The Colbert Report

Season 6 Episode 30

David Brooks

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Aired Weekdays 11:30 PM Mar 02, 2010 on Comedy Central
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David Brooks
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Tonight Stephen welcomes New York Times columnist David Brooks.
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      • Stephen: Tonight: Children are the key to our economic future, but are they too small to fail? Then: The most exclusive luxury car ever. I hope its airbags are solid gold! And my guest David Brooks is a moderate conservative and a New York Times columnist. I'll ask him what it's like to be in two dying industries at once. Happy birthday Dr. Seuss! This is the Colbert Repoose.

      • Stephen: How will the next generation of Americans learn to spend recklessly on things they can't afford with money they don't have? Thankfully the answer is tonight's Word: Kid-Owe. Folks, I have fallen in love with the new credit website called Kwedit. Now I know that sounds like a website that hooks little kids on borrowing credit, so let me explain: It's a website that hooks little kids on borrowing credit. You see, kids can borrow money from Kwedit to play online game, allowing them to play now, pay later. Which I believe is what e pluribus Unum means in Latin. (Carpe Diem = "Seize your house") Now let's say that your child is playing the online game FooPets, which, by the way, should not be confused with F U Pets. That is not a site for kids, or anyone really. Now on FooPets, your kid might need a bag of virtual dog food, because as the site says "…if you stop feeding and watering your FooPet, it will be taken to the FooShelter…" Where he will be injected with a fatal dose of FooBituates. (The circle of Second Life) Now, folks, this virtual dog food costs your child three actual dollars in the real world. Now how's your kid going to pay for it? (cash4mommysgold.com?) You see, that is where Kwedit comes in. Kwedit will lend the money as long as your child makes a Kwedit promise to pay that money back, as illustrated here by Kwedit's mascot, Kweddy. See, he's talking a pledge to repay the loan, so help my Jesus Kwist. (That's bwasphemy!)

        But if they don't have the money, Kwedit lets them pass the duck by generating an email to a friend or family member asking them to them to pay off the debt. (Emotional quackmail) You see this provides a teaching opportunity. As the site says: "When you Pass the Duck, it's a great opportunity to start a conversation about fiscal literacy and the responsible use of credit." The same way digging a shallow grave together is a great opportunity to start a conversation about how murder is wrong. Now what happens if the kid doesn't repay their Kwedit? (The break his wegs?) His Kweidt score goes down, but if they pay their Kwedit card bills, a child can but increasingly expensive virtual stuff. For example, this FooPet doghouse for 400 actual dollars. That is so much cooler than this real doghouse you can buy for $99 or this split level in Detroit that you can get for $20.

        Folks, I think Kwedit could be the next economic bubble. Because instead of relying on adults to spend money they don't have on things they don't need, now we'll have kids spending money on things that don't exist. (Jobs?) But kids cannot spend us out of this hole all by themselves. I say we extend Kwedit to even less responsible parties like the criminally insane and the dead. (Post-mortem, but pre-approved!) Or better yet, there is a rapidly growing demographic that we should really extend a line of credit to: FooPets. And don't worry that they have no income, if the pets can't pay they'll just ask your kids. And if your kids can't pay they'll just ask you, and if you can't pay you'll ask the bank and if the bank can't pay they'll ask the government and the government will ask China, who as we all know be getting that money out of your kids. (Kid-owe)

        And that's the Word.

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