Watch the preview: Nuts!
Who’s more American than Denny Crane? He owns more guns than the local militia and exercises every loophole possible to avoid paying taxes. Well… The Department of Homeland Security surely found out! Now I usually have a pet peeve for people stating the obvious, but I’m pretty sure Alan Shore isn’t someone you want to make an enemy… willingly at that. In the closing arguments Alan notes we can put 20,000 songs on a 4 inch tall iPod, but the Department of Homeland security cant erase a name from a no fly list? In fact here is the witty excerpt from Alan’s closing:
We’ve got kids in garages inventing Google and YouTube. Jets can not only fly by computer, but they can now take off and land on auto pilot. Should we truly be stumped by this No-Fly computer list? How about something so simple as issuing a flyer’s license? It could have your picture, fingerprints, you show it, scan the card and your fingers at the gate, if it’s a match you get your aisle seat! This can’t be undoable. Expensive? Maybe. But judging from recent spending patterns we’ve got billions to throw around. Halliburton alone has profited ten billion from the war, maybe we could get them to kick in?
Now as for the other lawyers in the firm, Shirley Schmidt finds herself in the middle of a difficult fight. Usually known for her famous paraphrased saying, “There are two things you need to know here. You work for Crane, Poole, and Schmidt. What’s the other? I’m Schmidt.” Shirley finds herself defending a teacher who had a child die in the classroom from a peanut allergy. Of course she wins, but not without the most compelling and awakening closing argument our country faces on the educational front. In fact the entire position and reality of said situation is so compelling take a gander for yourself at her closing statements.
Lawsuits are about allocating burden. For example, we want our cars to be safer, so we hit the manufacturers with a judgment that makes it more cost-effective to install the airbag. The problem here, as Ms. Bixby correctly states, is we have more and more special needs kids going into our public schools, combined with an unprecedented escalation in auto-immune diseases, autism. The peanut allergy alone has doubled in recent years.
“So, who do we heap this responsibility on? Who else? The teachers. The average annual starting salary for a teacher is $32,000. For that, we ask them to teach, police, provide emotional and social guidance. In some schools, they actually have to clean the toilets. Now, let’s throw in healthcare.
“This teacher, she works 65-hour weeks. In addition to her actual classroom duties, she teaches sex education to the older kids, she teaches a standardized test the school mandates in order to qualify for funding under the No Child Left Behind Act. She spends another ten hours a month meeting with parents. She supervises extracurricular activities, goes on overnight class trips, cleans and disinfects toys, coaches. She teaches fire drill safety procedures, healthy eating habits, she’s certified in CPR, first aid, and food sanitation. “She is so overextended that when her own father had to undergo a life-threatening medical procedure, she couldn’t be at the hospital. So she called on her cell phone to see if he had lived. Which he hadn’t. She then turned away from her students, so as not to traumatize them with her grief, which as a teacher she was expected to internalize.
“She has no savings … no house. And today she’s being sued because, without her knowledge, one of her students snuck a bite-sized candy bar containing traces of peanut into her classroom. Now she’s being publicly blamed for the death of a child whose parents had the means to implement a multitude of safeguards. They implemented none of them except a teacher.
“Is it any wonder half our teachers are quitting the profession outright within five years? Never mind who’s going to handle the epi-pen. Who’s going to teach?”
Now who is left but that sly blonde turned local office friend-with-benifit Denise! All I can say is that I have room for one more friend in my circle. Though I’m not sure why she won’t give Alan a shot at her, hell he is much more entertaining than Jeffery Coho and Brad combined.
Last but not least we address Clarence… or whoever he is in this part of the episode. Probably the most versatile up and coming actor I’ve seen since Eddie Murphy. Clarence and Claire continue to bond as Claire helps him with his confidence and self identity. I foresee a bright future for Clarence on this show. He passed the Bar exam and is a lawyer, all he needs is a little personal development. He is the token charachter that filled the large void left by Jerry “Hands” Espinsen. Jerry was a delightful addition to the show and unfortunately only returns periodically when in need of his dear friend Alan Shore.
Anyone have any Scotch?