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S.C. General Assembly Testing “Infinite Monkey Theorem?” May 29, 2007

Posted by fitsnews in SC Politics.

Monkey on typewriter


FITSNews – May 29, 2007 – We remain convinced that the average South Carolinian doesn’t give a monkey’s rear end about reforming the State Department of Transportation – nor are they especially concerned with deciphering the nuances between competing DOT reform bills offered by the S.C. House and Senate. We’ve written about DOT reform just once, and that was only because it gave us yet another opportunity to speculate about whether or not State Sen. Hugh Leatherman (Marxist-Leninist – Florence) plays with tiny communist figurines at his desk when no one is looking. Of course when people start calling each other monkeys, things do tend to get a bit more interesting.

“This is the worst bill I’ve ever seen,” a key Senate staffer told FITSNews today, referring to the DOT reform bill drafted by the S.C. House of Representatives. “An infinite number of monkeys working on an infinite number of typewriters couldn’t have drafted something this bad.”

For those of you unfamiliar with the Infinite Monkey Theorem, it basically holds that if you give an infinite number of monkeys an infinite amount of time behind a typewriter, they’ll end up writing Shakespeare. And yes, the author of the theorem (like our source on the quote above) was probably only a notch or two below us on the sarcastic smart ass scale.

Senators insist the DOT reform bill passed by the House is full of errors, specifically citing its failure to distinguish between a “board” and a “commission,” and its alternate usage of the contradictory terms “elected” and “appointed.” They also point out that the House bill references specific qualifications that are to be required of DOT commissioners, but then neglects to include what those qualifications are.

According to a Senator who spoke with FITSNews on the condition of anonymity, the bill also bungles the length of terms of commissioners, the process of filling vacant seats and would inadvertently create four new transportation improvement plans for the state as a result of using multiple names for the same plan, a definite bill-drafting no-no in a state that’s already got plenty of government to go around.

We’re not sure who’s right or wrong in this debate, we’re just glad someone has finally used an expression that accurately describes how the S.C. General Assembly operates.

Bananas all around, people!



1. yep - May 29, 2007

Is this about bad policy or bad syntax? Isn’t bad syntax a legislative counsel issue?

2. Key Senate Staffer - May 29, 2007

More “reliable” sources, Will? This time it’s a “key Senate Staffer” and a “Senator who spoke with FITSNews on the condition of anonymity.” How odd Will can never quote a source on the record. This blog makes the Infinite Monkey Theorem sound credible – with one monkey.

3. Newspaper Hack - May 29, 2007

It seems that the Infinite Monkey Theorem could basically explain the entire history of South Carolina politics from 1783-present. Well, you’d have to adjust for the “infinite number of monkeys putting using an infinite number of quills to write on an infinite amount of parchment,” but you get the idea.

4. Newspaper Hack - May 29, 2007

*stike “putting,” keep “using.” We need an editor.

5. Newspaper Hack - May 29, 2007

Oh, fuck. I misspelled “strike.” Really, I don’t feel so bad, though. I received two diplomas from USC because they made a typo on the first one, so there you go.

6. Syd - May 30, 2007

Apparently, “a key Senate staffer told FITSNews today” means the voices in Will’s head are at it again.

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