in light of this amazing accomplishment.  Officials within the federal government had just made an official announcement that the cockroach had finally reached extinction and had been totally eradicated from our society.  No longer would the infestation of the cockroach drive our economic engine in so many ways. No longer would we get up in the middle of the night, turn on the light, and see one of the hideous long brown creatures scurrying across the floor acting like a surprised criminal caught in the midst of his crime.  The long winter of infestation was finally over.

 

For a while, there was all out celebration throughout the country.  People were literally dancing in the streets with joy.  Restaurant owners were among the happiest of the crowd all grinning with the emotion that no longer would they be confronted with the embarrassment of cockroaches turning up in their establishments…what a relief!  Days had gone by now and still the celebrations continued.  Mankind had come to dominate the cockroach as he had all the creatures of earth.  This indeed was a day of victory, a time of celebration.

 

But there were those among us who were not so happy.  In fact, these people were quickly falling into a state of shock and depression.  The exterminators of America were totally sad-mouthed by the announced accomplishment of modern science.  The thought of this accomplishment send terror through the hearts of every pest control technician throughout the cities of America.  No more cockroaches…it was absolutely unbelievable.  Most folks would think they would be happy as well but the exterminators already knew what the people had not yet realized.  If the cockroach could be wiped out, then there was not hope for any other pest that walked, crawled, or flew around in America.  The cockroach was the icon.  It was the beast.  It was the standard by which the resilence of all other pest was measured.  Now this mighty cockroach had succumbed to the rigors of modern day pesticide and fell into extinction.  Truly this must be a sign that the end of the world is quite near.  There was no doubt about it, all the pest control technicians believed it.

 

The cockroach had been around since the first days of earth.  It had survived literally for centuries in every arena of mankind taking on his most potent concoctions and surviving them with ease.  Blessed with the ability to live in any environment and to multiply at speeds that would make jackrabbits cry, the cockroach for its ugliness was certainly a multi-talent and timeless bug.  Now, it too, had run out of luck in the war with mankind. It too had gone the way of the dinosauer and other species lost in time.  Pest control technicians sat at their desk and slightly wept the loss.

 

What could possibly be the economic trickle down effect in monetary terms of the eradication of this pesky critter from our midst?  Well, obviously the pest control industry would take a huge economic hit as one of the front line business directly impacted by the cockroach.  With over 4200 different species of cock roaches, 30 of which are classified as pests, the cockroach is big business in the pest control world.  Then there is the economics of disease and parasites these creatures carried.  That means doctors will also be impacted in terms of income since there will be significant decline in allergy and parasitic occurrences in patients.

 

More than 70,000 pest control technicians throughout America will suffer an income reduction due to the demise of the cockroach.  Current estimates for family care physicians put that population at approximately 100,000 doctors.  In total, this is approximately 170,000 individuals who are directly affected financially by the disappearance of the cockroach.  Now there is an economic theory which speculates that a minimum of six people are affected when the income of one individual is reduced.  On the base of that information, the expotential effect on trickle down income will expand from these 170,000 professional to an estimated 1,020,000 people who will suffer an economic impact.  Obviously these people will be involved in a variety of life pursuits but they economic suffering can only affect more people by that factor of six once again.  By the time we reach the third layer, the impacted population is over 6,000,000 people who will feel the ill-effects of the death of the cockroach.

 

Certainly the loss of the cockroach will cause a broad economic downturn as it trickles down through the layers of America.  The fingers of the effect will reach into restaurants, food stores, and into various retail stores such as Wal-Mart and Targets.  Once store sales volumes begin to drop, the backlash will be a lay-off of workers which will in turn surpress another layer of the population causing the financial impact to run even deeper.  In fact, some economists speculate that the loss of the cockroach could go so far as to undermine the financial coffers of the federal government setting off calls for tax increases from various key officials.

 

As news of these developments began to filter down to the average individual, the air of celebration began to depart the country.  Americans became increasing anxiously about the potential for pay cuts or possibly being laid-off from their current employment. An aura of depression fell upon the land and despair seemed to be the mood in what had just recently been a nation in celebration.  Disaster had struck once again in America and it was evident the toll would be high.

 

As the President walked out on to the podium to once again address America regarding this dire consequence that had befallen the nation, a strange thing occurred.  As the President prepared to begin reading the speech that he hoped would prop up the human spirit of Americans throughout the nation and give them a renewed sense of hope, he glanced at the floor and caught sight of a lone cockroach running from beneath the podium.  In that single instance caught on the cameras of the nationwide media, a miracle occurred.  The President and all those about him suddenly realized that America had been spared.  Americans would not suffer the ravages brought on by the loss of the loathsome cockroach.  All would be well once again in America as pest control technicians, family physicians, and just your average Americans smiled with glee watching the cockroach crawl across the toe of the President’s shoe.

 

© Copyright WBrown2010. All Rights Reserved.

 

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Comments 21 comments

nicomp profile image

nicomp 6 years ago from Ohio, USA

I, for one, welcome our Cockroach Overlords.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

@nicomp...yes it is rather scary to think how much power economically these creatures might wield! Thanks for the read and the good words! WB


KFlippin profile image

KFlippin 6 years ago from Amazon

That was a purely enjoyable read, what a great metaphorical essay, what a great subject, the cockroach's demise, the critter does serve a function (I guess), and humans could take a lesson from the balance of life in the insect world. By the way, just what eats a cockroach? That critter would start eating some other critter's food and so on, the trickle down effect to the insect world might be as life-changing as it would be to the human world.

This is amusing, and so well illustrates the very real trickle down and spreading fingers effect of seemingly innocuous or desirable decisions made that will actually negatively impact the economic well-being of America.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

@KFlippin...A new hubber challenged me to write a hub on who would lose money if the cockroaches suddently died. This was all that I could think of that made sense. Glad to hear that it worked out and entertained you while also teaching a lession. Thanks Katie! WB


KFlippin profile image

KFlippin 6 years ago from Amazon

I think probably the things written that both entertain and teach a lesson, or provoke thought, etc...as in old parable traditions, are maybe the things that stick the most with readers, I struggle to find humor at times, yours is always refreshing. And what an odd request for you from this new hubber!? You handled it well....Katie


Tom Whitworth profile image

Tom Whitworth 6 years ago from Moundsville, WV

Wayne,

What a great imagination you have to concoct this interprtation of the demise of a creature such as a cockroach. Surly the nuts from PITA would step in way before they would allow the cockroach to become extinct.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

@KFlippin...Interesting, Katie...must I should have called it "The Cockroach Parable". LOL! WB

@Tom Whitworth... You are right on there Tom. I have to laugh just thinking how much government would be involved in saving the cockroach once it became apparent that someone was trying to kill it! LOL! WB


eovery profile image

eovery 6 years ago from MIddle of the Boondocks of Iowa

This is great.

Keep on hubbing!


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

@eovery...Thanks much; glad you enjoyed it! WB


breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 6 years ago

Brilliant hub on a a rather strange subject. I am sure somewhere in the stimulus bill is money set aside for the cockroach. Personally, I think there are probably more cockroaches running around in Congress than any slum in the world.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

@breakfastpop...Yes Poppy and those are the kind that can be exterminated! We should do it in the next election! The hubber who request this write must have read my orginal "The Cockroach Factor" and decided that I had no answer for what happens when the cockroaches die. As Gomer Pyle would say...Surprise! Surprise, Surprise! WB


akirchner profile image

akirchner 6 years ago from Central Oregon

I say long live the cockroaches and if America is spared, so much the better!

I love the part about them multiplying fast enough to make jackrabbits weep - that is NO JOKE. Remember them in great old Southern California and can't say that I miss them!

Great analogy of the trickledown effect - even in the cockroach biz I guess there is a price to pay for loss of income. Again, long live the roaches - at least SOMEONE will still have a job, eh?


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

@akirchner...I guess it points out that we should really think about things before we begin to change them too much. Nature and just about everything else has some balance in the world that needs to be maintained...even the cockroach! Thanks for the read and the good comments! WB


Micky Dee profile image

Micky Dee 6 years ago

Wayne Dude! I'm amazed. I can't believe what you've done with that simple request. I'm also amazed at how all those roaches, on the video, were taught to dance. I've had a terrible time teaching roaches anything. I taught squirrel how to eat pecans and a mouse to eat cheese but no luck with roaches at all. They are unfriendly for the most part!


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

@Micky Dee...Thanks Micky! It amazes me how someone can suggest something to me and stuff like this just come roaring through...sometimes I am just the instrument. I have not had no luck with cockroaches either...I was just trying to get them to pee outside with the dogs! Thanks for the visit Micky and your good words! WB


mysterylady 89 profile image

mysterylady 89 6 years ago from Florida

Wayne, I am back to read your hub #2, and I chose this one because the first hub I wrote was titled "The Roach That Would Not Die," a true story.

This was a fun read!


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

@mysterylady 89...I think you had the right I idea from the start. I have never killed one that I believe was really dead! I think you could haul their body parts ot other states and they would still survive! But, based on my theory, that's a good economic indicator! LOL...Thanks for the read and the visit. Hope to see you again soon! WB


seedplanter 5 years ago

Ohmygosh, what a hoot this was! Love your wit and the way you write, Wayne. We spent 8 years in the Deep South (Louisiana) during my husband's military years. I'll always remember how those so-called "wood beetles"--the huge black roaches) could squeeze through a window screen and go whirring across the room like motorized cigars. This was a hilarious read. Can't wait to share it with my DH. :)


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas Author

@seedplanter...There's a lot of truth in this scenario, especially today's times. I suppose the big message here is "be careful what you wish for" and never look to the government for anything of rational good. Thanks much. Glad you had fun with it. WB


seedplanter 5 years ago

Wayne, I know - these tough economic times have touched so many lives, including ours. My husband worked for a great company and loved his job as logistics director. One by one, the 13 distribution centers went belly-up, leaving thousands out of work. He has been job hunting every day for 2 1/2 years. We really "get" what people are going through out there and it's been a long haul. I do like how you weave humor with truth--keep it up. I'm looking forward to reading more from you.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas Author

@seedplanter...Thank you and best of luck to your husband in that search. Come on down to Texas...we got jobs! Happy Thanksgiving! WB

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