Ways The Meeting Industry Can Save America

By: Harry Freedman, Humorist
Posted: 11/22/2009

Meeting planners, event producers, corporate speakers, sound guys, light guys, heavy guys, and even rich celebrity entertainers are suffering so badly; rumor has it,

Cher recently auctioned off some of her outfits.

One event producer with 60 years of experience, described it as “the worst he’s ever seen,” and considering he only made a living for about 30 of them, that’s pretty bad.

Meanwhile, despite all the bailing for banks, insurance, and auto companies, there are far fewer meetings. Apparently, the theory is, if the banks fail, the entire country and world economy could go with it, while speakers and event producers are considered dispensable.

But if speakers see no future in their chosen industry, they might start doing crazy things, like running for congress, and that wouldn’t be good, no matter which side of the political fence you’re on.

It’s the same with event planners, who are so bored, they’re now producing local pta meetings with real Clingons.

But just because these other industries screwed the pooch, is no reason for us all to suffer.

We’re ready to motivate. Now!

So instead of giving those companies more money, give it to the event planners.

If nothing else, we could show the other companies how to take a bailout gracefully, by demonstrating the proper groveling etiquette, taxpayers want to see in their bailout recipients.

Because, we’ll follow the government’s rules.

If the government wants me to fly to the North Pole for a motivational speech at Christmas time, I’m there. And if the government tells me I can’t use my private jet for that flight, I’m okay with that too, since currently, I don’t own a private jet.

So, in contrast to the arrogant auto executives, we would bus our best speakers to Washington to thank congress. And not even on regular buses. School buses. And not the new ones. The old ones, without heat, air conditioning or seatbelts or even attentive drivers.

Then, let the meeting planners work their magic.

Let the economists go back to economizing, the efficiency experts go back to efficiecisizing, the motivators motivating, and the Dooby brothers can go back to Doobying.

Who pays?

Well, partly the Ceo’s. Some of them are still earning 30 or 40 million bucks, so if you take away, let’s say, a million apiece, that would fund hundreds of meetings.

The rest? Well, we’d simply motivate everybody to work harder for less money, which could then pay for our speaking.

And while it may not seem the ideal time, what could be more important then uplifting demoralized employees?  

First of all, more meetings stimulate the economy.

Event workers devour enormous amounts of coffee, soda, pizza and chocolate chip cookies, which helps Starbucks, coke, dominos, and Keebler in that order.

That’s stimulus!

Meetings help hotels, thus enabling cab drivers and illegal maids to keep sending money back to their native countries, which results in more tourists coming to America.

That’s stimulus!

Right now, without business travelers attending meetings, first class on the airlines is emptier then the high priced seats at the new Yankee Stadium.

More meetings. Stimulus!

And lastly, there is no substitute for pressing the flesh, particularly, if you’re meeting in Vegas.

But what if there is no meeting bailout?

Well, whenever the sanitation department goes on strike, the garbage piles up and festers with insects, rats, and disease.

With the drop-off in meetings, a similar toxic build up has occurred in corporate America.

Because speakers are the cheerleading section of America.

But how cheery can America be, if the speakers are all unemployed?

And while, I don’t want to imply that anything terrible could happen, it is a well-known fact, that many serial killers are actually ex-motivational speakers whose sales have dropped off. So, if they’re not even working at all; well, you do the math.

So, call your congressman and county commissioners, stalk your senators, (except for Minnesota), write the white house, twitter your town councilmen, and mention it to your mayor.

It’s a moral issue. In order to save our family values, we must have a bailout

President Obama, the ball’s in your court.

If you can kill a fly with one hand, you can give us a bailout with the other.

Harry Freedman is a corporate impostor, emcee and humorous videographer. He has been profiled in the NY Times and has opened in major theaters for Ray Romano.

He is currently suffering from hair loss and sciatica, but will still travel anywhere in the free world to entertain an audience even without his private jet. 

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