WASHINGTON D.C. - In keeping with the Democrats' ambitious first hundred days of congress, Rep. Eliot Engel [D-NY] has introduced a bill calling for the criminalizing of "wanton proliferation of loose ball point pens." The legislation calls for all businesses with 5 or more walk-in customers a day to firmly secure their pens to the sales counter or face escalating fees.
"I ask you, when was the last time you actually threw away a pen because it was completely used up?" Engel rhetorically asked the gathered press crew, "Pens discarded prematurely account for 0.00006% of our landfills and it's high time businesses are held accountable for their blatant disregard for inkular waste."
"If you took all the excess pens unused each year in the US and placed them end to end they would circle the combined egos of Ted Kennedy, John Kerry, Charlie Rangel, and Harry Reid almost 2 times. So the problem is clearly not disappearing," Engel continued, "There are illiterate children in Ethiopia that would love a slightly used Rondo ball-point pen and we have a global responsibility to reign in our pendic consumption."
Business leaders maintain unencumbered pens are a service to their customers and expressed a desire to the keep the obstacles while writing a check for goods and services at a minimum.
"Businesses across the nation have always taken a proactive approach to securing wayward Bic and PaperMates," Thomas J. Donohue, president of US Chamber of Commerce said in statement issued on behalf of small businesses across America, "However the kleptomania in our customers has outpaced the pen chain technology."
Engel refused to acknowledge the businesses concerns, saying their time to act had passed.
"Clearly taping plastic spoons and silk flowers to Uni-Ball Jetstreams isn't working," Engel said, "so as with most things in life if you want it done right you have to involve the government."