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Friday, February 10, 2012

The $900 trillion suit

There's been a fair amount of publicity recently about Faisat Ogunbayo's recently filed $900 trillion suit against the New York City Administration for Child Services for having taken her children away from her.

Much of the publicity has centered on Ogunbayo's reported mental illness. Little has focused on her greed. But perhaps if she had sued for a more reasonable amount, say, $750 trillion, people might not be mocking her.

So far Mayor Bloomberg has not commented; he is undoubtedly fearful that such a sum would bankrupt the city.

Ogunbayo's name sounds Nigerian. I know from personal experience that Nigerians think big, as I frequently get emails from princes from Nigeria offering to wire me mouth-wateringly large sums of money if only I will send them my bank account number. Much as I'd like to consort with royalty, however, I haven't, because it just wouldn't feel right to take advantage of their generosity.

Unlike her countrymen, however, Ms. Ogunbayo seems to be more taker than giver. But perhaps I misjudge her. Maybe she only wants the money to help others. It is mind-bogglilng to think of the good that Ms. Ogunbayo could accomplish with that kind of money, even assuming she has to settle for, say, $500 trillion.

She could pay off our national debt (several times over). Then she could pay off the debts of Greece, Spain, Ireland, Iceland, and Portugal, thereby alleviating the global financial crisis. Afterward she could fully fund some of her favorite charities. Perhaps she wants to help orphans. Or save the tigers. And even after all that, she would actually have plenty left over for some pretty nice bling.

Heck, maybe we should root for her to win her suit. (If her lawyer can arrange a jury trial in the Bronx, she might actually be awarded that sum.)

Of course, she'll have to watch out for con men, who will pretend to love her just to get their hands on her money. (Faisat: I would love you for yourself, not your money, I promise.)

It is unfortunate that people like Bill Gates, and Mark Zuckerberg, and Warren Buffett, none of whom are worth more than $50 billion, will have a collective attack of insecurity.

Though, speaking frankly, it's about time those guys were put in their place anyway.