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August 13, 1998

IMF bails out Melrose man
Johnny Lucantoni benefits from new "Spread the Wealth Thinner" program

MELROSE — Johnny Lucantoni had problems. His credit cards were run up to their limits. And his car payments were two months behind.

"One time they even tried to repo the ‘Vette," Lucantoni recalls, "but they didn’t get fuckin’ far. Not after I took that bat to their shins."

But Lucantoni’s problems have been solved — for the moment, at least — thanks to a $7 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund. The bailout is the first in the IMF’s new "Spread the Wealth Thinner" program, created to prop up emerging economies after the foundation noted a recent slowdown in their operations. imf.jpg (22637 bytes)

"After Russia, we pretty much ran out of countries that needed money," said IMF spokesman Jeremy Feinstein. "Without countries that need money, we didn’t have all that much to do, when one day Bob said, ‘Hey, let’s give money to people!’ Bob doesn’t even work here. But we all agreed that people need money, and we jumped on it. Besides, we didn’t have anything better to do. It gets pretty boring around The Hague."

The new tactic has caused the IMF to face criticism from economists worldwide (except those economists who have amassed large personal debts, who are generally regarded as bad economists).

"This is bad for Mr. Lucantoni, and bad for the global economy," decried Theodore Gustavson, a macroeconomist of indeterminate nationality. "Mr. Lucantoni, and others who find themselves in situations like his, should be taught that you can’t solve a problem simply by throwing money at it. Instead, we’re teaching him that you CAN solve a problem simply by throwing money at it. That’s the opposite of what should be taught — and that’s wrong. Because wrong is the opposite of right. Except in a directional sense, then the opposite is left."

"In either event," Gustavson said, getting back to the point, "what happens when Lucantoni works his way through this money and needs more? Who’s going to give him seven billion dollars then? Not me, I tell you."

But Lucantoni defended himself and his plans for the IMF money. "I’m not planning to just go out and buy a lot of shit and spend this on myself," Lucantoni defended. "I’m going to use this money to give back to my downtrodden community — which is the purpose of IMF bailouts, I believe. So first we’re gonna have a wicked awesome block party all Labor Day Weekend. There’ll be strippers and all three kinds of Bud — regular, Light, and Dry. And we’re trying to get Aerosmith to play in Joey’s yard."

"You know," added Lucantoni, "normally I hate the fuckin’ French, but those Krauts really came through for me this time. Thanks, IMF!"

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