In light of the recent 38 Studios disaster, there is a lot of talk about economic development in this state, and how best to achieve that goal. The Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation kind of owes us one now, seeing as how it, along with the governor, former director Keith Stokes, the local media, the Bilderberg Group, George Soros and pretty much everyone other than Curt Schilling, brought about the untimely demise of such a promising and financially viable company. Now that the State of Rhode Island is unlikely to remain in the MMORPGCF (massively multiplayer online role-playing game clusterf**k) business, it will likely be looking for new opportunities to invest the taxpayers’ hard-earned money in dicey, unproven companies with inexperienced chairmen operating in highly competitive markets with huge development costs – and I believe I have the next $75 million idea.
If the EDC will simply hand over a blank check, I will immediately begin the process of relocating my innovative startup with huge growth potential from its current home in my daydreams to some swanky downtown real estate (I’m looking at you, soon-to-be-vacant Superman Building), bringing with it hundreds of (potential) jobs, millions of dollars in (hypothetical) tax revenue, and several (on layaway) air hockey tables. People of Rhode Island, say hello to the next Enron, Worldcom, Pets.com and Bernie Madoff’s hedge fund all rolled into one. Prepare to witness an explosion of growth and investment in the new Knowledge District, a dramatic drop in the unemployment rate, streets paved with gold, pennies from heaven, a chicken in every pot, 40 acres and a mule, free health care for everyone and lotto scratch tickets that are all winners. I’m talking, of course, about VagiTech.
Think about it: what are America’s two most innovative, high-tech, rapidly growing industries? Biotech and porn. VagiTech combines both. By using embryonic stem cells to develop synthetic, on-demand vaginas, my company will provide a valuable, recession-proof product, create jobs (in China), pay (zero) taxes (in the Cayman Islands) and capitalize on a trending Twitter topic (#VaginaMovieLines) – all the necessary ingredients for real economic development (in my checking account).
Now, I know what you’re thinking – plenty of entrepreneurs come to the EDC hat in hand, looking for some tax dollars to bankroll their hair-brained schemes. So what makes mine different? First of all, I’ve followed the 38 Studios blueprint and brought in some top-flight “visionaries” to ensure that VagiTech has the talent, experience and drive to win a wild card playoff berth, overcome a 3-0 deficit in the ALCS against our archrivals and go on to sweep the St. Louis Cardinals in the World Series of Economic Development. Just look at my company’s roster: former Red Sox backup catcher Doug Mirabelli, CFO; Red Sox mascot Wally the Green Monster, Senior VP for Operations; a bloody sock, VP of Marketing; the cryogenically preserved head of Ted Williams, Senior Product Manager; and Sully, that guy who calls into WEEI every day to yell about trading Kevin Youkilis, running the mail room. We. Can’t. Lose.
All that’s left now is for the governor and several prominent members of the General Assembly to publicly lobby in favor of this flagrantly dubious plan, while privately engaging in shady backroom horse-trading and pressuring the EDC to greenlight a deal that will shamefully be made law with an eleventh hour vote that everyone involved will subsequently disavow. Then, VagiTech is open for business. In the meantime, anybody wanna buy a motion picture tax credit?