Monday, January 13, 2014

What If Government Bureaucrats Made The Investments On TV's "Shark Tank"?

By, Chris Rossini

If you're unfamiliar with Shark Tank, it's a TV show where very wealthy businessmen & businesswomen use their own personal funds to back startups and businesses in need of capital.

Below is a snapshot of the show. The potential investors (a.k.a. "Sharks") are sitting on the left, listening to a pitch being made by the gentleman on the right, who is seeking an investment for his company.

The "Sharks" can refuse to make an investment, or, if they see a profit potential, can bid against the other "Sharks" in order to get a piece of the company.

In this article, I'd like to imagine what the show would be look like if the investors were not private individuals using their own funds, but rather government bureaucrats using taxpayer dollars.

So here we go.

Our "entrepreneur", George W. Obama, enters into the Shark Tank seeking an investment of $500,000 for a 50% stake in his company, Equality Inc.

George W. Obama: Hello Sharks, my name is George W. Obama, and I'm President of my company Equality Inc.

Shark: I love you already. Did your parents really name you that?

George W. Obama: No sir, I legally changed my name to George W. Obama.

Shark: Fantastic choice, but why that name specifically?

George W. Obama: Well, I'm one of the many Americans who is tired of all the gridlock in Washington, and I wanted to make a statement with my name that if we really try hard, both sides of the aisle can come together to become one.

Shark: Brilliant. So George, what is it that your company Equality Inc. makes? ... BTW George, that's another excellent name. You're 2 for 2, and we haven't even heard your pitch yet!....hahaha

George W. Obama: Hahaha...well thank you! My company creates customizable giant foam fingers. Here's an example:

So what we do is "hand-paint" patriotic messages on them and than sell them. For example, we'll paint "USA - We're Exceptional" on them, or "Healthcare Is A Right" or "Free Birth Control or Bust".....Stuff like that.

Shark: I noticed that you said "hand paint". You don't print them with a special type of printer?

George W. Obama: No mam, I believe that technology and machinery is a scourge and job destroyer. I'm trying to bring jobs back to this great country of ours, one hand-painter at a time.

Shark: That's a good point...a very good point, in fact.

Shark: Do you have any sales? And how much do you sell them for?

George W. Obama: Yes, we've sold about 1,500 at $2.00/each.

Shark: Where do you sell them?

George W. Obama: Well, because of my aversion to technology, I avoid selling them online. Also, I HATE the big retailers with a passion, so I avoid them too. I mostly take them by hand to political rallies.

Shark: Ok...ok...well it's great to see you getting involved in this great democracy of ours. Any profits?

George W. Obama: Not yet. I don't really focus on profits because I always preach to my employees that we should "Put People Before Profits".

Shark: Excellent way to look at things. So how have you been able to keep going?

George W. Obama: I received a loan from the Small Business Administration.

Shark: that you've sold 1,500...have you sought out private investors?

George W. Obama: I have. No one is interested. They just can't come around to seeing my vision. All they care about is making money. That's why I'm hoping that you fine individuals will be able to keep my dream alive. I really want a foam finger in every home in America. We're such an amazing and free country, that everyone should wave their foam finger with pride.

Shark: That's true...there's a lot of anti-government rhetoric that has cropped up lately. Ever since that Ron Paul guy came, I hate that guy.

George W. Obama: Like I said before, I'm not into the Internet and technology, but yeah I see on TV that people want to take away our right to free Healthcare. And as for that Ron Paul guy, I only heard of him from my friend, who said Ron Paul wants everyone to do heroin and cocaine. Wouldn't surprise me. Crazy times we're living in.

Shark: They are crazy times, and that's why me and the other Sharks are help people like you. People who are patriotic, compassionate, and not driven by profits.

George W. Obama: That's why I'm here.

Shark: Now, I notice that you're valuing your company at $1 million. But you only have $3,000 in sales. Explain to me how you got to that valuation, and why we should invest that much taxpayer money into Equality, Inc.

George W. Obama: That's a very good question. When I was in my early twenties, I attended a government-funded "skills building" program. At that program, they stressed to always ask high. Always ask for more than what you expect.

Shark: Very good. I'm glad to see you made use of that fine public program.

George W. Obama: Yes, I learned a lot. So, I came to the $1 million number by first assessing what a fair "living wage" would be for myself. I then added up the value of my time in creating each foam finger. I then took that number and multiplied it by the number of employees that I have.

Shark: Ok...I like your math. Did you attend public school?

George W. Obama: Never missed a day.

Shark: I can tell. See this is why it rips me apart every time I hear those libertarians talk about "getting government out of education".

Shark: I'll tell you what George....I think that I speak for the rest of my Sharks when I say you had us at the moment you told us your name. But everything that crossed your lips after was just as much a breath of fresh air. You knocked it out of the park my friend. More people should be like you.

So I'll tell you what, we're going to accept your offer $500,000 in taxpayer funds for 50% of Equality, Inc. This is how you rebuild America. When government invests in its people, it makes the best investment of all.

Congratulations George W. we have a deal?

George W. Obama: We have a deal!!! And I just want to say one more thing. I just knew in my heart, after hearing "No" from all those private investors, that this would be the place to come. They kept telling me about profits, and something about efficient use of resources. I wouldn't let their propaganda stop me.

And now my company is valued at $1 million. If that isn't proof that The American Dream is still alive, then nothing is!

Chris Rossini is on TwitterFacebook & Google+


  1. Funny as all get-out Chris! Good satire and good read.

  2. Good satire and good read! Thank you.

  3. Love this show.

    I would love to see the real sharks laugh this guy out of the door, and then rip in him even more after they kicked his pathetic ass to the curb!

    These "Sharks" are no fools- they can see through bullshit, and only want to put products out there that people actually WANT and that can make money.

  4. The best part of the show, to me, is that the 'sharks' always bring up things that someone like me - a 'non' businessman - would never think about: scaling production costs, obscure regulations, probing questions about marketability, etc.

    It really shows how much these guys know about the long, long process of getting a product to profitability, as opposed to the idea in many peoples' minds that they don't _do_ anything.

    Yeah, they can be a little abrasive, but then again, it IS a tv show...

  5. I needed a good laugh this morning, and your satire delivered with, for example, #74 of the cliches of socialism.