PTI chief Imran Khan says he will cut corruption by half exactly 9 days after coming into power. Detractors joke that this would be the greatest feat in magic since David Copperfield made a 150 ft. copper lady disappear in New York, but Imran is adamant he can pull it off.
How? By doubling the price of bribes.
“Bribes are too cheap,” he says, jumping on his seat like a spastic. “Anyone can pay off a policeman, a meter reader, have a fake passport made, evade custom and excise duties; we want to make bribes expensive, inaccessible; three of our best researchers sat down and worked out that by doubling the price of bribes we can half the amount of corruption.”
When pressed about his panel of experts he added, “One of them is our youth wing leader who’s just learned multiplication and division.”
“That is the kind of initiative we’re looking for in this party. It’s the youth that has to drive this country forward, when they’re old enough to get a license that is.”
But it’s not just the bribery he’s looking to half, it’s also the nepotism, the money laundering and embezzlement of state funds.
“Halving nepotism is easier. We’ll enact a law ensuring that people can only be related to paternal uncles and aunts, none of this maternal relations nonsense. With half the amount of relatives there will naturally be one third the amount of nepotism.”
Imran sits and smiles defiantly at the world outside; outside his heavily fortified, agency patrolled mansion in Zaman Park.
“Likewise, we will cut the state budget by 50% to make sure thefts from the treasury are suitably truncated and we’re planning a special scheme to offer money launderers amnesty as long as they reduce the volume of transactions by exactly ½.”
Asked why he plans to reduce corruption by exactly ½ and doesn’t just end it entirely, he responds with a wry smile, “People think I’m not an astute politician, but I tell you, we, all of us, we sat down and worked out how to end corruption entirely within a period of 9 days. It just wasn’t feasible.”
“Because that would’ve entailed legalizing all of it. Making bribery, embezzlement, fraud, money laundering, all of it legal. Now, we gave serious thought to doing that. But we felt that it went against the core principles of our party.”
“Honesty. We believe in honesty. Honestly. If somebody can come up with a way to honestly cheat I would be more than willing to take it up as a policy matter in the next party meeting.”
“You see, in our party everything is decided through a vote,” he beams. Even your own leadership? “Other than that,” he beams further.
“We want to affect real change, we want to bring a tsunami into this country.”
But tsunamis are violent, destructive forces of nature that can level entire civilizations. Why bring that to a country already reeling?
“Haha, no, we mean figuratively, it will be a tsunami of justice that will wash away all scoundrels from this country.”
What about the more extremist elements of society?
“Oh you won’t see them causing unrest on the streets anymore. They will all be in positions of power.”
And what about women?
“My personal life is my own business and has no bearing on what I am as a politician.”