Ladies who lunch is a phrase to describe slim, well-off, old-money, well-dressed women who meet for lunch socially, normally during the working week. Typically, the women involved are married and non-working. Normally the lunch is in a restaurant, perhaps in a department store during shopping. Sometimes there is the pretext of raising money for charity.They sound so sheik - no?
Well I only wish someone, anyone, had sent the memo to Meg Whitman, Carly Fiorina, and Linda McMahon that they were invited to lunch. Why?
Between Meg Whitman, Carly Fiorina, and Linda McMahon, they gave $217 million to the “cause” of getting themselves elected as national political leaders. $217,000,000.00 of their own money. Now I believe in public service ... but spending $217,000,000.00 to not get elected just seems ... well, gross.
If the three lovely ladies had instead gotten together for lunch and spent ... say $2,000 on lunch (Christal is very expensive and they wouldn't want to settle for Cold Duck) they could have gotten together for 100,000 lunches. Yes that is lunch every day of the year for almost 300 years.
What else could they have done with all of that money?
The Daily Beast reports that:
- Whitman’s spending could have bought full tuition for 23,553 California residents at the University of California-Berkeley, which would almost double current undergraduate enrollment. She could have made 95,764 connections for at-risk youth through Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Los Angeles.
- Fiorina spending could have doubled the total assets of Goodwill of Southern California. It could have fully funded Pajaro Valley Unified School District for a year, saving the schools’ sports programs. Or, if Fiorina wanted to befriend folks closer to her mansion in Northern California, she could have increased the budget eight-fold of Raphael House, which provides low-income family services and shelter in San Francisco.
- McMahon spending would have covered a full year’s worth of salary and benefits for 802 state employees facing furloughs because of the state’s budget shortfall. It could have provided heating assistance to Connecticut families in need for seven years. It could have paid for 15 million school lunches across the whole country, or paid for two years of enhanced security for our troops in Iraq.
It strikes me that we spend far too much money on elections. Do we really need endless commercials disparaging the other candidate?
But it seems far more ludicrous, in a time when unemployment is so high, when millions struggle every day, that three people spend $217,000,000.00 to elect themselves to office.
I am glad to see more women participate in politics. We need more women and minorities taking active roles. But it should not cost $217,000,000.00 to do so!